Yay Jean is back to relay her WEN experiences! Give her some love; read on:
I’m very sorry to report that in the months since publishing my raving love note to all things Wen, my hair care soulmate has let me down. In March of this year, I had some major abdominal surgery, with dramatic effects on my hormones and digestion, and for some mysterious reason: my hair. At first, I thought it was thinning and falling out, and it wasn’t just in my mind – to quote my BFF’s seven-year-old, “Your hair is really thin! My mom’s isn’t like that!” At the time, she had a fistful of my hair in one hand and a fistful of her mother’s in the other, so she would know.
Me on a good hair day. (Caution: hair in mirror may be drier than it appears)
After a thorough examination, my hairstylist proclaimed that it is not actually thinning, just extremely dry and breaking off, making it appear thin even though it’s still growing normally. Could be the hormonal changes, the digestive changes, the systemic shock of major surgery – who knows. My roots are also blonder now, but that’s a whole ‘nother mystery. When I explained the gentle ingredients in Wen, my hairstylist said that was unlikely to be the problem and I should keep using it, but to start doing Moroccan Oil treatments and add a coconut oil supplement to my diet. My mother, on the other hand, suggested that I’ve been wearing my ponytail too tight and I should try Mane & Tail, which she has never tried personally but has heard good things. So far, the oil treatments (internal and external) seem to be helping only slightly, and my ponytail is at just the right tension, thank you very much.
On a bad hair day. Does this ponytail make my hair look dry?
I’m not ready to give up on Wen, and not just because I bought a bonus 32oz bottle before my hair started drying out. It’s not Wen, it’s me. Even though my hair isn’t looking as luscious as it did before, I still think Wen is the most gentle, moisturizing treatment out there. And, it never fades my brilliant red dye job. So I’ve got that going for me. Which is nice.
But last time we talked, I promised you a review of some of the Wen styling products! And I won’t let you down – not now, not ever – so here we go:
This is definitely not the same as a Styling Gel. It has no hold, it’s not sticky, and you apply it while your hair is still soaking wet. The theory is, it adds extra moisture and protection for your hair, while making it easy to style. Being that I am the world’s worst hairstylist, it has not made my hair easy to style, but this is another case of “it’s not Wen, it’s me.” However, it is one of my most indispensible, do-not-run-out-of products, and here’s why: this is the gunk that turns my unruly weird hair kinks into fun, pretty, beach waves. And, when blended with a product from Prive’ called “Curl Activating Crème” and a mildly humid day, that’s when I can sometimes get a few spontaneously curling mermaid tendrils mixed in with the beach waves. Wen Styling Crème is awesome and I can’t live without it. Get some! 5 stars out of 5.
Wen Lavender Styling Creme. Styling Crème & her trusty sidekick, Curl Activating Crème. Store near the shower, they work best wet.
FINISHING TREATMENT CRÈME
I got a bottle of this by accident, as part of a package deal of Cleansing Conditioner and some other goops and lotions. This particular finishing treatment happened to be pomegranate-scented; I’m not sure if there are other options. It is unlike any other finishing slime I’ve tried before! I’ve used glosses and whatnot to make split ends and flyaways lie down, but I can never get them to distribute evenly and they make it look like I haven’t washed my hair in a month (did I mention that I’m the world’s worst hairstylist?). The Wen Finishing Treatment Crème is not glossy at all, but really more of a very creamy lotion. When I smear it on, it actually makes my hair lie down and look healthy, with no grease or gloss effect. So for that, I love it. The weird thing is, it doesn’t make my hair FEEL healthy. By the end of the day, the areas that got hit with the crème start feeling sort of stiff and tangled. Adding more crème the next morning can help with the appearance, but after a few hours it feels even more dirty and unbrushable. I will definitely keep using it for the looks, but I’m not super impressed. 3 out of 5 stars.
Wen Pomegranate Finishing Creme – As the name implies, this crème is creamy.
This stuff also came with a variety pack, and I definitely know it comes in all the usual Wen flavors & scents. I tried the lavender, to match my Cleansing Conditioner and Styling Crème. Honestly, it didn’t do anything. Nothing. I noticed no difference whatsoever on the days I used it and when I didn’t use it. Whether I air-dried it for beach waves, terrorized it into poodle curls with a small-barreled iron, or blow-dried it into submission and smoothed it out with a big-barreled iron, nothing. No extra volume, no change in texture, no extra stiffness or smoothness, just no effect at all. Maybe they accidentally sent me a bottle of lavender-scented water, I don’t know. It didn’t do any harm, but it didn’t do any good either. It just didn’t do anything. 1 star out of 5, don’t waste your cash.
While my beloved Wen isn’t working as well for me as it used to, I’m not giving up and you shouldn’t either. The stuff is great. Great quality, super gentle, and different from anything else you’ve tried. Like last time, I must still emphasize: DO NOT order directly from Wen unless you want to be roped into an endless cycle of expensive automatic shipments! I get mine from QVC.com with no hassle, and I’ve just learned that Sephora.com has also started carrying it. So far Sephora only has the Sweet Almond Mint line, but I’m sure if that sells well, they will start adding the other formulas. For now, QVC still has the best variety and excellent customer service. Prices are the same at both websites.
I’ll always love you, Wen. We’ll get through this. Together.