You know what it feels like when you have a great hair day – no matter which way you flick, toss or shake your hair, it just looks great. Unfortunately, however, not every day deserves the title of ‘good hair day’. Thanks to our ready reliance on hair colouring chemicals, straightening irons and styling products, our hair can all too often look dull, fraying and damaged. Yet there’s a new kid on the block that could change all that, helping to ensure that, after just two weeks, every day is a good hair day.

Developed by Elan Sassoon, the son of hair care visionary Vidal Sassoon, Sojourn Hair Care is desgned to tame, smooth, restore and hydrate your hair, without using damaging parabens, sulphates or formaldehydes. With four specialised collections – Smooth, Volume, Moisture and Colour Preserve – all Sojourn products are pH compatible with natural hair and contain cystine and keratin to nourish and protect your tresses.

An internationally renowned hairdresser and educator with more than 20 years’ experience, Sadie Marquez has worked her styling magic for TV commercials, fashion weeks and photo shoots around the world. Having worked in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, London and Munich, Sadie is now the Artistic Director for Sojourn, bringing her endless knowledge and passion for teaching to help ignite the new range. Here, she talks to CosBeauty about her work as Creative Director for Vidal Sassoon, her involvement with the Sojourn range and the features that differentiate this hair care line from any other.

How did you come to work for Vidal Sassoon?

I grew up about 30 minutes out of New York and left home to attend a hairdressing school in London. When I came back to the States – because I’m not a British citizen, they were chasing me out – I moved to New York City and, through the 80s and 90s, I worked with Vidal Sassoon, helping him on his TV segments.

For a piece in Beverly Hills we had three models and he wanted bobs, which is the cut he was most famous for. I can just hear him saying, “Shake your head darling, if you don’t look good, we don’t look good”. I cut the bobs and one of them dropped a little, just in the very front. He came in and said, “You need to fix that right now – they can’t be photographed like that!”.

Vidal Sassoon’s son Elan founded Sojourn; can you see his father’s philosophy reflected in the range?

Definitely! Elan wanted to carry on the tradition of providing great education and working one-on-one with hairdressers to lift the craft.

What makes the Sojourn hair care range different from others?

A lot of hair care products are marketed as ‘pH balanced’, but everything is pH balanced – they’re not saying what it’s balanced to. Sojourn products all have a pH of between 4.5 and 5.5, which is consistent with the natural pH of hair and skin.

This makes a difference, especially when colouring the hair. When a hair strand is lathered with colour, the cuticle opens so colour can enter the shaft and alter the cortex. The colour is then shampooed off, but nothing is done to close the hair’s cuticle. With a compatible pH between 4.5 and 5.5, the cuticle closes naturally, making the hair healthier and affording longer lasting colour.

The Sojourn promise, “Give us two weeks, we’ll give you healthy hair”, seems quite a challenge; what home care regime is required for consumers to achieve this result?

You should shampoo with Sojourn every day – that’s what I recommend. The more you shampoo, the better the results, because the cystine and keratine molecules in Sojourn shampoos and conditioners are extremely small. Their size means they can get inside the hair shaft and build up the cortex, but because the molecules are so small you have to use them frequently. That’s why it’s two weeks; we’re counting on the client shampooing everyday.

Can the Sojourn hair care be suited to any hair type?

Yes, it is suitable for every hair type and I usually recommend a take home, hair care regimen. For example, after I’ve coloured a client’s hair, I would recommend they use the Colour Preserve shampoo and conditioner for the first couple of washes. Following this, I would customise a home care range for their daily use – perhaps combining Moisture shampoo with Volume conditioner. And, finally, just before they come in to see me for their next colour service, I would request they shampoo and condition with the Smooth range, which is actually a treatment incorporated into a daily shampoo and conditioner.

That sounds like a lot of work – for those looking to gradually adopt Sojourn’s hair care range, what is your favourite product to try?

Wet Dry Volume Gel is the hit out of the park. As soon as you put it in your hand it starts to melt, due to the heat of your hands. This makes it really easy to work through the hair. Its light, light, light-weight – and I know it’s called gel but it doesn’t have that crispy, crunchy, gel-feel at all. This is because it doesn’t contain denatured alcohol (no Sojourn products do), which is the ingredient that creates the crunch in other gels.

Tell us about Sojourn’s environmentally friendly factor?

Our chemist, Rob Guimond from Canada, is an environmentalist and fisherman. He wanted develop a product line so environmentally friendly he could shower with it in a river and it wouldn’t hurt the fish. It was very important to him that everything he made in the product line would be 100% biodegradable.

What else should we know about Sojourn?

One of my favourite things about the Sojourn line is the nutrition label. We found consumers will look at a bottle of shampoo or conditioner, scanning the ingredients for things they don’t want to put in their hair. But do they really know which elements are responsible for conditioning their hair? Sojourn’s label lists those ingredients of common concern to consumers, with a 0% quantity alongside.

Sojourn hair care was officially launched in Australia last week and will be available in salons only from July. Take a look behind the scenes at the launch in our online gallery.

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