LUSH solid shampoo review

Lush solid shampoo bar review
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Lush solid shampoo review

If you’re wondering does Lush solid shampoo work well, and if the Lush solid conditioner is also worth trying, then read on. I’ve tested out several shampoo and conditioner bars from their range and here’s my verdict, along with suggestions for exciting alternatives to Lush!

I love my hair. I was a regular Rapunzel when I was younger, although the knight on a white charger never materialised. Hubbie doesn’t do horses, and ours is a modern day fairy tale. Yet you’ve probably never really seen my hair. On our travels I tend to tie it up and stuff it under a cap rather than using it to entice the male of the species into my clutches. Mainly because it’s always hot where we travel, and sweaty isn’t my best look.

Hair stylists often ask about my hair care regime, which must be extensive to achieve such shiny locks. Yet it’s actually pretty simple…just a quick shampoo and conditioner every morning, followed by a dash to work with it still wet. Sometimes I drive with the windows open so it dries before I arrive. The only thing I rely on is decent shampoo and conditioner, and when I travel they’re always the first things to go into my suitcase. I used to lug around a couple of giant bottles, which took up valuable souvenir space and did nothing to ease my plastic waste footprint.

So I decided to try solid shampoo and solid conditioner.

LUSH Solid Shampoo and Conditioner

I’d heard about Lush solid shampoo before, yet had always been dubious about its performance. And as for Lush solid conditioner? It just sounds ridiculous. How could a solid conditioner bar have the same effect as a bottle of milky cream full of moisture and shine.

This year I’ve decided to be more open minded and give it a go.

We’re heading off to Kenya in January (whoop) but because we’ll be taking several small internal cargo plane flights our total baggage weight limit is just 15 kg each. That includes hand luggage. Yikes. Our camera kit will probably take up half of that, and my clothes the other half, so quite what Hubbie is going to do I really don’t know!

READ MORE: A luxury safari in the Samburu in Northern Kenya

It’s clearly time to try the Lush solid shampoo and conditioner. 

I popped down to my local store, braved the cloying wall of stink and glitter and tried not to be intimidated by the hip young staff with their nose piercings, bright blue hair and skimpy dungarees. I was never that cool. Still, never too late to start, right?

Lush solid shampoo and conditioner review and giveaway

My haul of solid shampoo and conditioner from LUSH

LUSH solid shampoo review

First up was the Lush ‘Godiva’ solid shampoo. A day later it was already in the bin. A week later I was still trying to get rid of the incredibly strong (and unpleasant) smell which seemed to have permeated the house. It was terrible. Undeterred, I returned to the shop and this time chose on scent rather than listening to the lass with spiky hair and rainbow nails telling me all about the different properties of each Lush solid shampoo bar.

I have long fine hair which has a tendency to be greasy, so choosing the red ‘Jason and the Argan Oil‘ Lush solid shampoo didn’t feel quite right. Oil is the last thing my hair needs. Yet it smelled unoffensive and I kinda liked the name. Who says you should always be guided by science. I also picked up the ‘Montalbano‘ Lush solid shampoo bar, again because I actually really liked the scent and it had a cool wedge of lemon on top.

So did they work?

I have to admit being pleasantly surprised.  

The ‘Jason and the Argan Oil‘ solid shampoo reminded me of Morocco, a country famed for both Argan oil and roses. The oil left my hair shiny rather than greasy and the overtones of rose and citronella were subtle instead of overpowering. This solid shampoo is supposed to set fair hair ‘ablaze with brightness and strength’. I’m not sure about that, but my hair was left clean and no less silky than usual. This solid shampoo bar lathers up really well too, so you really do only need a couple of strokes on your hair. So far it’s lasted me several weeks, which is great news for travel.

