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John Frieda Root Awakening Strength Restoring Conditioner- tested and rejected

Is a Solution for:
Dry or Brittle Hair
Reviewed by Jimmy June 20, 2010 6 Comments
I'm not the type of guy to just pick any sample that comes in those small plastic packets. But this past week, my gym was giving out John Frieda Root Awakening Strength Restoring Conditioner ($5.98). It was in a big basket that replaced the complimentary apples. I'm assuming they were out of apples that day but it gave the impression this conditioner was better than fruit. So I playfully took it as a sign and picked up a sample.

John Frieda is a heavyweight in the hair industry, not only a popular salon but a lifestyle brand complete with its own range of hair products. It's pretty mainstream, and I'm sure you're familiar (I actually have family members who use the product line).

I wanted to like John Frieda Root Awakening Strength Restoring Conditioner. After using the conditioner, my scalp was tingling and stimulated with a smart coolness from the peppermint and eucalyptus extracts. It felt great on my head and definitely "awakened" my roots. But the reality is that's pretty much all it did. The product promises to reinforce the hair structure, and the only ingredient that really applies is the panthenol.

It's like a pop star without any groupies. Most every other ingredient in this product are surfactants, emollients and conditioning agents, so it definitely conditions and gives your hair a ultra-silky feeling... I just wish it was with the right ingredients instead of chemicals (especially completely random ones, like maltodextrin, which is primarily a sugar alternative, but still a hair conditioning agent).

Eucalyptus is a saving grace. It supports healthy hair and, going to back to the "root" of problems, it does help prevent dandruff.

Ingredients

Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Behenamidopropyl Dimethylamine, Cetyl Esters, Stearyl Alcohol, Mentha Piperita Leaf Extract (Peppermint), Eucalyptus Globulus (Eucalyptus) Extract, Dimethicone, Panthenol, Propylene Glycol, Menthol, Quaternium 91, Menthyl Lactate, Cetrimonium Methosulfate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Butylene Glycol, Benzyl Alcohol, Glycine, Niacinamide, Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Sodium Starch Octenylsuccinate, Maltodextrin, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Mentha Piperita Oil (Peppermint), Lactic Acid, Pyridoxine HCI, Malic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Silica, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Fragrance (Parfum)
  • September 30, 2013

    by carol

    I've been using the John Frieda full repair shampoo and conditioner for a couple of months. Could not understand why my scalp burned and itched. Also a lot of hair loss. I was ready to see a doctor when it suddenly hit me that maybe I was allergic to the shampoo, I stopped using and went with a baby shampoo and after two or three washing my scalp no longer itches and burns and hair loss is easing up.

  • July 19, 2011

    by mary

    I had a similar reaction and am going to the doctor tomorrow. Not sure why I had an allergic reaction. Do not know what I am allergic to.

  • August 9, 2010

    by jenny

    I used the John Frieda Root Awakenings a couple of weeks ago and it left my head really itchy - i think it actually burnt my scalp as i had a few scabs too. 3 weeks later and i have a full on out-break of hives...looks like i have had a severe allergic reaction to the shampoo/conditioner and have now been prescribed steroids...has anyone else had the same problem?!

  • July 2, 2010

    by Jaysie

    Long ago I used John Freida's Ready To Wear shampoo & conditioner just because I loved the scent so much. It was such a unique fragrance, I didn't care that it didn't do anything special for my hair and kept buying it until it was discontinued. I remember it fondly and think I was probably their last customer for that product group...sigh.

  • June 21, 2010

    by colinmack

    I KNOW! I wanted to purchase this for the packaging alone. I am very weary of John Freida!

  • June 20, 2010

    by Junko

    Thanks for confirming Jimmy what we would of expected of John Frieda. I hate how everyone's trying to make their products look natural with all the botanical greens and leaves. I suppose some buyers will buy a product because it looks natural. Always enjoy your posts Jimmy !

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