**Edit: Since writing this review John Masters have had some issues with formulas which resulted in silicones being added, less organic content and other problems. Although it appears they have reverted back to the original formulas following a significant backlash, please check formulas carefully before purchasing**
John Masters Organics is a brand that started in the US but that has a strong UK and European presence. It started as a haircare line, as founder John Masters has been working in the hair industry for years, opening his conscious salon in Mahattan in 1994. When I first started looking at switching to more natural haircare the choice was a lot smaller than it is now, I still feel it is one of the areas where brands most overstate the naturalness of their products. Just this week I had a PR email from L’Oréal who are cashing in on the natural trend with several new “naturally inspired” lines, despite the fact that it isn’t their usual niche. John Masters is I think the first natural haircare brand I tried around eight years ago, I was impressed then, and I am still impressed now, the range has since expanded to also cover bath and body care, skincare and even candles.
I have three products to show you that I think are a good option for most starting out with natural haircare. You won’t find any silicones, sulphates are harsh preservatives in these, but they perform very similarly to regular haircare products, so no drastic changes to your wash routine are needed.
John Masters Organics Lavender and Rosemary Shampoo – (£17 for 236 ml Other sizes available) This shampoo has a deep colour and a herbal scent. True to it’s lavender and rosemary name, the shampoo contains both of these botanical oils plus lot’s of other botanicals such as Aloe Vera, yarrow, jojoba oil and nettle. Given that this shampoo uses gentler surfactants and has no sulphates, it doesn’t foam as much as a conventional shampoo would, but still is easy to use and spread across the hair. I have hair that is below shoulder level and find that a ten pence piece worth of product is enough to cover all hair from root to tip. Hair definitely feels clean and I didn’t suffer from any irritation of my scalp, although as I have a naturally dry scalp anyway I suspect that the Zinc and Sage shampoo might be a better match for me long term. A really lovely shampoo, suitable for most hair types including colour treated that can be used with any of the John Masters conditioners or detanglers.
John Masters Lavender and Avocado intensive conditioner – (£22 for 207 ml other sizes available) This conditioner is a more intensive treatment that the John Masters detanglers, which have been favourites of mine over the years, especially good for summer when you perhaps wash your hair more frequently. The conditioner has a creamy consistency but isn’t too thick and rinses easily from the hair with no residue. I find this conditioner works well for my slightly wavy hair, it helps with frizz and softens the hair. for very dry hair I think you may well need something even more heavy duty, but this is a good product for most.
John Masters Organics rose and Apricot hair milk – (£25 for 118 ml) This is a leave in conditioner and styling product. It is a light milk consistency and I like that it doesn’t weight the hair down. I apply a small amount through the ends of the hair when it’s still damp and it adds shine and nourishment as well as tackling frizz.
There is no getting away from the fact that truly natural haircare is more difficult to formulate and more pricey generally, but I have found I don’t need to wash my hair as much with a more natural routine as my hair and scalp are generally more balanced. John Masters is definitely worth a look if you are looking for high quality products.The range is available at Only Naturals and the code ANA10 get’s you 10% off your first order.