The French Shampoo I’ll Be Using This Summer (Because My Hair Hates Me)

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I feel sorry for my hair sometimes.

I put it through fresh Hell most weeks. Highlighting it to the heavens. Baking it in the sun. Tying it up when still wet (ISAIDIMSORRY). Straightening. Curling. Towel-scrunching.

But I’m getting better! As a general rule, I refrain from washing my hair more than three times a week. Three times MAX. In my opinion, you want to toe the line between cleansing your scalp and completely stripping it of it’s natural oils. And this summer I’ll be toeing that line with a product by the french hair God himself, Christophe Robin.

For those unfamiliar, Robin is the french hair colourist to the stars and the man responsible for Catherine Deneuve’s hair. He also makes some of the most famous luxury hair products in the market, including the Cleansing Mask with Lemon that I finally got my hands on a few months ago from Ines Store. Regular shampoo can strip the colour from your hair, so a lot of women who dye regularly and are now opting for cleansing masks like this one in lieu of shampoo (iconic rhyme) to take care of business. The Cleansing Mask with Lemon has ingredients like lemon zest, chamomile and St Johns Wort extract, all which prevent the loss of artificial pigments. It’s paraben-free, silicone-free and colorant-free. But more importantly, it makes my hair feel illegally soft, shiny, and somehow brightens my blonde no matter how long it’s been since my last dye.

It’s a weird product to use: it doesn’t foam, it doesn’t even really lather. It comes in a huge tub and has the texture of solid coconut oil. After being applied to damp hair (I like to do a little head massage to stimulate blood circulation), it can be rinsed immediately or left on for between 5 and 20 minutes, before adding water gradually to emulsify the product. Make sure you rinse it out thoroughly to prevent any lemony-residue (not the worst thing though?). Thanks to the lemon zest extract it also works like a scrub, meaning that it really cleans the scalp rather than simply a quick surface-level hair wash (looking at you Pantene).

A french girlfriend of mine, Lauren, told me last month that her Parisian friends use it to restore their dry, brittle hair in winter. They probably don’t make rookie mistakes like tying it up while wet though.