Gel Shampoo Will Make Your Blowout So Much Better

Best Products for Healthy Hair

How Gel-Based Shampoos And Conditioners Can Help You Get A Better Blow Dry

08 December 2017

Emily Arata

Senior Editor,

As an employee of L’Oréal, Emily works with celebrity stylists to make finding the right cut, color, or style easier than ever before. She's previously written for Allure, Elite Daily, and First We Feast.

Everyone could use a better blowout. No matter how many fancy creams, expensive hair drying gizmos, or wide tooth combs made with the actual teeth of an angel we buy, we never seem to be able to recreate the perfection of a salon blowout. A better blow dry seems just out of reach.,

Interestingly, that problem isn’t exclusively due to the fact that twisting your arms to hold a dryer and a brush behind your head but perpendicular to your scalp is nigh impossible. According to Brayden Pelletier, Redken brand ambassador, the problem starts way before you even pick up the hot tools. Blame your shampoo and conditioner for some of your hair drying woes.

The secret to shiny, beautiful hair lies just behind your shower curtain.

According to Pelletier, shampoo and conditioner formulas are changing to reflect what women want.

Most consumers are looking to get about three days out of a blow dry...We want the shinier blow dries but we need to find a way to get the result and allow it to be more moveable and lightweight.

Brayden Pelletier

The logic goes like this: If you want shiny, manageable strands, the easiest thing to do is to buy a very dense product and prep your hair with it. Where that goes wrong is the second or third day, according to Pelletier. The best product in the world can’t save hair that’s essentially become an oil slick. That’s where gel formulas come in.

How are gel shampoo and conditioner different?

Let’s start with what gel shampoo and conditioner are not. Shake those memories of heavy, sticky hair gel from your brain and focus instead on thoughts of a bouncy, weightless blowout.

“It looks like a gel, but it doesn’t act like a gel. It acts like a gloss,“ Pelletier says of Redken’s Glow Dry line. “It still suds, it’s still easily able to comb through and it’s more or less the oils that they’re infusing into that gel-esque blend that are giving you the ability to be more detangling.”

However, with a lighter formula comes an extra step or two. In the past, shampooing your hair meant choosing a formulation that really cleansed the scalp of build-up. A gel shampoo or formula is lighter, meaning you may want to bring in a pre-wash product like an exfoliating scrub to help break up some of that oil and dirt.

“A pre-scrub actually helps kind of like you would use a pre-mask on your skin,” Pelletier says. Once your hair is truly clean, you have a fresh canvas for your heat protectant and styling products.

What’s best for my blowout?

Every head of hair has slightly different needs, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep a blowout-optimized shampoo and conditioner on hand for sleek styles. If you’re starting with very dry or oily hair, Pelletier recommends making sure you’re shaping the rest of the products in your blowout routine around that.

The result? A blowout that looks sleek and feels smooth. We’ll gladly trade in our heavy hair creams for that.

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