The Dirty Secret Of Cheap Beauty

When I came up for the idea to make a superior air-dry product, there was only one existing product on the market. Now, there are many. I've acquired these products to better understand what cosmetic companies think we want in an air-dry product. I've come to believe that these companies don't understand what we want. Most air-dry products seem to have light hold, light moisture, and light texturizing capabilities. They're milquetoast, IMO. 

All The Air Dry Products
 
I'm hyper analytical of these products, their packaging, their scent, and their ingredients. This helps me to make a better end product for you. Because of this, I recently found something very interesting that I had to share with you. I hope it will make you a more knowledgeable consumer.

 
These two products are THE SAME PRODUCT.
Two Air Dry Products - Different, But the Same
 
I wouldn't have even noticed it, but my client kindly gave me these to help me with my research. Having both of them in my hand at the same time allowed me to compare packaging, scent, feel, and ingredients. As I began comparing ingredients, I noticed that (with the exception of fragrance) these two products are IDENTICAL.

L'Oreal Undone Style Cream
L'Oreal Undone Style Cream 

Garnier Smooth Air Dry
Garnier Smooth Air Dry
 
It's also interesting how they've chosen to market them. One is called "SMOOTH Air Dry" while the other is called "UNDONE Style Cream". Let me get this straight: one product gives me a smooth style, and the other one gives me an undone style, but they're the SAME PRODUCT? This is one of my major issues with hair products today: the story on the outside of the bottle rarely represents the actual outcome. We're trying to change that with Tiny Hair Workshop products by being more transparent about your expected results.
I digress. Let's talk about how this happened. How are two products by two different companies the same thing? I started to think that Garnier was likely owned by L'Oreal, which proved to be true. In fact, most beauty brands are all owned by a few big players:

The 7 Major Beauty Companies
 
 
L'Oreal owns Redken, Pureology, Matrix, Kerastase, and Garnier. Estee Lauder owns Bumble and Bumble and Aveda. Unilever owns TIGI, Suave, and VO5. Procter and Gamble own Pantene, Aussie, Head and Shoulders, and Herbal Essences. Coty owns Wella and Sassoon.
 
You're might be wondering if this means that these brands share the same labs and formulas. The answer is complicated. Generally, one laboratory doesn't service only one company. L'oreal may contract a laboratory to work with them, but that lab might also create the products for some of the brands they own as well. That lab could also be creating products for a competing company.

Two Different Air-Dry Products, Same Ingredients
 
Generally, most high-end brands have their own labs which results in one-of-a-kind products. Garnier is a cheap spinoff brand of L'Oreal, which means they probably share labs and formulas. Redken, Kerastase and Pureology were all their own entities before being bought out by L'Oreal. This likely means they are working with labs for their own unique products.
 
I know it's not possible to check all the ingredients on every cosmetic you purchase. I do hope this information gives you a greater understanding into how cosmetic companies work. When it comes to less expensive brands, you can likely save yourself some money by quickly comparing ingredients.