‘A Head’ of the Class

By Melissa Meisel , Associate Editor | December 3, 2013

Marketers strive to deliver hair-healthy formulations when it comes to shampoo and conditioner products.

Spearmint oil, meadowsweet extract, kendi oil and orchid extract are just a few innovative ingredients appearing in hair care’s latest shampoo and conditioner formulations. Currently, the segment is rife with novel products, ranging from dry shampoos to leave-in treatments, and these formulas also perform a variety of functions—from nourishing the scalp to smoothing split ends.

In the shampoo category for the 52-week period ending Oct. 6, 2013, sales rose 1.5% to $2.6 billion in US multi-outlets (supermarkets, drugstores, mass market retailers, military commissaries and select club and dollar retail chains), according to IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm.  Among the findings, sales of dandruff shampoos fell 2.2% to $505.8 million; regular shampoo sales rose 2.3% to $2.05 billion; and sales of shampoo & conditioner combo packs (that fall under the shampoo category) surged 6.6% to $62.3 million. Meanwhile, hair conditioner sales jumped 6% to $1.9 billion.

According to The NPD Group, sales of hair care products within US prestige beauty department stores grew 10% to $105 million in the 12 months ending September 2013.

“Prestige hair care is a concentrated segment that is outpacing the performance of the mass channel, which grew 5% to $6.6 billion this year,” said Karen Grant, vice president and global beauty industry analyst, The NPD Group, Inc. “With increased access to limited distribution and salon brands, women are empowered to achieve salon level locks or ‘go natural’ looks on their own.”

As women embrace more do-it-yourself styling and intensive treatment options, these brands are delivering compelling innovation with new technologies and exotic ingredients, according to Grant.

 For a long time, hair care products fell on opposite ends of the spectrum—either they were completely results focused or completely ingredient/health focused, noted Joe Mastalia, board director, ICMAD and president, DePasquale Salon Systems, Fair Lawn, NJ.

“Shoppers are savvier now and are looking for products that not only perform but also improve the health of the hair,” explained Mastalia. “Products have to fill both needs in order to be in a consumer’s consideration set...products have to treat and perform.”
Beth Bewley, co-founder of hair care brand Eufora International, Vista, CA, sees value as a driver of shampoo and conditioner sales—but notes not in the price.

“Clients want their product to perform to the claims made and their expectations, Quality products that deliver on the promise are always best sellers,” she said. “We’ve also seen an increase in client’s willingness to purchase a complete regimen for their hair type and performance needs rather than using different products from various brands.”  

Catering to Color
The top trends for shampoo and conditioners for Holiday 2013 are “weightless” protein-balanced shampoo and conditioners that are color safe and help clients with the longevity of their color and aid them in the styling of their hair, noted Jeff Duckwall, artistic lead/platform artist and international educator for VTBeauty, Cincinnati, OH.

“Clients want products that build body and make their hair feel and look natural,” he added.

Sapna Parikh, CEO, Stylebell.com and beauty brand Maijan, Princeton, NJ, agreed that color-friendly, nourishing SKUs are essential this season.

“For Holiday 2013, shampoos and conditioners will be all about keratin-infused and oil-infused products. As a result of the rise of chemical treatments and the use of high heat appliances, such as flat irons, hair has become dry, dull and damaged. Keratin- and oil-infused hydrating and moisturizing shampoos and conditioner provide the answer to damaged hair.”

Maijan’s new Pure Argan Oil & Mint Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner has a natural oil base and infuses hair with antioxidants and vitamins to improve manageability, said Parikh. Additionally, the products are sulfate- and paraben-free making them gentle enough to use on all hair types including chemical- and color-treated hair.