The ‘Montalbano‘ Lush solid shampoo bar works a treat too. It doesn’t leave my hair as shiny as Jason and the Argan Oil, but it does make it feel totally refreshed and smells divine! Normally lemon scents remind me of chemical cleaning products, but Montalbano, like all Lush products, is all about natural fragrances. It contains Sicilian lemon oil, fresh lemon peel and organic lemon myrtle oil. And popping candy (not quite sure what that one’s about!). Again it lathers well, and you only need a couple of stokes over your hair to have enough product to wash with. They say it lasts up to 80 washes, and I can totally believe it!

Mithraeum above Rožanec, Bela Krajina, Slovenia

Fresh shiny hair on our Slovenia travels

There are other solid shampoo bars out there to consider:

Yet it’s not all about Lush.

There’s no doubt that Lush bars are expensive, and as I found, if you don’t choose wisely you’ll end up stinking like a teenager who’s just discovered body spray. And some potential buyers may be put off by Lush’s controversial campaign against the Police during 2018.

But don’t worry. There are several other solid shampoo bars out there that are great alternatives to Lush. 

I’ve tried out several other brands and they are all just as effective. I particularly like this Coconut and Lemon Verbana shampoo bar, and this Lavender and Tea Tree shampoo bar.

Browse Solid Shampoo Bars

How to store your solid shampoo

You can buy tins for the Lush solid shampoos, but they don’t make any the right size or shape for the conditioners, which seems to be a bit of an oversight.

Lush solid shampoo and conditioner review and giveaway

It’s also really difficult to remove the used shampoo out of the tins once it’s wet, since the tins are not flexible, so I use Go Tubbs from HumanGear instead.

The medium ones are just the right size, pop open using one hand, and you can remove the shampoo very easily. They’re also great for storing dashboard mints, headphones and ipod, and all manner of odds and sods.


LUSH solid conditioner

Now this was the real test. I’ve used it for a few weeks and have finally made up my mind. I opted to try ‘Big‘ and ‘The Plumps‘. Spiky hair girl assured me that both would give great volume to fine hair like mine. She clearly had volume so for once I took her advice.

Both smelt rather unexcitingly of soap, which was fine because the shampoos had such strong fragrances. I don’t like mixing my scents and smelling like a seedy Parisian boudoir. Clean and fresh will work just fine!

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We’ve just bough @zerowastehome book and I turned first to the chapter on the bathroom. I’m very guilty of having a LOT of products that claim to do a lot of things, most of them in plastic. I used to collect hotel miniatures as I thought they’d be useful to have – Now I’ve got tons of them! All in plastic… @lush do some amazing products that we first used when travelling – the gorgeous smelling Mighty Shampoo Bar (lasts for 80-100 washes!) My hair is dry and frizzy without conditioner so N just bought this conditioner bar from lush to try! They come in little metal tins so when you’re all out, you can just buy a refill! . . . . . . . . . . #Lush#Nopackaging#Travelproducts#Greenproducts#Naturalshampoo#Naturalconditioner#Lushshampoo#Lushconditioner#Lushproducts#Reducewaste#zerowaste#reusable#cuttheplastic#reduceplastic#savetheplanet#weonlyhaveoneplanet#eco#ecowarrier#gogreen#green#climatechange#extinctionrebellion#savetheearth#earth#thinkglobalactlocal#nowaste#gogreen#ecofreindly#ocean#noplasticintheocean#bansingleuseplastic

A post shared by K & N (@makehastettozerowaste) on

At first I found them both really frustrating. It is after all just like rubbing a bar of soap over your hair, and they don’t glide smoothly. They also don’t lather like the solid shampoo, and actually getting some product onto my hair seemed to take forever. Eventually I realised it was easier to try and lather in my hands, and then apply to my hair. I wasn’t particularly convinced by the experience, but after rinsing and drying my hair actually felt pretty good. It was more tangled than normal (isn’t that the point of conditioner?), but after some vigorous brushing I could live with the result.

It isn’t a product I’d use long term, but for periods of extended travel, I will be taking some solid conditioner with me.

The other negative of Lush solid conditioner is that it’s more pliant than the solid shampoo, and after a few washes it started to deteriorate around the edges, before finally breaking into several annoying pieces. Just something to consider when packing. Although it does mean it will fit in the brilliant Go Tubbs containers!

