What is hair perfume and how is it different from regular body perfume?
Discerning the difference between two seemingly similar beauty products could be a full-time job. Just when we have looked at the subtleties between eau de toilette and eau de parfum, another disconcerting pairing appears to be deciphered: what differentiates an ampoule from a serum, for example?
The last distinction using all the brain cells that I probably need to remember my Ticketek password comes once again from the world of perfumes. What is hair perfume and how is it different from regular body perfume?
As the name suggests, hair perfumes perfume your locks. I can smell your next question and yes: you can just spray your usual perfume in your hair. But you probably shouldn’t, because some of the ingredients in regular body sprays are too strong for delicate hair and could end up damaging it. Very few people want their hair to smell luxurious but look and feel like a bale of dried hay.
The cause is the alcohol content. Your standard perfume has a non-edible alcohol content that is approximately between 70-92%. The alcohol in question is usually ethanol: it acts as a base material to dilute strong essential oils, preserve their scent, and also carry or project the scent further as the alcohol evaporates. But in doing so, the fragrance dries up.
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“Alcohol can really dry out hair,” says Chloe Zara, the stylist behind the eponymous local perfume oil for hair and body. Left unchecked, these spritzes could leave you with dry, damaged, frizz-prone locks.
This is not the case with perfumes dedicated to hair like those from Zara, which have a much lower alcohol content. “We worked very closely with our formulator to ensure that each of our ingredients is naturally sourced and that the percentage of fragrance used is really low and we were very careful about how we used the fragrance. ”
While Zara used a nourishing oil base to carry its fragrance, most hair fragrances are water-based. Some formulas, like Juliette Has A Gun Not a Hair and Body mist, are alcohol-free, so they’re much gentler on your hair.
Another important difference is not in what is excluded from the formulas, but rather in what is deliberately included. In addition to reducing or excluding ingredients that could damage hair, many contain other ingredients that build hair strength.
Gisou incorporates honey, which acts as a water-absorbing humectant to help hydrate hair. Hermès includes healthy shiny lilac (no points for guessing what it achieves) and the Huda ingredient list contains soothing camellia oil.
Zara and its formulators have included a handful of ingredients that you would expect to see more in a skincare product than in hair care. There is cacay seed oil, which is smoothing on the hair but also rich in omega 3 and vitamins A (a natural source of retinol) and E (an anti-inflammatory) as well as kakadu plum, a powerful antioxidant, which helps protect hair and skin from environmental damage.
Zara says such inclusions mean you can confidently use this “hair” oil on the rest of your body to great effect. “The ingredients we’ve used are each intended to support overall health, so it’s also incredibly nourishing for the skin, it’s also going to leave your skin feeling nice and smooth to the touch.”