Thursday, June 2, 2011

Refreshing Waterfall Mist: A Standard Conditioner To Accompany The Standard Shampoo

The Good: Inexpensive, Intriguing scent, Conditions hair fine, Scent lasts!
The Bad: Protects more than revitalizes hair, Packaging
The Basics: "Refreshing Waterfall Mist" is an adequate conditioner, but it is not one that is going to inspire the truly hair-conscious person to buy it.

It's hard for me - even as someone who has long hair - to get excited about a product I wash down the drain. Yes, even though I have taken to writing reviews of hair care products, I find it more of a challenge than a relief to write those reviews sometimes. For me, a shampoo has to clean hair and have a decent scent that endures. For conditioners, I want my hair noticeably protected. Having taken a job at a factory where exposed hair quickly dries out and becomes brittle when underconditioned, I have developed a fairly ideal position from which to evaluate conditioners. Having reviewed Suave's "Refreshing Waterfall Mist" shampoo (here!), it seemed natural for me to review the accompanying conditioner.

Suave has been expanding its line of inexpensive shampoos and conditioners. In virtually every market in the United States, Suave - like VO5 - shampoos and conditioners may be found on sale for $1.00 for a 15 fl. oz. bottle. Refreshing Waterfall Mist conditioner seems to be a fairly standard scented shampoo for all hairs that does not seem to rely on gimmicks and is ideal for a staple shampoo. Technically, this listing is for a four-pack of this shampoo; the content of the bottles is identical and often there is little price savings on the bulk pack. The 15 fl. oz. bottle is a cylindrical tube bottle with a flip-top lid that is easy enough to open with one hand, sort of. The bottle is not contoured and does get slippery when wet. Indeed, the shape of the bottle might not necessarily be problematic save that when it is wet, there is very little friction on the bottle and it slips from one's hand quite easily.

Even more problematic is the lid. The lid is a standard flip-top lid and so long as the bottle is not wet, there ought to be no problem with using one's thumb to flip the top. The issue, however, is that the top of the bottle is a pressure ring, not a screw on top. What this means is that when one applies pressure to the top to open the spout, the user is almost just as likely to flip the entire top off. This is annoying and my first experience with this problematic aspect involved carrying the bottles; the top came off of one though sheer force of gravity and perhaps the best advice I might give is to hold the bottles by the bottom.

Inside the bottles is Refreshing Waterfall Mist conditioner and it is a light blue opaque gel, which resembles hand cream in its consistency. This conditioner is one of the thicker ones I have encountered and I have managed to make it stretch a little further than usual as a result. The scent is an intriguing sea scent. "Waterfall" is actually a fair name for this scent as this has the scent of water. The best way to describe the scent is that this smells like everything after one surfaces from swimming in a clear freshwater body. The scent is like having the concentrated smell of water up one's nose. The scent is identical to the same-named shampoo (sometimes the conditioners have a complimentary scent; this is not the case with Refreshing Waterfall Mist).

When in the shower and one's nostrils are opened by the steam (I tend to like very hot showers) this conditioner diffuses reasonably well. Thus, in the shower, one has water scented showers, which seems somewhat redundant. The point, I suppose is that this is supposed to make one feel refreshed. I cannot honestly say the conditioner energizes or refreshes me in that way, mostly because I don't go into the experience with that expectation. I find it more soothing than renewing.

When it comes to use, this is a simple conditioner and one need only flip the lid and dispense a small amount into the palm of the hand before applying it to the hair. The Refreshing Waterfall Mist conditioner requires a decent-sized dollop to condition a full head of hair. After one has cleaned their hair with a shampoo and rinsed it out, this may be applied to the hair. I have better than shoulder length hair and it takes approximately a heaping half-dollar-sized blob of conditioner to make it stretch through my mane. Like most conditioners, this does not lather and instead it is applied to the hair and scalp almost like a butter.

In the case of the Refreshing Waterfall Mist, as I've noticed often with conditioners lately, there is about a two-to-one ratio to the shampoo because conditioners do not dilute out from lathering. As a result, the 15 oz. bottle may last only three weeks with daily hair conditionings.

As a conditioner, it works well for the basic concept of a conditioner. Hair is protected, even in harsh environments. Hair that is conditioned daily using this conditioner is less brittle and less susceptible to split ends. What the conditioner does not do is add more bounce or body to hair. This is a fairly standard protecting conditioner, as opposed to a high style conditioner. So long as one knows that going in, it's a fine product.

I tend to like shampoos and conditioners that leave my hair smelling delightful, like whatever scent they have lured me in with. Given that the Refreshing Waterfall Mist Shampoo barely smelled like anything outside water to begin with, it was a bit of a surprise that it left a scent on my hair after it was rinsed out. I attended a concert last night and sat next to a smoker and when I returned home and began writing this review, I put my ponytail to my nose and I was surprised to find it smelled like this conditioner! This was even more surprising to me because I have already run out of the shampoo (damn fall-off top!) and so the only thing that would be leaving my hair smelling this way was this conditioner!

As it stands, Refreshing Waterfall Mist works fine as a day to day conditioner that will protect your hair, but for those looking for a bold scent or actual restorative or hair-type-altering qualities, this is not the conditioner for you.

This is a remarkably average conditioner.

For other Suave conditioners, please check out my reviews of:
Tropical Coconut
Fresh Mountain Strawberry
Ocean Breeze
Juicy Apple
Orchid Petal
Suave Professionals Rosemary Mint Conditioner


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