Beauty Throwdown: Should You Go Cheap Or Chic With Salon Products?

It’s hairdryers at dawn over professional and drugstore products. It seems like everyone and their mother is arguing over which is best for their hair. So what do you think? Are salon products expensive rip-offs or necessary for glossy, Hollywood locks?

Stylists seem to swear by professional salon products and they do have advantages over store brands. Let’s check out the pros and cons of both, so you can make an informed decision about your hair care.


The combination of sodium, laureth, and sulphate creates the gentlest and most effective shampoos, but these generally come at a hefty price. Salon products usually contain this group of surfactants (lathering agents). You can sometimes find this combo in store brands, but you have to look hard.

Ammonium, laurel, and sulphate will strip your hair of its natural oils and colour – it’s the cheapest group of surfactants, so most drugstore products contain it.

Salon products are satisfaction guaranteed. If you’re an unhappy customer, it’s likely that you can claim a refund. You also get more mileage out of your bottle, as the shampoos are concentrated rather than watered down. You only need to use a little to get your hair looking gorgeous. You may go through two bottles of drugstore shampoo for every one bottle of professional product.

Product build-up makes your hair appear dull and lifeless. Store brands are likelier to create this effect than their professional alternatives.

Every salon product comes with a stylist, so you benefit from professional hair care information, at the price of a bottle of shampoo. No two people have the same tresses, so it’s important that you get specialised advice on how to handle your hair.

Do you give your hair some serious abuse? Hairdryers, straighteners, and curlers all create major damage and salon products are generally effective at keeping your hair healthier – at least, you may notice that. Not everyone needs professional quality shampoos, but if your hair is regularly dyed, you may notice a big difference by using shampoos and conditions for colour-treated hair.


The majority of professional hair product providers have their own store brand shampoos and treatments. You can find a great conditioner for less money than its salon counterpart. You may find that there’s little difference between the professional and drugstore brand. Try both and see what you think.

We’re all hardwired to think that we’re getting quality for our money. Are we? Beware expensive products that are marketed as higher in quality than basic drugstore treatments – they’re not always superior to the cheaper version.

Many people just can’t afford to spend an exceptional amount of money on their crowning glory. When shampoos and conditioners from drugstores work relatively fine, why splurge on a pricy bottle of designer product if you have bills to worry about? Stylists will sometimes shamelessly attempt to make you buy some of their professional treatments, but don’t cave under the pressure. Ask yourself if you really need those products to begin with.

Our collaborative post today has been written by Zoe, an enthusiastic beauty and lifestyle blogger, on behalf of hair salon services company Salons Direct.

Do you prefer to buy drugstore or luxury, high-end products for your beauty routine? Sound off in the comments below!

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