My Celebrity Life

I Tried So Many Olaplex Products & There’s One Clear Winner

A good way to judge a brand before trying it out yourself is to get your group chat’s reaction. When I mentioned that I was trialling a complete Olaplex routine, I knew I was on to a good one. I was met with praise, jealousy and requests to pass on products. My friends’ responses reflect the general hype surrounding the brand. Recommended by hairstylists and celebrities alike, you’re likely to find Olaplex stashed in any beauty lover’s bathroom cabinet. The brand’s most recent product launches (a purple toning shampoo and the No.8 Hair Mask) have been sell-out successes, creating a real buzz on social media for their ability to transform brassy blondes into cool tones and dull, lacklustre hair into luscious lengths in mere minutes.

Olaplex is all about making salon-worthy treatments accessible at home and it has made a name as a saviour for those with coloured hair. Unlike other treatments which just add moisture and shine to the outer layers of the hair, Olaplex’s brand-specific technology (the star ingredient is bis-aminopropyl diglycol dimaleate) works on a molecular level, seeking out the broken bonds within your hair (caused by chemical, heat and mechanical damage). It then repairs these bonds and generates new growth, leaving hair feeling and looking softer, shinier and stronger, inside and out.

After years of seaside living, sun damage and more than two years away from professional hands, my hair needs a little TLC (I thank TikTok for teaching me how to cut my hair myself during lockdown). As I’ve done more research into Olaplex, I’ve found that it’s beneficial not only for bleached and coloured hair but also for reversing damage caused by environmental aggressors and styling. Even better, it promises to do a world of good for hair on the drier, frizzier side like mine. It’s a beauty lifeline as the cooler autumn temperatures and aggressive central heating threaten to make the frizz worse.

But here’s the million dollar question: is every single one of these products worth the hype? To find out, I spent a month using all seven. Read on for my honest thoughts, plus all the information you need before shopping the full Olaplex hair care range.

 

Olaplex No.0 Bond Builder, £26

Introduced last year, the No.0 Bond Builder is a powerful tool in a restorative hair care routine and boasts the highest concentration in the range of Olaplex’s patented molecule technology. According to the brand, it works best when used in combination with the No.3 Hair Perfector. First, the brand recommends applying No.0 all over dry hair, saturating it from root to tip and leaving for 10 minutes before applying No.3. After another 10 minutes, the brand then suggests washing out both products with the No.4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo and No.5 Conditioner.

Truthfully, I was a little sceptical of No.0. Its watery formula just didn’t seem to hold up to its supposed transformative powers. Once on, it makes your hair feel a little greasy. Introduce No.3 into the mix, though, and I can see the appeal. After washing both out and leaving my hair to air-dry as usual, I wasn’t left with any of the usual frizz but soft, shiny waves. It does feel like a lot of fuss and the thin nozzle meant it took a while to fully saturate my hair. I can only imagine that those with longer, thicker hair will struggle more. I think I’ll keep this as an occasional treatment going forward.

Olaplex No.0 Bond Builder 155ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.3 Hair Perfector, £26

 

The second pre-wash treatment in my routine is the No.3 Hair Perfector. It isn’t a hair mask or a leave-in conditioner but a creamy rebuilding treatment that should be applied pre-shampoo. Unlike No.0 (which needs to be paired with No.3 to work) it can be used alone. I tried it both ways and each time my hair was left feeling smooth and silky. I am conscious of how small a bottle of No.3 is, though. You need to fully saturate hair with this one, too, leaving for at least 10 minutes and then washing off. I’ve found that my hair needs to be treated to No.3 once a week at most but coloured or damaged hair might need two or three doses. It’s effective but at £26 for only 100ml, it can get expensive.

Olaplex No.3 Hair Perfector 100ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo, £26

Compared to the chunky bottles of Monday Haircare shampoo that usually live in my shower, No.4 looks tiny. A little of this stuff goes a long way, though, and the formula is very silky and smells amazing (light and fruity, like an expensive salon). This product would be great for someone with thick, dry, frizzy hair that needs a moisture boost. I only needed a small amount to lather up my entire head. It’s true that my hair does feel healthier, stronger and shinier after using No.4 but it’s also on the thin side and this formula is too intense to be used regularly.

Olaplex No.4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo 250ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.5 Bond Maintenance Conditioner, £26

Olaplex suggests leaving No.5 – the conditioning counterpart to the Bond Maintenance Shampoo – for three minutes before washing off. I admit I find this tricky to remember when going through my early morning motions but it’s worth it, especially if your hair is dry and you have split ends. Day to day, you don’t need to use No.0 and No.3 when you have No.4 and No.5 in your arsenal. Again, to give my hair a rest here and there, I’ve been alternating this with a gentler, thinner conditioner.

Olaplex No.5 Bond Maintenance Conditioner 250ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.6 Bond Smoother, £26

I was particularly excited to try this. No.6 Bond Smoother is a thick, buttery, leave-in styling cream, designed to hydrate dry hair and eliminate frizz. Considering how the change in seasons plays havoc with my parched, dead ends and the way central heating causes major frizz, it was sorely needed this past month. A pea-sized drop raked through damp, post-wash or dry hair before styling is ample. It practically melts into hair, leaving it soft, shiny, light and bouncy. It never feels greasy and never weighs hair down. I only wish Olaplex did a bigger version as this is the clear winner for me.

Olaplex No.6 Bond Smoother 100ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil, £26

Small but mighty is the only way to describe the No.7 Bonding Oil. It softens and detangles hair, extends colour vibrancy, reduces frizz, tames flyaways and is a powerful heat protectant (for temperatures up to about 230°C, not to mention UV rays). It comes in a small bottle (30ml for £26, which I think is quite steep) but I’ve found I need just a drop or two combed through the ends of my hair for instant glossiness and a sleek look. The formula is lightweight, absorbs quickly and has a yummy, sweet scent. That said, the applicator can be a little annoying to use. I would prefer a small pump to really feel like I’m in control of the product.

Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil 30ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

Olaplex No.8 Bond Intense Moisture Mask, £26

No.8 Bond Intense Moisture Mask is another favourite on this list and one I’m likely to purchase time and time again. It’s a simple hair mask that really works. Suitable for all hair types, it’s formulated not only with Olaplex’s bond-building technology but also a host of power ingredients (the likes of which you’re more accustomed to seeing in your skincare). Hyaluronic acid hydrates, ceramides speed up the repair and restore process, and avocado, rosehip and rice bran oils leave your hair with a lustrous finish. It’s a more concentrated version of No.3, which my dry, fine hair eagerly laps up. You only need to use this once a week. Apply it to clean, damp hair from the mid-lengths to ends and leave on for 10 minutes (my hair only needed two pumps). I’ve factored this into my self-care Sunday routine as an indulgent treat that sets my hair up for the week. With this in play I find I can even skip conditioner.

Olaplex No.8 Bond Intense Moisture Mask 100ml, $, available at Look Fantastic

 


Credit: Original article published here.

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