Back in March when I took advantage of Ulta’s “buy one, get one” offer on butter LONDON nail polish, I had to buy a bunch of other stuff to get to $50 so I could get free shipping. (What a racket.) I’m always on the lookout for products that work well with my naturally sort-of-wavy, sort-of-curly, sort-of-frizzy, stupid hair, so I picked up a few from Marc Anthony’s Oil of Morocco line.
First of all, no, it’s not that Marc Anthony, ex-husband of J. Lo, he of the ghoulishly sunken cheekbones. It’s this Marc Anthony, Toronto salon owner. Admittedly, I thought it was singer/actor Marc Anthony when I bought the stuff–not that this had any influence on my purchase. If anything, it almost made me less likely to buy it. But I figured, what the hell.
The Marc Anthony products were also “buy one, get one” so of course I had to choose two items. I bought the Oil of Morocco Argan Oil Volume Shine Hairspray (does anyone else think there’s one too many “oil”s in that name?) and the Dream Waves Beach Spray, which came with a free sample pack of the Oil of Morocco Deep Hydrating Conditioning Treatment.
Argan oil is supposed to be really good for dry, curly hair. And having just moved back to the East Coast, land of high humidity, I need all the help I can get to keep my curly hair from frizzing out of control, especially because I let it air dry 99 percent of the time.
The hairspray is decent. It has both a pleasant floral scent and an overpowering hairspray scent, all at once. I find that I have to step out of the bathroom to spray, then step back into the bathroom to escape the cloud that threatens to asphyxiate me. Several reviewers on Ulta’s website commented that the spray leaves a nice fragrance in their hair all day, but I have not had this experience.
The hold is good enough to seal my hair and prevent it from frizzing, which is really what I look for in a hairspray. If you use a heavy hand, it is rather sticky until it dries and stiff after it dries. You could easily give yourself a hair helmet if you use too much.
At $8.99, the hairspray isn’t exactly a bargain. I had previously been using a TRESemmé hairspray for curly hair that they don’t appear to make any longer because I can’t find it anywhere. TRESemmé is about half the cost of Marc Anthony, so while the Marc Anthony is fine, I’ll probably try something else next time. I do like that the Marc Anthony product is sulfate-free (the fewer chemicals propelled in my direction, the better).
I’m very ambivalent about the beach spray. The scent is very pleasant, somewhat reminiscent of coconut (not that there’s any actual coconut oil in it; I’m sure the fragrance is artificial). I was hoping that I would be able to use the beach spray and not have to use hairspray on top of it, but that is not the case. Without hairspray, my hair is frizz-central.
Salon stylists have used beach sprays on my hair in the past, which is why I keep trying them, because my hair always looks so good when they do it. The beach spray does seem to help my curls keep their spiral shape a bit better, but really, it’s just one more product to buy, store, and use. I have enough products already, and this one doesn’t make enough of an impact on my hair to make it worth my while (or $8.99).
I did rather enjoy the deep conditioner though. The free sample packet was a generous size. I used it once a week for six weeks (my hair is not quite a chin-length bob; obviously if you have long hair, you would need to use more product each time and it would not last as long). The scent is delightful–somewhat like almonds–and the thickness is what you would expect from a deep conditioning product.
My hair felt softer on the days I used the conditioner, but I wouldn’t call it a miracle product or anything. At $2.99 per packet, I consider it to be a reasonable price for a deep conditioning treatment. The next time I’m trying to pad my Ulta.com order, I will definitely pick up more of this conditioner.
Bottom line: If you have curly or frizzy hair, these are worth trying. Everyone’s hair responds differently to products. I didn’t hate any of them–which is saying something, because I hate a lot of things.