My Hair Coloring History
About ten years ago I started coloring my hair. Shhh, don’t tell anyone. Actually, they probably already know! At that time, I had three teenagers living under the same roof as me, and I noticed the stress was starting to get to me…you guessed it…in the form of gray hair. Of course it could have been because I was then in my mid-forties and for many women that age, gray hair was the natural progression of things.
You may wonder how I went about coloring my dark brown hair? Well, I was too frugal to go to the hair salon and have it done. I used to teach classes on how to save money at the grocery store and in other areas of life so I needed to practice what I preached. Paying $40 to $90 at a hair salon plus a tip seemed like a huge waste of money to me. Not to mention my concern about what kinds of chemicals they would put in my hair to keep the gray away. I’m more of an all-natural kind of girl and don’t like to take medication unless I have to. Nor do I like to add chemicals to the outside of my body. I discovered there are hair dyes and hair colorants and the colorants wash out whereas a dye is more permanent.
I looked into the store bought dyes and colorants that my friends used, but as I was in Walmart one day looking at the choices, I discovered that Clairol had a hair colorant called, ‘Natural Instincts” which washed out within 24 washings. That sounded pretty good to me. A wash out type of hair color probably had less chemicals in it than the “permanent” hair dye, and was less expensive as well. I figured I would give it a shot and if I didn’t like it, it would wash out in about three to four weeks.
Immediate Fan of Natural Instincts
I bought it, took it home and gave it a try. And to my amazement, I actually liked it. It covered the gray and made my hair look much more uniform. But I must admit it was messy and I was always petrified that I would get some hair color on the bathroom counter or the floor, not to mention towels. All of that did happen, and my bathroom in my previous house has the battle stains to prove it. But what’s a few stains when it came to my looking a bit more youthful and feeling better about myself? I thought it was worth it. But that was before I discovered Natural Instincts Crème, which is what this review is actually about.
The other day I again when to Walmart, because without a sale, Walmart has the best prices on Clairol’s Natural Instincts. I picked up what I thought was my regular box and brought it home. I jumped in the shower to wash my hair as the first step in my regular coloring regimen. I toweled off and opened the box, only to discover that I was now looking at a tube of cream instead of my usual liquid coloring. I read the directions which said to apply to DRY hair? OOPS, it really pays to read the directions! This was a brand new product. Where was my regular hair colorant? The box looked the same except it now has the word “Crème” along with Natural Instincts. I sat down and read the directions since now I had to wait for my hair to dry! I honestly had my doubts about this product and wondered how it could work on dry hair, but was willing to give it a try since we are leaving tomorrow on a short vacation in Florida and I wanted to get rid of the gray.
The Coloring Procedure
Once my hair was dry, I took a picture and started over and here are the steps:
1) Place a towel over the shoulders to prevent dripping and staining.
2) Put on the enclosed plastic gloves
3) Open the bottle of color activation crème and pour the contents of the crème colorant into the activation crème. Put the cap back on and shake till blended.
4) Open the bottle and begin to apply to the roots of the hair first, then the rest of the hair all over the head. Wait ten to fifteen minutes, (twenty at the most) and then rinse the hair until the water runs clear. I must say the crème on dry hair was less messy than the previous formula which made me very happy.
5) Apply the enclosed conditioner. Wait two minutes and rinse. ( The conditioner is the same as the previous conditioner and I have always gotten compliments about how nice my hair smelled after I used it).
6) Keep the rest of the conditioner in the tube and use once a week to keep the color looking fresh and your hair healthy.
This product says it should last 28 washings which is a bit more then the previous product I had tried.
I usually color my hair every 6 weeks as I wash my hair every other day, and swim three days a week. I probably should move that up to every 4 weeks because as you can see from the picture above by the time I remember to color my hair, the top of my head has straggly gray hairs, and the sides look a weird shade of blondish gray.
My Opinion of Natural Instincts Creme
If I were to give this product a score, I would rate it a definite 9 out of 10. Here’s why:
1) Easy to use
2) Conditioner smells great
3) The Natural Instincts Crème is less messy than the liquid colorant because when it goes onto wet hair, the hair is very drippy already and putting more liquid on it just adds to the drips, which get on floor, towels and sinks. That didn’t happen with the crème because the dry hair seems to soak it up.
4) It’s ammonia free.
5) It’s less expensive than hair dyes and certainly less expensive than having it done in a salon.
6) Even though it’s inexpensive (usually $6 to $9 US dollars) , there are often coupons available in the Sunday paper for it, making it even less expensive.
7) It is made with Aloe, Vitamin E and coconut oil which is why it feels so soft when one is done.
Natural Instincts Creme 4-Pack On Amazon…
Although you can still buy the Natural Instincts liquid that you use on wet hair, I will stick with the less messy Crème from now on. You may not notice a huge difference because this color matches my original color quite well. But it looks more uniform and the gray is gone, as is the weird blondish stuff at the sides, it feels healthier and smells great.
Review, photos and text by Karen Hellier
You can visit Karen’s blog at thriftshopping4ebay.blogspot.com