Beauty Heroes February 2019: Tabitha James Kraan

Because I am ever so timely with my blog posts *eyeroll*, you’ve likely already heard about this month’s Beauty Heroes discovery from Tabitha James Kraan. The hero product is the Clean Shampoo ($35) and Conditioner ($35), which I love that Beauty Heroes counts as one product (because really, what good is a shampoo without a conditioner?) and the sidekick is the Scented Organic Hair Oil ($52).

This month’s discovery caused quite a stir on all my social media channels. Holy wow, was it a polarizing product! Before I’d even opened my box, I’d read at least a dozen posts from those “for” and “against” the products. Comments from admirers included “my hair is the softest it’s ever been” and “this is the only green beauty haircare that I’ve ever loved!” while comments from detractors said “it left hair looking dull and dirty” and compared it to shampooing with glue.

I love a good green beauty controversy so I dove right in the test the product myself. I can now say with certainty that Tabitha’s products have a serious learning curve, and after three weeks of use, I still haven’t mastered the application or experienced the sought-after “oil balance” Tabitha is known for. That said, the products hold my interest and keep me committed to trying.

The Clean hair care line has two scents: Amber Rose and Golden Citrus. I am unsure if the entire Beauty Heroes Tribe received the same fragrance, or if some got Amber Rose and others got Golden Citrus, but all my products — including the Scented Organic Hair Oil — were Amber Rose. The scent in the shampoo is fantastic! I’m not exactly sure what it is tempered by, but it feels a touch more rose than the other products and is beautifully balanced. The same scent in the conditioner is a bit stronger, but still pleasing. However, the scent of the Amber Rose in the hair oil felt a bit overpowering to my delicate nose. It’s not at all unpleasant, only strong. I feel that those who have tried Aynua products and love they way they smell will be big fans of the Amber Rose fragrance. Amber Rose has a similar luxurious weight to its scent.

I feel like I can see why some people hated it, especially if they normally use a conventional shampoo. They are looking for the lather, so they add more shampoo. But more shampoo means more moisture, which zaps non-dry locks of their luster, leaving hair heavy and dull.

The first ingredient in the Clean Shampoo ($35) is the aloe vera leaf juice, so you know you are starting with a seriously moisturizing base. The product gently lathers using decyl glucoside, a plant based surfactant. When I say gently lathers, I do mean gently. This is not the kind of shampoo that will let you sculpt a foam mohawk. I feel like I can see why some people hated it, especially if they normally use a conventional shampoo. They are looking for the lather, so they add more shampoo. But more shampoo means more moisture, which zaps non-dry locks of their luster, leaving hair heavy and dull. I have dry ends and oily roots, and this was not a problem I ran into when using the shampoo, but it’s possible I’m already acclimated to “green” shampoos and feel comfortable with the minimal lather. My hair felt clean but not stripped and I could easily see this product being a repurchase.

The Clean Conditioner ($35) uses the same aloe vera base, and Tabitha considers it to be so moisturizing that it can be used as a “spot treatment”, only where you notice dryness in your hair. I actually had the best success using this method, applying product to my ends and not my roots. The conditioner does not rinse out in a way that leaves hair “silky soft” and when I first tried it I was convinced that lack of smoothness upon rinsing would mean a mess of tangles and dry ends. How wrong I was! But it takes some getting used to, especially because you need so little to do so much. I frequently over applied conditioner in the first week or so, thinking that if that silky feeling wasn’t there, I should use more. The result was overly hydrated and limp locks, so go against your gut and follow Tabitha’s instructions and use less (so much less) than you think you need.

My trial and error experience with the Clean Shampoo and Conditioner has been positive enough that I have attempted to tackle my true beauty nemesis: hair oil. Tabitha gave an interview to Beauty Heroes founder Jeannie Jarnot and through this I learned that the key to the successful application of the Scented Organic Hair Oil ($52) is to warm it up thoroughly between your palms, and then warm it more. You can see the entire interview and learn about Tabitha’s unique philosophy on hair and scalp here:

If want to get straight to the details, you can view this short video presented by Tabitha on the two methods of use for the Scented Organic Hair Oil here:

I am always, always confused by hair oil and though Tabitha’s instructions make me feel as if I’m getting closer to cracking the code of hair oil, I’m not yet convinced of its benefits. I’m currently using it only once a week and I’m not sure three times is enough to speak to its results. However, I can say that I have enjoyed this Beauty Heroes Discovery and the challenge it’s presented in getting me to use familiar products in a new way. I’m doubtful the hair oil will be a repurchase, but I am already looking forward to trying the Golden Citrus scent of the Clean Shampoo and Conditioner when I’m ready to restock my hair care.

A note about Beauty Heroes: Beauty Heroes has completely changed the way I experience clean beauty. My love for this company is real. Each month’s beauty discovery box contains a full-size Hero product and a deluxe sample-size or full-size Sidekick product for about $43/month. Many of the full-size Hero Products retail for upward of $70 and the deluxe Sidekicks often well above $30, so it’s one of the most cost effective ways to explore new brands and products. Additionally, members of the Beauty Heroes Tribe receive 15% off all purchases at The Beauty Store and free shipping on orders over $75, so it’s less expensive to repurchase items you’ve discovered and loved.