Olaplex, a trendy haircare brand, has reached significant popularity on many social media platforms. It’s claim to revitalise, nurture, and strengthen damaged hair has attracted many consumers looking to tame their mane. The most popular product of the line, N°3, has reached an astonishing of 30m hashtags.
At first, Olaplex products were designed to be salon exclusive and as add-ons to regular hair treatments. In fact, N°1 and N°2 are still not sold to the public, due to the strength of the formulas. Since its first launch in 2014, the LA based company has added several other products to the line, including a shampoo, a conditioner, and a range of masks. Deemed most effective home treatments are N°0 and N°3, to be used before shampooing, and N°6, which, if applied before the use of heat tools, removes frizz and protects from heat damage.
What makes Olaplex so special?
First, Olaplex is based on a molecule called «Bis-Aminopropyl Diglycol Dimaleate», invented by bioscientists Eric Presly and Craig Hawaker. The molecule acts on disulfide bonds in hair which are easily fractured by heat, brushing, bleaching and any other aggressive treatment. It repairs and rebuilds them, reinforces endurance and flexibility, and prevents the follicle from breaking again.
No gluten, aldehydes, parabens or SLS/SLES are in the Olaplex formula. The company has also stated they don’t test on animals and follow a vegan and cruelty policy. While most of their products are silicone-free, N°7 contains dimethicone. For non-experts, this means there’s a certain chance to stratify and prevent hair follicles from absorbing other products. Yet, Olaplex states that it is a high-quality water-soluble ingredient and doesn’t present any health risks.
The peculiarity of being suitable for every hair type gifts Olaplex with the reputation of the closest thing to a hair miracle. This makes it a favorite of not only luxury-haircare fans but also those not exceptionally passionate about hair care in general. Olaplex seems to be so effective that many think that the price, set around 27€ per product, is justified. When questioned, Aldo Coppola, hairdresser of a famous salon in Italy, declared “there are no highly satisfactory alternatives to Olaplex for chemical treatments”. Evidently, in the vast world of haircare, no other product has revolutionised the industry like Olaplex. In recent years it has gained quite the cult following and many await new products from the restorative line.
As a company, Olaplex Inc. is also very attentive to sustainability and innovation, thus adding value to their public image and protecting them from scandals. In early 2022, on TikTok, some critiques have gone viral for N°3, which was found to contain lilial, an ingredient linked to infertility, to be banned in a short time by the UK and the EU. However, it was demonstrated through Internet archive Wayback Machine that, for safety reasons, it had already been removed in 2021, notably showing the company’s deep concern for consumers’ health.