Worth Every Penny: Shu Uemura Tasai Styling Cream

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


I swear up and down that Shu Uemura is my all-time favorite beauty brand. This is for two reasons: 1) No other company has such successful and truly terrific products all across the skincare, makeup and hair boards (seriously impressive), and 2) Uemura-san is one hell of an innovator.

While cleansing oils today are all kinds of popular, he was one of (if not the first) to have the inventive skincare product on the market over a decade ago. And who remembers years ago, when no one apart from makeup artists used lash curlers, until the greatest curler ever became famous? The brand is such a terrific blend of originality, creativity, and the technology behind such ideas to create exceptional product. Since that fateful day seven years ago, when I purchased my first Shu curler, I have enjoyed every product I've tried from the line.

This styling cream is no exception. You might be wondering why there is such an extravagant introduction to a mere hair product, but this is a fantastic representation of the best of Shu Uemura. (I'm also at the very end of my tube of Ultimate Natural mascara and am feeling sentimental).

Here's the product description of the Tasai Cream: 
"Moisture-rich styling cream that offers texture, structure and definition with natural shine and lavish touch."

When I first read that in the store, I thought, "God, another hair product that promises touchable texture, when everyone
knows that texture is synonymous with dry, stiff, usually tangly hair,"--salt sprays, anyone? You know how I am about my hair's tactility; if my locks are even the slightest bit stiff or crunchy, I need to shampoo it out.

Looks vulgar, but I'm just trying to show you the consistency!

For some illogical reason or another, I bought it, and once again, Shu has seriously impressed me. The consistency of the cream really isn't anything creamy at all, it's more of a slightly thickened fluid, which makes sense given how lightweight a product like this has to be. It's not too sticky, as there's only a bit of tackiness on your hands, and it's this stickiness that helps create that texture.

Now let's get to the good stuff. This product won't give you full-on beauty pageant thickness, or hair gel extreme hold, but it gives your hair virtually weightless, incredibly comfortable grip. Just a pump or two into damp hair provides the light-medium hold of a hairspray that I find is great help for maintaining any hairstyle you do. Literally, the only difference I feel in my hair is that it's just a touch drier than usual--absolutely no stiffness or stickiness whatsoever. Again, I'm a bit anal about the feel of my hair, so I'll usually mix in a pump of Bumble and Bumble Hairdresser's Oil (post) before blow drying, and the combination is just perfect.

The hair oil takes care of the silky-softness I crave, and the Tasai keeps my hair a little bit piecey and not so fluffy-looking, not to mention how much better my locks hold the shape I give them. Plus, adding the "hold" step into damp hair means I don't have to worry about shellacking my style into place with hairspray.

Again, depending on how much hold you need, this may or may not suit you. But if you're after light-medium grip without sacrificing any comfort, this is just perfect. At $38, it's definitely steep, but I suppose it's justified given it's the only effortless, clean texturizer of its kind? (Or at least, of the products I've tried!).

Once again, Shu has taught me what a terrific product (one that I used to be afraid of) can be.

[You should have seen my face (roughly five years ago) when the lady at the Shu counter told me to wash my face with oil.]

Now if we could just get your distribution right, Uemura-san, I wouldn't have a complaint in the world!

Hope you're well!

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