You might know by now my obsession with oils and similar potions for hair. I am on the never ending search for the next best hair dressing and I'm a complete sucker for a good hair oil (I've been totally raised by my Indian mother to do regular hot oil treatments to keep my hair shiny and healthy). So, whenever my hair is feeling a little more dry than usual, a good oil massage is usually what I turn to. Since my last experimentation with Redken's shampoo and conditioner didn't go as planned, I needed some emergency TLC to restore vibrancy to my hair. Happy to report I totally found it in Yarok's Serum 1 ($28).

It contains anti-inflammatory and skin soother roman chamomile and antiseptic/anti-dandruff clary sage and atlas cedar (also reported to have healing effects to the skin, or in this case, the scalp). The addition of petitgrain oil actually counteracts oil; sesame seed oil is a potent antioxidant with moisturizing vitamin E. Coconut oil is notoriously beneficial for your hair -- it's a saturated oil that smooths strands and is also said to have anti-fungal properties. The molecular structure of coconut oil is super conducive to penetrating and healing the hair shaft. Along with olive oil, it happens to be one of my favorite hair oils growing up! Finally, super vitamin- and mineral-rich wheat germ oil totally rounds it all out.

So here's the funny thing: the serum I used from Yarok's line (they have seven) is actually prescribed for blondes. It's called the "Illume Your Blonde" serum, in fact. I'm a total brunette.

I'm not in denial -- to be fair, I happened to get this specific product in a gift bag a long time ago, so I didn't pick it out exactly. But here's where you can actually use the product off-label and it's OK. The reason this one is prescribed for blondes is that people with lighter hair (naturally or processed) generally have a more delicate scalp, so the formula is accordingly more gentle. For a brunette to try something more gentle is OK -- might not work as well the other way around.

I massage a little of this serum on my scalp, and coat my hair lightly to the roots in hopes that it would reverse my hair's dry spell. It did that and so much more. My hair was shiny, feeling more bouncy and healthy. It did the trick in just one use and I've been using it weekly ever since. For $28, it's such a great buy for the times your hair is going through a rough patch. Though I do have my eye on their Serum 2 for "Real Brunettes" for when I run out of this one. I'm just saying.

Ingredients:
Roman chamomile, clary sage, atlas cedar, petitgrain, sesame, coconut and wheat germ oils.

UPDATE (2/2/2012): Yarok discovered that Serum 1 worked best as a finishing product that adds shine and tames frizz, rather than a treatment serum. It has been re-released as the Feed Your Shine Hair Serum.

Ingredients in Feed Your Shine Hair Serum:

Pure sesame, coconut, wheat germ, Roman chamomile, clary sage, atlas cedar, petitgrain oils