March 24, 2008

Clarifying Your Hair: Lush Big and Retread Review

I’ve already done a section on Lush Cosmetics Shampoo Bars a long, long while ago but I was doing my daily Sunday night hair clarifying ritual yesterday and I thought I’d share it with you guys since it works so well for me!

As you know my hair mostly stays up and out of my face in a bun with a headband. I don’t like my hair flying around my head, my mouth, my face, etc….it irritates and annoys me since it’s so very long. I like it out of my face when I’m working so 5 days a week from 9 to 5 my hair stays firmly in it’s bun with a headband smoothing it back. After work and on the weekends I don’t mind it floating around but when I’m working it’s smoothed back!

I wash it everyday. I do not believe that washing my hair daily will strip my hair of it’s natural oils yada yada yada. If it does, it does but the fact of the matter is I don’t feel clean unless my hair is washed so every morning I take a shower and I wash and condition my hair.

During the week I use various shampoos, conditioners, and such. My hair doesn’t have a whole lot of maintenance attached to it during the week. It consists of me entering the shower washing it with my daily choice of shampoo and condition, air drying it, curling it into a bun, and going.

I don’t blow dry my hair, I don’t curl it, etc….My hair is naturally curly, a bit dry, and long.

I normally use a very small amount of gel to slick it back otherwise I do have a bit of frizz.

Since I like to switch around shampoos and conditioners so much through the week my hair becomes weighted down from all the silicons in those products plus the gel causes it’s normal wreckage with my hair.

What does that mean?

It means my hair is heavy with a bit of buildup. We all get it, it happens to everyone.

My Sunday evening routine prior to bed is to take a shower and clarify my hair. There is nothing in the world like the feeling of a lighter head of hair. It feels cleaner, my curls are softer, my hair is shiner, etc…after I’ve used a good clarifying shampoo.

My personal choice for that shampoo is Lush Cosmetics Big. Big gets my hair so clean it nearly whistles. Seriously. If your hair is oily this is a god sent!

Big is actually for people with fine hair thus the name comes into play here. Big is supposed to give volume and pouf to those of you with fine hair! I do not have fine hair but I still use Big regardless for me it’s a deep cleaning shampoo that rids my hair of buildup. If you suffer from dandruff this will surely rid you of your problem as it contains sea salt which is fantastic for massaging into your scalp to rid yourself of any nasty dandruff that’s made a home in your head!

The formula of this is a tad bit weird and probably not like any shampoo you’ve run across before. It’s clumpy and full of seat salt so it basically looks like a pot of scrub for your face or body not something you’d use in your hair. Many people are a bit wary of trying it because they are worried the sea salt will not wash out easy. Have no fear the salt washes away quickly and easily. The lather is beautiful and the smell is fresh and beautiful.

Now I had mentioned earlier on that this would be good for oily scalps. My hair is dry so do be warned that this will make your hair even drier when use it. It drys out hair big time so you need to follow up with a good conditioning. There in lays a good thing for the oily scalp folk as Big will definately dry up your scalp, remove the oil from your hair, and replace it with fluffy, soft hair!

Since Big is so drying I follow up closely with Lush’s Retread Conditioner. Retread smells just as gorgeous as Big and compliments it well in my humble opinion! Retread is one of Lush’s thickest conditioners minus any silicones. Your hair might not know what to do without the silicones you get in your normal conditioner but as it adjusts it’ll thank you for treating it to such an amazing conditioner. I normally smooth a good amount on and leave it on for 5 minutes while in the shower right after I’ve rinsed out Big. During that time frame I take a large tooth comb and start detangling with Retread in and smoothing my hair back and while working the conditioner through. Since Big leaves my hair such a mess and in such a tangle it feels good to gently work the comb through while Retread helps with the knots that Big created.

After 5 minutesI rinse with luke warm water and I’m done.

I towel dry my hair after this and go to bed with it damp. In the morning my hair is fluffy, soft, and beautiful. After this treatment my hair seems to just behave better. It accepts product better, it brushes out easier, I don’t experience frizz or tangles as much, and my hair just seems to be thankful that I took a bit of time out to treat it to a nice clarify!

So that’s about it 😉

The Muse highly recommends trying out Big and Retread for yourself! Retread is fantastic for daily use and as for Big I only recommend using it once a week and twice if you’re hair/scalp is oily!

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Want to simplify your haircare? Check out my review of Lush Shampoo Bars to show you how! Click!


About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • PaoPao

    Hi Muse!

    I’m also using Lush’s Big shampoo, I love the smell. But it’s completely necessary applying a good conditioner after using it.

    Have you tried Reanimator Shampoo? Gives lots of shine and volume, I adore it!

