Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Worthwhile, But Not Superlative, Suave Professionals’ Almond + Shea Butter Shampoo Is Fine.

The Good: Inexpensive, Good cleaning power, Good ingredients.
The Bad: Utterly indistinct scent
The Basics: A good, inexpensive, shampoo, Suave Professionals could have made their Almond + Shea Butter shampoo more memorable.

I have a deep love of hair products that either thrill me with their scent or have a distinctive scent memory associated with them. That makes my reviews of them somewhat more subjective than most, but given how scent is what most people are buying in a shampoo, it also provides a decent statement on a shampoo to consider the impact of the shampoo’s aroma. Sadly for Suave Professionals’ Almond + Shea Butter shampoo, there is no impact. In fact, this is one of the most mundane shampoos – in an olfactory sense - that I have ever encountered. Fortunately, it makes up for it with pretty amazing cleaning power.

My monthly haircare experiment for last month was using the Suave professionals Almond + Shea Butter Shampoo and that experiment was a great success. As my life has become more active with work, time at the beach (lots of sun!) and showers to beat the heat, Suave Professionals' Almond + Shea Butter Shampoo has come through to keep my hair clean, manageable and smelling great! Especially as summer makes everything in life that much more difficult, who could truly ask for more?

After three weeks of use, Almond + Shea Butter shampoo by impressed me with its cleaning power, but not its scent. This shampoo is inexpensive, leaves no residue and leaves my hair clean and light, but does so without having much of an aroma. Outside that, it is one of the better shampoos I have used and it makes it very easy to recommend it.

Suave has been expanding its line of inexpensive shampoos and conditioners and has been entering new shampoos to the market in their "Suave Professionals" line, which is intended to compete with higher priced shampoos that use all-natural ingredients. In most markets in the United States, Suave Professionals shampoos and conditioners may be found on sale for $1.49 - $1.99 for a 14.5 fl. oz. bottle. Almond + Shea Butter shampoo is one of the first outings in the Suave Professionals line which explicitly tries to compete with Aveda. The 14.5 fl. oz. bottle is a flattened tube bottle with a flip-top lid that is easy enough to open with one hand. Because it is not contoured extensively, the bottle gets slippery when wet. Even so, the bottle is very stable when one gets down to the last of its contents, it is quite easy to get the rest of the product out of the bottle.

The lid is a standard flip-top lid and even when the bottle is wet, there ought to be no problem with using one's thumb to flip the top. Despite the fact that Suave's Almond + Shea Butter shampoo uses a pressure ring to hold the cap on, there is little chance of flipping the whole cap off the bottle. As a result, Almond + Shea Butter is easy to dispense and store with little waste or risk of accidents.

Inside the bottle is the Almond + Shea Butter shampoo and it is a slightly pale white, opaque gel. This shampoo has good leg and is more viscous than watery. The scent is vague and it does smell faintly of almonds. Actually, it smells like slightly warmed almond butter and the scent is light and otherwise indescribable. When in the shower and one's nostrils are opened by the steam (I tend to like very hot showers) this shampoo diffuses quickly. As a result, it is a weak smell that quickly becomes no smell. This does not leave a scent in the hair after it is rinsed out, even when used in conjunction with its accompanying conditioner.

When it comes to use, this is a simple shampoo 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 Almond + Shea Butter shampoo requires only about a quarter-sized dollop to clean a full head of hair. This lathered up remarkably well, which meant I could get away with using less of it. I have long hair and as a result, shampoo can be an annoying expense when the shampoo I am using does not lather up and clean well.

In the case of the Almond + Shea Butter, it lathers up wonderfully, such that a quarter-sized dollop can easily stretch to coat a very full head of hair, like mine. Used judiciously thus, the 32 oz. bottle lasted my wife and I a month and a half with daily hair washings. This makes its value a little greater than some shampoos I've recently tested and a pleasure to use.

And, quite simply, as a shampoo, it works. Hair comes out looking and feeling cleaner after its use than before. I think the most objective test for a shampoo is to see if hair is cleaner using the shampoo vs. rinsing your hair with water alone and for the basic functioning of a shampoo the Almond + Shea Butter shampoo lived up to that basic litmus test. My hair was not weighed down with any grease or residue and the scent was not at all overbearing, but my hair had the faint ocean scent and was quite clean.

Almond + Shea Butter Shampoo has no discernible conditioning properties. There is a separate conditioner that has the same scent. As it stands, Almond + Shea Butter works fine as a day to day shampoo that will clean your hair, but that is all.

For other Suave shampoo reviews, please visit my takes on:
Refreshing Waterfall Mist
Tropical Coconut
Fresh Mountain Strawberry
Ocean Breeze
Juicy Green Apple
Orchid Petal
Suave Professionals Rosemary Mint


For other haircare products, please check out my index page!

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