Tag-Archive for » shampoo bar review «

Thursday, July 02nd, 2009 | Author:

It’s been a while! This will probably be the last shampoo bar review for a while, because I’ve settled on a routine I’m really happy with and am done playing the field, lol. This is a great bar called Fragrant Tresses from Heart of Iowa Soapworks.

Ingredients: Castor oil, Water, Coconut oil, Palm kernel oil, Olive oil, Sodium hydroxide, Rice bran oil, Fragrance oils, Jojoba

Smell: This is a synthetically fragranced bar that smells a lot like commercial shampoos. I purposely tried this one out because of dh’s smell-aversion to a lot of the shampoo bars I’ve tried.

Texture: This is a nice, hard soap that lathers up to a rich, creamy lather.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes,this was a very cleansing bar — leaving that squeaky clean feeling. Great for those who don’t want anything left on their hair to weight it down.

How does my hair look and feel? Very shiny, slightly on the grabby side.

Price plus shipping: $6.50 + $2.75 shipping for a 4 oz bar

Verdict: I give this one a thumbs up :) As I mentioned earlier, it is more on the cleansing side so probably best for those with fine, limp hair.

Saturday, March 07th, 2009 | Author:

It seems there is a neverending supply of great shampoo bars out there! This time around, I’ll be reviewing the Unscented shampoo bar from Earth Muffin.

Ingredients: Saponified oils of sweet almond, Sunflower High Oleic, Avocado, Olive, Jojoba OIl and Castor, silk protein, wheat protein, panthenol

Smell: This is an unscented bar, with a nice, fresh, soapy smell.

Texture: Wow! This bar gives such a rich, creamy lather — tons and tons of it. It feels like a wonderful, indulgent treat, washing my hair with it.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes, it is a balanced cleanse and is definitely more on the conditioning end of the spectrum. I could feel that my hair had just a bit of something left on it to keep it smoothed and conditioned.

How does my hair look and feel? Very soft, slightly heavy, but not in a bad way.

Price plus shipping: $5.00 + $3.00 shipping for a 4 oz bar

Verdict: Definite thumbs up :) I think this is a great bar for those with dryer hair. You definitely won’t need a separate conditioner with this one. May be too heavy for those with fine/limp hair.

Saturday, February 28th, 2009 | Author:

If you are looking for an amazing variety of shampoo bars, and an incredible wealth of information about them as well, look no further than Chagrin Valley Soap and Craft Company. Ida has created 16 different shampoo bars, along with a general guide for which ones work best for what type of hair here. Seriously, there is so much information on this site, that you could spend hours happily reading about shampoo bars.

I purchased four sample bars, and will be reviewing my current favorite, the Summer Sunshine bar.

Ingredients: Saponified oils of castor bean, coconut, palm kernel, wheat germ, sunflower, babassu, jojoba, palm, and expeller pressed canola; filtered rainwater; coconut milk; essential oils of lavender, sweet orange, pink grapefruit, lime, rosemary, and ylang ylang; sea kelp; vitamin E oil; and rosemary oil extract.

Smell: I truly love the smell of this shampoo bar. First of all, I’m a sucker for citrus. And it also turns out that I *love* ylang ylang. I never knew that about myself. This scent is such a nice blend of the fruity and the floral — it really makes me feel pampered and lingers lightly in my hair for most of the day.

Texture: This is a medium-hard bar that lathers really nicely. I get lots of rich lather which enhances the spa-feeling I’m already getting from the scent.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Absolutely! I find it is a balanced clean, not too dry or stripping. I have read on other boards that many people find this to be a cleansing and drying bar, so your mileage may definitely vary.

How does my hair look and feel? So soft, silky and shiny!

Price plus shipping: $6.60 + $5.70 flat-rate shipping (for orders up to $41.00) for a 6-7 oz bar

Verdict: Huge double thumbs up! This is quickly becoming one of my favorite bars :)

Monday, February 02nd, 2009 | Author:

I purchased a bunch of samples from Mema’s Cold Process soaps because she has so many lovely-sounding fragrances like Ginger Lime, Plumeria, and Pomegranate. The ones I’ve tried so far are the Cucumber Aloe and Plumeria.

Ingredients: olive oil, canola, jojoba, goat milk, glycerin, coconut, palm, avocado, sweet almond, kernel, rice bran, nettle oil, sodium hydroxide.

Mema’s shampoo bars have mostly the same base ingredients with different fragrances and extras added in.

Smell: This soap has a very very mild scent — even the scented ones. Mostly what I smell are the base oil, which have a soft, cake batter smell. The fragrance is really only noticeable during the lather-up, and not so much as a smell that would linger in your hair after it’s dry.

Texture: These bars are quite a bit softer than most of the other I’ve tried. The lather is maybe not as bubbly as some, but still enough to get the job done.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes! As I’ve tested more and more bars, the thing I’ve honed in on to really check is for any waxiness or residue deep under all that hair (like close to the scalp, halfway between the nape of my neck and the crown of my head). This bar cleans well, and no residue left behind.

How does my hair look and feel? This is a nice, conditioning bar, and my hair feels nice and soft without being weighed down or greasy feeling.