Meanwhile, at Pureology, a new color-specific formulation, Pure Volume, is said to help weightlessly elevate fine, color-treated hair.  These “ZeroSulfate” shampoos contain an exclusive AntiFadeComplex to remove volume-inhibiting buildup, while infusing hair with fullness and protecting color. Pure Volume features fortifying wheat protein, refreshing eucalyptus extracts and flexible thickeners for extra volume and color retention; while ultra gentle purifiers remove volume-inhibiting buildup. A signature aromatherapy blend of apple, citrus, blackcurrant, jasmine, muguet, peach, amber, cedarwood and musk round out the formulation.
Sister brand Redken will roll out Color Extend Magnetics in January, complete with the brand’s exclusive Interlock Protein Network and Charge-Attract Complex that deliver charged amino ions that are attracted to the hair fiber to form a protective seal. The range includes shampoo, conditioner and “deep attraction” mask, a unique formulation with zinc gluconate.

To keep hair looking fresh between visits to the stylist, salon brand Eufora debuted Beautifying Elixirs Color Revive. These concentrated color enhancing formulas can be added to any conditioner or masque to eliminate brassiness in blondes, deliver vibrancy to brunettes and enhance red and copper tones, according to the company. Those who don’t color their hair need not feel left out—Color Revive is also ideal for enhancing non-color treated, au naturel hair. Beautifying Elixirs Color Revive features a unique application that allows users to add their color formula to their favorite conditioner or masque, enabling them to reap the benefits of their preferred product without having to purchase additional conditioning treatments. Color Revive formulas are ammonia- and peroxide-free, and are available in blonde, red or brunette. All SKUs feature the trademarked plant essence of sage and thyme to help soothe and nourish the scalp as well as antioxidant rapeseed oil.

 Bewley of Eufora told Happi, “As we enter the cooler months and the heat kicks on, shampoos and conditioners that provide added moisture, silkiness and shine, and also static control are desired. Moisturizing and repairing treatments also play a big role.”

Fake It ‘Til You Make It
Fortifying limp, thinning locks is another big concern with the aging population in the US. To meet these needs, marketers are rolling out some at-home solutions to add to their “wash and go” routines.

This season, John Masters Organics debuted a few new scalp health products. The new Spearmint & Meadowsweet Scalp Stimulating Shampoo is infused with six certified-organic ingredients to optimize scalp health by removing excess build up and oil, stimulating the scalp for optimal hair growth and helping to prevent hair loss, said the company. Eucalyptus oil removes bacteria and is anti-inflammatory; spearmint oil stimulates scalp for optimal hair growth; meadowsweet extract is said to prevent hair loss; zinc reduces irritation and protects the scalp; soy protein strengthens the hair follicle; and guar gum is a natural thickening agent.
The brand also added a Deep Scalp Purifying Serum, a professional-grade weekly scalp treatment that combines a unique blend of organic extracts and oils along with a vitamin B complex to repair and heal a damaged scalp while also removing oily build-up and excess sebum. A new Deep Scalp Follicle Treatment & Volumizer is formulated with 17 certified-organic herbs and essential oils which are said to help to improve the health of the scalp by stimulating circulation, balancing sebum production, eliminating free radicals and providing essential nutrients. This spray-on treatment features thyme, arnica and gotu kola, to name a few natural ingredients.

As the weather turns cooler and winter begins, more consumers look for hair and scalp help, explained John Masters, founder of John Masters Organics, New York.

“During the Fall and Holiday seasons, most people tend to begin using scalp stimulating or scalp repairing shampoos and conditioners. With the end of warmer weather and the start of colder weather, your hair will react to that and hair will start to become dryer and need more moisture. In addition, with all the holiday parties and celebrations your hair needs to look its best. Using a good scalp shampoo and conditioner is paramount for the Fall/Holiday season. After all, healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp.”

Nioxin is also looking to amp up its hair care business with a new brand ambassador, television actor Mario Lopez. Speaking to the 78% of American men and women who are concerned with thinning, Lopez will help to dispel the myths surrounding the issue and encourage consumers to talk to their stylist and seek customizable solutions tailored just for them, according to the company.
“Mario and Nioxin complement each other perfectly,” said Reuben Carranza, North America leader, Wella, the Salon Division of P&G. “He embodies the Nioxin consumer; someone who is educated on the issue and takes necessary steps to combat thinning. Because of the wide variety of concerns surrounding the topic, with Mario as the face of the brand we can help change perceptions, educate and empower the public to start having healthy conversations with their stylists.”

