ABOUT THE TEST
HOW IT WORKS
INGREDIENTS + PACKAGING
AVAILABILITY, SHIPPING + RETURNS
ABOUT THE HAIR LAB
ABOUT THE TEST
How do I take the Strands Test, and how long does it take?
You can take The Strands Test online, or in-store on your mobile device using the QR code on the display. The test takes approximately two minutes to complete, and you’ll get your results right away.
Which hair concerns do you address?
The Hair Lab doses are formulated to customize your shampoo and conditioner with ingredients selected based on your hair’s biology and concerns. We have doses available to address the top 10 most common hair concerns:
Do I have to take the Strands Test before choosing my shampoo & conditioner?
We recommend taking the Strands Test to get the best results. Knowing more about your hair biology helps us provide you with the most effective and personalized recommendations.
How does the Strands Smart Scanner work?
The Strands Smart Scanner takes three simultaneous images to measure your hair texture and scalp type (meaning, scalp sebum or oil level). One image measures your hair texture by identifying the exact edges of your hair fibers, then measuring the diameters. A second image identifies impurities in the scalp, which is directly proportional to scalp sebum production. The third image assesses reflectance intensity of the scalp as a measurement of oiliness.
To use the Strands Smart Scanner, part your hair at the center or side, and place the device on your part. Once you can see your scalp and strands clearly in the circle on the screen, press the button. You may need to retake if we don’t get a clear image. This might happen because…
The Strands Smart Scanner wasn’t placed on your part
Your hair wasn’t clearly parted
Your hand moved while pressing the button
The button was pressed while aiming elsewhere. For example, at the floor, ceiling or another part of your body
Where can I find a store with the Strands Smart Scanner?
For a list of stores that have the Strands Smart Scanner, click here.
How can I tell my hair texture?
You can easily feel a thick (aka coarse) strand between your fingers, but not a fine one. If you have a variety of hair textures, please select the one that’s most prevalent. If you’re in between (ie, between fine- and medium-textured or between medium- and coarse-textured), select the extreme (ie, either fine or coarse). Alternatively, you can test your strands in-store using the Strands Smart Scanner, which accurately measures hair texture.
How can I tell my scalp type?
A dry scalp usually feels tight and irritated, while an oil-prone one typically weighs hair down. If neither of these sounds right, your scalp is most likely balanced. If you’re between two types (ie,between oil-prone and balanced or between balanced and dry), choose the extreme (ie, dry or oil-prone). Alternatively, you can test your scalp in-store using the Strands Smart Scanner, which accurately measures scalp type.
How can I tell my natural hair type?
Here, we’re looking at whether your hair is naturally straight, wavy, curly or coily. So, think about the original shape of your strands, before you had any treatments. If you have a variety of hair types, select the one that’s most prevalent.
You ask about the treatments I use. Why do they matter?
Different treatments and styles can have an impact on the condition and needs of your hair, which is why knowing about them helps us make better, more tailored product recommendations. So don’t hold back — make sure to select all the treatments and styles you currently use!
Why didn’t I get the Curl Define Dose Set if I have curly hair?
Our recommendations are based on all of the hair data we analyze, and so sometimes we may recommend a different dose over Curl Define if we believe it will be even more beneficial to your hair.
Why did I get the Moisture Boost Dose Set if I’m concerned about frizz?
Your hair is impacted by a myriad of factors, including hair texture, scalp type, humidity and even water hardness. Our recommendations are based on all of the hair data we analyze, and so sometimes you might be surprised by a recommendation. But don’t worry! Our Moisture Boost dose set contains ingredients to help combat frizz, with added benefits of moisture and damage protection, too.
Why do you ask for my zip code?
Knowing your zip code helps us understand the specific environmental factors that impact your hair on a daily basis, such as temperature, UV index, water hardness, air pollution and humidity.
Do you do any DNA testing?
The Hair Lab does not collect samples of your hair and does not conduct any DNA testing. The Strands Smart Scanner captures images of a small section of your hair and scalp so we can better understand your hair’s physiology (aka biology). We analyze things like hair texture and scalp oil levels so we can make more precise custom product recommendations.
How often should I retake the Strands Test?
You should retake the Strands Test if you get any chemical treatments that physically alter the color or texture of your hair. Similarly, if you discontinue chemical treatments and revert to your hair’s natural state, we recommend retaking the test after approximately two to three months. If you live in an area where humidity changes seasonally, it’s best to take the test seasonally to make sure those changes are accounted for in your next set of customized formulas.
How is the Strands Smart Scanner sanitized between uses?