  • mayaari

    ah, i love Big 🙂 i actually used it this weekend to detox my hair, even though i don’t really use many styling products. i’ve been using veganese conditioner with it, based on the reviews on the Lush site, but I may have to check out retread the next time i stock up on lush products 🙂

  • the Muse

    hiya pao pao!!!

    I love the smell too but damn I need major conditioning afterward. Super dry head with this!

    No I haven’t tried that. Who is it by? I don’t think I’ve ever tried it. Unless it’s a lush product under another name in Spain 😉

    We have Rehab maybe that’s the same thing!?

    • livia

      AGREED! i have to doubble condition after using it (american cream) whih stinks beecause the conditioner is not cheap. i have a good amount left in the pot still so i am going to buy a pot of Curly wurly for back to school and mix it with the big to cut some of the dryness and then condition!

  • the Muse

    hiya mayaari!

    yay another big lover!

    I don’t use a ton of styling products but I swatch my daily wash routine alot so this detoxes me in a major way from the buildup those other shampoos/conditioners caused!

    Veganese smells SOOOOOOOOOO good. It’s a fav of mine!

    Retread is triple strengh unlike the other conditioners in the line. It feels much more deep conditioning.

    I love American Cream but the lack of silicons makes me feel like I’m missing out where as with Retread I feel much more conditioned 😉

    Thanks for the comment!

  • PaoPao

    Yes, it’s called Rehab in the US! Why they keep changing the names???? Sometimes they change English names for other ones… in English too!

    • Icinggirl

      I believe rehab is the restorative shampoo 🙂 it’s different from retread.

  • the Muse

    ha score!

    I rock 😉

    I know! Some of the names in Japan are hysterical!


  • Lee

    I really like BIG, although I find it quite stripping. But hey, I guess that’s the point of a clarifying shampoo right?! I am going to use it tomorrow morning, along with Retread as you suggested. I have very fine hair, cut into a chin length bob. I do not colour my hair and rarely heat style. I would love to wash my hair daily, because it would look better and have more volume, but I’m scared of stripping all of the natural oils and people constantly saying its bad for the hair. How long is your hair and do u find washing it daily makes it oiler/drier/no difference?

  • the Muse

    hello there lee!

    It’s very stripping and very drying but it does a damn good job of cleaning up my hair 😉

    I normally use once a week for these reasons!

    I wash my hair everyday but NOT with Big 🙂

    Big I reserve for once a week or twice a week treatment.

    I normally wash my hair daily using I Love Juicy and American Cream and throw in some Baby Shampoo on occasion or other Lush shampoos.

    I have very long, wavy/curly hair down my back 🙂 Using Lush has really helped keep it orderly.

    My hair is at a normal, calm state at the moment after many years of misbehaving and I blame it on Lush. Lush has some sincerely quality hair care that strips the silicons from hair while leaving natural oils in place.

    Hope this helps 🙂

  • Lee

    I love your blog Muse! Yes, I only use Big once a week on a friday to detox my hair before the weekend. I love LUSH haircare and am currently using their new ‘squeaky green’ shampoo bar and seanik shampoo bar. I have both american cream and veganese conditioners. About once a week I use LUSH’S Marilyn hair treatment. I just brought their Jasmine and Henna Fluff Eaze hair treatment and can’t wait to try it. I also like my Tigi Honey and Oatmeal shampoo and conditioner which smell delish. How often do you trim your hair? I am currently trying to grow mine to shoulder length – I am about 3 inches away from my goal length though. I was going for tiny trims every 6 wks but now I’ve decided I want to leave it go until xmas so I can get some real growth happening. I have never coloured my hair, and when I dry my hair I use an ionic hairdryer with diffuser and only dry the front and leave the back wet to airdry. I have had to use my hairdryer a little more lately due to it being winter here (I’m in Australia) and absolutely freezing. I use a good leave in on the ends most of the time. How did u grow your hair that long without getting split ends? My stylist says fine hair (I have very fine hair) is more prone to split ends so I do everything I can to prevent them.

  • the Muse

    hello lee 🙂

    Aw thanks so much! Glad you like my crazy babblings 🙂

    I do the same. I normally use it sunday night.

    I haven’t tried squeaky green yet as I fear it’s too earthy for me but I love New! and Godiva 🙂

    AC and Veganese are favs of mine 🙂

    Jasmine and Henna Fluff Eaze is amazinggggggg do stop by and tell me whatcha think of it!

    I trim my hair once every 3 weeks to keep it from weighting down and also dealing with major breakage and split ends 🙂

    I don’t dry my hair at all as it causes my hair to dry out so I normally let it air dry 🙂

    I have thick hair. It takes me very little time to grow it long 😉 I cut it shoulder length last year I believe and it’s back to it’s regular length again..I think I’ll be cutting it again shortly 😉

    I have such thick hair that I don’t get too many split ends thankfully especially since I maintain it well with proper cuts here and there plus I use AC on the ends to prevent splitting 😉 As a leave in treatment 😉

    Works a treat!

