Recently, hair care routines have become more complex and involved than ever before, following in the footsteps of the massive skincare boom over the last few years, which was ushered in by the popularity of Korean beauty and its penchant for 12-step routines. Just like many of us wouldn’t dream of simply just cleansing our face and slapping on moisturizer (what about serums, masks, and toners?), gone are the days of simple, two-step (shampoo and conditioner, duh) hair regimens. These days, styling treatments like oils, creams and texturizing creams make up the majority of our hair product cabinets. In fact, the hair care industry has borrowed many of its newer products, like serums and masks, from the skincare industry, even including popular skincare ingredients like charcoal and micellar water, in hair products.
And as recent hair launches would make it seem, the focus has shifted from our hair’s ends to our scalps. Brands and consumers are recognizing that since the skin on our scalp is an extension of the skin on our face, it should be treated and taken care of as such. First up: exfoliating scrubs that address excess product and oil buildup. The scalp, like the skin, is made up of oil glands and sweat glands, and if they become clogged, it can not only cause itching and flakiness, but even pimples and blemishes. Sound familiar? Like exfoliators for your skin, scalp exfoliators are an excellent option for addressing and clogged pore issues and creating a healthy, balanced environment to encourage hair growth.
Hair masks, on the other hand, are certainly not a new concept—we’ve been using them for years to treat dry hair and split ends. But now, masks that are specifically formulated to treat scalp issues like dryness, flakiness and hair loss are finding their place in the ever-expanding hair care market, filling a void that we didn’t even realize was there. But if you’re experiencing scalp problems, masking is a great place to start your repair journey.
Last but not least, the skincare industry’s favourite (and most robust) product category, serums, have made their way to hair care, too. Featuring skin-saving ingredients, like vitamins A and C, ceramides and fatty acids, hair serums can be applied overnight for long-term nourishing benefits, like a more balanced scalp, leading to softer, shinier and stronger hair.
We’ve rounded up some of our top picks for hair scrubs, masques and serums below.
Shea Moisture African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Pre-Shampoo Scalp Scrub, $13.96, walmart.ca
Head & Shoulders Supreme Exfoliating Scalp Scrub Treatment, $8.97, walmart.ca
Kérastase Scrub Apaisant Soothing Scalp Scrub, $70, kerastase.ca
Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Overnight Serum, $70, shuuemura.ca
Design.ME Gloss.ME Cannabis Sativa Oil Hair Serum, $24, designmehair.ca
Kérastase Resistance Serum Extentioniste Scalp & Hair Serum, $60, kerastase.ca