When it comes to washing my hair, I’m admittedly a creature of habit. Suds are usually my safe zone when it comes to a deep clean, with previous dalliances with 'gentle cleansers' having left my roots greasy and my ends dry. However, cue L’Oreal Paris’ new range of Low Shampoos to convince me otherwise - a duo of cleanser-conditioner hybrids designed to turn traditional shampooing on its head, and a concept for which I’m the perfect guinea pig for.
What exactly is ‘low shampooing?’
Low impact and low cost seem to be the main goals behind the concept, with each of the two low shampoos in the line having been created with a delicate and dry hair type in mind: Colour Protect Low Shampoo for those with coloured hair and Extraordinary Oil Low Shampoo for those whose locks are particularly fragile and prone to breakage.
With foam-free and sulphate surfactant-free formulas, the idea is to help minimise the effect of stripping or hair damaging friction caused by the usual ‘lather, rinse, repeat’ technique and use them in place of your regular haircare routine once or twice a week. Three minutes is all it takes, claims the brand and at £6.99 a pop, their price tag makes for a bank balance-friendly alternative to more expensive options.
At 400ml, the bottles are definitely on the bulkier end of the bathroom scale. Upon reading the instructions though, their size begins to make perfect sense. With 10-15 pumps recommended, the amount needed is a bit comical to begin with. However, it actually turned out to be just the right amount for my thick and wavy mid-length hair, with its balmy texture spreading like the smoothest of butters when massaged in from roots to ends.
Both smelt beautiful and rinsed out easily three minutes later (leaving enough time to tend to shower gel and/or shaving needs). Instructions were easy to follow and the ritual, refreshingly simple.
...were highly favourable. Both low shampoos in the line delivered effective cleansing without compromising on care. Colour Protect was my own personal preference, with UVA/UVB filters and a cocktail of conditioning ingredients leaving tinted locks looking more vibrant and more protected in the long-run. My roots were left feeling clean, my ends soft and hair overall more manageable and ‘swooshy’ (technical term there). Having skipped conditioner in order to take as accurate a view as possible, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was actually fine without it. So much so, that I'd be tempted to use it on its own in the future.
While I was skeptical at first, 'low shampooing' is definitely something I’ll be incorporating into my regime going forward. Having saved valuable minutes (and hot water) in the shower with a second dose of lathering and a separate conditioner taken out of the equation, it’s certainly proven to be a haircare shake-up that's been worth stepping out of my comfort zone for.