When the device is in its cradle (or dock), there are two UV light sources that help destroy bacteria and inactivated viruses. These lights are in the Germicidal UV (UV-C) spectrum of 200-280 nanometers. The ultraviolet radiant energy inactivates bacteria, mold spores, fungi and viruses, including the SARS-CoV-2 virus which is responsible for COVID-19.
The first pair of UV lights is in the cradle itself, and sanitizes the lens which makes contact with the scalp. The second pair of UV lights is above the device, and sanitizes the surface where you hold the Strands Smart Scanner. In addition, there are sanitizing wipes provided so you can wipe down the surface and lens of the device before and after use, if desired.
What do you do with my hair scan from the Strands Smart Scanner?
Images of your hair will be stored in our secure database, and will not be shared with or sold to any third parties. They will be used exclusively to refine and improve The Hair Lab’s algorithm for assessing hair texture and scalp type, to provide you with even more accurate customization results.
HOW IT WORKS
How do I know which dose is right for me, and how does the customization work?
From the thickness of your strands to the oil level of your scalp, from the treatments you get to the humidity in the air, your hair is impacted by a myriad of factors that are impossible to track without help. That’s why we thrive on data. Using the Strands Smart Scanner or Strands Test, we’re able to accurately assess your hair care needs – and customize formulas to address them. In addition to 10 precision doses, our shampoos are tailored to scalp type (Dry, Balanced, Oil-Prone) and our conditioners to hair texture (Fine, Medium, Coarse). Together, our system works to address all your hair needs. At prices that leave no one out.
Does The Hair Lab work for all ethnicities and hair types?
Yes! At The Hair Lab, we believe no two strands are alike. That’s why we start with an in-depth analysis of your strands. Using our high-tech hair analysis, and our Test, Know, Customize + Go methodology, we start by understanding your hair’s unique biology and needs. Then, we build a customized hair care routine to match — all types, textures, styles and budgets. Because we believe that everyone deserves the healthy-looking, head-turning hair of their dreams, our individually tailored approach was made with everyone in mind, with ingredients formulated for strands of all kinds. Inclusive for all. Exclusively for you.
How do I know which shampoo & conditioner to choose? How do I know which doses to choose?
Easy! Test, Know, Customize + Go. We developed our hair analysis technology (both the Strands Smart Scanner and Strands Test) to provide us with the data we need to recommend the most effective formulations customized for your hair’s unique biology and needs — in just 2 minutes. After you complete your hair analysis, you’ll receive a report with your results and customized recommendations, which will include: shampoo (tailored to oil-prone, balanced or dry scalps) + conditioner (designed for fine-, medium- or coarse-textured hair) + up to three dose sets (which include Anti-Brass, Curl Define, Heat Defense, Rebuild Boost, Color Protect, Shine Boost, Anti-Breakage, Moisture Boost, Anti-Frizz and Scalp Reset).
What should I buy to ensure I have everything I need?
For the best results, we recommend buying the products custom- recommended for your hair’s unique biology, which will include: 1 shampoo + 1 conditioner + up to 3 dose sets (which each contain a shampoo dose and conditioner dose).
How do I mix my shampoo and conditioner with the doses?
Easy! Pour the full contents of your shampoo doses into your shampoo bottle. Ensure the cap is tightly closed and shake well for 30 seconds. Repeat with your conditioner doses and conditioner bottle. Remember, add up to three doses only to each, and keep shaking for a full 30 seconds as it takes this long to fully mix. Tip: shake hard enough that you can hear the shampoo and conditioner sloshing around in the bottle.
How do I know if my formulations are mixed?
You’ll want to look for a homogenous, uniform mixture. For example, there should be no clear, brown or purple liquid still visible, depending on which doses you added.
What are the three blank rectangles on my shampoo and conditioner bottles?
Good catch! On the side of our shampoo and conditioner bottles, below the words “My Code,” we’ve left three rectangles blank. It’s to help you remember your unique formula once you’ve recycled your dose packaging. Once you unbox your dose sets, simply remove the peel-off labels from the vials (notice how they’re inspired by the periodic table of elements, in a nod to our science background), and add them to your shampoo and conditioner bottles. This way, you’ll always remember your unique code!
What color should the doses be?
With the exception of the Anti-Brass Dose Set, our doses range in color from clear to shades of brown. That’s because we don’t add any dyes or colorants to our doses, so the hue you see reflects the inherent, natural color of the ingredients. (Because we’re serious about clean beauty, our cruelty-free dose formulas are also free from phthalates, sulfates, parabens, fragrance and mineral oils.) Our Anti-Brass Dose Set is purple-hued only because we add specific, innovative pigments to neutralize unwanted brassiness and yellow tones in blonde and silver hair. While it won’t stain, we recommend pouring carefully and cleaning up spills immediately.