Through broadcast appearances, media interviews and social media engagement, Lopez will reveal more staggering statistics from the survey which sheds new light on men’s grooming hang-ups, their fears about aging and hair loss, specific style preferences, and exposes hair loss myths and reveals the facts, said the company.

On the Mend
In the mass market, there are a variety of hair care brands that treat distressed tresses for the health and beauty aisle shopper who spends time at box stores, supermarkets and drug stores. P&G’s Pantene added a variety of fortifying hair care SKUs to its entourage of options. The Pantene Advanced+ Keratin Repair Keragloss Oil Mist helps restore hair to its healthy, smooth state and repairs hair for 48 hours of continuous, brilliant shine, said the company. The Pantene Pro-V Heat Shield Collection is a line of products that delivers 450° heat protection. The range contains a shampoo and conditioner that defend against damage before it starts with weightless heat-activated oils, and a new Heat Potion Serum that helps protect and repair hair to provide a silky, smooth finish. The Pantene Pro-V Smooth Collection includes shampoo, conditioner and styling products that contain an anti-humidity technology to lock out frizz and extend the life of smooth styles.

The latest creation at John Frieda is a line of shampoos and conditioners that help prevent fading and maintain the rich tones and soft texture of freshly colored hair. With the introduction of Sheer Blonde Everlasting Blonde Colour Preserving Shampoo and Conditioner and Brilliant Brunette Colour Protecting Moisturising Shampoo and Conditioner, the John Frieda brand is helping to preserve salon-fresh blonde and brunette and provide the soft, smooth texture women experience after coloring. The newly upgraded Radiant Red Colour Protecting Shampoo and Conditioner  help maintain rich red with each use, completing the brand’s comprehensive color care offerings.

“We’ve always known that every shade has its own unique needs—now the John Frieda experts are applying that knowledge to fade protection,” explained John Frieda International creative consultant Harry Josh, who is based in New York. “I advise my clients to use the right color preserving shampoo and conditioner for their shade so that they can hold onto the richness and shine of fresh color even weeks after a salon visit.”

John Frieda also recently reformulated its Luxurious Volume Touchably Full Shampoo and Conditioner. Crafted with an exclusive proprietary spherical polymer, the shampoo and conditioner duo weightlessly cleanse and moisturize while beginning to build the texture that gives hair touchable volume that won’t fall flat, according to the company. In the conditioner, a unique wax and silicone blend minimizes hair’s “slip” and gives it the texture to start building volume before you even step out of the shower.

Competitor L’Oréal is innovating in hair care all across the board for its brands. Following the Garnier Triple Nutrition launch this summer (a collection based on olive, almond and avocado oil for “triple restoring action,” according to the company), it rolled out L’Oréal Paris Advanced Haircare Color Vibrancy Nourishing Shampoo & Conditioner as well as L’Oréal Paris Advanced Haircare Triple Resist Reinforcing Shampoo & Conditioner. The former is a duo said to help instantly nourish color-treated hair and shield color from fading, leaving hair protected and color vibrant over time. The latter features a “triple-action power” with concentrated arginine said to instantly help nourish hair from root to core to tip, reinforce strands and help hair resist breakage.

Meanwhile, L’Oreal’s salon brand Biolage is also expanding with new developments. The new Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Collection reinforces fragile hair with a system designed to actually strengthen the hair strand. Due to unique formulas containing Intra-Cylane and bamboo, Fiberstrong adds resiliency and conditions the cuticle—leaving hair 12 times stronger after just one use of the full system, said the company. Intra-Cylane is an exclusive, patented molecule that reinforces the hair strand externally by filling in gaps in the outer cuticle caused by mechanical stress, like combing, brushing, impact from thermal styling tools, UV damage and daily wear and tear. At the same time, the cuticle is regenerated, leading to long-term strengthening for fragile strands.

