I haven’t had my hair highlighted or cut since mid-January. JANUARY. That’s a tough reality to swallow for a woman who religiously schedules her hair appointments for every eight weeks. But, you know – I never thought we’d be in the middle of a global pandemic, so here we are. While I’m definitely too scared to take scissors to my ends or attempt at-home color, I did want to find a way to bring back some life to my strands and tone down the brassiness. After seeing this picture, I promptly nicknamed my shade of blonde macaroni and cheese. Ha! After a lot of research, I decided to try toning my hair at home with Kristin Ess Signature Hair Gloss. I love a majority of her other products, so why not?!
What is it?
The Kristin Ess Signature Hair Gloss is an in-shower treatment formulated to boost vibrancy and shine for all hair types. It will help keep color looking fresh, shiny and healthy between appointments. It’s silicone- and ammonia-free (aka it doesn’t lift, lighten or cover grays!). The formula is color and keratin-safe and will last three to four weeks depending on how often you wash your hair.
I will note, however, that even though this is described as an in-shower treatment I did it outside of the shower (minus to get my hair wet). It’s way easier to apply at your bathroom vanity where you can presumably look in a mirror. Plus, the toner needs to process for 10 to 20 minutes, and that’s a lot of wasted water if you’re just standing in the shower that whole time!
What color did I choose?
I went with Winter Wheat, which is described as ideal with anyone with light blonde hair looking to tone down warmth and boost shine. Kristin has a complete color guide on her Instagram page if you’re not sure what’s best for your own hair.
The Before + Process
Here’s an unfiltered look at my hair before the toner. I stood right in front of my bedroom window to capture my hair in the truest light possible.
My color overall isn’t awful by any means, but there’s definitely some warmth and brassiness coming through. Ignore those ends, though … I can’t wait for the day that I can get a trim!
The application process is pretty easy and foolproof, in my opinion. I washed my hair the day before and didn’t apply any product so my hair would be as clean as possible. So I simply had to jump in the shower to get my hair wet followed by a quick detangle with my favorite brush.
From here, I pretty much just followed along with Kristin’s IGTV video. There was more than enough product for my hair – I only used about half the bottle -, so I made sure to take plenty of time to really saturate my strands from roots to ends. I also think it’s much easier to apply the product into your hands, emulsify it a bit, and then apply it the hair. This allows for a better, more targeted application instead of squeezing the product right onto your head and hoping for the best!
When I finished, I wrapped my hair up in a clip and let the toner process for the full 20 minutes.
Once the 20 minutes were up, I jumped back in the shower and washed/conditioned my hair as usual. Then I let it air dry a bit while I applied makeup, followed by a rough blow dry. Here are the immediate results! Again, unfiltered.
While subtle, there’s definitely a difference in the tone of my hair! Much more neutral and cooled down, opposed to the warmer golden/brassy tones that I was seeing before.
I also noticed how smooth my hair looked and felt! A lot less frizz and much easier to brush through and blow out.
So overall, is the Kristin Ess Signature Hair Gloss worth it? I say yes! Does it replace trips to your professional stylist? 100% no. My roots are still sad with no color, and my grays are popping. But, for $14 this at-home alternative is worth a try!
You might also enjoy my complete review of the Kristin Ess fragrance-free hair care line.