Product Disappointment – Philip Kingsley Moisture Balancing Range

First let me explain; I hate writing negative reviews, very little else gives me as much angst as sitting there deciding how I should express my negative opinion in as constructive a way as possible, or whether I should even post the review. But then I had a disappointing experience with quite a high-end hair range recently and I wondered if I was the only one, so I consulted Google only to find 4 and 5 star reviews. Surely I was not alone in not getting on with this product, I wondered. Then it struck me, perhaps people aren’t posting their less than glowing reviews (this is a subject that’s come up time and time again in Twitter chats with many Bloggers stating they don’t publish negative reviews) but surely in order for shoppers to get a balanced view we owe them the bad as well as the good? So putting my reservations aside here goes with my honest review…



As a bit of background i’m a big fan of Philip Kingsley Elasticizer so as a treat for my hair which I’m attempting to grow I decided to pick up some of the Philip Kingsley shampoo and conditioner. With my oily roots and drier ends the Moisture Balancing range sounded perfect for my hair type so I parted with £32 (they retail at £16 each) and looked forward to trying them out.

The first wash was, well, disappointing. The Moisture Balancing Shampoo doesn’t lather particularly well, which isn’t an issue, but it didn’t distribute very easily either. As a result I had to give my hair a second wash, which fared slightly better, although left my hair feeling coarse, matted and still not particularly clean. I moved onto the Moisture Balancing Conditioner, which is quite thin, and it did a pretty good job of detangling the birds nest the shampoo had left behind. After rinsing and styling the result was ok not the experience I expected for the pricetag.

As the week progressed and I continued to use the duo however I started to feel my hair was getting lanker and duller, and it felt as if there was product build up on it – we’re talking bad hair week rather than bad hair day! Still I persevered, making sure I rinsed my hair well everytime, but the issue persisted. Only after I switched to a different shampoo did my hair feel clean again. I’ve just tried using the shampoo and conditioner again after a break of five days and my hair feels fine, but I certainly won’t go back to using it as my regular haircare for fear of the build-up returning.

Over the past two weeks I’ve been driven mad by the Philip Kingsley Moisture Balancing range, trying to figure out where I may be going wrong. I’ve discontinued using any other hair products, tried shampooing my hair differently, all to no avail. On more than one occasion I’ve even been tempted to get my hair chopped off and go back to my manageable, well behaved crop. Priced at £16 for 250ml these products aren’t cheap and to be honest I’ve spent a lot less on haircare and had better results. I must add however that plenty of people seem to love this range, so perhaps it is just a personal thing. If you’re tempted to try this range what I’d suggest is purchasing the 60ml travel sizes, which for £5 give you a good idea of whether the product is suited to you without shelling out for the full sizes immediately.

Philip Kingsley is available at Marks and Spencer stores nationwide as well as online at

Have you had any bad experiences with a product that other people rave about? How do you handle negative reviews? I’d love to hear from you!

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9 thoughts on “Product Disappointment – Philip Kingsley Moisture Balancing Range

  1. Paula says:

    This was a very interesting read and thank you for sharing. Reminded me of a similar experience I had with a SLS free Branded Shampoo which is very popular but just left my hair feeling flat, looking dull and full of residue. It is difficult for me to find a suitable shampoo as I have a sensitive scalp and have many hardly used bottles. However, this afternoon I was tempted by the trio trial set “Take Comfort” for £6 – and I ordered it. If I don’t like the shampoo and conditioner at least I have the brilliant Elasticizer to fall back on! Thank you for your honest blog.

    • Helen says:

      The Elasticizer is great – I think that’s what made the disappointment worse as I had such high hopes. But like I said other people seem to love the shampoos so hopefully you will fair better! You’ll have to report back after you’ve tried it 🙂

      • Paula says:

        My samples are now gone (well at least the shampoo). I got 3 washes from the shampoo tube. And I use with and without the elasticizer. I was really impressed. It’s not the ultimate – I need polytar but alas the coal-tar preparation required by Glaxo cannot be sourced and it looks very unlikely it will ever be produced again so I need to find an alternative. I’d like this alterative to be more of a natural product. I read a review that Take Comfort was developed for Sir Laurence Olivier and as he had a similar skin and muscle illness to me I thought this would be a suitable one to try. It really does help with the persistent itch. Even without the hair elasticizer my hair is less frizzy. The shampoo produced a nice creamy lather (rather than a foam) which I really liked. Scalp build-up afterwards is slower – which is great. The good weather also helps my scalp so it is hard to say it is just down to the shampoo. I have another shampoo sample I’m trying now. I will keep trying others but I will probably buy the full size of Take Comfort in due course. The conditioner was very good too, and I still have some in the tube. Bonus. All round I am pleased but it is not the perfect resolution, which I expect would be hard to obtain anyway.

  2. gsymoo says:

    I don’t mind reading negative reviews, especially if its explained why it didn’t suit them or meet their expectations.

    When you see blogs where ever product is wonderful and the best thing ever you feel you’re not getting the full picture. Everyone has had a product they’ve brought or received in a beauty box that didn’t perform well for them.

  3. Ellie says:

    I tried this range when I received samples in a beauty box and I also found that it didn’t lather well, my hair felt pretty coarse after using it and then I didn’t feel that the conditioner did much either. I do have the Daily Defence spray which I like using but I definitely didn’t get on with the shampoo/conditioner. Thanks for your honest review.

  4. Ursula says:

    Love your honest, constructive review on a product that didn’t work for you! I respect in a fellow blogger who knows how to write a negative review in honest fashion and not afraid to speak up about a product, brand, or service that was not good!

    Ursula aka Blueridge Beauty

  5. MaggieMayQ says:

    I love to read and write negative reviews – somehow I belive they help balance out the positive ones. I ofte get a feeling when there are only positiv reviews specially when it comes to blogs, regarding products that the reviews are paid (not saying that about you!!) and the fact is that there is a lot of that going on. Some are paid just to review (just that makes me hate the product) – and it needs to be positiv, but in general affiliates are the enemy. It’s easy mathematics – affiliates + positive reviews = more money. Unfortunately.

    The main thing to remember when reading (and writing) negative reviews is that even if it didn’t work for the person who reviewed the product it still might work for you.
    But it happens to me a lot, products that are being raved about might not necessary work well with my hair, skin or face.

    Products people rave about that have not worked for me have been probably every mascara ever mentioned by anyone “famous” and a skincare brand called EmerginC <- Everyone was so overly extremely pleased with it that I thought there was something wrong with my products – they made my skin worse and I got an allergic reaction to them.

    And this was a very long comment – so I'm gonna go hide in my corner again 😉

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