Biolage also introduced the Advanced Keratindose Collection, said to replenish essential moisture and protein balance to hair that has been depleted by chemical services. The sulfate-free, paraben-free formula that is also free of harsh salts and contains pro-keratin and silk to restore and lock in hair’s optimal protein and moisture balance. It’s recommended for, but is not limited to, those who receive hair color, relaxer, texturizer and keratin straightening services. With the Keratindose daily regimen, hair is 90% more conditioned after one use, contends the company. 

Glycolic acid is no longer just for your skin. A hair new treatment from Keratin Complex is taking the beauty industry by storm, incorporating this popular ingredient to create the ultimate hair smoother. Joining the line of innovative smoothing treatments, Keratin Complex brings you their Advanced Glycolic Smoothing System that allows for same day wash, contends the company.
In the mass sector, Sally Hershberger rolled out Hyper Hydration Super Keratin Shampoo and Conditioner. Infused with both argan oil, amla oil and keratin, a protein that strengthens the hair shaft to fight frizz naturally. It is said to treat from the scalp, even on the most dry, damaged and color-treated hair.

“Start your style with a shampoo and conditioner that takes your hair’s integrity into serious consideration. Keratin instantly penetrates for smooth, modern and super sexy styles, leaving the hair feeling clean and shiny. Argan Oil is the ultimate rehab for stressed out locks,” said Hershberger. The New York-based brand also has a marine collagen collection to volumize thinning hair.
Recently gathering attention was Dove’s new Intensive Repair in the Great Hair Affair Tour. Women in the US showed off smooth, moisturized locks by participating in the tour as it traveled from coast-to-coast this summer.

“Women are always asking me to unlock the secret to no more bad hair days,” said Dove celebrity stylist Mark Townsend, who is based in Los Angeles. “I know that the foundation to any great hair day starts when a woman chooses a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner that does not weigh hair down.”

Additionally making waves in the mass market is the Adidas Personal Care collection for guys. Among the body sprays and deodorant, the multi-tasking Hair & Body Washes are available in three “revitalizing” scents—Pure Game, Deep Energy and Dynamic Pulse. The products are sold at Walmart nationwide.

Dry Idea
In hair care, dry shampoo is without doubt a trend that has taken hold. According to Elizabeth Cunnane Phillips, a trichologist at Philip Kingsley, New York, “Our lives are busier than ever and we are always looking for ways to save time! Philip Kingsley has always strongly advocated for washing hair and scalp very frequently. For many that may mean daily, but we realize that is not always an option. The use of a dry shampoo that has been formulated well can be a great option.”

To help maintain the wellbeing of hair and scalp between washes, Philip Kingsley formulated One More Day Dry Shampoo, a lightweight spray that refreshes and soothes the scalp, absorbing excess sebum while providing volume and texture to the hair, leaving you ready for “One More Day,” said the company. The product is packed full of soothing ingredients such as zinc PCA, allantoin and bisabolol that cleanse the scalp and eradicate excess dirt and oil while keeping flakes and irritation at bay. Oryza sativa (rice starch) absorbs sebum and adds texture and volume to hair too.

“We wanted to create a product that was not only convenient but also provided scalp benefits—a first for this category,” noted Cunnane Phillips.

Fellow prestige hair care brand Alterna recently extended its popular Bamboo Style Cleanse Extend Translucent Dry Shampoo line to include two scented variations, Mango Coconut and Sheer Blossom. This cult favorite beloved for its lightweight, translucent formula is formulated with kendi oil to nourish, omega 3, 6 & 9 to smooth the cuticle and vitamin E to help ward off future damage.
Salon segment leader Pureology is touting its latest creation, Fresh Approach Dry Shampoo and Condition, ideal for color-treated locks. According to the company, loss of pigment can occur anytime hair comes in contact with water; in fact, water abrasion (when the hair is exposed to extreme water saturation in the shower or bath) is the leading cause of hair color fade.

