Luxurious, healthy hair is a goal for many people, but with so many hair care products on the market, it can be tough to know which ones really work. Two of the most popular salon-quality brands are Kérastase and Olaplex, which both claim to repair damaged hair and leave locks smooth and shiny. But when it comes down to it, which brand reigns supreme?
Today I’ll compare and contrast Kérastase and Olaplex hair products to help you determine which line is the right choice for your tresses. We’ll look at the key ingredients in each, analyze what hair types can benefit from each brand, and make an overall assessment of which company offers the most effective and worthwhile products. Read on for the full breakdown and get ready to pick your new favorite hair care line!
Kérastase Brand History
Founded in 1964, Kérastase is a luxury haircare brand that originated in France and is a part of the L’Oréal Group. The brand earned recognition for its salon-exclusive products and customized haircare routines that rely on scientific research.
Known for its innovative formulations, Kérastase offers a range of shampoos, conditioners, and treatments that target specific hair and scalp concerns. It is a staple in high-end salons and a go-to brand for haircare professionals globally.
Through collaborations with hairstylists and ongoing research, Kérastase continues to set industry standards in luxury hair care.
Olaplex Brand History
Olaplex was founded in 2014 by Dean Christal, who teamed up with scientists Dr. Craig Hawker and Dr. Eric Pressly to create a revolutionary haircare technology. The brand gained immediate attention for its patented formula that repairs broken disulfide bonds in the hair, a groundbreaking approach to hair health.
Initially introduced as a salon-only treatment, Olaplex quickly expanded its line to include at-home care products. It has become a favorite among hairstylists and celebrities, gaining widespread acclaim for its ability to repair and strengthen damaged hair.
In 2019, private equity firm Advent International purchased Olaplex before it went public in a 2021 IPO. Today, Olaplex remains a leader in the haircare industry, widely recognized for its innovative, science-backed products.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex Oil
When it comes to nourishing hair oils, two popular options are Kérastase Elixir Ultime and Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil. Kérastase and Olaplex oils target different hair concerns and offer distinct benefits, based on their unique formulations.
Kérastase Elixir Ultime
The Kérastase Elixir Ultime Oil contains a mix of four high-performance flower oils including camellia oil for nourishment, apricot oil for smoothness, argan oil for hydration, and pomegranate oil for protection against environmental damage. It claims to provide overall hair repair while leaving strands softer, smoother, and shinier.
Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil
Meanwhile, Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil contains the brand’s patented bond-building technology and nourishing oils like sunflower seed, meadowfoam seed, and red algae oils. This oil aims to re-link broken hair bonds in all hair types that lead to damage and frizz. It promises to make hair up to four times stronger while increasing shine, smoothness, and moisture.
The Olaplex oil focuses specifically on repairing bonds and preventing damage while the Kérastase product aims for a more holistic hair improvement, so the right choice may depend on your hair’s damage level and needs.
Kérastase’s hair oils, such as the Elixir Ultime, are generally formulated to provide shine, smoothness, and nourishment, using a combination of luxurious oils like maize, argan, and camellia oils. These oils are versatile and can be used for various hair types but are especially known for their moisturizing and frizz-controlling properties.
Olaplex’s No. 7 Bonding Oil aims to fix broken hair bonds, leading to stronger and healthier strands. It’s particularly beneficial for damaged or compromised hair due to chemical hair treatments, heat styling, or environmental factors.
While Kérastase focuses on overall hair aesthetics and manageability, Olaplex zeroes in on hair health and structural integrity.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex Shampoo for Thinning Hair
Kérastase and Olaplex offer shampoos aimed at addressing different aspects of hair care, and their suitability for thinning hair depends on the underlying cause of the issue.
Kérastase’s Bain Densité is part of its Densifique range, specifically designed to tackle hair density and fullness issues. It aims to add volume and texture to thinning hair through a formulation that includes hyaluronic acid and intra-cylane, ingredients known for plumping and strengthening hair fibers.
No. 4 Bond Maintenance
Olaplex’s No. 4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo, on the other hand, focuses on repairing broken bonds within the hair structure, which can be beneficial if your thinning is due to hair breakage or damage from chemical treatments. While it doesn’t directly target thinning hair, its reparative features can promote stronger, healthier hair over time.
