The Beauty Department Is Obsessed: Crown Affair for Hair
We’re a group with very different hair types—kinky, curly, wavy, straight—but when the beauty department discovered this spectacular box from Crown Affair, with its glamorously minimal pale-pistachio package stocked with key essentials for the healthiest, shiniest hair ever, we flipped (and saved the box). Inside: a chic, beautifully made boar-bristle brush; a detangling wide-tooth comb; a silkifying hair serum; and an enormous, quick-drying microfiber hair towel. In short, it’s a good hair day in a box—and the best-ever present to yourself, not to mention anyone else.
The Best Brush
This sleek boar-bristle brush moves the natural oils the scalp produces down to the ends, where we need the shine and moisture. This is particularly important for wavy, curly hair, or colored hair, and brushing is best done prior to washing. “I brush my kinky-coily curls with this once a week before the shower,” says senior beauty editor Megan O’Neill. “The combination of boar and nylon bristles really gets in there to detangle and to massage my scalp (god, it feels sooo good). When my hair dries, my texture is defined and smooth, and my hair is shinier than ever.” Beauty director Jean Godfrey-June uses the brush once a day, “just to get myself together,” she says. “I get it all smooth, then work a little anti-frizz milk from Christophe Robin into any flyaways. It’s the perfect combination.” No matter your hair texture, make sure to brush only dry hair—brushing hair that’s wet (when it’s the weakest) can be super damaging.Christophe Robin Anti-Frizz Rescue Milk With Shea Butter goop, $35SHOP NOW
Made in Switzerland by the same manufacturer that makes Buly 1803’s combs, this plant-based cellulose detangler works to smooth even the most unruly hair. “I use it to comb Sangre de Fruta conditioner through my hair in the shower,” says assistant beauty editor Brianna Peters, whose hair is fairly straight. “Afterward, when my hair is damp, I run it through my ends to detangle.” The comb is pocket-size, so it’s brilliant for travel, the gym, or just leaving in your makeup bag for last-minute touch-ups.Sangre de Fruta Garden of Earthly Delights Botanical Conditioner goop, $52SHOP NOW
The Most Luxe
We’ve long sung the frizz-taming praises of microfiber towels, but this one exceeded our expectations. The super luxe waffle-ish fabric is cut into a unique shape that somehow doesn’t leave ends exposed, while the elastic band at the nape of the neck secures the twisted towel: no accidental unfurling. This ingenious, wildly practical feature is one we now can’t imagine ever living without. “I also use the elastic to hang the towel on a hook,” says Godfrey-June. “It’s practical, and it just looks so good.” Senior features editor Simone Kitchens loves to leave the towel on longer: “For a half hour, sometimes more, so it soaks up as much moisture as possible—I feel like it makes my somewhat frizz-prone hair air-dry even smoother.”
Hair Oil for Shine
and Fresh Scent
This oil leaves hair thoroughly nourished but not weighed down, and shiny, not greasy. The lightweight finish is dry, and it leaves a subtly refreshing, sexy, woodsy scent. It’s made with just five ingredients, including tsubaki-seed oil to help smooth and meadowfoam-seed oil to moisturize. “I put it on my ends to protect them before I go into my (homemade) sauna. When I come out, I’ve got pretty waves instead of damaged hair,” Godfrey-June says. Kitchens, who has very fine, curly hair, likes to work a couple of drops into her ends before braiding her hair at night and sleeping on a silk pillowcase. “The next morning, my curls—which can get dry—feel softer and look healthier and happier,” she says.Slip White Queen Pillow Case goop, $89SHOP NOW
Then there’s the box itself, which is one of the best presents—to oneself or another—we can think of. We had to know more about the brain behind it. “I wanted to create a universe of hero products,” says founder Dianna Cohen, who launched Crown Affair in January. A veteran of Away, Outdoor Voices, and Tamara Mellon, she says that navigating the complexities of creating a clean scent with the historic Swiss fragrance house Firmenich was difficult: “It’s not often that they get companies or brands that say, ‘Clean is important to us,’ but ultimately they understood what we were going for.” The Crown Affair vibe, from scent to imagery and design, is inspired by “vintage 1970s Shiseido ads meets ’90s Kate Moss,” Cohen says.
She wanted to create a collection that people would use with the dedication of a skin-care ritual. Included in the set is a small green three-minute hourglass—a gentle suggestion to brush your hair for that long or simply to take a small break. “The whole idea is around slowing down,” says Cohen.Crown Affair The Set goop, $220SHOP NOW