Wen by Chaz Dean

   Ah-h-h, the promise of beautiful, celebrity-quality hair! It is simply irresistible. Hair-care lines in all price ranges promise designer results. Despite the fact that hair-care products cannot deliver one iota of the claims on the label, we keep hoping that someone someday will finally be telling us the truth. Chaz Dean is a celebrity hairstylist who claims to have invented the concept of “cleansing conditioning,” back in 1993. According to Mr. Dean, the idea of shampooing and conditioning at the same time came to him after years of doing hair, particularly permanent coloring and bleaching, and noticing the detrimental effect of shampooing on color longevity and on hair’s overall condition. His claim is so over the top false it’s laughable for anyone who knows the history of two-in-one shampoos. They were invented by Procter & Gamble, not Mr. Dean, and P&G launched Pert Plus shampoo and conditioner in 1987.
   Forgetting about who came up with this revolutionary concept first, Dean finally launched his small line of products, none of which contain detergent cleansing agents. Instead of using standard shampoo ingredients such as sodium laureth sulfate, Dean maintains that his products cleanse scalp and hair with natural ingredients that have astringent properties.
   Before I discuss the poor cleansing properties of natural ingredients and the Wen products that contain them, I want to discuss the term “astringent.” Assuming that the natural ingredients Dean selected have astringent properties, that would not be good news for your hair, color-treated or not. By definition, astringent means dry, constrictive, and caustic. Is that what you want for your hair? Of course not, and actually that’s the good news about Wen products. Although these products won’t leave your hair dry or unmanageable, they won’t get your hair and scalp clean either, at least not to the extent of a real, bona fide shampoo, perhaps from a line that’s not trying to come up with a new marketing angle. 
   All of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners contain standard conditioning agents that lack significant ability to cleanse hair or remove the buildup of styling products. Instead of detergent cleansing agents, the backbone of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners includes cetyl alcohol and cetearyl alcohol. Both are chemically known as fatty (non-drying) alcohols, and both have slight surfactant (cleansing) properties, but only to the extent of lathering. Unfortunately, an ingredient that simply produces lather isn’t going to clean and remove buildup from an adult’s hair, especially if it’s oily (Sources: International Cosmetic Ingredient Dictionary and Handbook, 11th Edition 2006, pages 406 and 420; and Encyclopedia of Shampoo Ingredients Micelle Press, Anthony L.L. Hunting, 1998). 
   Some of the plant extracts in these “cleansing” products could be described as astringent, but they won’t clean or help your hair. You can try this yourself at home: gather some of the same plant extracts Dean includes in his products—rosemary, aloe, marigold, and wild cherry—mash and mix them together in a bowl, and apply the concoction to your hair as you would a shampoo. Your hair won’t be clean any more than your windows would be crystal clear if you washed them with tea water instead of Windex. 
   Regrettably, all of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners also contain essential oils and other ingredients (such as menthol) that can be irritating to the scalp. Based on the directions for use, you’d be actively massaging these irritants into your scalp for several minutes, then rinsing and applying more of them to your hair (because the Cleansing Conditioners also are supposed to be used as leave-in conditioners). Moreover, all of the Cleansing Conditioners will be a problem if you leave them on your hair because all contain a sensitizing preservative system that is contraindicated for use in leave-on products (Sources: Contact Dermatitis, November 2001, pages 257–264; and European Journal of Dermatology, March 1999, pages 144–160).
   Dean also maligns every detergent cleansing agent used in shampoos, when in fact there are dozens of gentle detergent cleansing agents that, when properly formulated in shampoos, do not cause dryness or damage your hair. Ingredients to watch out for due to their drying effect on hair and scalp are sodium lauryl sulfate, TEA-lauryl sulfate, and sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate. Luckily, these show up in shampoos infrequently relative to the gentler yet still effective detergent cleansing agents. One more thing: although shampooing hair can cause some amount of color fading, so can the ingredients in Dean’s products, as can plain water, styling tools, and sunlight, which are the major culprits for color loss. So, opting to forgo using a real shampoo isn’t going to keep color around any longer.
   What does help? Avoid exposing your hair to the sun and styling your hair with high-heat flat irons and blow dryers as much as possible (both are damaging to healthy hair, but even more so when hair is chemically treated). It also helps to use shampoos and conditioners that contain silicone. Research has shown that silicones help maintain color intensity and longevity when permanent hair dye is used (Sources: Journal of Cosmetic Science, Supplement, 2004, pages S123–S131, and January/February 2004, pages 130–131). While Dean’s products do contain silicone, it is a small part of the formula, barely noticeable on the ingredient list, and even less so on your hair.
   For more information about Wen by Chaz Dean, call (323) 467-6444 or visit www.chazdean.com or www.qvc.com.

