This sums up my reaction to a recent email response I received from Newhall Laboratories.
I was having a difficult time finding my favorite hair product.
It had disappeared from the shelves before only to turn up in a whole slew of other stores, but this time all shelves were not empty (a good sign) but stocked with a completely different product (a horrible sign).
I hit the “contact us” button on the website and sent a message and had a reply the very next day.
Three and half years from the start date of my natural hair journey, my adored GroWorks will neither grow nor work for my coily mane again.
GroWorks was one of those products I told everyone about. I’ve never been one of those chicks to act confused or come down with a sudden case of amnesia when asked about my hair care.
I will tell you exactly what I use, how often I use it, where I buy it and how much I pay for it. I even tell people who my stylist is and give her number because I don’t want to lose a favorite product or person.
Alas, this has failed me since my precious, precious hair cream is going to that beauty supply store in the sky.
This stuff was water and conditioner based, not heavy, waxy or sticky, gave my hair shine, perked up the curls, had a mild, pleasant but barely noticeable smell (because who wants to be the natural chick with the smelly hair) and was the only product I’ve used in nearly three years that didn’t just sit on top of my hair. I used it daily with no build-up.
It was inexpensive. I have a lot of hair- a lot of hair- so I can go through a lot of product (Those Organix conditioners were good for two and half washes, maybe three). I need something that gets the job done without the cost adding up to something akin to a car payment. A jar of this stuff would run me $4-7 depending on the store and it could last me a month or two.
Finally it was easy to apply. I hate seeing those natural hair care regimens that have 19 steps to them even after all the cleaning, conditioning and detangling. That was kind of defeating the part of the purpose for me going natural in the first place. If it’s going to take me two or three hours to get the job done, I’m not interested.
And since I live in a cold region, daily wash-and-go’s and spritzing techniques were out of the question. How many of those expensive curl stretching, loosening, defining, encouraging creams required you to add water the next day? Or even another semi-expensive product in the same line to boost and fluff it back into shape? If it doesn’t last beyond one application or without me having to buy a partner product, then it’s a rip off.
Even my aforementioned stylist was a fan. She knew about my many hair experiments but after just a few uses of this stuff, she said to me, “Whatever it is you’re using right now, keep using it. Your hair is looking really healthy right now.”
I loved, loved, loved my GroWorks. But now it’s gone.
And so it begins.
The mad dash to Big Lots, Dollar Tree and every other buy-out store to relieve them of their entire supply. Y’all think I’m kidding, but I’ve been known to take my arm and sweep everything off the shelf and in to the basket (I still have some Vitamin brand conditioner left thanks to this method, and it still works, so there!)
I’m hopeful I get there in time and I’ve put the word out on the street that I’m looking for it.
All my friends are looking. A buddy dropped by the other day with three jars and the lady at the counter had the nerve to ask if that was what he always used. Can I tell you this guy does not have the sort of hair that really requires a hair product?
And even if he did, it’s too late. He bought the last of it. She should have been buying it when it was freely available and maybe we wouldn’t be in this predicament. Stinkin’ saleslady.
I sullenly started my search for a replacement product once I noticed the GroWorks supply starting to dwindle, but so far it isn’t going very well.
The Palmer’s Coconut hair lotion has the same initial effect, but the buildup is maddening. Within two or three days of this my hair looks and feels like paper.
And the smell of this stuff. You should never be indoors if you’re going to use this. The smell is so loud, I thought I heard my smell-sensitive father start sniffing and gagging a little. And as you know, the man has been dearly departed since the mid 90s. Yes, the scent is that pronounced.
Cantu’s Shea Moisturizing lotion has a nice moisturizing affect but the hair doesn’t really curl up and smile like I’m used to.
My mom recommended good old fashion Ultra Sheen. “It worked when you were little,” she reminds me, and it did, but I was also wearing my hair in ponytails back then. Doesn’t work so well if I want the hair to be loose and free. It doesn’t even work that great for hair buns, but it does have a nice shine to it and smells like nothing at all.
Finally, the other product I’m playing around with is the Organic Root Stimulator intense hair repair moisturizing something or other. This is another one where the smell is a bit intense. And I think I got a bad jar because it’s heavy, not so creamy like I saw on some reviews. Not bad for buns, but I don’t know about using this with my hair down.
So yes, this whole post was all about me losing a hair product. Why? First because I took the beauty blog down and had to grieve my loss somewhere, and second because this is my desperate plea for suggestions for alternatives.
If I don’t find something soon then I’ll have to try anti-depressants. Not for me, for my hair!!
Lyn Christopher – Take Me With You
One day I’m going to do a post about all the songs I never knew had videos. Here’s one now.
Zero 7 – My Flame
Not sure how this got into my head but here ‘tis
Ja’Net Dubois – Movin On Up (Jeffersons Theme Song)