Do I have to use doses in my shampoo & conditioner?
You don’t have to add doses to your shampoo and conditioner, but for the best, personalized results, we recommend adding the three doses custom-recommended for your hair’s needs to both your shampoo and conditioner.
Can I apply a dose directly to my hair?
The doses are not designed to be applied directly to your hair without first mixing them into one of our shampoos or conditioners.
Can I add two or three of the same dose to my shampoo or conditioner?
Adding more than one of the same dose set (for example, three Moisture Boost Dose Sets) to your shampoo or conditioner is not recommended. You won’t experience any adverse effects, but it won’t increase the efficacy of your formulas.
What happens if I want to use more than three doses?
You can’t add more than three doses to your shampoo or conditioner because a) the bottle may overflow, and b) there won’t be enough room to mix thoroughly.
What happens if I spill my dose?
If part of the dose spills, you can still add the remainder to your shampoo or conditioner and you’ll get the benefit of the amount added. If all of it spills, you can proceed with using the shampoo or conditioner until you’re able to buy a replacement dose.
Do I have to use the same doses in both my shampoo & conditioner?
We designed our shampoo and conditioner doses as sets, with one dose for your shampoo and one for your conditioner. This way, it’s easy for you to customize your hair care routine. For the best results, customized for you, we recommend using the corresponding doses in both your shampoo and conditioner. We created My Code so it’s easy to remember your unique formula. Just unpeel the labels from your doses and add to your shampoo and conditioner bottles.
What if I use the shampoo dose in the conditioner, or vice versa?
The contents of the doses for shampoo and conditioner are the same, but are labeled for clarity. Don’t worry! You’ll still get the same, head-turning results if you inadvertently put the shampoo dose in your conditioner, or the conditioner dose in your shampoo.
What if I accidentally put two of the same doses in my shampoo or conditioner?
That’s OK. Your shampoo (or conditioner) is still completely safe to use if you accidentally add two of the same dose. You just won’t get a more efficacious result than you would have with just one dose. That’s because each dose contains the precise recommended concentration for maximum efficacy. Because we believe in less waste, more great hair.
Can I buy the shampoo or conditioner only?
Absolutely. You’re welcome to buy the products that work best for your strands, whether it’s the shampoo, conditioner, or both. However, because we believe customized hair care is a science, not a guessing game, we always recommend taking our 2-minute hair test and discovering the shampoo, conditioner and dose sets custom-recommended for your hair’s biology and needs.
Can I add a dose to a different brand of shampoo or conditioner?
The ingredients in our formulas are designed to work together. Because of our high-tech hair analysis and customization process, our dose sets are optimized to provide best results when added to The Hair Lab shampoos and conditioners.
How do I know that I’m using enough shampoo?
Since our formulas are sulfate-free, your shampoo may lather less than you’re used to. In some instances, the lather may be very light due to the active ingredients we’ve added to your custom-recommended routine. We recommend starting with a few pumps of shampoo and massaging the product into your scalp, before working it down to the ends. If you don’t feel like you have the proper coating over your hair, use more product. Please note that sometimes there’s a transition period when switching to sulfate-free shampoo, and it can take two to three washes to adjust.
Do I need to shake my shampoo and conditioner every time I use them?
If you’ve shaken both well when you added your dose sets, there’s no need to shake with every use. Though we applaud your enthusiasm!
How long does it take to see results?
Great question! The short answer is: It varies for everyone. Some custom’ers notice a difference immediately while others have seen changes over three to four weeks. On average, we recommend using your new hair care routine consistently for two weeks to see results.
How should I store my The Hair Lab products?
All of our products have been formulated to withstand the warm temperatures and humidity of an average bathroom environment.
What’s the shelf life after opening and mixing my hair care?
Adding your doses does not affect the stability of your formulas, and they won’t separate after being mixed well. Rest assured, your shampoo and conditioner will remain stable for at least two years after customizing with your recommended dose sets.
INGREDIENTS + PACKAGING
Do you use "clean" ingredients?
All of our products are safe to use and created using the highest quality personal care ingredients. Because we’re serious about clean beauty, our formulas are free from ingredients harmful to you, your hair and the planet. All are sulfate-free, paraben-free, phthalate-free, mineral oil-free and cruelty-free.
Are your hair products vegan?
