It used to be that sussing out a great shampoo meant surreptitiously removing the cap in the store and giving it a little sniff. Today, an amazing fragrance, great texture—these are simply table stakes. Consumers expect more from their products; they read the labels and want to know which ingredients really work, says L.A.-based stylist David Lopez. As a result, he adds, “we’re seeing more brands based in the science of hair care. It’s not just about looking pretty.”
These new tech-forward products are also responding to the desire to protect healthy hair that was restored by gentler pandemic regimens (read: fewer products and less heat). “So many of my clients adopted low-maintenance routines or grew out their hair,” Lopez says. Now that wash cycles and heat styling have returned, it’s about protecting the hair at every stage, from your in-shower procedure to your styling tools. Here, we’ve highlighted the best products that embrace innovative hair technology to get the job done.