If you are dealing with thinning hair due to loss of volume or density, Kérastase may offer more targeted benefits; if the thinning is a result of damaged or broken hair, Olaplex could be the better choice.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex Purple Shampoo
Kérastase and Olaplex both offer purple shampoos designed to neutralize yellow and brassy tones in blonde, grey, or lightened hair, but they approach this goal differently.
Blond Absolu Bain Ultra-Violet
Kérastase’s Blond Absolu Bain Ultra-Violet is enriched with hyaluronic acid and edelweiss flower, aiming to provide nourishment and protection in addition to color correction. Its focus is on offering a complete treatment for blonde hair, tackling issues like dryness and damage alongside toning.
No. 4P Blonde Enhancer
Olaplex’s No. 4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo, meanwhile, incorporates the brand’s signature bond-repair technology. It not only tones the hair but also helps to repair broken bonds, making it particularly useful for blonde hair damaged through bleaching or other chemical treatments.
While both products aim to tone and improve the appearance of light-colored hair, Kérastase leans more towards nourishment and overall hair health, whereas Olaplex emphasizes repairing damaged hair structures. Your choice between the two comes down to choosing between additional nourishment or more focused repair benefits.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex Conditioners
For the task of nourishing and repairing hair, both Kérastase and Olaplex offer high-performing conditioners.
The Kérastase Nutritive line features the Lait Vital conditioner which contains iris rhizome extract, ceramides, gluco-peptides, and hyaluronic acid to provide deep nutrition and hydration for dry, damaged hair. It helps restore the lipid layer on each strand to leave hair smooth, silky, and ultra-shiny.
No.5 Bond Maintenance
Olaplex No.5 Bond Maintenance Conditioner contains Olaplex’s patented bond-building ingredients to restore broken bonds caused by chemical, thermal, and mechanical damage. It helps repair and protect hair at the molecular level while also restoring hydration and smoothness.
The Kérastase conditioner focuses more on overall nourishment while the Olaplex zeros in on bond repair specifically. Those with severely damaged or color-treated hair should go for Olaplex, while the Kérastase provides an extra moisture boost for dry hair.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex for Curly Hair
Curly-haired folks know the constant battle against frizz and dryness. Both Kérastase and Olaplex offer products aimed at nourishing, defining, and enhancing natural curls.
The Kérastase Curl Manifesto line includes a curl-defining cream with hydrating aloe vera and contouring polymers to enhance definition and hold. The Olaplex No.6 Bond Smoother contains Olaplex’s proprietary bond-building technology along with moisturizing ingredients like green tea extract and jojoba, meadowfoam, and argan oils to not only repair damage but also hydrate and reduce frizz.
Those with very dry, fragile curls would benefit most from Olaplex’s bond-strengthening abilities while the Kérastase provides pliable hold and definition. Using the Kérastase curl cream along with the Olaplex No.5 conditioner can provide the ultimate 1-2 punch of definition, hydration, and repair for bouncy, healthy curls.
Kérastase vs. Olaplex vs. Oribe
Kérastase, Olaplex, and Oribe are all luxury haircare brands, but each has its own unique focus and set of benefits.
Kérastase is renowned for its scientifically formulated, salon-quality products that address all types of hair and scalp needs, from nourishment to frizz control. Olaplex is known for its revolutionary bond-repair technology, making it a go-to choice for hair that’s damaged by too much heat, chemical treatments, or general pollution.
Oribe, founded by the late celebrity hairstylist Oribe Canales, stands out for its high-performing, stylist-approved products that often incorporate skincare-grade ingredients and offer a pleasant experience through fragrance.
In terms of product offerings, Kérastase excels in customized regimes and treatments for specific hair types and conditions. Olaplex focuses on a narrower range of products but excels in restoring hair health at the elemental level. Oribe offers a mix of aesthetic appeal and effectiveness, often featuring exotic ingredients and an emphasis on both hair and scalp wellness.
Choosing between these brands would depend on your specific hair needs and concerns. If you’re looking for tailor-made solutions backed by scientific research, Kérastase might be your best bet. For hair that is damaged and needs structural repair, Olaplex would be the recommended choice. If you’re interested in luxury, effectiveness, and a sensory experience, then Oribe could be the most appealing brand for you.