Wen Cleansing Conditioner: Does It Really Work?Abby Smith
First off, what should you look for in a shampoo and conditioner? I think it’s no surprise we want to avoid harsh chemicals that dry out and damage our hair. Some shampoos strip out not only the old dirty product, but the healthy natural oils and expensive color as well. It’s best to avoid any shampoo and conditioner that has harsh cleaning agents, such as sulfates and ammonias. When you choose what to wash your hair with and how much money to spend, make sure to do your research. Remember that buying a cheap shampoo and conditioner doesn’t necessarily mean you’re saving money! Those of you using drug store shampoos … I can see your expensive color just circling the drain right now. Ahhh!!
So. What’s up with Wen? For years I’ve had readers emailing me about the stuff. My own mother has been begging me since college to try it! Over the past year, my hair has been through the ringer. It went through a traumatic bleaching experience, and I’ve really struggled keeping it hydrated and healthy since, despite my best efforts in using the best products available. I would describe my hair as dry and overly bleached with splitting ends and heat damage.
What is Wen? Wen is a cleansing conditioner. It replaces your shampoo, your conditioner, your deep conditioner, your detangler, and your leave-in-conditioner. It gently cleanses the hair without lathering or stripping it of its natural oils, and it’s designed to leave your hair with more strength, manageability, and better color retention. So the big question…
Does it actually work and is it worth the money? I purchased the WEN® Cucumber Aloe Cleansing Conditioner for $40 on Amazon. The first couple times I used it, I hated it. I felt the need to wash my hair more often, and I was discouraged because my scalp was itching and my hair just felt dirty all. the. time. It was heavy, hard to work with, and I even had a difficult time blowing it dry because it kept getting all tangled up. I knew my hair and scalp needed to adjust to the new routine though, so I was persistent. I refused to wash my hair more than three times a week, and I just kept pushing through the dirty feeling, hoping that soon my scalp would balance out the oil production.
One month and 1/3 of the bottle later, I am a full on Wen believer. My hair has made a complete 180. It feels soft and smooth and it’s not dry at all. I can go days without washing it, and while it never feels “stripped,” it does feel clean and is very manageable. My hair hasn’t felt this healthy since before my dark ombre to light blonde bleaching experience over a year ago. I still have a long way to go, but I feel like with Wen I’m able to reverse the damage I’ve caused and I’m loving the way my hair is looking.
So what the heck was happening those first couple of weeks?! Wen doesn’t have any sulfates or harsh chemicals in it, so it doesn’t lather up when you put it on. Because it doesn’t lather and it’s an all-in-one gentle cleanser, it’s not stripping your hair of natural oils. The key word there is gentle. After you wash your hair those first couple of times, it will feel dirty, oily, and heavy. But stick with it, invest in some dry shampoo, and I promise you you will reap the rewards of amazingly soft, healthy hair. It’s all about re-training your scalp to produce less oil; it’s a supply and demand thing. Wen isn’t stripping out the oil and your scalp needs to learn to produce less, but it takes time. Use it for 3 weeks, and I swear you’ll love it.
Is it worth the money? I’m going to go ahead and say a big fat heck yes. Without Wen, I spend $50 every five-ish months on great shampoo and conditioners. I also spend another $30 on deep conditioners/leave in conditioners, another $30 on styling serums, and another $30 on purple shampoos. (Don’t tell my husband. Ha!) That’s a ton of money; I’m spending about $150 on products that keep my hair healthy, but my hair is important and I’m willing to make the investment. But now with Wen, I’ve gone through 1/3 of the bottle in 30 days, which means I can spend 40 bucks every 3 months and get ALL those products wrapped up in one nice little compact bottle of Wen. It’s fabulous for traveling, my shower is clutter free, and I’m clearing out all the old unused products under my sink.
I really can’t say enough wonderful things about Wen and I’m excited to keep using it!!! My girl Cara from Maskcara took some great pictures of her before Wen and after Wen experience. Go read her story too. She’s got great tips on how to correctly use it. The proof that it works is in the pudding!
Are you going to take the challenge?! What are your thoughts on Wen?