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Frizzy hair fighters tried and tested

Is a Solution for:
Dry or Brittle Hair, Limp Hair, Dull Hair
Reviewed by Marta August 15, 2012 9 Comments
Now that my hair is longer (past shoulder length) I sometimes feel that I have a dead sheep on my head. Or at least something that is heavy, woolly and static. A dead sheep in a thunderstorm. The pony tail is my new best friend (I don’t have the skillset to achieve a more age appropriate chignon) and so it has become high time to get serious about frizz fighters.  I have been testing a handful of new hair tamers as well as revisiting some from last year’s Five Best to fight frizzy Hair. The results have been good hair days and some hair raising ones. Here are my frizzy hair tamers test results.

The most successful was a real surprise: Ouidad’s Frizz & Flyaway Fighter Taming Shine Spray ($22). Ouidad’s products have had mixed reviews from Truth In Aging reviewers. The travel kit was dissed a couple of years ago, but Nisha gave the Ouidad Moisture Lock Leave-In Conditioner a thumbs up - as well as teaching me how to pronounce the stuff (wee-dod).  I always inwardly sigh when a product has more than one noun or verb, but Frizz & Flyaway Fighter Taming Shine Spray lived up to every single one. The product is a light spray that is applied on dry hair. It imparts a little shine, but didn’t leave me looking like an oil slick and my wavy hair was gently locked into light curls with no frizz or flyaways. All day. I shall repeat that, all day long in August, in New York.

The ingredients list didn’t make me shudder too much. However, Ouidad Frizz & Flyaway Fighter has a predictable quotient of silicones, the chemical UV filter butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane (avobenzone) and preservatives. None of which I would want my skin to absorb, but I’m guessing are relatively harmless on hair shafts. They are mitigated by wheat, avocado, grape and olive oils. Overall, Ouidad is a keeper.

I also liked the effects of Phyto Phytolisse Finishing Serum. This is applied to damp hair prior to drying and left my blow out looking relatively sleek. For $30 it seems somewhat overpriced for what is basically two silicones, vitamin B and a smattering of token botanical marshmallow root (a Phyto favorite that is used in Phytodefrisant). Still it does the job of taming unruly hair and shielding it from the vagaries of humidity.

Which is more than can be said for Keratin Perfect Blowout Booster Styling Cream ($34). This is supposed to give you a better blowout deploying heat-activated keratin to tame frizz and flyaways. Not for me. I used Keratin Perfect, as directed on damp hair before blow drying using my trusty Sedu Revolution (read more on Sedu below). My resulting blow-out was far from sleek. It was perhaps smoother than using no product, but not by much. I resorted to spraying my dried, rather frizzy looking hair with my Ouidad frizz fighter.

Ouidad will likely elbow out my Oribe Creme For Style ($29), although this has been my daily tamer for a couple of years now. A thickish cream, it is very versatile and I find it can smooth down stray locks after blow drying or used to scrunch in curl. Botanical extracts are welcome, such as antioxidant green tea, follicle smoothing chamomilla recutita flower extract, hydrolized wheat protein imparts strength, geranium balances oil. It does the job but has its fair share of nasty preservatives and silicones. Read the full review

Then, of course, there’s Living Proof No Frizz Styling Cream ($14.50 for 4oz). This, like Oribe, stands the test of time, but is OK rather than great. The foe of frizz, something called PolyfluoroEster, was supposed to have been invented at MIT.  Eshewing all that silicone that competing products rely on, Living Proof claims that its poly-whatsit blocks humidity and reduces friction—the two causes of frizz. And it does make a notable difference—less frizz, easier styling and a smoother look. Read the full review by Emily

Last but not least, there is my trusty Sedu Revolution TGR 4000i Hair Dryer ($159). I love my hairdryer. The Sedu promises to reduce frizz by 90%. And it does. At least for as long as it takes to get outside. With my old hairdryer, I’d finish drying and looked as if I was carry around my own, personal static force-field. When I bought it, I said it was the best $140 that I’d spent in a while. That was nearly four years ago and I still think that. Its all down to tourmaline, a silicate mineral. This is a natural source of negative ions and electricity. The negative ions counterbalance the positive ions that come with frizz. One of things that they do is break down water molecules so that some of them are small enough to enter the hair shaft and your locks retain moisture. The other great thing is that the Sedu dries hair in about half the time of a non-tourmaline dryer. Read the full review.

Finally, if all this silicone is not for you, check out Kristen’s video on fighting frizz with Yarok’s natural hair products. And if that inpsires you to get to know more about Yarok, note that if you buy any two full-size Yarok products you will get a free 2oz conditioner.

