Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Not All It's Cracked Up To Be VO5 "Kiwi Lime" Is Hardly A Clarifying Shampoo

The Good: Interesting scent, Cleans hair when moderately unclean
The Bad: Does not truly cut through build-up, Scent does not endure, Not the best lather
The Basics: Disappointing for its lack of cleaning and actual clarifying power, Kiwi Lime shampoo from VO5 is not one of their better products.

For those who do not follow my reviews, I am a fan of VO5 shampoos and conditioners. I am a big believer in not spending a lot of money on anything I am just going to wash down the drain. As a result, I tend to like inexpensive haircare products that work and between Suave and VO5, I have found several shampoos and conditioners that I continue to come back to, most notably Vanilla Mint Tea shampoo by VO5. I swear, it's a perfect shampoo.

I tend to stick to what I know and like and VO5 is a brand I trust. So, when I was given a bottle of Kiwi Lime Clarifying Shampoo, I was not about to turn it away. I'm happy with my shampoo; not ungrateful for freebies! Besides, Kiwi Lime sounds like an intriguing combination and I decided to give the shampoo a week. I am sorry I did; this was not the best VO5 shampoo I have ever used.

VO5 shampoos are part of an inexpensive line of hair care products that tend to be found for an average price of $1.00 per 15 oz. bottle in most markets in the United States. The bottles have recently been redesigned to be flatter instead of tapered, which makes them easier to hold when wet and I have only found Kiwi Lime in the new bottles. Kiwi Lime is a dark green translucent shampoo that has good viscosity and is very much the a standard VO5 shampoo as far as consistency goes. It is easily distinguished from the green apple VO5 shampoo by its darker green color (the Kiwi Lime is darker green). The Kiwi Lime shampoo comes with a flip-top cap for easy access to the shampoo with one hand while in the shower.

Kiwi Lime is a shampoo, so there is no trick to using it. Simply place a dollop on your hand and rub it into your wet hair until it lathers up. Then rinse and repeat if necessary. More than any other shampoo in recent memory that I've tested, Kiwi Lime requires the second helping, lowering the overall value of this product. Indeed, the only times my hair was truly cleaned by this product - when noticeably dirty to begin with - was when I lathered up twice. I have long hair and I can get away with a quarter-sized dollop to clean my hair with most shampoos. I ended up using two quarter-sized portions to try to clean my hair and after a week of use, this was a severe depletion of the bottle, so I suspect that a bottle would last less than a month.

The thing is, with clarifying shampoos, I have an expectations that I do not necessarily have for shampoos that do not claim to have clarifying properties. I expect a clarifying shampoo to strip away oily build-up that comes from not washing hair so my first test of late with every clarifying shampoo has been to subject myself to three days of not washing my hair so it has an actual build-up on it, then see how many cleanings it takes to strip that daily build-up away. With Kiwi Lime, a three-day build-up took three wash and rinse cycles before my hair was clean enough that I was comfortable with it. For a clarifying shampoo, that is pathetically weak in my estimation.

That said, in normal daily use, this was not a bad shampoo. It worked when I washed my hair twice per shower with the shampoo. Again, that tends to be a little more wasteful than I would prefer.

As far as the scent goes, Kiwi Lime has an intriguing initial scent. The shampoo actually smells like kiwi and limes for the first thirty seconds it is out of the bottle and in a hot shower, this has a great energizing effect. Unfortunately, the scent does not endure. The result is a shampoo whose scent fades within moments of being rubbed into the hair. I have smelled my hair moments after towel-drying my hair off and I cannot find the scent that initially effervesced through my shower. This scent has no enduring quality and truth be told now that I am no longer working in a terrible factory where my hair gets stripped each night of anything remotely good smelling, it's shocking to me how quickly the scent of this shampoo dissipates without being subjected to such harsh conditions!

This is almost the insult to add to the injury of having to wash my hair twice with the shampoo each time I use it. Not only do I have to use a lot to simply clean my hair, but I do not get the benefit of a scent-memory trigger afterward! Bummer.

On the positive side, it does rinse out of my hair remarkably easily. This shampoo may not lather up incredibly easily (or effectively) but it does wash out without leaving any residue of its own.

In the end, for something that seems to be banking on the cleaning power of citrus (limes fall into the same category of grease-cutters as oranges and lemons) Kiwi Lime is a surprising failure from VO5, reducing the overall value by requiring more to clean my hair and not leaving any enduring scent to trigger any pleasant shower memories. At least it is inexpensive in a pinch.

For other VO5 shampoo reviews, please check out my takes on:
Split Ends Anti-Breakage Shampoo
Passion Fruit Smoothie Moisture Milks Shampoo
Blackberry Sage Shampoo


For other hygiene product reviews, please visit my index page by clicking here!

© 2011, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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