I rarely considered the skin under my hair until two years ago, when “scalp-care” became a thing. Of course, a scalp is skin, just like any other part of the body. The company’s been focusing on the skin below the chin with serums, lotions, and exfoliants, and its slogan, “Treat your body like your face,” indicates it’s a passionate area for it. The company just launched its first hair-care products, collectively dubbed “The Scalp Duo” ($40).
Both Shampoo ($25) and Conditioner ($25) are included in this combo, but they are also available separately. Nécessaire’s products are both purpose-built for the skin, something I was seeking after a year of DIY bleach jobs that have left my scalp parched, jute rug rough, and sensitive to brushing. With what I was facing, I needed a system specially designed to restore and soothe it.
I’d like to share my first thoughts on the Scalp Duo from Nécessaire
I’ll be open about something you might not like: Scalp Duo smells like nothing at all…literally nothing. While this is an intentional decision on Necessaire’s part, fragrance is often the cause of skin irritation.
The first time I used unscented shampoo, I felt like I was rubbing CeraVe through my strands. As a result of my lack of a sensory experience, I now enjoy DIY scalp massages on a tactile level instead. To use each product, I follow the directions on the packaging, working it into my scalp in a methodical, deliberate manner.
The suds of this sulfate-free shampoo are actually satisfying, and it doesn’t strip the skin of moisture in the process. The shampoo makes my scalp feel softer and less tight since I started using it. It soothes my scalp like aloe after a sunburn almost immediately after I bleach my roots – during a delicate period when my scalp appears most vulnerable.
The Conditioner has the same thick, comforting feel without being heavy. It seems that this conditioner sinks into my scalp instead of sitting on the ends of my hair, which is something I generally avoid doing because I am afraid my hair will look limp. I feel comfortable after washing and drying my hair. A squeaky-clean tightness does not exist, nor is there any gummy or greasy residue.
As I turn the bottles over to look at the ingredients, I see that both products are made with plant-based hydrators like aloe and avocado oil, as well as B vitamins like niacinamide, an antioxidant that can relieve inflammation and promote skin health. What is notable about this absence? Chemicals such as sulfates, parabens, silicones, and PEGs (a petroleum-derived chemical compound that irritates skin)…and fragrances.
It feels like an “I’m sorry” to my scalp after treating it with reckless abandon over the past year.
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