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Lush and I: The Shampoo Wars!

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Lush and I: The Shampoo Wars!

Lovelies, just how important is your hair?! Mine is so important and I really feel as if it could define me which is why I try so hard (maybe too hard) to make the most of it.

My ideal hair is something like the locks adorned by Angelina Jolie and Jess on The Real Hustle. Both have healthy, glossy, shiny dark locks but neither of them have extreme volume or tight curls so why if I’m not using a shampoo called Big then I am using one called Curly Wurly?! Curly Wurly and Big are more hair nightmare then dream for me!

Therefore, it follows that Big shampoo and Curly Wurly shampoo from Lush have been the two major staples in my beauty routine over the last couple of months. Huh?!?!

To note, I tend to use both of these shampoos twice. I never get a lather and hardly any bubbles or soapiness, especially with Big, the first time that I use it.

When I brought these products, Big cost £9.90 for 330g (and with my current once a week regime, this goes very far). Meanwhile Curly Wurly costs £8.60 for 220g. I would say one pot will last me about 4-6 weeks using the regime detailed below.

Now to the review. . .

I started using Big shampoo first. This was just after I had finished the pre-shampoo treatments which I could not afford to repurchase. I was intrigued by what I had heard about the Big Shampoo. Big contains Sea Salt; Lemon and Lime; Softening seaweed and Cocoa Butter. I had never heard of a shampoo with solid bits before. I read somewhere that this shampoo acted as an exfoliator for hair and to me, this made sense. It would break down and get rid of all the gooey and sticky chemicals that I constantly seem to dowse my hair in as well as all that rubbish that my hair just picks up in daily life eg. exhaust fumes, smoke, make up/beauty residues. The solid flakes would be able to loosen, release all this rubbish and scrub my hair squeaky clean. Clean hair, yay! However, I had concerns that such a routine was a bit harsh and too rough for my hair but soon forgot this when I read that there was Cocoa butter in the shampoo. I love Cocoa Body Butter so surely Cocoa Butter could make any product gentle?!

Lush claim that with Big, ‘shine, softness and optimal volume are at your fingertips’. When I started to use Big, my hair really did feel throughly cleansed and so soft. The flakes rinsed out easily enough. However, I was a little worried about the effect a “heavier, slightly more solid’ shampoo would have on my hair extensions. For a couple of hours after a hairwash, the rows would feel as if they were sitting in a slightly different place but after a couple of hours, this feeling either disappeared or I just did not notice it anymore. My hair was not flat after using Big but nor was it massive by any means. However, it still looked better, it was less puffy and less frizz made it more managable.

So far, so good!

However, it was only after I started using the Big shampoo that I began hearing negative reviews about the shampoo. In fact, suddenly everything I heard/read seemed to be negative. The main concern was that it could dry your hair out. Oh, not good. Especially for me. I already feel as if my hair is very dry and damaged. Personally, I don’t think my hair became drier just because I used this shampoo. However, the panic button had squealed and I started to look at ways, others were employing to counteract this. Some people were using Big about once a month or so as an intensive, clarifying shampoo. Others were using it more often but mixing it with an alternative moisturising shampoo. Note, there seems to be lots of reviews in Beauty blogs and on You Tube for these products. You should find some easily. I read and heard lots. I know there is a review from Bubblegarm and I’m sure Lollipop26 mentioned Big in a You Tube video.

I brought Curly Wurly and used it alone once or twice a week and then for my final hairwash each week, I would mix some Curly Wurly with Big for a deeper hair cleanse.

Curly Wurly was a Lush shampoo that I knew nothing about except that it was very moisturising (it is 15% coconut) and was reportedly suitable for any hair type, not just Curly Hair. When I brought the shampoo, the assistant made a point of making sure I knew how to use the shampoo. He said that it really needed to be worked in to the hair for a minute or so. I was very, very surprised when I opened the pot to see that this shampoo had solid bits in, like Big. I don’t know why, I just was not expecting it. This shampoo was sweeter then Big (a lovely peach colour) and very, very sticky. Now I understand why the assistant said the product needed to be worked in. Otherwise nothing would be loosened up and once applied, the gloop would just stick there where it had been applied. It needs to be worked in to clean the hair and for the good things to be dispersed.

