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The Best Hair Shampoo and Conditioner

Updated on August 11, 2023

We need to look after our hair

When we were younger, we could probably get away with using nothing but a bit of the supermarket's own shampoo and as far as conditioner was concerned, what was that?

Sadly as I have found from my own experience, things don't stay that way.

As I have got older, I have noticed how my once glossy, wavy hair has turned grey through more of it than I really feel comfortable with and what was once a wash and leave, has become a nightmare unless I keep it brushed, washed and conditioned. Don't even bother asking what happens on those rare occasions when I can drop the roof of my car and feel the wind in my hair...

Not only has the colour of my hair changed--and before you ask, I'm not going to go off on one now, telling you which is the best hair colourant, because I'm not. Although my hair is very long, I'm determined to grow old and grey--gracefully.

So why did we go for Pantene?

To be honest, all I can tell you is that it is what has worked best for Penny and I.

We're both fast approaching what those in the know laughingly call 'middle age' and frankly don't feel any different than when we were much, much younger.

But we are.

Our metabolism has changed and so too has our hair.

Penny prefers to keep hers coloured and although I tried once, I really can't be bothered with the upkeep choosing instead to let mine stay as is--a mix of steely grey and mid brown reaching almost down to my backside.

Both of us however, have to take care of our locks and to that end, we have tried various different hair products to try and find something that fits us.

Between us, we have come up with the following pearls of wisdom:

Elvive left our hands and hair feeling greasy
Elvive left our hands and hair feeling greasy

Hair shampoo

This we use daily and having tried Tresemme, various L'Oreal products including Elvive and Pantenne Pro V, we have come to the conclusion that the first two have serious faults as far as how it left OUR hair.


We had Elvive for a while and while it's marketed very heavily on the television, is made by one of the biggest beauty-product manufacturers out there, trying it we found that it wasn't nearly as good as they made out.

For a start, it's an absolute nightmare to rinse out.

As an ex-hairdresser, I have been trained in how to know when hair is free of product and I just couldn't seem to get it out.

Not only that, but it also left my hands feeling kind of oily and the only thing I could think of was the use of silicone.

This is something which can make hair feel silky smooth, but at a cost: it also makes it feel greasy.

So that one went out of the window... um... not literally, we just stopped using it and didn't even finish the bottle.

Wire wool would have been easier to detangle after this stuff.
Wire wool would have been easier to detangle after this stuff.


Salon quality is its marketing and salon quality didn't seem to be what we found.

In fact, we found that this left our hair feeling like it was a handful of wire wool. It felt incredibly stripped, course and not at all how we had envisaged so called 'salon quality hair shampoo ' leaving our hair.

We even tried the conditioner afterwards, but it didn't ever feel right.

It didn't have the same effect as L'Oreal in that it didn't leave our hands and hair feeling like it had just been sprayed with engine oil, but it wasn't good and once dried, getting a brush through it was like being tortured. Five minutes of brushing and I would have admitted to anything...

Strike two.

This is the one for us.
This is the one for us.

Pantene Pro V range

Admittedly, not all of the products in this range suit us, but we have found the Pantene Pro V Repair and Protect line about the best for us.

The fact that I don't have my hair cut on a regular basis, means I have probably enough split ends to give Vidal Sassoon a heart attack, so rather than cut them all out and risk losing the length, I go for a good quality shampoo and conditioner.

The shampoo is nice to use and despite the fact that most people say I have more than my fair share of hair, I don't need gallons of product to shampoo my hair.

Pantene Pro V doesn't leave my hands or my hair feeling like they have just been through an oil bath, but at the same time, doesn't leave it feeling dry, brittle and as though you'd be better off scouring the dirty baking tray with it than brushing it.

We both use this and for once, I have got into using it regularly too. Whilst my hair doesn't look like one of the models hair that advertise it, it's the best it's been for a long time
We both use this and for once, I have got into using it regularly too. Whilst my hair doesn't look like one of the models hair that advertise it, it's the best it's been for a long time

Pantene Pro V Repair and Protect Conditioner

To go with the Pantene Pro V Repair and Protect shampoo, we use Pantene's Pro V Repair and Protect Conditioner.

There's nothing to say that you have to use the same type of conditioner as your shampoo, but it's what suits us.

Having had a reasonable number of decades to have tried a wealth of products--including professional products from my point of view, I think I can safely say that this is probably the best range currently on the market.

If they do use silicone, it's in small quantities and leaves the hair largely tangle-free and the most manageable that any product leaves it. Basically, like with the shampoo, I don't need huge dollops and find it rinses out quickly without leaving any kind of oily or greasy residue.

Two thumbs up for this.

This is a leave-in product that does exactly what it says on the packet
This is a leave-in product that does exactly what it says on the packet

Pantene Nature Fusion Moisture Balance Conditioner

No, sadly I am not being paid by Pantene to extol the virtues of its products, but we seriously get on with their hair care range.

Penny swims four or more times a week before work at our local swimming pool and this means two things.

  1. She is subjecting her hair to a dousing with chlorinated water
  2. She is short of time to properly pamper it once she's done.

Enter Pantene Nature Fusion Moisture Balance Conditioner.

This is a leave in product and needs no more than a smarty-sized drop in the hand and then worked or massaged into the hair.

She can then leave her hair until she gets home to blast it with the hairdryer.

The condition of her hair after she's used it makes it feel soft, silky and again, nt covered in any kind of oily or greasy film.

Two thumbs up for this one too.

Using hair products

Many people feel that they should be using huge quantities of product no matter what they're using.

It's a bit like the toothpaste ads that show the person putting a good thick squeeze of paste from one end of the brush to the other.

That's all well and good, but most of that's going to fall off the brush either on the way to your mouth or after the first couple of brushes.

Product that goes down the drain is of no use to man nor beast and is just a waste.

Therefore, start with a small amount and if it's not enough, increase that amount slightly.

The use of handfuls of shampoo only means that you've got to spend longer rinsing it out and what's more, the more you use, the more it costs. It's not going to get your hair cleaner.

Products may well have changed over the last twenty five years, but not to the degree that you will need to use mountains of gunk to make your hair nice. This is why we have settled for Pantene products. Not only do they work, but they work without needing to use a bottle a week.

The same can be said for conditioner.

So again take a small amount and work it into the hair.

The hair and scalp benefit from being massaged.It can encourage growth and help exfoliate at the same time.

A little conditioner goes a long way, so be sparing or like the shampoo, spend more time rinsing out.

Leave the conditioning product in your hair for a minute or so, but you don't need to leave it any longer. Only so much will be absorbed, no matter how long you leave it.

Rinse thoroughly. Leaving product that's meant to be rinsed out, in, will only cause irritation and can even lead to dermatitis.


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