Last Fall something amazing happened to our industry and it was called Olaplex. I'll admit, I was skeptical at first. I am a die hard Kerastase addict and I was convinced that there wasn't another product that could come close in conditioning power and I am so glad that I was wrong. Olaplaex has revolutionized the way stylists are able to color hair. We now have the power to bleach brighter, lift hair and improve the condition of hair.
Olaplex is often imitated and never duplicated. There are attempts from many major haircare lines to replicate this treatment and none come even close. There were rumblings from Redken that they may have the same technology available in some of their products, however further testing proved this to be untrue. Olaplex is a brand new technology that isn't going anywhere and clients are asking for it by name While purchasing a full kit is a pricy investment (Over $200 for a full size kit plus the cost of the retail pieces), you can cover your cost in a day or two by positioning this treatment correctly and utilizing it to its full potential.
Who is Olaplex for?
Truly any client can use Olaplex and get a great result. In fact my 11 year old daughter with perfect hair used the in-salon treatment and Number 3 and her perfect hair is now even more perfect than I thought was possible. While this product can be used by anybody, it is a necessary tool if you are hi-lighting more than 2 levels or working with overly damaged hair.
What does Olaplex do?
The natural disulfide bonds in hair are necessary to keep hair pliable and healthy. Bleaching, coloring, hot tools, excessive brushing and environmental factors can all lead to damaged bonds and ultimately breakage. Olaplex is able to create a synthetic disulfide bond in the hair which repairs the weak links in the protein strands allowing hair to appear healthier and stronger after just one treatment.
How does the Olaplaex treatment work?
There are 3 steps in the treatment. You can add step 1 which is a yellow liquid to bleach or hair color to protect the hair. This is important because now we are able to lift to a higher level than before while maintaining the integrity of the hair. I personally don't hi light or bleach my hair, but I add Olaplex to my semi-permanenet color formula and my hair has never felt smoother or softer. If your client doesn't color their hair, you can also mix step 1 with water for superior conditioning. After you've rinsed out the color or hi-lights, you apply step 2 without shampooing and allow to process for 10-20 minutes. The hair can then be shampooed, conditioned and styled as usual. The client should take home step 3 for use weekly to maintain the results.
Is step 3 of the Olaplex treatment necessary?
I have clients asking all the time if the step 3 take-home part of the treatment is necessary and I firmly believe it is. Steps 1 & 2 work to rebuild the bonds and add protein, however step 3 is what keeps the hair feeling soft and manageable. Its like steps 1 & 2 are the meatloaf that your grandma says you need to get nice and strong and step 3 is the amazing homemade apple pie that you've been waiting all day for.
How much should I charge?
This is a good question. I have seen stylists charge as little as $15 per treatment and at my salon we charge $50. For us, step 3 isn't optional so the client gets the in-salon treatment and take-home making it a great value. We also include it in package pricing for color corrections. The cost per treatment is between $4-$8 so I don't believe charging $15 is worth your time when you factor in cost of product, but charge appropriately baed on your market.
Remember that Olaplex isn't just a fluffy conditioning treatment. This product will make a tangible change in your clients hair and once they try it they will be hooked. In my salon Olaplex treatments are not optional for color corrections or overly processed blondes. If a client wants to have healthy hair, they will be willing to make the investment and the proof really is in the pudding on this one.
If you want cold, hard proof that Olaplex is worth it, I have one stylist who started offering Olaplex in November, 2014 and over the last 8 months she has generated an extra $6,297 for herself just by using and suggesting Olaplex treatments. This product not only makes your client happy, but your life so much easier as a stylist and is a must have for every hair stylist.