If you have ever gotten your hair colored at the salon then there is a good chance you’ve heard the word “Olaplex” being thrown around whether it’s a treatment or recommendation your stylist makes to add to your product regime. There’s a reason for that.
As a naturalista who loves to color her curls I can say without hesitation that hair dye does a number on your texture, pattern, and overall hair health when not treated properly. Finding the right mix of shampoo, conditioner, and products to give your curls the bounce and moisture they need can be extremely challenging. Every product can say “color safe” or “sulfate free” but you can go through plenty of trial and error to determine which product is actually helping your hair versus hurting it.
What is Olaplex?
Olaplex is a patented system developed by scientists to repair, protect, and strengthen damaged hair regardless of your texture or type. These bottles are filled with liquid gold and are known for their reparative qualities that re-links broken bonds whether you have damaged hair, frizz, colored curls, or split ends. “Olaplex is Insurance for your tresses” says textured hair expert Niki Mackey. “I have seen first hand what this product can do to damaged as well as healthy hair. Olaplex’s game changing products repairs the disulfide bonds in your hair, which give your hair it’s structure, strength and stability; when these bonds break – this is what results in damage. The products work for every hair type and texture.” The short version is that it leaves your hair easier to manage, healthier, stronger, and moisturized. We’re breaking down all the Olaplex products, why people love them, and which hair types they work best with.
Olaplex Hair Perfector No. 3 – The Best-Seller
Known as the “Hair Perfector” the original Olaplex is one of the most popular products because it is an at-home treatment that nourishes, strengthens, and repairs hair from the inside out. It is the global best-seller of the brand because it improves the overall look and feel of the hair texture giving it a noticeably healthier appearance. “I use Olaplex on myself and my clients” curl stylist LaQuita Burnett told us, “I perform a lot of color services on my clients, especially blonde. I use Olaplex No. 1 with my color mixture during color service and No. 2 after color is rinsed to protect, repair, and strengthen curls post color treatment. I then recommend taking home care Olaplex No. 3 along with any additional products following No. 3 my client decided to use. Olaplex is definitely a must for healthy curls.”
It can be used 1x-2x a week to help strengthen hair before you shampoo. You can use it all over the hair or on the roots but much like a deep masque, you want to comb it through and leave it on your hair for a minimum of 10 minutes or more. This product is ideal for all curl types and should be used for naturalistas looking to maintain their favorite color treatment between salon visits.
Olaplex No. 4 – The Shampoo That Gives Back
This is a highly reparative and nourishing shampoo that is designed to repair and protect hair from daily stress like frizz, split-ends, damaged hair, and relinking broken bonds. As a sulfate-free shampoo this is a crowd favorite because it will not leave your hair dry and provides great moisture for regular and color treated hair.
Chicago color specialist Rhi Hibionada uses this on her color clients, “when a client sits in my chair, I believe they should have the most luxurious experience. That includes adding an Olaplex treatment to help keep their hair strong and healthy. I specialize in color services only, that being said, I use Olaplex no. 1, no. 2, no. 4 and no. 5. I start off by mixing in Olaplex no. 1 with the color then when the color is rinsed out, my client sits with Olaplex no. 2 for 15-20min. Lastly, they are shampooed and conditioned with Olaplex no. 4 & no. 5.”
Curlies can incorporate this into their weekly wash regimen or use it after they use it with the signature No.3 product. If you’re looking to reduce breakage and incorporate moisture into your curls, this is the product for you!
Olaplex No. 4D – For the Clean Hair & Healthy Scalp
Welcome to the newest edition to the Olaplex family, the NO. 4D Clean Volume Detox Dry Shampoo. The best thing about dry shampoo is that it can make your hair and scalp feel cleaner without the fuss of wash day. As a healthy scalp shampoo it does not clog pores or leave any visibile white residue so your roots aren’t powdery or gritty. It can be easily applied to different sections of your roots between wash days to amplify any style. Current results show that consumers had 100% no white residue, 97% say their hair looked clean, and 97% saw an overall reduction in oil.
Olaplex No. 4P – For the Unbreakable Blondes
The purple shampoo has made a splash and become a staple of the Olaplex family! Whether you’re a natural blonde or not, the concentrated purple shampoo works to cleanse, tone, and repair any hair type or texture from root to ends. The sulfate-free formula creates a rich later which can neutralize the dreaded brassiness that comes with washing your hair. You can look forward to improving brightness in blonde, lightened, and grey hair in just one use.
Olaplex No. 4C – For Removing the Buildup
Don’t you hate when your hair becomes dull, discolored, dry, and unmanageable due to hair damage? The No 4C Bond Maintenance Clarifying Shampoo helps to optimize your hair repair by removing impurities that can leave your hair brittle and straw like. Your hair will love the airy volume, softness, restored shine, and vibrant color clarity. If your scalp is in need of a deep clean, this is the shampoo for you.
Olaplex No.5 – Say Goodbye To Frizz
The No.5 is the perfect pair to the shampoo because it’s a nourishing conditioner aimed to keep hair healthy, shiny, and strong. Known for being an ultra-hydrating conditioner, this is an excellent remedy for frizz and infusing moisture into your thirsty strands. For those of us with super dry ends and damaged hair, this is your best friend. One of the benefits of this conditioner is that it is lightweight and doesn’t require a heavy handful.It can be applied daily and should be washed out as it is not leave-in conditioner and should be used by slowly working it’s way up from the ends to root.
Olaplex No.6 – The Leave-In Conditioner
Finally a leave-in we can fall in with. The No. 6 separates itself from the average leave-in conditioner because it is designed with curls in mind. Hydration and moisture are the staples of this product that can eliminate frizz and flyaways for up to 72 hours. It adds weightless nourishment while protecting and defining your curls just the way you like it. If you have chemically treated or color treated hair this can greatly improve your hair health and can be used on dry or damp curls. It is recommended to be applied from mid-length down to your ends and combed through generously.
Olaplex No.7 – The Big Finish
An oil that is a step above the rest. The No. 7 is the Bonding Oil that can be applied for extra gloss and shine. The product is highly concentrated, lightweight, reparative, and can be used for all hair types and textures. Just a few drops can drastically change the appearance of dull, dry curls, and it can be applied to wet or dry hair at any time. If you also like to straighten your hair this is an oil that can also provide heat protection which is vital to preserving your hair health when applying large amounts of heat.
Olaplex No.8 – Time to Mask Up
This bond intense moisture mask is the latest and greatest edition to the lineup and debuted this past year to stellar reviews. As a “multi-benefit” reparative mask this product works to shine and smooth hair that has been damaged by heat. It has been clinically tested to treat all hair types and is recommend to be used weekly as part of your regular hair routine. “Six of [the] eight products are available for shoppers to use at home,” says stylist Nicki Mackey, “Olaplex No 3 Hair Perfector and Olaplex No 8 Bond Intense Moisture Mask are both my top leave in treatments for home. You can mix and match based on your individual hair needs. Give your hair the TLC it needs and watch it transform!”
Olaplex No. 9 – When It’s Time for Nourishment
Knots, tangles, and dull hair does not stand a chance with the No. 9 Bond Protector Nourishing Hair Serum. Heat damage and pollution can contribute to your overall hair health. Olaplex is ensuring you can protect your hair from daily damage with this weightless leave-in serum to help shield hair from pollution and up to 450 degrees of heat. It can be incorporated as a serum on your wash days to improve shine, softness, and bring the bounce back to your curls.
Have you tried Olaplex on your curls? Let us know how it works for you in the comments!
This article has been updated with newly released products and links.