Curly Wurly does give shine and again, makes the hair very soft. I would say it has pretty much the same effect on my hair as Big did. This one is allegedly less drying but I would say it is much more difficult to use. Primarily because it is so hard to rinse out. Obviously I might find it harder then some of you with the sticky flakes getting caught up in the rows of my extensions but I don’t think anybody would be able to rinse this out very quickly and I sometimes have to leave a few remnants in until I rinse out the conditioner. Otherwise I seriously could run out of hot water! Curly Wurly is made up of Coconut, Cocoa and Avocado.

Lush claim that Curly Wurly has a delicious scent. Both of these shampoos were scented. Big smells like a couple of exciting raw ingredients and Curly Wurly smells like the gorgeous pud or cream that the ingredients make. Both shampoos are pleasantly fragrant and much nicer then the overpowering scents of the Pre-shampoo treatments discussed in an earlier post. Interestingly you may also want to note, that I used a shampoo from the Boots 97% natural haircare range, Naked, for the first time recently and found the scent much falsier and manufactured then the Lush shampoos. In fact, it was slightly off-putting.

When it comes to ease of use, I prefer Big. Big is much easier to rinse out. The sharp salt(?) flakes are not trapped in a sticky gloop. However, I am put off by all the warnings about the drying effect that Big is supposed to have and consequently use this shampoo less then Curly Wurly. In fact, it is very rare that I use Big alone now without mixing it in with Curly Wurly.

I also do not like how unsettled my hair, in particular my extensions, feel after using Big. It really feels a bit windswept and out of place although it actually looks sleeker and acts more managable (but still feels wrong).

When it comes to overall results, there is little difference between Big and Curly Wurly. My hair may feel ever so slightly cleaner with Big but otherwise there is little in it. Both give shine, softness and managibility. I can only think of one drug store shampoo brand which could achieve so much and that would be, Aussie. The Lush shampoos do seem slightly cheaper then the ones I buy from my hair salon but I would say that the Lush ones are just as good.

I am going to put it out there and say I prefer Curly Wurly but to be honest, it is mainly only because I’m a scaredy cat and worried what effects Big could have on my hair in the long term especially since fingers crossed, the condition of my hair should be improving. Maybe the condition was so bad before, Big couldn’t make it any worse. It would be interesting but scary to see what effect Big could have on healthier more typical hair. Another concern I have, with Big, is that if it is a hair exfoliator, it may break down any hair dye quicker then a conventional shampoo. After all, aren’t exfoliating scrubs what we rely on to remove patchy tans?!

I do not like the sticky flakes that I find falling out of my hair after using Curly Wurly but I have no concerns about the long term effects that Curly Wurly could have on my hair. To the contrary, I would have some optimism in the continous use of Curly Wurly.

I would repurchase both of these shampoos again. In fact, I have already used two pots of Big. However before I buy them again, I am keen to gain more experience of natural haircare products. I’m very interested in the Phyto range as well as some of the Holland and Barrett ones and I’ve just brought a Naked shampoo and conditioning treatment from Boots.

Have you used any of the shampoos mentioned here? Any thoughts on these or on Lush haircare?



Written by essjay23x

March 9, 2010 at 10:00 am

Scent-sational soaps!

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Scent-sational soaps!

Hi Girlies, welcome to another post in my ‘Lush and I’ series!

As you know I was very disappointed with Lush when I tried the soap, Vanilla In The Mist. Well, I think consolation is required and I’m very tempted to pop in to Lush this weekend and get some. It may just be time to repurchase two of the most super-duper, amazingly gorgeous soaps in the whole wide world.

I guess you are all wondering which soaps have earnt such a great accolade.

I doubt that the first will be a big surprise. Tra la lah, it is ‘Honey I Washed The kids’. This soap has a huge following. It was my very, first Lush soap in five plus years. I was not very excited about it as I have never had a thing for soaps. I only brought this one because everybody else is so excited by it and I had some gift value left to spend and wowee, what a lucky random buy it turned out to be!


