Marooned Haircutters
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Olaplex: the new salon wonder-treatment that ACTUALLY fixes damaged hair

The brainchild of scientists (NOT beauty insiders), which can transform brittle and broken hair. It's how Kim K went platinum and back without ruining her locks.


All the stylists at Marooned Haircuters have been fully trained in the use of Olaplex and we love it, we see many products come and go with massive claims on how they can improve our clients hair, most do some of what they claim but Olaplex is amazing. We offer this as an 'add-on' service at the salon for when having a cut, colour or even a blow-dry. It pretty much guarantees that your locks will feel softer and look stronger.

OlaplexHairStrand1Olaplex is free of silicone, sulfates, phthalates, DEA, aldehydes, and is never tested on animals. Olaplex reconnects broken disulfide sulfur bonds in the hair. Hair bonds are broken during thermal, mechanical and chemical services.


Imagine if you could prevent your hair from breaking and repair damaged strands by linking the bonds back together again? Well the Holy Grail has happened. It's thanks to a treatment called Olaplex and it's got nothing to do with big hair brands selling you stuff and everything to do with science.

The story goes like this; founder Dean Christal, curious to understand how to repair broken hair, teamed up with chemists and was introduced to nationally recognised scientist Dr Craig Hawker. Inspired by the idea, Craig enlisted Dr Eric Pressly and the brains came up with a new molecule that they couldn't believe the beauty industry hadn't thought of before.

Already a huge hit in America, Olaplex is now taking UK salons by storm and transforming the texture of clients' coloured hair. The magic works from the inside out to strengthen, condition and literally reconnect the hair strand structure where broken. It's amazingly simple and it's how Kim Kardashian's hair wasn't totally ruined by 'platinumgate'. "When your hair is really damaged, if you sleep in that, it really works. I notice a huge difference!" Kim said recently - without officially endorsing the ad-free brand.

Especially beneficial for chemically coloured hair, it has the potential to restore the health of all damaged hair types given that hair bonds are broken during thermal, mechanical and chemical services. All the stylists at MArooned have been fully trained in the use of Olaples and we love it, so why not book it as an 'add-on' service the next time you visit the salon for a cut, colour or even a blow-dry. It pretty much guarantees that your locks will feel softer and look stronger.

“If you have ever had clients who worry about their hair breaking off from the coloring process, tell them, ‘Don’t worry, I use Olaplex!’ Not only does it help prevent breakage, my clients tell me that their hair feels stronger, silky and fuller as well. This is a brand new hair care product unlike any other, and it makes my job a heck of a lot less stressful!”  —Tracey Cunningham

Here's the story

What they say: A game changer for hair colour, the idea behind Olaplex was proper blue-sky thinking – to create a magical ingredient that would help stop chemical treatments from hurting hair. It was launched Stateside last year and has quickly won a slew of celebrity fans including Charlize Theron who was Olaplexed by Redken's Creative Consultant for Colour, Tracey Cunningham and Kim K – how else could her poor locks cope with all that change? But what is Olaplex? Well, put simply, it’s an additive that your hairdresser can add to chemical treatments such as colour and smoothing services to minimize the damage and improve the feel and look of your hair. Just think about the possibilities – you could finally bleach your hair like Rita Ora and NOT have it fall off your scalp

The start……………………………..

In the middle of a day filled with back-to-back balayage and root touch-up appointments, Aura Friedman — the cool-girl colorist of Sally Hershberger Downtown salon in New York City — went to take a phone call. It's not normal for a stylist to be interrupted, mid-process, for a call at such an establishment, so Friedman assumed it was important. “It’s Tracey Cunningham,” the receptionist whispered, referring to the famous hair painter, responsible for Gwyneth Paltrow’s honey blonde and Jennifer Lopez’s inimitable caramel.

“Take a message,” Friedman instructed, concerned that she had, perhaps, made a mistake on one of Cunningham’s A-list clients while they were in town. But, later that day, she was surprised to see Cunningham herself at the salon’s front door, demanding to be seen. “She handed me a bag filled with product, and she basically said it would change my life,” Friedman recalls.

