Beauty Review // New Wash by Hairstory: A Shampoo Replacement?

Hi all! If you’ve been a reader of mine for some time, you may know that my hair journey has been long, and it’s not over yet. When I was a teenager I straightened my hair daily, causing my natural wave to fall out and my hair to become dry, frizzy, and unhealthy. In college, I researched and made the switch over to sulfate-free shampoos, and after a few months, a bouncy, natural curl came in! Now, my natural curl has relaxed into a loose wave, and I almost never heat style. Because of that, I’m constantly on the lookout for a shampoo/conditioner combination that can result in a natural, frizz-free wave without product or irons!

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In the past, I’ve tried a lot of shampoos/conditioners, like DevaCurl, Function of Beauty, and a few by Hask. My favorites are Function of Beauty (custom) and DevaCurl (Low-Poo). However, I’m always on the lookout for a new product. So I said yes when the opportunity to try something new came along: New Wash, by Hairstory Studio.

I was given the opportunity to have a complimentary wash and blowout at the Hairstory Studio in Manhattan, using New Wash, and with the understanding that I would try out New Wash for 30 days—using nothing else. No shampoos, conditioners, masks, or product that wasn’t New Wash. Here’s the deal:

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About New Wash:
  • New Wash is called “revolutionary”—a cleanser that works on all hair types versus having to shop for specialized shampoo that ends up being very similar to each other.
  • There are NO “detergents.” Instead, New Wash cleanses with a proprietary blend of essential oils and saturated fatty acids.
  • It’s very similar to co-washing, or using conditioner as a cleanser. It’s also similar in texture to conditioner, and reminds me of No-Poo, the no-detergent cleanser from DevaCurl, which I’ve used in the past.
  • Hairstory insists that shampoo is the worst way to wash hair, and that marketing is responsible for most of the specialized (ex. “for curly hair”) products we’re impelled to buy. They insist that all you need is New Wash!

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My Experience:

I visited the “Warhol Factory of hair,” i.e. the Hairstory salon in downtown Manhattan, to meet the crew and have a wash and blowout at the studio. Gina, who booked my appointment, explained the details behind the product, while Wes washed my hair with the product. It was the best head massage/wash I’ve ever gotten at a salon, and Wes was so passionate and knowledgeable about the product. He also listened when I told him I wasn’t into super-styled looks, and gave me a blowout that was natural, sleek, effortless, and totally my personality. I had a great experience at the studio and loved the vibe. Now it was time to start my challenge!


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The Challenge:

Nixing all other products was super easy for me considering I hardly use any, and the studio also gifted me a few other spritzes and sprays and gels that I liked, but didn’t use regularly. The New Wash was the only product I used on my hair for 30 days!

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The Review:
  • The first time I touched my hair after using New Wash, I was SHOCKED how soft it was—exactly like silk. I adored that aspect of the product.
  • The New Wash routine is a little high maintenance: you have to coat your hair in the conditioner-like product, rub it into your scalp vigorously for several minutes, and then rinse it out using a squeegee-like movement to make sure it all rinses clean. I found myself dreading the long process, as opposed to a quick lather you get with a traditional shampoo (even the sulfate-free ones I have used for years).
  • The texture of my hair remained soft and wavy, and little else changed.
  • The best result of using New Wash was that my dry, itchy scalp cleared COMPLETELY. If you have scalp issues like flaking or dandruff, this is a GODSEND.
  • The product DID tend to build up after a couple weeks, which made me feel a little gross. Maybe I wasn’t rinsing it out properly, but I began to long for the days when my hair would feel clean, rather than feeling like I was only conditioning. I wanted to do a clarifying, but knew I couldn’t!
  • After 30 days the bottle ran out, and I haven’t been compelled to buy another. For reference, it’s $40 a bottle and the company offers a subscription service with eco-friendly packaging to minimize waste.

On the whole, I’d give the product 3.5 out of 5 stars. It’s an impressive product and it does what it says it does, but it tends to build up and you’ll have to wash your hair more often to keep it from looking greasy. Normally, I’d go three days without a wash, sometimes four, but with New Wash, my hair would look significantly oilier on Day 3. Bummer!

I think this product would be excellent for: people looking to make the switch from traditional, detergent shampoos to improve their hair health; people with super dry hair; people with scalp conditions; or people with natural hair (WOC). As for me, I’m back to using a combo of Function of Beauty and DevaCurl!

Style and New Wash c/o Hairstory via Activate.signoff

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  • hal

    i’m always reading about new products & this one sounds great – thanks for sharing!

  • Jauwan Stinson

    I think my hair would love this product! Thanks for the review. I’m going to look into this.