Friday, 21 December 2012

John Frieda Precision Foam Colour – Radiant Red 5R Medium Red Brown (review)

John Frieda Precision Foam Colour

If you want the ultimate home hair dye kit, look no further because John Frieda's Precision Foam Colour is, in my humble opinion, the best on the market. And here's why...

John Frieda, a rather famous British celebrity hair stylist, opened his first salon in London in 1976 and started selling his haircare products in the U.K. in 1988 through Boots stores. His initial Signature line was followed up with the legendary Frizz-Ease in 1990, Sheer Blonde in 1998, Brilliant Brunette in 2004 and Radiant Red in 2005. His company has been so successful because his ranges offer targeted hair products that people buy over and over again... because they work. It is no small compliment when Vogue says "John Frieda is the founding father of modern hair products". So when his first home hair colour kit was introduced it was a very big deal indeed.
At £9.99 Precision Foam Colour is priced at the premium end of the market. Infact, it's the most expensive colourant on the high street, but this hasn't been a barrier to sales. One of the most innovative aspects of this dye kit is the foam formulation. Most dyes, as I'm sure you know, are creamy or gel-like in texture. John Frieda's is a liquid that foams up during use allowing the formula to be spread quickly and easily (and thoroughly!) from root to tip. It was the first premium, permanent foam hair colour on the market and has been much copied since it's début.

This is my go-to hair dye – although I do deviate for innovative new dyes such as Garnier Olia Permanent Hair Colour Innovation which was a disappointment – but here I am again, back with John Frieda using my favourite Radiant Red shade: 5R. Unlike the Olia 4.6 Deep Red shade I used before, John Frieda's 5R Medium Red Brown is far more natural looking, with no pinky tones or brassiness to ruin the effect. It still promises 100% grey coverage if that's important to you. (Please be aware that the same dye can vary in shade and intensity depending on your hair colour, previous dyes used and hair condition.)
What's inside the box

To start with, the instructions are clear with good pictures. Once the developer and colourant are combined, you do NOT shake it, but tip the bottle around until mixed. This is made quite clear. You squeeze the bottle to dispense the foam, which is easy to do (and better than the push-down dispenser of L'Oréal Paris Sublime Mousse Permanent Foam Colour which gets too slippery). The foam smooths easily through the hair, coating every strand. Yes, there's the traditional ammonia smell, but after a decade or so of dying I'm getting used to it. Despite not being a thick cream it's completely non-drip and there's plenty of foam to cover long hair (in fact I could have got away with four fifths of a bottle) so there are no missed patches.

Development time is twenty minutes (thirty minutes for greys) and I experienced no irritation. When it came to rinsing it out, it couldn't be easier. After applying a little water and massaging the foam in I found that despite the dark red colour, rinsing this particular dye off my hair wasn't a problem – unlike Olia which kept leaching colour for two or three washes after first use, and ruined my towels! My hair did feel a bit straw like after use, but the slick conditioner (a generous 50 ml is provided) put an end to that.

After my hair had dried – by air drying, I rarely use heat styling – it looked lovely and shiny with a fantastic depth of evenly spread colour. The best bit is the highlights that shine through; this isn't a 'blocky' colourant and looks more natural than most. Unless people spot my golden blonde eyebrows (often darkened with eyebrow pencil!) or have been told my hair colour is fake, they don't realise my hair colour is artificial when I use this! 

So, why would you not buy this hair dye? Well, if you can't afford it, fair enough. You can get just about adequate results elsewhere for much less. However, I still rate Precision Foam Colour quite highly for 'value' because the results are so good. You should probably also look elsewhere if you're after a full-on, bold new colour like pillar box red or platinum blonde. For everyone else, though, this is a reliable at-home colourant, that gives you results that come closer to matching a professional dye at the salon. And that is high praise indeed.

Hair has natural looking tones and highlights
One of the most expensive hair dyes around
Colour quality and vibrancy is outstanding

Generous quantities

So easy to use

Instructions are simple to follow


Brand: John Frieda


Developer Size: 48 ml 
Colourant Size: 32 ml
Conditioner Size: 50 ml
Price: £9.99 (£9.99/treatment)

Manufactured: European Union

Developer Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Hydrogen Peroxide, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cetyl Alcohol, Myristyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Etidronic Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Salicylic Acid, Acetaminophen 

Colourant Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Alcohol Denat., Decyl Glucoside, Ammonium Bicarbonate, Propylene Glycol, Ammonium Hydroxide, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Ethanolamine, Laureth-23, Parfum, Toluene 2,5-Diamine Sulfate, Polyquaternium 7, Sodium Sulfite, Polyquaternium 22, Alcohol, Ascorbic Acid, Resorcinol, Myristyl Alcohol, Potassium Oleate, m-Aminophenol, C-11-15 Pareth-9, Tetrasodium EDTA

Conditioner Ingredients: Aqua, Glycerin, Stearyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Behentrimonium Chloride, Cetyl Alcohol, Trisiloxane, Cetyl Esters, Orbignya Oleifera Seed Oil, Quaternium 91, Oryza Sativa Bran Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetrimonium Methosulfate, Parfum, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Methylisothiazolinone 

Alternative: L'Oréal Paris Sublime Mousse Permanent Foam Colour

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