Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Product Review: Redken Color Extend Shampoo

Redken frequently reformulates their products while neglecting to sufficiently inform their retail outlets, but that's ok because its one of my favorite product lines and I stay on top of things for you all. You're welcome. 
This shampoo has been recently reformulated, along with the accompanying conditioner which I'm reviewing tomorow. The foam is a dense, thick and creamy feeling, it rinses incredibly easily and the integrity of fairly healthy hair seems the same. The smell is a slightly perceptible citrus/floral, which I personally enjoy in hair products, and so do a lot of women. If you've been deterred by the scent of other Redken products due to their slightly chemical smell, this one is very very different from the rest, so don't let it stop you from potentially trying a fantastic product.

I did slightly cover some of the controvery regarding sulfates, surfactants and color protecting shampoos in the ingredients. An in depth explanation would take 5 hours to write and just as much to read so I will spare you the extensive scientific information. All I will say is this: Color deposited into hair, must get past the cuticle layer to be called permanent or semi-permanent. The cuticle must be lifted, and therefore hair incurs some degree of damage. The way that shampoo works, is also by providing a somewhat basic environment and lifting the cuticle layer, in addition to de-fatting the hair shaft. If it foams, it's lifting the cuticle layer. The more it foams, the more its lifting. And color fade occurs when cuticle layers are lifted. This is why judicious conditioning, avoidance of over-shampooing and gentle treatment of ends is important for maintaining color integrity. This particular shampoo is far gentler than the majority of high foam shampoos, therefore a decent option for keeping color. The ideal situation would be washing only with conditioner, but the vast majority of people are incredibly uncomfortable with that. Therefore, this option is on the table.

  1. Aqua/Water: We all know what water is
  2. Sodium Laureth Sulfate: A lot of stylists and so called experts these days are saying that sulfates fade hair color and contribute to roughness of cuticle. This is absolutely true, but all surfactants which foam do so. And the more foam the worse. So even if you're using a "sulfate free" shampoo, as long as it produces a dense foam, they are contributing to color fading. The only way to avoid fading is to co-wash. However, the vast majority of consumers would never feel clean with using only conditioner to wash their hair. Therefore the constant push to create shampoo formulas that foam, yet cause minimal fade. Even though Sodium Laureth Sulfate does produce foam, it is one of the gentlest options available, especially is it's combined with even milder co-surfactants.
  3. Cocamidopropyl betaine: And here's that ultra mild co-surfactant. In fact the combination of sodium laureth sulfate and cocamidopropyl betaine has been the backbone of most baby shampoo formulas for decades. The reason is that the combination is extremely gentle and minimally de-fats the surfaces it cleans. 
  4. Glycol distearate: Conditioning and emulsifying ingredient. This enhances the cleansing properties of the shampoo (emulsifiers also act as surfactants, which is why the two categories often seem interchangeable) but it is a fatty ester, which means it enhances the conditioning of the product. This is likely what contributes to the extremely thick, buttery feel of the foam.
  5. Amodimethicone: Excellent in a shampoo that is supposed to prevent cuticle lift to a degree, it limits the foam capacity of the surfactants and helps protect the cuticle from damage.
  6. Sodium chloride: Common table salt, this acts as a thickener.
  7. PPG-5-Ceteth-20: Non greasy lubricating ingredient.
  8. Disodium cocoamphodiacetate: Very mild coconut derived surfactant
  9. Sodium benzoate: Preservative
  10. Sodium methylparaben: This is the sodium salt of garden variety of methylparaben, it still functions as a preservative it's just more soluble in cold water
  11. Parfum/Fragrance: Scent
  12. Polyquaternium-7: Conditioning agent
  13. Salicylic acid: This is too tiny of an amount to have any positive effect on exfoliating the scalp unfortunately
  14. Carbomer: Thickening agent
  15. Ethylparaben: Preservative
  16. Trideceth-6: Emulsifier and surfactant
  17. Ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate: This is part of the UV filter marketing story, but unfortunately it just washes right down the drain because these sunscreens don't have the power to stay on the hair shaft.
  18. Methylparaben: Preservative
  19. Butylphenyl methylpropional: Fragrance
  20. Cetrimonium chloride: Conditioning agent
  21. Hexyl cinnamal: Fragrance
  22. Linalool: Fragrance
  23. Wheat amino acids: Part of the marketing story...
  24. Hydrolyzed soy protein: More marketing fluff
  25. Vaccinium macrocarpon (cranberry seed) oil: And further marketing fluff
  26. 2-Oleamido-1 3-Octadecanediol: Now this stuff was so unfamiliar that I actually had to spend a good amount of time researching. Thank you public patent records, it turns out that Redken's parent company, L'oreal corp, patented this synthetic ceramide because of its wonderful property of helping deliver phospholipids deeper into skin strata. If this were better concentrated, it would be an amazing help for dry scalps. Bravo L'oreal.
  27. Oleth-10: Emulsifier
  28. Citronellol: Fragrance
  29. Disodium cocoamphodipropionate: Mild co-surfactant
  30. Benzyl alcohol: Preservative
  31. Lecithin: This was described in the patent description as a reccomended partner to 2-oleamido-1 3-octadecanediol, likely because it like phospholipids and ceramides is a natural part of skin's moisture system and complements the effects of the others.
  32. Sodium hydroxide: This makes a solution more basic, which makes the cuticle layer lift easier, which is bad for conditioning and color retention. Thankfully, there's very little of it.
  33. Citric acid: This makes the solution more acidic, helping retain color and cuticle integrity. Ironic isn't it?


  1. I cant understand why 2 years later there are no comments here. This is an awesome review :) Thanks (A girl who just died her hair pink and needs a colour stay shampoo lol)

  2. Wow I love redken but this has opened my eyes thanks