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Amika vs Redken (The Definitive Guide)

We all know and love Amika. They've definitely been having their fair share of the limelight recently! We all know and love Redken, too; this brand has been consistently delivering quality hair care products for decades now.

Which is better, you ask? Let’s discuss the difference between a newbie with impressive stats and a tried-and-true veteran. Amika vs Redken - let’s get into it.

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Amika The Kure vs Redken Acidic Bonding Concentrate

A myriad of factors can cause your hair to become dry, brittle, and lifeless, such as heat styling, coloring, or even environmental stressors. It’s imperative to not only find a shampoo and conditioner that will maintain healthy hair, but also a specialized treatment to help revive tired tresses.

More specifically, you may find that a bonding treatment, like amika’s the kure multi-task repair treatment or Redken’s Acidic Perfecting Leave-in Treatment for Damaged Hair, is just what you’ve been looking for.

Now, it appears both brands’ regimens are suitable for all hair types (we’d still advise using discretion, though), but let’s delve into the details to see which comes out on top.

Amika’s repair treatment claims to strengthen hair, reduce breakage and prevent future damage. So, how do they achieve all three, you ask? Thanks to a mixture of sea buckthorn, mango butter, shea butter, borage oil, and vegan proteins, your mane will be doused in fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals to repair (and maintain) bonds at your strands’ cores. Ultimately, its ingredients are intended to deliver the same results as a keratin-like treatment—but it’s strictly sourced from plants. I've used it both as a rinse-out and leave-in treatment, finding its versatility quite useful.

Moreover, both the kure bond repair shampoo and the kure bond repair conditioner are similarly formulated to complement the efforts of the repair treatment. (And we think it’s worth mentioning that all three products are free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, mineral oil, and petrolatum.) Based on my experience and what I've seen, these products have made a noticeable difference. After using them, my hair felt stronger and looked less frizzy, with more defined curls and body.

Redken’s approach to their leave-in repair treatment is slightly different, as citric acid does the heavy lifting to reinforce weakened hair bonds. Further, it’s created with an acidic pH to defend against the effects of coloring and heat styling while also offering color fade protection. Plus, for those who use flat irons or curling wands regularly, Redken’s regimen lends heat protection up to 450 degrees. Like amika, Redken’s shampoo and conditioner contain similar ingredients to its repair treatment.

Having tried Redken's acidic bonding concentrate trifecta, I noticed a visible improvement in my hair's appearance and texture. There was a reduction in breakage and fewer visible split ends. Between amika and Redken, both offer impressive results, but the choice ultimately depends on one's specific hair needs and preferences.

Now, let’s talk cost. The kure multi-task repair treatment is ~$30 for a 6.7oz bottle, while the shampoo and conditioner are ~$25 for 9.2oz. On the other hand, Redken’s acidic bonding treatment will run you a bit more for less product at $30 for a 5.1oz bottle and both their shampoo and conditioner are ~$30 for 10.1oz.

If you’re still on the fence about which treatment is right for you, perhaps each brand’s business ethics will give you your answer.

Something we love about amika is their commitment to ethical business practices. Every “the kure” product is cruelty-free, vegan, and recyclable, aligning with a strong environmental conscience. The shampoo and conditioner even offer 500ml refill pouches so that customers can reuse both bottles to offset the purchasing and disposal of additional bottles. You can also add social initiatives to amika’s résumé, as they donate at least 1% of profits (before taxes) to non-profit causes as well as partnering with City of Hope annually to raise funds for medical research.

Redken, under the umbrella of L’Oréal, has ceased animal testing across its products. However, as of February 2024, reports from Cruelty-Free Kitty and Ethical Elephant suggest that Redken hasn’t fully embraced cruelty-free practices. In terms of sustainability, Redken has made strides by incorporating at least 93% recycled plastic in its packaging since early 2021. This is commendable, but given the resources of a giant like L’Oréal, it’s reasonable to expect ongoing and more substantial progress in their sustainability efforts.

In summary, while Redken is a popular choice among salons and hairstylists and has shown some progress in sustainable practices, Amika not only rivals them in quality but also takes a more proactive stance in ethical business practices. This makes Amika a compelling choice for those who value both product effectiveness and corporate responsibility.

Of course, if Redken is your tried-and-true favorite, we fully support your preference. Being an informed consumer means weighing both these aspects to make a decision that aligns with your values and needs.

Amika Best-Sellers

For dry shampoo:
Try Perk Up

For heat defense:
Try Blockade

For volume:
Try 3D

Redken Best-Sellers

For blonde hair:
Try Color Extend Blondage

For dry/brittle hair:
Try All Soft

For fine hair:
Try Volume Injection

This article was originally published on September 20th 2022, but it has been reviewed and updated with the latest available information on February 13th 2024 by Sara Mckay, MA.

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