We strive to provide our custom’ers with the most efficacious products, using the most effective ingredients, and in some cases vegan alternatives are not available. However, we are committed to selecting ethically sourced ingredients, always. We recommend that you please check the ingredient list on the label, or on our website, to see if the product you’re purchasing contains any animal-derived ingredients.
Are your hair products cruelty-free?
Yes, all of our products are cruelty-free. The Hair Lab does not and has no plans to conduct any animal testing.
Are your products safe on colored hair?
Yes, because all of our products are sulfate-free, and sulfates like SLES and SLS are the culprits known to cause color-loss. For an extra boost of color protection, we may custom-recommend our Color Protect Dose Set.
Are your products hypoallergenic?
The Hair Lab does not test for or claim that our products are hypoallergenic. If you have a specific allergy, please check the ingredient list on the label or on our website, or share the ingredient list with your doctor or medical provider, to see if the product you’re purchasing is suitable for your use.
Can I use The Hair Lab if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
There are no specific restrictions for using our products when pregnant or breastfeeding. However, we always recommend consulting your doctor or medical provider with questions or concerns while you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
What fragrance is used in your formulas?
Because we believe that customized hair care can be transformative, we use our signature fragrance, Escape, in our shampoos and conditioners. Notes of mango leaves, coconut and bamboo wood evoke the feeling of diving into the water for a tropical plunge! Our Dose Sets are all fragrance-free.
Is your packaging recyclable?
Because we believe in less waste, more great hair, we use a minimum of 25% post-consumer recycled plastic (PCR) in all of our bottles. Our bottles are recyclable in most municipalities, but please check your local curbside recycling program.
Our dose boxes are made with Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI)-certified materials and are recyclable.
Why are my shampoo and conditioner bottles not full?
Our shampoo and conditioner bottles have a capacity of 12 fluid ounces, but we thoughtfully filled them with 11 fluid ounces — to leave exactly enough room to accommodate your custom-recommended doses. There’s enough room in there for three doses!
Are your hair products tested on animals?
The Hair Lab does not and has no plans to conduct any animal testing. None of our products are tested on animals and no animal testing is done on our behalf by our ingredient suppliers.
Why do you use multiple types of protein?
Your hair is substantially made of keratin protein. Our dose sets are formulated with several types of protein to target your hair care needs. Like hydrolyzed wheat protein, to help hydrate the hair shaft to restore hair tensile strength (aka the ability to withstand pulling and stretching). Or hydrolyzed vegetable and vegan protein, to improve elasticity in order to stretch the hair normally without breaking. In addition, proteins nourish your hair, helping to provide shinier, more manageable strands, while reducing oiliness and scalp build-up (thank you, rice and lemon protein).
Are your hair products sulfate-free?
Yes, all of our products are sulfate-free. Sulfates like SLES and SLES are the culprits known to cause color-loss and to strip the hair of its natural oils. And at The Hair Lab, we believe you deserve the healthy-looking, head-turning hair of your dreams.
Are your hair products dye-free?
All of our shampoos, conditioners and dose sets are dye-free, with the exception of our Anti-Brass Dose Set, which is formulated to help eliminate brassiness in blonde and silver hair. Any coloration you notice in the Anti-Brass dose is naturally occurring based on the ingredients used (for example, violet rice), and will not change the color of your shampoo and conditioner once well mixed.
Are your products silicone-free?
Our shampoos and conditioners are silicone-free, but we use silicones in two of our dose sets — Heat Protect and Anti-Breakage — because they allow us to address some hair concerns more effectively. That’s because silicones transfer heat at a slower rate, which is beneficial for heat resistance, and they also provide a protective barrier to retain moisture. However, we’re careful to only use silicones that don’t cause build-up, and do wash out of hair easily, retain moisture and redefine the curl pattern.
Do you support the Curly Girl Method?
Yes. All of our formulations are sulfate-free. All of our shampoos and conditioners are silicone-free, and almost all of our dose sets are silicone-free as well. We do use silicones in our Heat Protect and Anti-Breakage Dose Sets because they allow us to address these hair concerns more effectively. Silicones transfer heat at a slower rate, which is beneficial for heat resistance, and they also provide a protective barrier to retain moisture. However, we’re careful to only use silicones that don’t cause build-up, and do wash out of hair easily, retain moisture and redefine the curl pattern.
Do your products help with dandruff/anti-dandruff?
The Hair Lab Moisturizing Shampoo is specially formulated to soothe and gently cleanse a dry scalp. However, we don’t yet have a formulation specifically designed to treat dandruff.
Do your products work for dry hair or dry scalp?