The new mineral-infused formulas refresh color-treated hair while adding a radiant, low-mattifying finish, said Pureology.
Additionally, by using Fresh Approach every other day as opposed to water-based cleansing, consumers can successfully reduce water abrasion by 40%, save water and extend the life of hair color by up to four weeks.

“Shine isn’t a word that’s normally associated with dry cleansing products, as they tend to have a mattifying finish when working to absorb oil,” said Steven Henley, senior director of education development for Pureology, New York. “In developing Fresh Approach, we knew that shine is a top priority for consumers, especially those with color-treated hair; consequently, shine was a top priority for this launch.”
The perfect complement to any of the brand’s Pronto Dry Shampoo offerings, the new Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Conditioner Spray, out now at Sephora, is designed to give hair a quick pick-me-up.

Delivered in a weightless, ultra-fine mist, the spray features a combination of oils, emollients and vitamins that work synergistically to detangle, soften and polish the hair, said the company. Its creamy citrus fragrance neutralizes odors, while sunflower oil nourishes hair, hydrolyzed keratin seals the cuticle and vitamin B5 prevents future knots. 

And, a new generation of dry shampoo, Tigi Bed Head Oh Bee Hive! Matte Dry Shampoo, absorbs the excess oils that drag hair down. A spritz of the super-fine powder releases volume, while UV absorbers and hydrolyzed keratin protect and strengthen hair, according to the company. Starch also absorbs oil and grease to refresh, revitalize and “pump up” the volume, according to the company.

Staying Power
Formulators have carved out a niche for leave-in conditioners, often used to complement hair care regimens. Exotic oils that add a drop of luxury are common in treatment products, as seen in recent launches.

“The most popular ingredient making its way around is argan oil, along with other naturally derived oils and extracts,” noted Drew Noreen, lead stylist for mass market hair care brand Not Your Mother’s, Phoenix, AZ. “Using oils and even plant extracts in shampoos and conditioners delivers moisture and repairs the hair without the coating or buildup that you can get from chemicals. This is much gentler and lighter on the hair which will also help to boost body and shine.”

Argan oil is still going strong as a hair care ingredient, as seen with the new Agadir Argan Oil Introduces Hair Shield 450 Intense Crème Treatment. Formulated to withstand intense direct heat up to 450°F, this nourishing crème was designed to keep hair hydrated and soft while combating heat damage, said the company. Created with “Shock Protein” and antioxidants, the protective properties are activated by the heat from styling tools. The protein immediately targets the damaged areas of your hair to protect, and condition. The antioxidants mitigate and prevent damage to hair strands.

Fellow salon brand Pravana continues the natural evolution of hair care with the inclusion of its popular Intense Therapy Leave-In Treatment, now under the brand’s eco-friendly Nevo Hair Care Collection. Reformulated to be 100% vegan, gluten-free and housed in 100% biodegradable packaging, the all-new Nevo Intense Therapy Leave-In Treatment provides the same quality of personal care and performance as the original, contends the company. The all-inclusive two-phase formula combines powerful hydrating ingredients and natural proteins to deliver a complete hair-perfecting leave-in treatment. Its rich formula softens, detangles and provides deep hydration without weighing hair down. The formula is pH balanced and helps to lock in color, soothe the scalp and equalize hair porosity, according to Pravana.

Orchid extract (Bulbophyllum sp) is another rising ingredient in hair care, as seen at White Sands. Its new holiday kit features full sizes of Orchids Hair Oil alongside Orchid Bliss Shampoo and Conditioner. Camouflaging split ends like a magic wand (think the same effect of botox on wrinkles), orchid extract will close the cuticle layer, fill in imperfections, and keep hair from frizzing, thus creating incredible mirror-like shine, said the company. Orchid Bliss shampoo and conditioner utilizes the anti-aging and mineral richness of the orchid flower to support color care with a sulfate-free formula while providing cuticle nutrition all in one. With a fresh citrus scent, the orchid extract in addition to natural ingredients like sunflower seed extract, grape seed oil, carrot seed, olive extract and apricot kernel restores moisture, shine, elasticity and softness. Orchid complex is said to instantly fill in the cracks and imperfections in each strand giving a high shine, making hair simply brilliant with UV protection and works with other styling products to improve texture, repel moisture and enhance vibrant color, according to the company.

