Haircare formulations are now more sophisticated than ever with a surge of new innovations inspired by skincare.
The golden rules of happy and healthy hair were once simple: shampoo, condition and style. But haircare has progressed by leaps and bounds in the way of skincare. Concerns such as anti-ageing and pollution protection are now par for the course. Along with advances in technology and research, we have the “skintification” of haircare to thank for this. The scalp – the root cause of hair issues – is now regarded as an extension of the face that deserves equal attention.
The new generation of haircare is inspired by what’s typically used for your face. Think serums, acids and even sheet masks for your locks. We explore these latest advancements, led by luxury haircare experts old and new.
Exfoliate your scalp
The scalp deserves some love – particularly in Singapore’s humid climate where shampoo isn’t enough to remove the build-up of product and sebum that can clog your roots and follicles. Regular scalp exfoliation is the key to healthier, shinier hair from the root to the tip. A gentle scalp scrub, such as Christophe Robin’s Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Seasalt uses the flakes to gently remove impurities while stimulating blood circulation. Meanwhile, a chemical exfoliant such as Drunk Elephant’s T.L.C. Happi Scalp Scrub uses plant-cellulose exfoliating beads with an acid blend to effectively remove dead skin cells.
The root of hair loss
Hair loss occurs when the scalp is not in optimal condition. The deepest layers of the scalp are where the roots are found and where hair growth starts. If you’re shedding more than usual and have visibly thinning strands, try a powerful topical treatment. The Shiseido Professional Sublimic Adenovital range uses its Core Powerising Technology to ensure hair stays firmly rooted in the innermost layer of the scalp to receive growth signals. The recommended routine involves using two different treatments for your scalp and hair ends, as well as a mask for repair. Its star product is the Scalp Power-Shot, a potent concentrate with active ingredients to optimise hair growth.
Particles, smoke and gas can remain on the scalp and the hair, causing irritation and damage. Cult Stockholm brand Sachajuan’s anti-pollution haircare shampoo creates a protective barrier against environmental toxins and damaging minerals found in hard water, which can clog follicles and weigh hair down. The conditioner works to smooth the hair surface to prevent pollutants from adhering.
Just like skin, our hair needs UV protection too. The Gold Lust collection from Oribe, a luxury haircare brand founded by celebrity hairstylist Oribe Canales, offers natural UV filters that act as sunscreen to protect hair from photo-ageing and keratin depletion caused by damaging UVA and UVB rays. The products also nourish damaged hair using potent formulations of moisturising botanicals and oils. The Transformative Masque and Nourishing Hair Oil are remedies that restore shine and moisture to overly treated hair. Head to its premium partner salons such as Black Hair Salon at Capitol Piazza for an introduction by the experts. You’ll leave with softer, smoother tresses with insider knowledge on how best to use Oribe products for your hair.
Scent your mane
With fragrance houses releasing scented mists for tresses, 2019 was the year of the hair perfume. These are free from ingredients – namely alcohol – that can dry out your locks. This year, Kérastase launched its Chronologiste Parfum Oil, which is a multi-purpose fragrance that nourishes and de-frizzes hair, while offering high heat protection.
It contains a double concentration of perfume with notes of tea rose and peony juxtaposed with velvety-rich magnolia. Woody cedar and musk anchor the scent, with Persian lime and green tulips lending freshness. This same scent is also found in every product in the new Chronologiste range, available here and Sephora ION Orchard, which promises to reverse signs of ageing in hair and the scalp.
Similar to body butters for skin, hair masks coat hair in luxurious formulas that replenish parched strands with nutrients and moisture. The Masque Quintessence by natural haircare pioneer Leonor Greyl is the gold standard for masks.
Available at escentials, it’s described as an ultra-rich formula with cupuaçu and manketti nut oils that revive brittle and ravaged hair.
Innovation rears its head with sheet masks for hair, such as Briogeo’s Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Hair Cap System. It combines a cocktail of oils and B-vitamins from its Deep Conditioning Mask with a cap system that opens the hair cuticle and locks moisture in. The cap contains an inner fabric that is lined with micro-encapsulated argan oil to mend damaged hair.
Top-tier haircare names are sparing no expense to include luxurious ingredients in its formulas. Hollywood haircare brand Philip B uses Italian white truffle oil in its White Truffle Shampoo to treat coarse and chemically damaged hair. Available via Net-a-Porter, it works in tandem with a concentrated blend of 23 per cent pure botanical hydrators.
The haircare industry saw a major breakthrough when Virtue, available at Sephora, introduced new formulas that harness keratin from human hair, instead of plant amino acids or animal by-products. Alpha Keratin 60ku is extracted from ethically sourced human hair and incorporated into each Virtue product for its reparative effect. When deposited onto strands, it seamlessly fills and heals cracks of damaged hair to leave it softer, smoother and healthier.