Paula's Choice Don't Go Shopping With Hair Care Products Without Me

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3.7

12 reviews

66% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.6

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 3.6

Price: $$$

Not tested on animals

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on 7/19/2009 2:39:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

As a haircare junky I enjoyed this book very much, the problem with the reviews is that they become out dated very quick.

And I don't agree with Paula on everything she writes.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.



on 6/8/2009 8:47:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Oily, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I know everyone has different hair, but I just do not think drugstore products are as good as salon products. I have used Goldwell and Redken products my entire life and they are wonderful. I could not imagine buying a $3 bottle of suave and getting the same results. I have short hair that is colored every six weeks by a stylist. Sorry Paula I have to disagree with this book!


on 8/19/2007 9:29:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

This is a very informative book. Like her other books, it is well-researched and exposes many hair myths. It covers the following topics:
- scalp facts
- effect of the sun, humidity and other conditions on hair
- damaged hair
- hair growth
- hair transplants
- hair colouring
- the different types of shampoos and conditioners
- scalp problems including dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, seborrhea, psoriasis
- perms and relaxers
- thermal hair straightening
- hair styling

Paula also reviews many brands and lists about 15 or so of best products in each of the categories for the various hair types, categorised into two price categories.

I took one lippie off since I disagree with many of her reviews (I have tried many of the hair care products she has recommended and found that they are not very good and thought some of the products she did not rate highly were effective).

3 of 3 people found this helpful.


on 6/6/2007 4:02:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Blue

I bought the 3rd edition when it first came out, so the reviews weren't outdated like they are now. It was worth purchasing because I learned some important things about haircare formulations. For example, it is good to avoid drying surfactants (such as many of the sulfates) in shampoo. Since I have fine hair, I also avoid things that might build up and weigh down my hair, such as silicones and film-formers (e.g. acrylates, etc.) in shampoos. I've also learned to avoid two particular ingredients: ammonium xylenesulfonate (a very drying solvent, which is particularly prevalent in drugstore products) and sodium polystyrene sulfonate (which is very drying and can even strip hair color). And I learned that after swimming, I should use a product with disodium EDTA or tetrasodium EDTA to remove minerals. Now that Paula has taught me to read ingredients lists, I don't find her reviews to be a necessity, except that it's nice to know how much hold a particular styling product actually has (since labels are not at all accurate or consistent).

I don't always agree with Paula, however. For example, she seems to see no reason to purchase salon products instead of drugstore ones, but I cannot find a decent shampoo or leave-in conditioner at the drugstore. Paula also sings the praises of silicones, but these cause nothing but limp trouble on my fine straight hair, and I know many curly-haired people on the MUA haircare board also dislike silicones. Overall, this book was worth purchasing once, but if she comes out with a 4th edition, I doubt I'll purchase it.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.


Age: 19-24

Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Straight, Coarse

Eyes: Brown

My hairdresser recently introduced me to this hot/cold hair treatment that first steam your hair with hot oil and then freeze them up. Expensive. And after reading this book? I know I am not going to do it again. Goodbye to expensive shampoo also!


on 12/14/2006 11:14:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Oily, Fair-Medium, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Blue

This book is an interesting read. I am amazed that companies keep putting harsh ingredients in hair care products. I recommend that everyone read this book and take the information with a grain of salt. I might a bit dated, but it's still an interesting read.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.


on 8/22/2006 2:43:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Oily, Fair-Medium, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Green

As a hairdresser this is a fun book to read. Quite a lot of info in this book, but the cosmetic book is better...She say that most schampoos are all the same,cheap or expensice (if you read the INCI-list maybe)and work the same, but most of us know that it isnīt true. We have all tested hairproducts that dont work and work... The best in the book is that she says what schampoos that can cause buildups...Fun to read but thatīs it...


on 8/11/2005 10:17:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

I don't know why I love to read this book. The truth is that I disagree with practically everything she says. Paula basically dislikes any products that are expensive. Although I wish I didn't need to spend a lot on hair care products, and I do admit to being a bit of a product junkie, I am a firm believer that drug store brands in general do not make my hair look as good as salon brands. I also think it is important to try different products to determine what works for you. That said, I bought this book and still refer to it constantly! But all in all, I feel that MUA is THE best source for beauty product advice. It has never steered me wrong and has introduced me to many products that I never would have tried on my own.


on 8/8/2005 9:01:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Blue

I'm not sure why Paula takes so much crap. She herself has said that her reviews are strictly information that her readers can choose to take or leave. I used to be so gullible that I believed everything I read in magazines like Allure, I believed what I was told by salespeople at the cosmetics counters, I believed the claims made on the packaging of drugstore items. I wasted a lot of money believing that stuff. Because of Paula's books, I am a much smarter consumer and make much better purchasing decisions. That said, her reviews are not the only thing I use in making my decisions. I consult the reviews here, because here you have reviews from people who have actually used the products and even used them for extended periods of time. I find that using the reviews here in conjunction with Paula's works really well for me.


As for this book, I can understand that a lot of the reviews sound the same. But the fact is, most hair care products have very similar basic formulations. If you buy Kerastase, you are paying for the Kerastase name and prestige, you're not necessarily purchasing a better product. And btw, I'm not criticizing that because I have some higher priced hair and cosmetic items that I buy partially for the prestige factor. The important thing is that you realize what you're paying for, and don't get suckered into believing that expensive = better.

I do have some reservations about her selling her own products and reviewing others. I like a lot of her own products, so it's a tough issue for me. I wouldn't want her to stop doing her reviews, but I wouldn't want her to discontinue Paula's Choice/Paula's Select either.

6 of 7 people found this helpful.


on 6/9/2005 4:48:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Very Dry, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Other

You have to take Paula's opinions with a grain of salt. She dislikes anything with essential oils in it, and I'm the opposite.

However, this book has already saved me some money - I now have cheaper alternatives to pricy products I love. And if I would have read this book before I fell in love with DHC Head Oil, I could have saved myself a lot of dough.

Between this and Lorraine Massey's "Curly Girl", I've learned so much about taking care of my hair. I would give "Curly Girl" a slightly higher mark. But this is a good reference book.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.


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