READ MORE: Unique and Unusual Travel Gifts

Buy Solid Conditioner

As with the solid shampoo, there are alternatives to Lush solid conditioner bars, and the ones I’ve tried (like this amazing hand-made lavender and lime solid conditioner from Devon) seem to work pretty much the same. So my advice is to just go with the scent!


LUSH toothy tabs

As well as solid shampoo and conditioner, Lush have a few other tricks up their sleeve when it comes to travel. Trying the solid and powder deodorants was a step too far for me, but I decided to give the Toothy Tabs a go.

This has to be one of the most bizarre concepts I’ve ever come across. How on earth are you supposed to brush your teeth using little dry tablets?

Once you get your head around it, the process is pretty simple. Just chew one up for a few seconds and start brushing. The saliva makes it foam up like normal toothpaste and does leave your teeth feeling quite clean. Yet I’m not convinced they worked as well as normal toothpaste.

I had a whiff of all the different flavours in the shop, and as with some of the solid shampoos, most of them smelled really bad. Certainly not something I’d want in my mouth. So I opted for the ‘Miles of Smiles‘ which is triple mint flavoured. Surely you can’t go wrong with a bit of mint? It was pretty potent, and the aftertaste wasn’t pleasant, and despite persevering for over a week, I just didn’t relish the experience.

Some people may have an issue with the absence of fluoride in Toothy Tabs. Some want it in a toothpaste whilst others prefer it without, so this one really is up to personal choice. Here’s a great review from a dentist on the ins-and-outs of the Toothy Tabs.

I don’t think I’ll be using the the Toothy Tabs any time soon, even on my travels.

What I loved

Lush is all about ethical, and natural ingredients. There are no chemicals here, and the products are all fresh and handmade. So as well as feeling good on the outside after using them, you also feel good on the inside for doing a little bit for the environment.

What wasn’t so great

It really is best if you can go to a store to check out the scents before you buy. Some are lovely, others really stink. It is of course a very personal thing, so whilst I liked the ones I eventually chose, you might decide you’re more of a Lady Godiva. 

The Verdict

Lush products are on the pricey side, and there are several cheaper solid shampoo bars and conditioner bars on the market. Do shop around and see what works best for you. I’m pretty much sold on shampoo bars, but am not convinced by the conditioner bars. If you have a different experience, do let me know!

Remember everyone’s hair is different, so don’t just follow what I say, go try some out for yourself.

Have you tried Lush solid shampoo or conditioner before? What did you think?

LUSH solid shampoo review. Does it really work and is it ideal for travelling. Plus some ideas for cheaper alternative solid shampoo bars. #LUSH #solidshampoo #soap #washbag

LUSH gift voucher GIVEAWAY

Now it’s your chance to try out some of the LUSH products, whether it’s solid shampoos and conditioners, toothy tabs or something entirely different. The choice is yours. We’re giving away a £15 gift card to one lucky entrant.

Unfortunately the card is only redeemable in the UK, so this giveaway is open to entrants able to spend this in the UK. However the expiry date isn’t until 22.7.18 so if you think you’ll be passing though before then you’re welcome to enter!

The giveaway closes at midnight on Monday 15th August 2016. 

To Enter

It couldn’t be simpler. Just use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter, doing as many of the options as you like. If you have previously completed any of the actions (for example if you already follow us on Facebook, Twitter etc) then feel free to have an entry for them!

Make sure you select your entries on the Rafflecopter widget to validate your entry!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and conditions

No purchase is necessary to enter or win. A purchase will not increase your chances of winning. The prize is a £15 gift voucher from Lush. The prize is not refundable or exchangeable for cash. This competition is open to a worldwide audience. The giveaway will run for 2 weeks and end at midnight on Monday 15th August 2016. The winner will be determined on or around the 16th August 2016 by a random drawing of eligible entries received. Your chances of winning are determined by the number of eligible entries. Winners must respond within a week of receiving the notification email, otherwise another winner will be chosen.


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