Drew Barrymore adores this £24 JVN hair serum – but is it worth it?

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·Contributor, Yahoo Life UK
·4-min read
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Drew Barrymore said this JVN product saved her hair. (Getty Images)
Drew Barrymore said this JVN product saved her hair. (Getty Images)

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The flamboyant and deeply fabulous US hairdresser Jonathan Van Ness – aka JVN – became an icon after his fun, energetic turn on Queer Eye as the grooming expert. (Sample quote: "I was the first male cheerleader of my high school; it's very hard to embarrass me – you have to do a lot").

So when he decided to launch his own brand of inclusive, gender-neutral, clean hair products, there was, to put it mildly, a bit of a frenzy. As he's blessed with the lushest locks since Jennifer Aniston, we want what he's having, frankly.

And, hurrah, the JVN Haircare range – exclusively available in-store and online at Space NK – finally launched in the UK at the end of February. The salon-quality, environmentally-friendly range includes shampoos, conditioners, pre-wash scalp oil – even an 'air dry' cream.

But after seeing glowing reviews all over social media, it was clear that there was one standout purchase I needed to make, pronto.

And when I found out Drew Barrymore said the JVN Complete Instant Recovery Serum "SAVED my hair", I raced to Space NK quicker than you could say "good hair day".

Only to find that it had sold out in three of the stores nearest to me. So I had to stay patient and order it online. But... was it worth the wait and the £24 price tag? Here are my thoughts.

What does the hair serum do?

The big plus point for me is that it protects from heat damage up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit (approximately 232 Celcius) while also strengthening your hair, repairing the outer shaft, and reducing split ends.

All of which I'm in dire need of.

Plus it's vegan, suitable for all hair types including coloured (mine is highlighted to a crisp) and it doesn't contain silicone – which is good because it can cause dryness and build-up, and it's sulfate-free too (sulfates can strip the hair of beneficial oils and protein).

As for the packaging? It comes in a recyclable glass jar that also has a recyclable aluminium lid.

How does it work?

Here comes the science bit: two of the key ingredients are niacinamide – which helps support hair repair, and hemisqualane which apparently strengthens and smooths as well as reduces damage.

The formula also contains 'charged lemon protein' – the brand claims that this protects and defends against heat and environmental damage.

JVN Instant Recovery Serum
The JVN Instant Recovery Serum includes niacinamide that helps support hair repair and hemisqualane which strengthens and smooths. (JVN/ Space NK)

£24 at Space NK

As all the above is supposed to equal shiny, strong hair, I'm eager to find out if my frazzled, highlighted bonce will feel any benefits.

How to apply:

This is a 'cream' so you don't spritz it on.

I took a 50p sized amount (I've got a very fine, chin-length bob) and applied it on my damp hair, then combed it through to ensure it was evenly distributed.

You don't wash it out. As it's a heat protector as well, you need to apply it before you start blasting your mane with a hairdryer or using any other heated tools.

What to expect?

I usually find that bog-standard heat protector products that you spritz on make my fine, fragile hair feel stiff and sticky, so I tend to use only a tiny amount. Therefore the heat protection factor is probably negligible –which is part of the reason my hair looks so broken.

But the JVN Complete Instant Recovery Serum has been a revelation. As for my worries that the creamy texture would make my thin hair look and feel lank and greasy? Nope, there's not a hint of limp.

After blow-drying my hair, it instantly feels softer and looks more nourished. It's also bouncy and full of body.

While I can't say it has been an absolute miracle cure for my damaged lengths (unless I stop having blonde highlights I don't think anything will completely fix that) the serum smooths out some of the fluffy texture I hate. And my hair looks and feels way more hydrated and healthier on the whole.

So, welcome to my bathroom JVN Complete Instant Recovery Serum – I think we're going to have a long, enduring friendship.

Shop: JVN Complete Instant Recovery Serum | £24 from Space NK

JVN Hair Complete Instant Recovery Serum
JVN Hair Complete Instant Recovery Serum

£24 at Space NK

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