Redken and Nexxus have been consistently delivering quality hair care products for decades now.
Which is better, you ask? That's what we'll be finding out today as we compare the two side-by-side. Redken vs Nexxus - let’s get into it.
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Redken All Soft vs Nexxus Ultimate Moisture
While most shampoos and conditioners claim to have moisturizing ingredients, it’s clear that breathing new life into brittle strands isn’t always their specialty. Thankfully, there are plenty of choices that do aim to deeply nourish as they cleanse, such as Redken’s All Soft Argan Oil Shampoo and Conditioner, plus Nexxus’ Therappe Ultimate Moisture Shampoo and Humectress Conditioner.
Both brands’ formulas ultimately promise the same results, so we’re going to have to break down the skinny on each to reach a decision on which to choose.
This may be bad news for some, but we thought it important to note upfront that Nexxus’ and Redken’s formulas are made with sulfates (relatively harsh—but not uncommon—cleansing agents). Also, it seems that neither brand is vegan, and their status on being cruelty-free is a bit murky, but more on that later.
Nexxus’ silicone-free formulas highlight their use of green caviar and elastin protein to restore nutrients throughout your mane. Further, these superstar ingredients hydrate hair and restore natural protective barriers to seal in moisture for up to an entire day. So, what can you expect overall? Think: your smoothest, shiniest, most hydrated tresses.
Both Redken’s shampoo and conditioner lean on argan oil to promote nourishment and softness. Additionally, the brand credits their RCT Protein Complex, soy protein, arginine, and sepicap for treating parched locks from root to core to tip. This powerhouse of a formula works to first stimulate the scalp, then lock in moisture, and, lastly, restore split(ting) ends.
Though Nexxus’ shampoo and conditioner are made with caviar, their prices are anything but bougie. Amazon currently lists their shampoo at $17.71 for 13.5oz and their conditioner at $16.09 for the same size (last updated 19th Feb 2024). Redken’s shampoo and conditioner are available at $26 each for 10.1oz. Though Nexxus has won some points here for its relative affordability, let’s dive into the results in practice.
With Nexxus, I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly my hair absorbed the product, leaving no residue. My hair had a light, bouncy quality post-wash, and I noticed a visible reduction in frizz. The hydration was reasonably long-lasting, though nothing to write home about necessarily. (P.S., I'm unsure how much of these results can be credited to the inclusion of caviar!)
Switching to Redken, the first thing that struck me was the richness of the formula. It felt more intensive, and the nourishment from the argan oil was palpable. My hair felt deeply moisturized, and there was a noticeable smoothness to the touch, especially at the ends where I usually struggle with dryness.
While both products delivered on their hydration and smoothness promises, Nexxus stood out for its lightweight feel and frizz control, whereas Redken impressed me with its silken effect.
As previously mentioned, Nexxus isn’t vegan or cruelty free, as reported by Ethical Elephant in June 2022. While Nexxus remains committed to using the best ingredients in their formulas, they don’t have a statement or stance on sustainability anywhere on their site. Given that they’ve been in the haircare game since 1979, one might think they’d prioritize taking more ethical approaches, like using plant proteins only, or at least using recyclable/recycled plastic for their packaging.
According to Redken’s site, L’Oréal—the parent company of Redken—no longer tests any of its products on animals. However, Ethical Elephant claims that Redken also isn’t cruelty free (as recently as June 2022). Sustainability-wise, it seems that Redken began using sustainable packaging in early 2021, with at least 93% recycled plastic. (But, with a beauty giant such as L’Oréal as their parent company, it’s fair to expect more from Redken ethically and sustainably.)
This article was originally published on September 26th 2022, but it has been reviewed and updated with the latest available information on February 19th 2024 by Sara Mckay, MA.
Calum Torrington is the founder of FemmeNordic. He has worked as a beauty editor since 2020 and employs his analytical background in mathematics to thoroughly scrutinize complex INCI lists. Now, he helps over 1 million people per year to find the best beauty products.