  • Sophie

    Thank you! Someone else who washes their hair every day! I get lectures all the time about how I shouldn’t wash my hair every da because of the whole stripping my hair of oils thing. But if I don’t, I’m left with limp, lank hair which doesn’t feel clean and I certainly don’t want to leave the house feeling like that! I find that the Jumping Juniper shampoo bar deals with my oily roots and then any of their conditioners sorts out my dry ends.
    Great blog 🙂

    • the Muse

      ugh sophie that drives me bats…same here…I cannot leave the house with my hair not washed…gross! I like JJ it’s pretty nice 😀 my fav is new! it’s really good for clarifying and love how it smells like big red gum!

      thanks! 😀 hope you’ll visit again!

  • Mascha

    It’s funny to read that you treat your hair EXACTLY the way I do! Wash everyday, in a bun during workdays, no blow drying or straightening, and just a little gel or hairspray to hold back the hair in the bun. My very long hair was a bit flat, and my natural waves seemed to have vanished. That’s when I bought Big, and boy does it do a good job! Especially when I do not use a conditioner after Big, since that weighs down the effect of Big. Just use it once without a conditioner and then when you wake up next morning, you will actually be able to comb out the tangles and it just falls beautifully. I actually wear my hair down now more often then I used to do before Big. It’s a must have for everyone in need of some serious volume!

    • the Muse

      ha mascha! high five! No one understands my bun mentality but my hair MUST be out of my face during the day otherwise I’ll go mad. It does do something for volume! holy cow big wig hair with it ha! I’m so glad you’re loving it b/c it’s truly a fab fine. I use it to clarify as it really deep cleans!

  • Leah

    I LOVE BIG!! I’ve never found a clarifying shampoo that comes close, its awesome. I Love Juicy is my daily fave though 😀

  • Elena (MakeupbyElena)

    I absolutely love BIG shampoo as well! I work at a Lush store in Norway, and I have tried almost every shampoo we sell, and Big is the one shampoo people everywhere love! I have customers coming in to buy the pots in bulk so that they never run out 🙂

  • Lauren

    Thank you thank you thank you for this review. I had a horrible waxy sebum build up on my crown (not sure why but apparently it’s very common, from what my google searches showed). After trying all sorts of remedies (dishwashing detergent, dry shampoo, vinegar) i finally clicked onto clarifying shampoo. You review and information here was so helpful…you definitely need a good conditioner after the big shampoo…i can’t remember my hair ever feeling that dry/stripped (??) but combing the conditioner through worked wonders, and the horrible waxy sebum/grease/oil has all gone!! i’m so relieved that I can wear my hair down again!

    • the Muse

      my pleasure lauren that is so great! i’m glad to hear it ;-D be sure to use it only once a week or less in some cases as it def is terribly drying 😀 I’m so glad it worked so well for you!

  • Lauren

    Thank you thank you thank you for this review. I had a horrible waxy sebum build up on my crown (not sure why but apparently it’s very common, from what my google searches showed). After trying all sorts of remedies (dishwashing detergent, dry shampoo, vinegar) i finally clicked onto clarifying shampoo. You review and information here was so helpful…you definitely need a good conditioner after the big shampoo…i can’t remember my hair ever feeling that dry/stripped (??) but combing the conditioner through worked wonders, and the horrible waxy sebum/grease/oil has all gone!! i’m so relieved that I can wear my hair down again! 🙂

  • Sara

    I definitely want to try this because I want both volume and moisture. After using Retread did you nice volume or was it more sleek?

  • Claudia

    Oh, this topic is so old….
    I don’t know if you’ll check my comment.

    I really love LUSH products.
    My hair is thin and straight.
    I love the combination Big/Retread for the same reasons: the shampoo really cleans it all : hair and head. I use it 3 times a week, so then I HAVE to use RETREAD.
    Retread is perfect because it acts like a treatment. And it acts fast.
    As you say, after using a claryfing shampoo as Big, Retread is the perfect choice.
    I mean… it was. Have you noticed that they changed its formula?
    Here in Brazil I noticed it 6 Months ago. I am very disappointed. I like Veganese but it’s too light. I tried American Cream, but nothing compares with the Retread (old formula until 2016).
    Do you recommend one of the solid ones?
    Thank you,

    * my cousin likes the new Retread; she says that before it was “heavier”.
    Yes, it’s lighter now, but it doesn’t “cure” my hair in five minutes anymore.