Don’t be fooled by the products you’ll see in this post. I am a cheap girl at heart. The truth is, the best place to look for the right products to maintain healthy hair is just around the corner in the drugstore. When you are looking for a new product, I always recommend walking up and down the aisles at Duane Reade or CVS before looking at Sephora or Ulta. The truth is, most of the more expensive products I use I didn’t pay full price for. Some I found on sale, and others I purchased using my employee discount when I was working in a salon. Salons are a great place to test out high-end products before opening up your wallet. Talk to your stylist who might be able to give you a sample to take home.

I am not saying that all salon quality shampoos, conditioners or styling products work better than what you find at CVS. Some might and some might not. That totally depends on your own hair. What works for me might not work for you.

I am always interested in reading any product posts, because it’s where I get inspiration to try something new! My hair tends to be on the drier, thicker side, so I tend to look for heavier products that my hair will really absorb and eat up. Obviously those are the types of products that won’t work on someone with thinner hair. The good news is, a lot of companies, drugstore or salon, have different lines for all different types of hair.

Here are the products I currently use to keep my locks healthy, happy and looking lovely.

Shampoo- Brilliant Brunette by John Frieda


I’m really not that picky when it comes to shampoo. I have found very few that I don’t actually like, so normally when I am running low I rush to the drugstore and grab anything. I do use Brilliant Brunette frequently because it does make my hair clean, shiny, and on top of that, it smells great. But if I don’t happen to find it at the store, I’ll grab something like Pantene Pro V, which works just as well.

Conditioner – Aussie’s Three Minute Miracle Deeeeep Conditioner


 If there is one product I can’t live without, it’s this one. I told you all that my hair is on the dryer side, and I like heavy products. This one is perfect for me. It’s highly concentrated and creamy and rich and all things wonderful. Technically this is a “deeeeep” conditioner, but for me it’s just normal conditioner. I usually wash my hair every 2 days, so by using just a little of this product on the ends of my hair I am all set (more on how to properly wash your hair in a future post!).

Treatment – Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque


This product I had been keeping my eye on for a while, but I just never found myself in the mood to shell out $36 for a product I’ve never tried before. That’s why when I found on sale at Target for 2-for-1 my hair cried tears of joy.

This product is certainly wonderful, and you can use it in a variety of ways. I like to use mine as more of a treatment than a normal conditioner, which I know some people like to do. I try to use it once a week, but sometimes I skip out on it. When I do use it, I paint it on my ends, throw my hair in a clip and leave it on for an hour or more. When I rinse my hair is like silk, and I can feel the difference even after the next full wash.

So if you are interested in trying this product out, check Target. Maybe you can even split the cost and product with a friend or sister to save a little more money. You can also find sample packages of it at CVS for about $6. I was even annoyed with that prize to be honest, but it’s always an option. Another option is the Macadamia Oil Mask by Organix, which retails for less than $10. I do like their Moroccan Oil Mask, so I’ll probably purchase the macadamia one to give it a try as soon as I am done with this pot.

Shiny Leave-In #1 – Kerastase’s Oleo-Relax Serum


This serum is an absolute necessity for me in the summer time, and I really think I will end up repurchasing this at full retail price when it runs out.  It’s not too heavy, but boy does it do an unbelievable job at keeping my hair as frizz free as possible! I typically just use this when I am letting my hair dry naturally. Believe me when I say this, I would look more like I stuck my finger in an outlet if I didn’t use this when rocking my natural hair. All I do is take one pump, start applying it to my ends and working up. I comb through it and voila: frizz free and super shiny hair.

Shiny Leave-in #2 – Organix’s Moroccan Argan Oil Spray


Oils can be annoying to apply, no matter if your hair is wet or dry. That’s why I was so excited when I stumbled upon this at the drugstore! I am a fan of heavier products (see all above), but this spray really takes the cake even though it is a lot lighter. Typically I just switch up between this and the Kerastase serum I use, though I tend to lean more on the latter in the summer time because I need a little extra help in my ongoing battle against humidity. If you have thick and dry hair like me that can be a little dull without a dab of something sparkly, I recommend this. The spray bottle makes it super easy to work with, and my hair always comes out soft and shiny no matter if I use it when it when its wet or dry as a finishing spray.

Heat Protectant #1 – Kerastase’s Nectar Thermique


Here is another pricy yet amazing product. We all know how important heat protectants are for our hair. I try and try and try to use less heat on my locks, but I’m addicted to my blow dryer. I reserve this protectant for when I blow dry as opposed to when I pick up my curling iron. What I love most about this product is that it’s a treatment and protectant all in one! The heat helps activate the product, and I swear you can tell its working even when you are blow drying. Take my word here: when it comes to Kerastase products, a little goes a long ass way. I try to use no more than a dime size amount and that is more than enough.

Heat Protectant #2 – Tresume Heat Defense Spray


In terms of heat application, I blow dry or use a curling iron. Under no circumstances will I ever flat-iron my hair again. Those days will remain in my high school memories when my hair was fried beyond belief and damaged beyond repair. Anyway, it is important to use a heat protectant no matter if your hair is wet or dry. If you get out of the shower and apply this, then blow dry and then pick up a curling iron you need to spray again! Don’t forget that. If you use this product, you don’t have to worry about your hair becoming too greasy or oily, provided you spray it correctly and try to keep it away from your roots. When I curl my hair, I always let it dry natural before I start. I don’t need to double down on the heat. I also find that my hair holds the curls better when it dries naturally as opposed to being tortured under my blow dryer. This product not only smells great, but it protects my hair and leaves it shiny. What else can a girl as for? Oh, and it’s cheap, so I guess there always is more.

Healthy hair is an accessory no girl should go without. Embrace what you have, learn to love it and figure out what works for you and what doesn’t. Maybe it will be the $60 deep conditioner, or maybe it will be the $8 one. If you are into the more expensive stuff, try to find deals on Amazon or Target. Or stick to the cheap stuff. It’s your call because it is your hair. Take care of it while you have it so you can rock it while you still got it!

xx – Kate