Okay, What’s Happening With Olaplex?

Okay, What’s Happening With Olaplex?

Refinery 29 Article

Okay, What’s Happening With Olaplex?

Since launching in 2014, Olaplex has become the go-to brand for hair repair. The company, with its patented technology designed to essentially reconnect broken hair bonds, paved the way for an entire category around ‘bond repair hair-care — and it has resulted in countless imitators to boot. But now, Olaplex is facing legal trouble due to customer complaints accusing the enormously popular products — which raked in $176 million in sales last year as of the third quarter — of causing dryness, damage, and breakage, with some users even reporting hair loss.

Olaplex denies all of the above: “Olaplex products do not cause hair loss or hair breakage,” the brand wrote to Refinery29 via email. “Olaplex products are safe and effective, as millions of our customers can happily attest.”

Furthermore, according to Bessam Farjo, a hair restoration surgeon at the UK’s Farjo Hair Institute, due to the cosmetic regulations that all companies have to comply with, hair products are proven safe for use — or they just wouldn’t be on the shelves. “Hair products are tested vigorously, and standard shampoos and [conditioners] don’t cause hair loss,” says Dr Farjo. “Only severe chemicals would cause such damage. If something is irritating to the hair, you’re more likely to get temporary damage to the outside of the hair, rather than near the root.”

So can hair treatment products, Olaplex or otherwise, actually be at least a partial factor in hair loss? It’s uncommon. According to Dr Farjo, hair products have the potential to cause damage, but it’s unlikely to result in hair loss. “Some products may cause damage to the hair shaft on the outside and this would be temporary damage,” he explains. If a product or treatment comes in direct contact with the scalp, however, “it can burn the skin, which can affect hair loss,” he adds.
A word to the wise: before linking hair loss to your Olaplex products, see a doctor. “It’s never a good idea to self-diagnose,” says Dr Farjo. “Once you notice you are losing hair — and by that I mean a visual difference and not ‘I can see hairs in my hand,’ as we all shed hairs each day regardless — then it’s worth investigating.” Additionally, Dr Farjo says that if the hair loss is occurring over an extended period of more than three months then it makes sense to see a doctor, dermatologist, or trichologist for the purpose of obtaining a diagnosis.

Thinking about hair restoration? See how the experts at Farjo can help.