The product in question was Olaplex, a single-ingredient wonder created by chemist Craig Hawker, the co-director of the Materials Research Lab at the University of California Santa Barbara. Hawker is a nationally recognized scientist, and his research group is focused on molecular engineering, specifically as it applies to biomaterials and energy. According to Dean Christal, a beauty-industry entrepreneur, Hawker’s inventions had never contributed to the beauty world — until the two met.

“We talked for a few hours," says Christal. "[After that conversation,] he invented Olaplex in one night and handed it to me after I told him what I wanted.” According to Christal — who had been looking for the next big thing in beauty — it was a huge game-changer: “Basically, when you put chemicals in the hair — from coloring, or peroxide developers, or straightening treatments — the sulfur bonds split, and they then become sulfur hydrogen." This process can eat away at the hair proteins, which causes damage. Olaplex prevents the splitting from happening. In short, "It links [together] broken bonds in the hair caused by chemical processes...preventing them from damage.”

olaplexmix1This is a massive claim to make for a young beauty company, especially considering Christal is not relying on clinical trials or lab experiments for proof. “Most of our testing is real-world stylists,” he explains, pointing to the brand’s Instagram, which is full of remarkable, frizz-erasing transformations. 

And, once it ended up in Cunningham’s hands, Olaplex' fate was essentially sealed.

“I have to tell you, I get things from companies all the time that I never try," says Cunningham. "But, I just decided that what Dean said, about it eliminating breakage…there’s just never anything new like that in the industry." She called up a client who had had a particularly damaging experience going from red to blonde, and invited her back to try the process again. “I thought, 'I’m going hard or I’m going home,'” she says. After mixing the liquid form of Olaplex (step one) in 40 Volume bleach (industry speak for one hell of a dosage), and then painting all over using the Olaplex cream (step two), she was sold. “It should’ve broken all the hair. I left that on for a half hour. It was as if a miracle had happened.”

As far as Friedman, the product has transformed her entire hair mantra — one that’s focused on instant, radical transformations. “I know that when I use it, it won’t break down the hair," she says. "So, for people I have to take from virgin to platinum in one day, it’s perfect. It allows me to push the boundaries." It’s also revolutionary for a color detox: “Once you go fully platinum, it can be hard for the hair to hold color when you dye it back,” she explains. “This repairs the hair, but also keeps the color intact.”

If there’s one thing you can bank on in the beauty world, it’s word of mouth —especially in a salon environment. “In less than 12 weeks, we [were] in over 7,000 salons,” says Christal. “And, once Tracey used it on about 2,500 people and told every [colorist] from Aura to the team at Nine Zero One Salon, we started looking at trademarks, how we’d scale it up, and all that… We filed a patent, too.” In short, "overnight success" would be the correct term here.

So, when Friedman encouraged me to go from black to silver, the first time I’d be double-processed in my entire life, she swore my hair wouldn’t be compromised for eternity. After taking the plunge — even though I still have that nitty-gritty feel of freshly-bleached strands — I’m surprised at how soft and easy it is to manage, especially post-shampoo.

Upon hearing this, Cunningham is unfazed. “On my life, this is the best thing that’s happened to hair in a long time,” she says. Before your next appointment, you may want to make sure this miracle molecule is within reach — especially because it won't be available to buy anytime soon. “I’m dedicated to making this a professional hairdresser’s product only,” Christal says. “Professional services are what keeps the industry alive for hairdressers.”

And, perhaps, thanks to Olaplex, their jobs are about to get a whole lot easier.


What the press say : Olaplex Could (And Will) Change Everything

One curious man. Two chemists. One big question. Could you create a product that would never, ever break hair again while haircoloing…even at 40-volume?

Could It Be True?

About a month ago, I got a frantic call from Tracey Cunningham while I was in Europe and she was in Dubai. She said, “Mary, call me back. I have to talk to you. I’ve just used a product that could change everything.” I love Tracey, but was sprinting a marathon of meetings that week in London. She was insanely busy as well, but when I didn’t call her back, she texted me the next day and then the next day. I called her and this is what she shared, “I’ve just used a product that gives me the superpower to do things I never thought were possible. It allows me to color more often, go lighter and double process the same day without any fear of breakage. Like, no breakage, Mary. I’ve used it on Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez, Gwyneth Paltrow and pretty much every client for the past month. I’m going through a liter of it a day! I’ve been blown away by what I’m seeing.”