This soap looks lovely, it smells gorgeous and feels fabulous to wash with. This caramel gives off the most beautiful scent and is very moisturising especially as the soap breaks down and the soap almost starts to liquidfy and ooze. Meanwhile the outer crust is very useful for gentle exfoliation. I adore this soap and can assure you that I will be buying it again and again.

Now the second soap was not one I expected to fall for.

Firstly, it was not ‘Honey I Washed The Kids’ which I had already discovered and had just finished, leaving me feeling so, soo, soap abandoned (a wretched emotion that I had never experienced before).

Secondly, I’m not a big fan of currents, raisins and sultanas so why would I like a soap, that I had never even heard of, called ‘Sultana of Soap’?!


Well, for several reasons actually!

Firstly, it smells beautiful. While ‘Honey I Washed The Kids’ smells gorgeous and fabulous. ‘Sultana of Soap’ is more subtle but is just unmistakenly so, soo, pretttyyy and I felt gives out faint hints of springtime blossoms and sweet, sweet sweeties. It could be a classic!

Secondly, this princess of a bar glides effortlessly along the skin.

Thirdly, my svelte little tiny bar seems to be lasting for ages.

I don’t think this soap is very well-known but please Girls, next time you are in Lush, have a sniff and maybe get a small little sample. I’m pretty sure you won’t regret it!

And one more thing you might not regret is taking a peek at BeautyMarked19. Sophie is having the most amazing giveaway to celebrate reaching 500 followers. The prize includes perfume, MAC, Gosh and more.

Also, Legs Eleven7 is having a giveaway with some mighty fine little treats making up the winners stash. Such pretty colours. You can have a look at her very popular blog and enter here.

Right Treacles, I’m off sniff to some perfumes. I think I owe you a perfume review or two. I hope you are all ok and making some exxxxciting plans for the weekend. Don’t forget to keep commenting, subscribing, tweeting and feel free to spread/tweet the word. This mighty mission of mine can never have too many followers or too much advice.


Written by essjay23x

March 4, 2010 at 8:32 pm

Yummy in other ways. . .

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Yummy in other ways. . .

I expect that many of you have already heard about the product that I am going to discuss today in my ‘Lush and I’ series. It is the Yummy Yummy Yummy Shower Cream Wash.

Now I have heard a lot of people rave about this product so I was surprised when I used it that I just felt well, so indifferent. It is ok, it doesn’t do anything wrong. The scent is pleasant but I wouldn’t go as far as yummy and certainly not yummy, yummy, yummy. It does lather more then the Lush soap bars but still is not in the same bubble league as other cream washes I’ve used such as Soap and Glory’s. It does ok but nothing more. When I’m tired, I don’t think I’ll have a nice bath and I can use some of that Yummy Yummy Yummy to unwind. Instead I get in to the bath or shower and realise that I can not reach my soap/wash product of choice and grab this instead and then when I’ve finished washing, I don’t have to lather myself in lotions to get rid of the scent. I can barely smell Yummy, Yummy, Yummy on me and I like to be able to smell something fresh lingering on my skin when I’ve washed otherwise I fear that the  job has not been done properly. So I have to have the lotion on stand by just to get a scent. I have been reading the Lush brochure and it says the product is filled to the brim with fresh strawberries. I just wish I could smell them as soon as I step out of the water. It also says that there is almond oil, honey water and passionflower seed oil too. It all certainly sounds very delicious and in fact, even when you pull the lid up and smell the shower cream in the bottle, a lovely gorgeous smell seems to waft in to the air but I don’t know, I’m still not sure if I would buy this product at full price for myself again. I’m happy to use it if it is there but it isn’t a potion that excites me. This product does not really do anything wrong. I guess that I just find it rather bland.

