After my experiments with John Frieda’s Colour Glaze, I decided to try something a little less dramatic in my bid to give my red hair a bit of a colour boots. Botanics ‘Radiant Red’ conditioner seemed to be just what I was looking for: again, this is a "normal", use-in-the-shower conditioner, however as well as the usual moisturisers (plus honey, in this case), it also contains henna, which will give red hair some extra shine and vibrancy, without looking too "fake".
First things first: the fact that this contains henna is a big clue that you need to use it with care. It is colour-depositing, and it will deposit that colour on everything: hair, bathroom walls, towels, you name it!
The first time I used it, then, I was actually fairly shocked by how far it managed to spread. Apparently I flick my head around a lot in the shower (WHY? And how did I never notice this before?) because once I’d finished applying it I turned around and noticed that my white bathroom tiles were now splattered with red. Looked a little bit like a massacre had recently taken place, to be honest.
Of course, the conditioner wipes off tiles no problem, but the grout between them is now looking a little pink in places, so use with caution near anything white, and be aware that if you’re anything like me, you’ll be finding this, not just on the walls of the shower, but EVERYWHERE. I keep finding spots of it on the bathroom wall, for instance, and the white towel I wrap my head in after the shower turned pink almost instantly after I used this. Luckily, the colour came off both wall and towel, and both now look as good as new, but… just be careful, ‘kay?
Onto the actual product, then!
As I mentioned, this is used in exactly the same way as any other conditioner: just apply after shampooing (there’s a ‘Radiant Red’ shampoo from the same brand, which I haven’t tried yet), let it soak in for a few minutes, then rinse. So that’s simple enough, what about the results?
Well, I was very pleased with the results, especially given that this is very much a bargain buy at just £2.99 per bottle. The actual condition of my hair hasn’t really changed while I’ve been using it, so I can’t say that it’s made it dramatically softer, however, I have noticed a subtle change in the colour: the colour does look redder and more vibrant, but in a way that looks very natural: there are only small amounts of henna being deposited, and, of course, you don’t leave it on for a long time, so there’s not a dramatic difference, but it’s definitely there! The proof of this came from Mr Dollface telling me that my hair looked "very red" after about a week of using this, and totally unprompted, too!
A really good buy for £2.99, then, and something I’ll definitely be using in the future, probably along with the matching shampoo!
Oh, and if you’re not a redhead, there’s also a Glossy Brunette version and a Shimmering Blonde.
UPDATE! In repsonse to some of the comments below, about how henna reacts with chemical hair colours, I contacted the Boots press office, who told me the conditioner is safe to use with chemically treated hair. They say that it contains a henna extract, but the level of henna used is not enough to cause any problems.
Buy: Botanics Radiant Red Conditioner, £2.99