Had enough of diets already? Ayesha Muttucumaru tries one that really works - but step away from the scales, this one's for your hair...
‘Diet’ seems to be the buzzword of the moment, as we look to swap the mince pies, mulled wine and hangovers for smoothies, juices and coconut water instead.
5:2 diets , Atkins and Paleos aside, have you ever thought of going on a hair diet instead? I certainly hadn’t, but with my hair crispier than a burnt turkey on Christmas Day and current levels of shedding causing me to produce balls of hair akin to an army of hamsters, something had to be done; and that’s where Pantene and their Great British Hair Diet came in.
Designed to provide a personalised hair care plan of Pantene products for your particular needs, it claims to ‘Give your locks the love they deserve for it to be at its best’ in 21 days. With my New Year’s resolution being to use my straighteners less often for the good (and longevity) of my hair, I was more than willing to accept Pantene’s challenge, albeit skeptical that a range of products could really make a noticeable difference in just three weeks.
Getting started was simple and began with filling in a questionnaire on the Great British Hair Diet website . Step 1 determined my hair’s general condition and calculated its ‘Hair BMI’ (mine was 16). Step 2 then assessed my particular hair type and recommended the best Pantene range for it, taking into account whether I coloured it, its texture, thickness and my specific hair goals. I was matched with the brand’s Smooth & Sleek range.
Step 3 then explained how to put my Hair BMI into practice. My score reflected the Pro-Vitamin points I should aim to reach every week. Each Pantene product had a particular Pro-Vitamin score ranging from 1-3 and then I simply had to use each of the products recommended enough times to equal that total.
So did it work, and did I reach for my straighteners at all over the three week period?
My hair has a natural (at times, erratic) wave to it and what the range did was tame the chaotic halo of frizz that used to permanently follow me around and transformed it into soft, healthy waves. It’s not poker straight, but instead it’s given my natural hair type a bolster of health and converted it into something that I wouldn’t want to straighten the heck out of. Furthermore, my level of hair loss has started to decline too. Good news for both my hairline and my shower plughole.
For me, the star products from the range were the fast-absorbing and non-greasy Frizz Fighter , £4.69, and the lightweight Heat Defence Gloss Spray, £4.49, which has a great nozzle to finely disperse the product throughout my hair without clogging. Each gave a sleek, polished finish to my blow-dry blasted locks.
The one product that I felt was missing though, was a leave-in treatment that was rich enough to provide an intense dose of hydration to my ends on days when they were feeling particularly dry. Other than that, I was very happy with the results and in particular I found that my BMI score simplified my hair care regime overall, by discouraging overuse and resultant product build-up so that it didn’t feel weighed down or greasy.
With my other New Year’s resolutions (eat more veg, drink more water, eat more fruit), each falling by the waist side, at least this is one diet that I can actually envisage sticking to.