However, bland things can have their uses. Lollipop26 discussed Yummy, Yummy, Yummy recently. I think that she rather liked it and said that often she will just use it for handwash. So I had a go. I work in a care environment and my hands are constantly in water or been dowsed by alcohol gels and during the last few chilly months, I’ve really noticed the horrible effects that this is having on my hands. I even try very carefully to hide them when I take photos for you, gals. They look horrible at the moment. I’m thinking of trying the Body Shop Hemp Hand Cream, has anybody tried it?

Anyway I’m going off track again but when I used the Yummy product to wash my hands, they did not feel quite as tight afterwards and on my hands, I could smell quite a sweet, fruity, spring smell. Lush also suggest using it for hair washing when you are in a hurry. Well, I wasn’t in a hurry but my shampoo was in the other room so I used this. My hair again benefitted from the same scent and I could still smell it later in the evening. It smelt nicer and fresher then many shampoos. However, my hair did need washing again more or less the next day.

Then as if I haven’t tried the product in many different ways already, I was reading the comments that somebody had left Zoella and this person said that they use Yummy, Yummy, Yummy to wash their make up brushes. Now, many of you know that I really want to look after my new Sigma brushes but am struggling to find a brush cleaning product to help. Well, I tried Yummy, Yummy, Yummy and it seemed to work ok. The fluffier brushes are still very soft and do not seem matted or dried at all. I have little experience of brush cleaners but most of the dirt seems to have been removed even some of the Revlon ColorStay (not all) and I have not had (fingers crossed) one new little blemish on my face since I used this product for brush cleaning last weekend so I think I will do the same thing this weekend and if the good results continue then maybe there will be a reason to repurchase Yummy, Yummy, Yummy after all. It is probably cheaper then brush cleaner, yay!

Ha! What is the bet that I repurchase it as a brush cleaner and then can not stop using it on my skin?! Sometimes products grow on me. Normally, it is as I’m just about to finish the bottle. Typical!

So any Yummy, Yummy, Yummy tales? Or have any of you got any secrets when it comes to a product that is meant to do one thing but you use to do another? Don’t forget, please keep commenting and subscribing. I lurvee your company!!!


Written by essjay23x

February 27, 2010 at 10:00 am

Oh dear, Vanilla In The Mist!

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Oh dear, Vanilla In The Mist!

When I went to London last week, I decided to pop in to Lush. It was time for a new Lush soap. I was thinking maybe Rockstar as there is a lot of hype for this soap.

I picked Rockstar up and gave it a sniff. It smelt nice but quite fragrant, in a perfume way and I’ve already got a lot of perfumes.

Anyway I was just deciding if Rockstar should accompany me to the till when another soap caught my eye, Vanilla In The Mist. Before Christmas, I was very in to a Vanilla Body Butter from Boots. I found that the Vanilla scent is nice and clean. It also provides a good base if I wanted to apply other fragrances. So I had to pick up the Vanilla In The Mist soap bar and one sniff of the grogeous fresh vanilla scent and I was sold.

However, it only smells gorgeous and vanillary when it is dry. I was really disappointed with this product when I used it to bath. You can just about smell the vanilla underneath some horrible heavy smell. This second smell is not fresh at all. Instead of ice cream and sand, it makes me think of cigars and old moth bitten blazers. I found it did not really lather and instead with some work just left a bit of an oily, sticky yellow type residue which looked revolting on my pale skin. I know it should not really matter what the soap looks like while it is working after all, you are going to rinse it off but this for me, was the final straw. This soap does not make me feel pretty at all. In fact, I don’t even feel particularly clean after using it and have had to lather myself in body lotion.

For me, this is probably the most disappointing product since my mission officially began at the beginning of the year.

Have any of you tried this soap? What did you think? Could it possibly grow on me? What soaps from Lush do you like? I do have a couple of raves coming up.

On a happier note, check out The Make Up Goddess Guru. This blog is Sophie’s (BeautyMarked19) third Guest blogger and the eye make up in this blog is extraordinary and so inspiring. Joanna has already reached 100 followers and to celebrate is having a little giveaway. Here is the link for more information,


Written by essjay23x

February 19, 2010 at 1:17 pm