   Ah-h-h, the promise of beautiful, celebrity-quality hair! It is simply irresistible. Hair-care lines in all price ranges promise designer results. Despite the fact that hair-care products cannot deliver one iota of the claims on the label, we keep hoping that someone someday will finally be telling us the truth. Chaz Dean is a celebrity hairstylist who claims to have invented the concept of “cleansing conditioning,” back in 1993. According to Mr. Dean, the idea of shampooing and conditioning at the same time came to him after years of doing hair, particularly permanent coloring and bleaching, and noticing the detrimental effect of shampooing on color longevity and on hair’s overall condition. His claim is so over the top false it’s laughable for anyone who knows the history of two-in-one shampoos. They were invented by Procter & Gamble, not Mr. Dean, and P&G launched Pert Plus shampoo and conditioner in 1987.
   Forgetting about who came up with this revolutionary concept first, Dean finally launched his small line of products, none of which contain detergent cleansing agents. Instead of using standard shampoo ingredients such as sodium laureth sulfate, Dean maintains that his products cleanse scalp and hair with natural ingredients that have astringent properties.
   Before I discuss the poor cleansing properties of natural ingredients and the Wen products that contain them, I want to discuss the term “astringent.” Assuming that the natural ingredients Dean selected have astringent properties, that would not be good news for your hair, color-treated or not. By definition, astringent means dry, constrictive, and caustic. Is that what you want for your hair? Of course not, and actually that’s the good news about Wen products. Although these products won’t leave your hair dry or unmanageable, they won’t get your hair and scalp clean either, at least not to the extent of a real, bona fide shampoo, perhaps from a line that’s not trying to come up with a new marketing angle. 
   All of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners contain standard conditioning agents that lack significant ability to cleanse hair or remove the buildup of styling products. Instead of detergent cleansing agents, the backbone of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners includes cetyl alcohol and cetearyl alcohol. Both are chemically known as fatty (non-drying) alcohols, and both have slight surfactant (cleansing) properties, but only to the extent of lathering. Unfortunately, an ingredient that simply produces lather isn’t going to clean and remove buildup from an adult’s hair, especially if it’s oily (Sources: International Cosmetic Ingredient Dictionary and Handbook, 11th Edition 2006, pages 406 and 420; and Encyclopedia of Shampoo Ingredients Micelle Press, Anthony L.L. Hunting, 1998). 
   Some of the plant extracts in these “cleansing” products could be described as astringent, but they won’t clean or help your hair. You can try this yourself at home: gather some of the same plant extracts Dean includes in his products—rosemary, aloe, marigold, and wild cherry—mash and mix them together in a bowl, and apply the concoction to your hair as you would a shampoo. Your hair won’t be clean any more than your windows would be crystal clear if you washed them with tea water instead of Windex. 
   Regrettably, all of Dean’s Cleansing Conditioners also contain essential oils and other ingredients (such as menthol) that can be irritating to the scalp. Based on the directions for use, you’d be actively massaging these irritants into your scalp for several minutes, then rinsing and applying more of them to your hair (because the Cleansing Conditioners also are supposed to be used as leave-in conditioners). Moreover, all of the Cleansing Conditioners will be a problem if you leave them on your hair because all contain a sensitizing preservative system that is contraindicated for use in leave-on products (Sources: Contact Dermatitis, November 2001, pages 257–264; and European Journal of Dermatology, March 1999, pages 144–160).
   Dean also maligns every detergent cleansing agent used in shampoos, when in fact there are dozens of gentle detergent cleansing agents that, when properly formulated in shampoos, do not cause dryness or damage your hair. Ingredients to watch out for due to their drying effect on hair and scalp are sodium lauryl sulfate, TEA-lauryl sulfate, and sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate. Luckily, these show up in shampoos infrequently relative to the gentler yet still effective detergent cleansing agents. One more thing: although shampooing hair can cause some amount of color fading, so can the ingredients in Dean’s products, as can plain water, styling tools, and sunlight, which are the major culprits for color loss. So, opting to forgo using a real shampoo isn’t going to keep color around any longer.
   What does help? Avoid exposing your hair to the sun and styling your hair with high-heat flat irons and blow dryers as much as possible (both are damaging to healthy hair, but even more so when hair is chemically treated). It also helps to use shampoos and conditioners that contain silicone. Research has shown that silicones help maintain color intensity and longevity when permanent hair dye is used (Sources: Journal of Cosmetic Science, Supplement, 2004, pages S123–S131, and January/February 2004, pages 130–131). While Dean’s products do contain silicone, it is a small part of the formula, barely noticeable on the ingredient list, and even less so on your hair.
   For more information about Wen by Chaz Dean, call (323) 467-6444 or visit www.chazdean.com or www.qvc.com.

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