Do you have clients who just can’t seem to get their hair damage under control, no matter how hard they try? You’ve recommended all of the treatments under the sun, but nothing seems to be working? 

Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. There’s one piece of the puzzle that is often overlooked, and it’s extremely important where breakage and damage are concerned – and that’s the overall pH level. 

Salons Direct is joined by Redken to discuss just how important it is to balance the pH levels in hair – with the help of their iconic Shades EQ range! 

Read on to discover the pH power of Redken…

Why the pH level is important

pH is more than just a number – it’s the key to keeping the acidity level in hair healthy so that it can thrive. 

If the pH level in the hair is too high or too low, the hair is likely to swell. This isn’t an instant cause for concern, but over time, hair will start to break and become damaged – a direct effect of this swelling.

Redken’s iconic Shades EQ and new Acidic Concentrate Haircare system are acid-balanced products that help minimize swelling and maximize strength while providing optimum condition and shine.

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Don’t believe us? Here’s what Jimmy Green, Redken’s Education Manager, had to say about Redken’s philosophy and the natural pH levels found in hair: 

“Redken’s hair philosophy is built on restoring hair to its natural pH of 4.5 – 5.5. Maintaining the correct pH of our hair helps smooth the cuticle which helps promote healthy and shiny looking hair.”


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A post shared by Jimmy Green (@jimmynumberonebrand)

The iconic Redken Shades EQ Gloss 

It’s no secret that Redken’s Shades EQ collection is loved by colourists worldwide, and for good reason. The Redken Demi-Permanent Gloss & Toner Shades EQ is loved worldwide because they produce unbeatable toning, color, and shine – every time.

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The formulas are specially designed to perfect the way professionals gloss, tone, refresh, and correct a client’s hair – and they’ll also work wonders with taking your technique to the next level when used for colour treatments. 

The Acidic Demi-Permanent Gloss is formulated with wheat amino acids, and the Redken Shades EQ will help to condition the hair, leaving it super shiny and healthy. It’s like lip-gloss for your client’s hair!

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The Shades EQ formula has remained unchanged for over 30 years because of how effective it is, making it a permanent staple in salons across the globe. It’s the toning technique perfector you need to create the latest trends that your clients are asking for!

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Meet the new Redken Shades EQ Bonder Inside 

Do you love what the Redken Shades EQ Gloss can do for your work, but some of your clients are in need of additional strength and shine? We’ve got just the thing.  

The new Redken Shades EQ Bonder Inside is formulated with citric acid and taurine, which are incredible for toning whilst also protecting the strength and integrity of sensitised hair. The Redken Shades EQ Bonder will deliver a beautiful glossy shine, along with a deep condition – with true-to-tone results! 

Blondes are some of the most high-maintenance clients in the salon, and they’ll definitely need that added strength and protection throughout every step of lightening techniques. And yes, that also means the toning stage! 

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Top tips when using Shades EQ and Shades EQ Bonder Inside 

Trust the process

The Redken Shades EQ can appear dark when developing because the formula is made up of a combination of Direct and Oxidative Dyes. This means you can often see pigmented colour straight away – relax, that means it’s working!

Even if the colour looks scary or too dark, just trust us and trust in the process. Leave the formula to develop for the full 20 minutes. Remember you can always add some Crystal Clear into the formula to soften the tone and deposit the color.

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Customise your mix with Crystal Clear

The Redken Shades EQ Crystal Clear is the unpigmented version of Shades EQ that can be used alone to add incredible shine or with any other shade to dilute colour or level intensity.

Add a shot of gloss

Offer your clients a no lift step-by-step shine boost by mixing the Shades EQ Gloss Crystal Clear & Processing Solution together.

The ultimate dilution solution 

The Shades EQ range can be diluted with Crystal Clear to lessen the intensity or tone of any formula. Perfect for toning and blonde hair!

Choose the right developer

The Redken Shades EQ has two dedicated developers, both formulated with 2% hydrogen peroxide. They are specially formulated to maintain an acidic pH and stabilise viscosity.

The Redken Shades EQ Processing Solution is the best-selling liquid format developer. Perfect for toning and blending techniques.

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The Redken Shades EQ Gloss to Gel Processing Solution is a unique developer for the Shades EQ range, which lets you transform our iconic liquid gloss into a versatile gel. Perfect for precision techniques such as lowlights, contouring, and defining.