Many of our formulations, such as our Moisturizing Shampoo and our Moisture Boost Dose Set, include ingredients specifically chosen to hydrate and add moisture back to the scalp and hair if that’s one of your concerns. Dry hair can be caused by many factors, like your environment, the condition of your cuticle and even the products you use. Washing your hair every day without a proper hair care regimen can strip your scalp of the natural oils it needs to stay hydrated. Over time, the hair becomes brittle and breaks due to dryness. That’s why we start with an in-depth analysis of your strands. In just 2 minutes, you’ll learn about your hair’s unique biology — and get a customized hair care routine to match. For under $9 a bottle.
Do your products help with hair loss?
We analyze your hair to look at a myriad of factors, including hair texture, scalp type, frizz, breakage, shine, hair treatments and environmental factors such as pollution and humidity to create a customized hair care routine to solve your hair care needs. At the moment, we don’t make products specific to hair loss. However, many times hair breakage can be the culprit behind the issue, in which case we may recommend customizing your The Hair Lab shampoo and conditioner with our Anti-Breakage Dose Set.
Do your products help with medical conditions?
No, The Hair Lab does not diagnose or treat medical conditions, and our hair analysis technology is not intended to stand in for your doctor or other medical provider. Please reach out to your doctor or medical provider with any questions or concerns.
Can all ages use your products?
Our products are not designed for children. All of our formulas have been tested for irritation and we’ve conducted studies on adult hair (human volunteers, of course). However, our formulations are not tear-free, and parents should consult their pediatrician with any questions or concerns about which personal care products are safe to use on their children.
Are your formulations gluten-free?
All of our shampoos and conditioners are wheat-free, but three of our dose sets (Rebuild Boost, Anti-Breakage and Heat Protect Dose Sets) contain hydrolyzed wheat protein. This is a restorative ingredient that attaches directly to the hair follicle and hardens the cuticle layer to form a barrier around the follicle for protection.
Please check the ingredient list on the label or on our website, or share the ingredient list with your doctor or medical provider, to see if the product you’re purchasing is suitable for your use.
Are your formulations nut-free?
All of our formulations are peanut-free, but we do use jojoba oil, coconut oil and shea butter in our shampoos and conditioners. Please check the ingredient list on the label or on our website, or share the ingredient list with your doctor or medical provider, to see if the product you’re purchasing is suitable for your use.
Do you have a scent-free or fragrance-free option?
Not right now. While our dose sets are fragrance-free, our shampoos and conditioners contain our signature fragrance, Escape, with notes of mango leaves, coconut and bamboo wood.
How big are your bottles?
Each shampoo and conditioner bottle contains 11 fluid ounces, and each dose vial contains 0.2 fluid ounces. The shampoo and conditioner bottles are large enough to accommodate an additional volume of up to 0.6 fluid ounces with the addition of your three custom-recommended doses.
AVAILABILITY, SHIPPING + RETURNS
Where can I buy The Hair Lab?
The Hair Lab is sold exclusively at Walmart stores in the United States and online at Walmart.com. You can also build a cart on TheHairLab.com and checkout on Walmart.com.
How do I track my online order?
Fulfillment and shipping is handled by Walmart. To track an order on Walmart.com, please click here.
What if I don't like my products?
If you have a problem with your formulations, please let us know what issues you’re experiencing and we’d be happy to make an adjusted recommendation for you.
Refunds must be requested from the place of purchase — in-store at Walmart or online at Walmart.com. For more information about returning products to Walmart, please click here.
Do you offer samples?
Sorry, we’re not able to provide samples at this time, because each formulation is custom-recommended for you.
How long does shipping take?
Fulfillment and shipping is handled by Walmart, and shipping times vary by location. To track an order already placed on Walmart.com, please click here.
How much does the shampoo and conditioner cost?
Our technology-driven approach delivers an empowering experience that we designed to be affordable. Our shampoos and conditioners cost $8.97 each, and each dose set costs $2.97. That’s under $27 for a complete, customized hair care routine based on science, not guesswork.
ABOUT THE HAIR LAB
Where is The Hair Lab based?
We’re based out of sunny LA.
What is your relationship to Strands?
The Hair Lab by Strands is a new, customized hair care brand brought to you by Strands Hair Care, Inc., a pioneer in hair testing and precision formulation. For more information about Strands, click here.
To read our privacy statement, please click here.
Does The Hair Lab sell or share customer data?
We use data to create custom hair care recommendations only, and we share your full data profile with you in your report. As our custom’er, we’re committed to keeping your information safe, and solely use it to provide you with better products and services.
I'm an influencer, can we do a collaboration?
We love to collaborate! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll reach out if we’re interested in working together or if we have any questions.