Ingredients in Ouidad: Isododecane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, C20-40 Pareth-10, Phenyl Trimethicone, Tocopherol, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Ozokerite, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Water (Aqua), Synthetic Wax, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Ethylhexylglycerin, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Hydroxyethyl Behenamidopropyl Dimonium Chloride, Phenoxyethanol, Polyethylene, Fragrance.

Ingredients in Phyto: Cyclomethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethiconol, Alcohol Denat, (Alcohol De Betterave), Panthenol (Provitamine B 5), Fragrance / Parfum, Althaea Officinalis Root Extract, Phytantriol.

Ingredients in Keratin Perfect: Water/Aqua/Eau, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Cyamopsis Tetragonoloba Gum (Guar Gum), Glyceryl Cocoate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Methicone, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Glycerin, Echinacea Purpurea Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis Extract, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Fragrance/Parfum.

Ingredients in Oribe: Water, cetearyl alcohol, glyceryl stearate, PEG-100 stearate, phenyl trimethicone, polyquaternium-55, behentrimonium metholsulfate, olealkonium chloride, glycerin, polyquaternium-7, lavender extract, geranium leaf extract, green tea, chamomilla recutita extract, panthenol, hydrolized soy protein, hydrolized wheat protein, hydrolized wheat starch, polyquaternium-11, benzophenone-4 PEG-12 dimethicone, fragrance, tocopheryl acetate, stearalkonium chloride, guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, phenoxyethanol, chlorphenesin, citral, hexy cinnomal, limonene and limonool

Ingredients in No Frizz Straight-Making styling cream for medium to thick hair: Water, PolyfluoroEster, Myristyl Alcohol, Polyacrylate-13, PEG-8 Stearate, PPG-2 Myristyl Ether Propionate, Polyisobutene, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Fragrance, Polysorbate 20, Sorbic Acid
  • August 20, 2012

    by Vivien

    Thanks for the post! I mostly use Pro Naturals Moroccan Argan Oil to tame frizz but I'm open to trying other products! The Pro Naturals brand has seemed more high quality to me though.

  • August 16, 2012

    by Julie Kay

    Marta- This is something I feel I can address w confidence having had long hair for most of my life. My current and I do love it frizz fighter is evo's End Doctor. A dime to nickel size dab in my palm on dry hair just before I (slightly) flatiron it works wonders. Accordingly if I'm in a humid a dab to "remind" my hair withOUT the flatiron will put it back in its place like no one's business. Love it. ~jk

  • August 16, 2012

    by Marta

    Hi Emily, thanks for the reminder about the Solano brush. It somehow escaped my mind when It was writing the article. You are right, its a big contributor to frizz reduction.

  • August 15, 2012

    by Emily

    Thanks for this round-up, Marta! I am always interested in this topic at this time of year, and this has been the most humid summer ever. First of all, a couple of weeks ago my very old, tried-and-true Solano dryer died, and I took your advice from the post you refer to above and bought the Sedu. It's expensive but gets great reviews everywhere -- and it's also much lighter and more compact than most, so far easier to use if you're small. I've only used it for a few days but I do think it makes a real difference -- perhaps not as much in the length of time to dry as I'd expected, but it leaves hair shinier, not dried out, and far less frizzy. You didn't note your other contribution to frizz reduction (in my world): the Solano brush. It really dries, and styles, perfectly, and completely. Belatedly, I've discovered that what makes hair frizz is failing to really dry it completely! Between the Solano and Sedu, that problem has been solved.

  • August 15, 2012

    by Marta

    Hi Wendy, thanks for the tip. I'll look out for African Pride and give it a try.

  • August 15, 2012

    by Nisha

    Hi Marta,
    I recently received a sample of Ouidad's Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel which is applied to wet hair and is heat activated so I have only used it twice as I try to let my hair air-dry as much as possible, especially in summer. But I have to say that it delivered on the humidity-fighting front on both occasions that I used it.

  • August 15, 2012

    by cheryl

    At Marta's recommendation I purchased the Sedu Revolution from Folica.com, and I love it (Sedu's styling iron is also fantastic!). But Folica often has sales (recently all Sedu products were 50% off), so I recommend waiting for a deal before you pay full price. Marta, I love your hair longer!

  • August 15, 2012

    by Wendy Collett

    Hi Marta!!! Hope you are doing well. I just had to respond. I, too, am a curly girl, so frizz can be a problem. I found what I consider to be a miracle - African Pride Olive Miracle Anti-Breakage Formula. I use it as a styling product. Made out of fruit oils and shea butter, not only does it smell great but it tames the frizz on this non African- American head of hair. It is inexpensive (actually cheap) and can be found in most drug store hair care aisles.

  • August 15, 2012

    by hogan

    Flat iron works great and is $11 at walmart.

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