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See how other professionals are using Redken Shades EQ

Lived-in honey blonde 

Created by the incredible Emily Mander using:

  • Highlight & Face Frame:  Flash Lift Bonder Inside + 10vol Pro-Oxide.
  • Roots: Shades EQ Gloss 07N + 07G + Processing Solution.
  • Low Light: Shades EQ Gloss 07G + 07NB + 08GG + Processing Solution.
  • Global Gloss: Shades EQ Bonder Inside 010NB.


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A post shared by EDUCATOR / STYLIST (@emilymanderhair)

Check out her step-by-step tutorial video here. 

Honey dipped glow 

Created by the talented Tia Lambourn using:

  • Highlight:  Flash Lift Bonder Inside + 20 & 30 vol Pro-Oxide.
  • Roots: Shades EQ Gloss 05G + Processing Solution.
  • Mid-lengths: Shades EQ Gloss 08GG + 09AA+ Processing Solution.
  • Global Gloss: Shades EQ Bonder Inside 010NB.

Watch her step-by-step tutorial here.

Iced almond balayage blend 

Created by the talented Harriet Muldoon using: 

  • Highlight:  Flash Lift Bonder Inside + 20vol Pro-Oxide.
  • Root Smudge: Shades EQ Gloss 09G + 07G + 07NB.
  • Global Gloss: Shades EQ Bonder Inside 010Gi + 010P. 


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A post shared by Harriet Muldoon (@harrietmuldoon)

Watch her step-by-step tutorial here.

The new Redken Acidic Concentrate haircare system

To perfectly compliment a Shades EQ gloss and maintain that irresistible shine, Redken recommends its new Acidic Concentrate Back Bar service – which is now available as a bundle at Salons Direct!  

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Being hailed by top colourists as a game changer, the New Acidic Concentrates are Redken’s most powerful customisable (and compact) salon service. 

This three-step back bar system is super easy to use, offering professional standard concentrated hair care services to target the key building blocks of healthy hair – protein, moisture, and pH balance. 

What is more, it is super quick – taking no more than 6 minutes. Perfect for busy stylists and time-poor clients alike. 

When used together, the Acidic Concentrate Back Bar service can visibly reduce the appearance of surface damage in a single treatment and leave hair seriously smooth, soft, silky, and with incredible shine!

How to use the Acidic Concentrate Back Bar System 

Step 1

Start with thoroughly assessing your client’s need for protein and/or moisture. 

Step 2

Next, apply up to 15ml of the Acidic Protein Amino Concentrate to help strengthen and repair the hair. Layer with up to 15ml of Acidic Moisture Concentrate to help repleiish the moisture in the hair.

Leave on for 5 minutes – don’t rinse just yet!

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Step 3

Lastly, finish with 10-15 pumps of the Acidic pH sealer to help balance the pH levels in the hair and seal the cuticle for a smooth finish and long-lasting results. Leave this on for one minute, rinse out, and style as desired!

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If you have clients who are looking to maintain what you have created at home, the New Acidic Bonding Concentrate is also an advanced concentrated take-home hair care regimen – formulated with citric acid and a bonding care complex.

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The award-winning regimen consists of three concentrated products. These include the Acidic Bonding Concentrate shampoo and conditioner system, along with the Acidic Perfecting Concentrate Leave-In Treatment.

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These products will work to provide intense conditioning, whilst also significantly reducing breakage. Oh, and it protects the hair from premature colour fading! Perfect for those who attend multiple salon services for colour treatments, lightening treatments, and heat styling. 

When used together, the regime offers 10 powerful benefits to transform the appearance of processed hair. These include: 

  • Up to 56% less breakage.*Acidic Bonding Concentrate shampoo and conditioner vs classic shampoo on bleached hair
  • Protection from premature colour fading.
  • Provides intense conditioning.
  • Protects hair from heat (up to 230°C).
  • Conditions to protect weaker hair bonds.
  • Hair is up to 11x Smoother
  • Split ends will become significantly less visible.
  • Helps to tame unwanted frizz.
  • Adds incredible shine.
  • Helps to strengthen hair.

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We hope that you enjoyed hearing from Redken. At Salons Direct, we are proud stockists of all of the products (and more!) mentioned in this article, so be sure to get yours! 

Shop Redken at Salons Direct now.

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