And Tracey isn’t the only one. In fact, nearly every major celebrity salon in Beverly Hills and West Hollywood, including Guy Tang, Nine Zero One, Estilo, Goodform, Sally Hershberger and Chris McMillan all have their army of celebrity colorists testing this “secret” formula, which from all accounts, is no longer a secret anymore. 

The Holy Grail of Haircolor

It’s called Olaplex, and it just could be the holy grail for haircolor. To never break hair again is a huge claim, so Tracey gave me the guy’s name and number who created the product and the second I got off the line with Tracey, I called him. For the next two hours, Dean Christal spoke to me in a language of chemistry I didn’t understand, with one exception. The part I did comprehend is that the most world famous chemist from the polymer field of chemistry, with countless awards and patents to his name, who has nothing to do with hair, had created a new molecule that would link broken bonds in hair back together again. This molecule, he claims, when added into any haircolor services, will absolutely prevent any breakage. The two-hour chemistry lesson all boiled down to one simple idea—a hair coloist would never have to worry about destroying a client’s hair ever again. One simple molecule. One simple ingredient. Nothing simple about its effects. Imagine never breaking a client’s hair again. Imagine never stripping haircolor again. 

One Curious Man. Two Curious Chemists. 

The Olaplex story, in Dean’s words: “I was working with a group of chemists for three years trying to develop a UV activated silicone that would stay in the hair for up to 25 washes. It worked beautifully 80 percent of the time, but 20 percent of the time, various wavelengths in the UVA range made it sticky. An Australian chemist working on the project suggested that I take a shot at meeting Craig Hawker at the Hawker Group at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He said Craig was a chemistry savant and the only one capable of coming up with the solution for our problem. I hung up the phone and immediately drove out to the university and unannounced, walked into Mr. Hawker’s office. We talked for four hours. Almost immediately, Craig came up with an idea for our perplexing UV activated chemistry, and he and I discussed what it would take to create the holy grail of the beauty industry—preventing damage to hair. Craig was intrigued with the idea of repairing hair and preventing chemical damage from occurring. Craig introduced me to Eric Pressly that evening, a PhD in materials, and when I returned the next day at 2 p.m., I was given my first batch of Olaplex. “Craig and Eric were both surprised that the industry had not created something like this,” Dean shared. 

Thinking From the Outside…In

Olaplex has now filled multiple worldwide patents. The work these chemists are famous for involves helping to stop organs and transplants from being rejected by the body. It’s life-saving work. Dean convinced Craig and Eric that helping women feel more beautiful was also life-saving work and just as important. Which it is. And now, the best chemistry from the best minds in medical polymer research has been offered to our industry to solve a problem that’s existed since the development of haircolor.

The Story Goes On

Interestingly, the story gets even bigger than this (if that’s possible). It appears this molecule called Olaplex will also radically change the hair texturizing business as well, allowing a permanent wave to be done on the same day as color. Dean says, “I had a stylist Japanese relax a swatch of hair two times, then 40-volume bleach it, then perm it, and the hair was still in good condition. The control sample that had no Olaplexdisintegrated halfway through the test. I knew at that point in time that Olaplex would completely change the way hair was chemically treated forever.”

“If you have ever had clients who worry about their hair breaking off from the coloring process, tell them, ‘Don’t worry, I use Olaplex!’ Not only does it help prevent breakage, my clients tell me that their hair feels stronger, silky and fuller as well. This is a brand new hair care product unlike any other, and it makes my job a heck of a lot less stressful!”  —Tracey Cunningham

Marooned Haircutters - 52a High Street - Cowbridge - Opening Times: Mon - Wed 9 - 5.30 | Thurs & Fri 9 - 7 | Sat 9 - 5 | Sun 10-3

Last cut and finish appointments are 45 minutes before closing, we sometimes close early if those appointments are not taken.Please call if you are coming in after that.

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