A styling prep for achieving soft, moisturized, and tangle-free curls, Leave-In Condish—mass market hair care brand Miss Jessie’s newest addition to the conditioner family—is the answer for buttery soft texture and curls without the buildup, contends the company. This lightweight leave-in conditioner and detangler acts as the ultimate frizz fighter and moisturizer for slightly misbehaved to flat-out unruly locks.

“This multi-tasker makes achieving beautiful, frizz-free, uber moisturized curls easy,” said company founder Miko Branch. “The lightweight, nutrient-rich formula coats strands so they’re protected from heat stylers and banishes frizz, without weighing hair down.”

Ingredients include glycerin, aloe barbadensis, pumpkin seed extract, soybean seed extract, laminaria digitata extract and spirulina maxima extract. The SKU is online now with a March 2014 rollout to Target, Duane Reade, Walgreens and Walmart.

At Ulta, fellow textured hair brand Ouidad recently rolled out Curl Recovery Ultra Nourishing Cleansing Oil, a brand new addition to hair regimens. According to the company, it contains an advanced oil base that gently removes dirt and buildup, while restoring essential moisture. Ideal for hair that may be dry, thin, or transitioning to its natural texture, the Ouidad Curl Recovery Ultra Nourishing Cleansing Oil leaves hair in a radiant and balanced state, said the company. It features a CR 4 Repair Complex, a combination of four ingredients: mafura butter, kalihari melon oil, daikon radish oil and meadowfoam seed oil that envelopes the hair shaft with concentrated fatty acids that are vital to rebuilding, nourishing and protecting.

The Future Is Bright
Mintel forecasts the shampoo, conditioner and styling product category will grow roughly 13% from 2012-17, to reach $7.9 billion. Shampoo is the largest segment in the category, with nearly universal usage, and future growth will likely result from price increases and value-added benefits such as anti-aging that encourage increased spending, said the report. Conditioner is the strongest performing segment in the category and while usage is very high among women, opportunities to increase consumption among men exist.

Industry experts agree that specialized hair care will aid in the growth of shampoos and conditioners. According to Bewley of Eufora International, more consumers are embracing their natural texture and curl.

She explained, “For some time, bone straight has been the trend and the chemical services and cumbersome finishing practices have taken a toll on the health of the hair. Products that help a consumer work with their texture and curl and allow them to leave the flat iron behind will become more popular in the coming year.”

Masters of John Masters Organics predicts color care as the next level of specialized shampoo and conditioner, as “there is such a high demand for a less evasive, more natural hair color line. I think 2014 just might be the year for that,” he told Happi.

Parikh of Stylebell.com and Maijan predicts that natural as well as fragranced formulations will boom in the upcoming year, along with ways salons will stock their products.

“We will see the steady expansion of natural ingredient-based hair care products. Shoppers are savvy and want to know what ingredients are in their hair care products. Products with organic, natural and pure ingredients will continue to expand,” she said. “Perfume-based hair care products are also going seeing a major uptick in 2014. This would include perfume-based shampoos, conditioners and shine sprays. Who wouldn’t want their hair to smell like Chanel No. 5?”

Parikh added that there is a shift underway in how professionals are purchasing products. Salon professionals will move more to investigating and completing purchases with authorized online retailers. 

The ultimate trend to look out for in the coming year is hair care products that multi-task, noted Mastalia of ICMAD.

“People are busier than ever and, as a result, they are demanding that products do as much as possible… so we see all-in-one products emerging. We have already seen it in skin care and cosmetics with BB, CC, and now DD creams,” he said. “Products like this one are perfect for people who just want to have one product that does it all.”