Price plus shipping: $4.50 to 5.00 plus ~$2.00 shipping for a 4 oz bar

Verdict: Thumbs up :) This bar is more on the conditioning end, but also cleanses well. I would say it’s good for normal to dry hair.

Saturday, January 10th, 2009 | Author:

Here’s a shampoo bar from the maker of my favorite face cream (I’ll save that for a later post), DressGreen. Lauren offers three different scents (Chamomile and Calendula, Rosemary Peppermint and Sweet Orange), and I’ll be reviewing the unscented version, which she calls UnDressed.

Ingredients: distilled water, coconut oil, olive oil, palm oil, sodium hydroxide, castor oil, cocoa butter, jojoba oil, meadowfoam oil, wheat germ oil, vitamin E

According to Lauren, the meadowfoam seed oil “adds shine and moisture to the hair and scalp.”

Smell: This is a truly unscented soap — even the base oils don’t really come through in the smell. It just smells fresh and soapy.

Texture: This bar is very hard and glides smoothly over my hair. It works up into a nice, light lather.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes, very well. This is another soap that strikes a good balance between cleansing well without being drying.

How does my hair look and feel? It feels very soft, light and clean. I love it!

Price plus shipping: $6.00 plus $2.50 for a 5 ounce bar

Verdict: Total thumbs up. I really love Lauren’s shop and this is just another example of her excellent and effective products. As an aesthetic plus, her items are beautifully packaged and labeled.

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 | Author:

I debated on whether to delay my review on this soap, as it seems that Dragon’s Den is temporarily shut down due to a family emergency (hope everything’s okay, Amanda!). But I’ve decided to go ahead and write my review now, while the experience is still fresh in my mind.

Ingredients: Olive, palm kernel, and castor oils, water, lye, cocoa butter and hemp oil, honey, grapefruit seed extract, essential oil blend (Lemon, Lavender, Bitter Almond, and Ginger)

Smell: This soap has a light, slightly earthy smell which is really only detectable if you hold the soap right up to your nose. Afterwards, the only smell I noticed on my hair was the comforting smell of soap.

Texture: This is a nice, hard shampoo bar that glides well over my hair and lathers up really nicely. The bubbles are really slippery and long lasting (as opposed to some soaps which seem to break down faster and don’t give that slippery / lather-y feel).

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes, in a wonderful way. Both hair and scalp were left feeling light and clean.

How does my hair look and feel? I loved the way this bar made my hair feel — it was really light, yet silky, so I’m thinking it left something behind to condition my hair, but in a very non-greasy, non-heavy way. I had thought the only way to get this effect was with silk proteins, but maybe it’s the honey or something, working its magic here.

Price plus shipping: $6.00 + $2.50 for a 5 oz bar

Verdict: Two big thumbs up! I’ll be visiting again in January when Amanda opens back up.

Friday, November 07th, 2008 | Author:

Shampoo bar number four is Hot Summer Nights by Baby Bird Bath Works. This was actually the first shampoo bar I ever tried. I’ve been holding off on reviewing it because I’ve been waiting for Merna, the shop owner, to make some unscented soap. Although I really like the fragrance, I’ve found that I’m more sensitive to smells these days and anything that has a fragrance tends to distract me. However, I was in the mood for fragrance this morning, so I decided to use my Hot Summer Nights and see if it’s as good as I remembered, after having sampled all these other shampoo bars… It is!

Ingredients: Beer, saponified oils of (olive, coconut, palm, cocoa butter, castor) fragrance

This is one of the simplest soaps I’ll be reviewing, ingredients-wise. But I think this soap demonstrates that you don’t actually need a lot of additives to make an exceptional product. Must be in the technique of how it’s made. I’m starting to realize that soapmaking is a lot like baking. Two bars can have the same exact ingredients, just like two cookies can, but the end result is just as dependent on the proportions of the ingredients and skills of the soapmaker / baker.

Smell: This will be the only bar I review that has fragrance oils added. As I mentioned, I prefer light or no scents. As fragrances go though, this is a really pleasant one — fresh and fruity. Here’s a quote from Merna’s listing, since I’m not that great at describing fragrances: “Then we fragranced it with a wonderful blend of summery scents including melon, kiwi, citrus fruits and lime. It smells like a sweet breeze on a hot night without being overwhelmingly fruity.” I know Merna’s working on some specially formulated shampoo bars that will be unscented, and I am really looking forward to picking some up.

Texture: This has been the yardstick that I’ve measured my shampoo bar testing against. This bar glides over my hair like butter on hot corn on the cob. Then it lathers up beautifully with rich, long lasting bubbles.

Did it clean my hair and scalp? Yes, absolutely. Both hair and scalp come out squeaky clean.

How does my hair look and feel? This bar somehow manages to find that rare balance between cleaning well and leaving my hair conditioned at the same time. I think I could easily skip the leave-in conditioner. The comb glides effortlessly through my hair, and even when soaking wet, my hair has that glide-y feeling I was talking about earlier. Once it’s dry, it feels super soft and glossy. I should probably mention that this might be a soap that is too heavy for those with really fine hair.

Price plus shipping: $4.50 + $2.80 for a 4 oz bar. She’s sold out now, but I happen to know there’s an unscented batch on the way.

Verdict: Total thumbs up. This is one of my absolute favorites!