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With its new Super Sleek line, Ojon is aiming to bring a natural version of a hair straightening system to the market in mid-January.
This story first appeared in the December 16, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“One of our recent focuses has been on how we can, as a brand, be high-tech and also natural,” said Jane Lauder, global president and general manager of Origins and Ojon. “The straightening category has experienced a huge amount of growth, and there has been widespread concern about chemicals in straightening treatments — which made this a natural focus for us.”
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The collection includes the sulfate-free, ion-rich Smoothing Shampoo, $24 for 8.5 oz.; Smoothing Conditioner, $25 for 8.5 oz., and two versions of Hair Straightening Treatment, each $39 for 2 oz.: one for loose to wavy hair and a second for medium to tighter-textured hair.
The line is powered by the proprietary Super Sleek Straightening Complex, and each product is formulated to match the 5.5 pH balance of hair and skin, noted Geoffrey Hawkins, vice president of research and development for Ojon. “The complex is designed to deliver three straightening actions simultaneously,” said Hawkins. “A gentle reshaping agent relaxes and smooths out the curved structure of hair’s keratin bonds, making them supple and flexible. Then our proprietary blend — including plant keratin derived from wheat, soy and corn proteins and azurite — acts like a liquid flat iron to realign natural keratin bonds and seal in straightness. It also fills in rough spots on the cuticle that can make hair appear frizzy, coarse and unmanageable. Finally, this treatment acts as a conduit for heat transfer from blow dryers and flat irons to instantly loosen curls.” Each treatment is designed to keep hair straight and manageable for 30 shampoos, and consumers can wash and condition hair when a 24-hour time period has elapsed. It is also safe to use on relaxed hair.
The brand has applied for five patents related to the line, Hawkins added.
The at-home regimen takes about an hour and a half from start to finish and doesn’t require gloves or a mask, noted Hawkins. It’s also free of formaldehyde, lye and cysteine. Like all Ojon products, it contains the brand’s Ojon oil, which is said to penetrate deep within the hair shaft to repair and seal the cuticle, as well as resist future damage.
While executives declined comment on projected sales, industry sources estimated the line could do about $6 million at retail in its first year on counter.
The line will bow first in 450 Ulta doors in January before rolling out to the brand’s remaining distribution in the fall. Ojon is carried in about 1,200 doors in North America, including Ulta and Sephora, as well as on QVC, qvc.com and ojon.com.
The regimen will be promoted via ojon.com, Facebook, direct mail and collateral and during on-air presentations at QVC.