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The Best New Hair Products

I’ve finally found a shower cap that works. And it looks good, too



I’m in love with a shower cap, and if you make it to the next sentence, I’ll be amazed. I know, shower caps are rubbish and ugly. Practical in notion, hopeless in reality, they not so much shield hair from the shower as cause roots to flatten, hair to frizz and fringes to go awry – all to the sound of a biblical rainstorm on the tin roof of a static caravan. If ever I’m attempting to make a good blow-dry limp on, the path of least resistance is to avoid showering and dangle my head from a bubble bath – inconvenient when trying to get kids to school before rushing for a train.

Obviously, I’m about to tell you that this one is different. Believe me, I was sceptical when an advert for Shhhowercap began following me creepily around the internet, but the leopard print, turban shape (as opposed to the traditional Miss Muffet/cider wench type) and “revolutionary” claims persuaded me to shell out (about £44, including postage and duties; less if you’re buying more than one).

A  fortnight in, I’m devoted. The antibacterial fabric is soft, doesn’t stay damp or get mouldy, and even reduces noise. The band around the head – usually elastic that stretches and fails to dam the water – is a snug but comfy thin rubber (the sort you find inside bras). The cap looks great, works brilliantly and, post-shower, my hair emerges looking much as it did before. It’s expensive, yes, but if you’re someone with curly, thick or afro hair, or who spends ages on styling, it’ll pay dividends.

I now rely on it to preserve the effects of what I think may be the best volumiser I’ve ever used. Living Proof’s Dry Volume Blast (£15, 95ml) sprays into dry roots, a section at a time, much like dry shampoo. Only it has none of the white residue and coarse feel, and gives extraordinary fullness for way longer than anything I’ve tried before. It’s no exaggeration to say that my hairdo lasts two or three days without any reapplication, provided I shake the can vigorously between sprays (crucial).

Finally, I must mention the new John Frieda Radiant Red shampoo and conditioner (£5.99 each, 250ml). Since she began testing it for me, my redheaded colleague Lauren has been positively evangelical. Even to me, her hair is noticeably brighter, shinier and lovelier than before.

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