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The Best Clarifier: Oribe’s The Cleanse Clarifying Shampoo and Essential Antidote Replenishing Conditioner Review

Oribe Clarifying Review

So, about a week or so ago my hair hit a breaking point. Not quite breaking I guess, but things were ok, and then OMGWTFBBQ things are sooooo not right!

And really, I should have seen this coming.

We put a pool in this summer at my house. Yes. We saved our pennies, and put in a pool (with many fancy safety covers, alarms, fences, etc), which means I’m now a peds ICU doctor with a pool. There aren’t many of us out there. With a pool comes a lot of time in that pool, which I love! I’m the mom in the pool doing hand stands with my 5 year old. We swim around the deep end together, I throw her in the shallow end… you get the idea. I’m not the mom lounging by the side of the pool. I’m in there enjoying it.

As a result of our time in the water, my 5 year old’s dark blonde hair has had a bit of a greenish tinge, which inspired a massive experiment with different clarifying shampoos and treatments. You can read my post Why Your Hair Turns And How to Fix It. My daughter’s hair is much better now.

But, in all of the excitement about my daughter’s hair, I completely ignored my own hair. I was focused on color, and since I hadn’t seen any changes in my own balayage highlights, I ignored the increasing manageability issues I was having. It was taking longer to dry my hair, it wasn’t curling easily and my hair was going flat more quickly. A lot of that could be explained by the humidity.

And then came that critical morning, and it took me about 45 minutes to dry my hair. Really. It “usually” takes about 12 minutes or so. And even at the end of 45 minutes, my hair just felt gross. It was a little sticky, rough and still didn’t feel completely dry. The ends were horribly frizzy and looked full of split ends (which I don’t have), and no amount of product was helping.

I needed to clarify my hair, and do it fast. I confess that I tried a product that we had at home (I’ll share which ones and my thoughts in a later post rounding all of them up), but really, nothing was really fully removing all of the build up. It was about 30% better with a few shampoos with a clarifying shampoo (I’ve thrown that one out).

I decided it was time to really splurge and at least trying a clarifying shampoo and conditioner duo that wouldn’t dry out my hair. So I went for the big guns, I ran to the Ann Arbor BlueMercury and I splurged on Oribe (I might have a bit of an Oribe problem, here are my favorite products from Oribe).

Oribe Clarifying

So, the biggest things that sets these products apart is that they come in the same cans as Oribe’s mousses. They come out and foam, and I was a bit worried about what to expect from them.

The shampoo feels like a heavy mousse, it is definitely a bit airy. It’s a dark grey color because the formulation has volcanic ash to help exfoliate. It has one of those kind of masculine, kind of 1980’s scents that Oribe and Kerastase seem to like so much. I wasn’t a big fan of that in the shower, but once it has washed out the scent was something I only smelled if I was really trying to smell my hair. The shampoo really works up a lather, and it rinses out very easily. Apparently the secret behind the shampoo is that it really just polishes off dirt, oil, and product buildup, rather than trying to dissolve and wash it away like other shampoos.

There is a conditioner to pair with the shampoo, and I decided to buy it as well in a “go big or go home” beauty moment. Likely I didn’t really need to use both, because the shampoo is just that amazing. The conditioner is a bit less airy and more liquid than the shampoo, and it’s a faint off white/yellow color. When I used it, my initial thought was “this smells like fresh cut apples”. But, it isn’t very apple. It’s that first moment that you’ve cut into the apple, when it is just fresh and there’s a little bit of a bite or tang, and it is almost citrusy? This conditioner smells like that. The conditioner lathers up a bit, almost like a shampoo, and I was worried that it wouldn’t be hydrating enough for my hair when I was rinsing it out. It rinsed out very easily, much faster than other conditioners that I’ve used.

Once I was done using the duo, I was amazed. Drying my hair once again took 12 minutes. My hair didn’t feel sticky or grimy. My hair feels incredibly soft and silky, and that gross frizz action at the ends is gone. My hair is back!

I’ll likely use the shampoo a few more times to ensure that all of the insane buildup I likely had is gone, and then I’ll use it about once a week or so. The conditioner promises that your hair gets better with each washing, so I can’t wait to see if that is true! If so, it might become my new “go to” conditioner.

Where to get them:
The Cleanse Clarifying Shampoo at Neiman Marcus, BirchBox, or BlueMercury
Essential Antidote Replenishing Conditioner at BlueMercury, BirchBox or Neiman Marcus

I Bought It, Affiliate Links

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About Me

I’m a doctor, a mommy and a bit of a beauty addict. If you let me, I can take 2 hours to get ready in the morning. Really. I'm on a quest for faster beauty that works!

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