1. Lush Cynthia Sylvia Stout. This is lovely, but at $21 a bottle hardly essential. Smells great... but it seems to go bad at some point, at which point it smells like the inside of an In-Sink-Erator. Lush just opened their first store in the USA... in San Francisco, of course. Bet you can smell it from Daly City!
2. Scullys lavender shampoo from Bulls, New Zealand. [The local dairy has a great slogan: The only place where milk comes from Bulls!] My favorite by far, this is of course hard to come by. It's everywhere in NZ, but it's unclear if they export much. Smells fantastic.
3. Pears shampoo from Canada. I like this largely because the packaging was so delightful: matching oblong containers in purple and orange. Cool!
4. Timotei shampoo, blue cap ["with Alpine minerals" or something]. This has a very distinctive odor. I haven't smelled it in aeons. It'll always remind me of Patrick Rady; I used it the day I met him.
5. Suave Strawberry Essence. Actually, I've only used this once. I think it's pretty gross, but Dan's used it for as long as I've known him. So, it smells like Dan. I like that.
6. Neutrogena T-Gel. Great for when my scalp just won't stop itching. Recommended to me by my childhood barber - he thought the ladies would be turned off by my dandruff at the seventh grade dance. Luckily for me, the ladies didn't notice it at all - they were too transfixed by the breakin', poppin', and lockin' action going on on the dancefloor. Jam on it! Jam on it! [repeat until 1984]
7. Prell concentrated shampoo, in the small clear plastic tube. I haven't seen this when I was a kid, but it would still remind me of Dad if I could ever find it again. The brand went away and was reintroduced as a normal shampoo, but it just isn't the same. Feh.
8. A small glass bottle of East German shampoo from the summer of 1988. I sadly can't remember what the brand name was, but this was a classic GDR consumer product. Yes, that was a real glass bottle, complete with a poorly printed and barely adhesive paper label slapped on the front of it. It smelled an awful lot like the Macys perfume counter after the Loma Prieta earthquake: it REEKED. And did it clean my hair? Not that I recall. Dude, socialism sucks. I still have a tube of Putzi brand GDR toothpaste, though: that smells even worse.
9. A big pump bottle of Target brand Pert-style shampoo occupied a corner of my bathroom for about five years until I finally got angry enough to throw it out. When Dan and I stayed with our friend John for a couple of weeks between apartments in 1996, I thought this stuff was great. I don't know what I was thinking. It made me smell like a maxi-pad. I'm glad it's gone.
10. Boots brand comfrey and sage shampoo [or some other vile botanical combination]. Apparently one of the big trends of the last few years is to ship products that contain "botanicals". At Target last week, there was some new brand of home cleaning product that promised aromatherapeutic ylang-ylang oils in their floor wax or something. Anyhow, Boots has been hawking this stuff for a couple of years now. I bought the green men's shampoo when I was at my parents' place in 2001, and it sucked more than any other shampoo has sucked before. Recommended only for use in PETA videos - I'm sure it'll make those bunny eyes tear right up!