We Tried Cécred, Beyoncé’s New Hair Care Line

As Beyoncé’s life and career have evolved, so has her hair, which has become a golden star in its own right. There’s her straight, blonde hair, complete with platinum money pieces, at the 2001 Grammy Awards, where Destiny’s Child won its first shiny gramophone trophy for ‘Say My Name’; then there’s her dramatic chop in 2013 to mark becoming a mother; and most recently, she announced Act II of ‘Renaissance,’ the singer’s first country album, at the Super Bowl showing off tumbling platinum blonde curls. There’s a reason there are countless lists on the internet cataloging her most iconic hair moments, and the long-awaited launch of Cécred, her new hair care brand, feels like an inevitable progression.

The performer’s hair is also steeped in familial history—her mother, Ms. Tina Knowles, and grandmother, Agnéz Deréon, taught their daughters how to maintain their hair, encouraging hair growth through methods like oiling, fermented rice water treatments and protective hairstyles. Beyoncé famously grew up sweeping hair in her mother’s Houston salon, watching Ms. Tina, Cécred’s vice chairwoman, mix existing hair care products with protein-packed natural remedies and moisturizers like egg whites and olive oil to keep textured hair nourished and healthy. We also can’t forget that the backdrop for the music video of one of Destiny’s Child’s first hits, ‘Bills, Bills, Bills,’ was a hair salon; according to Beyoncé in a rare, personal, post, “Destiny’s Child got our start by performing for clients while they were getting their hair done.”

That’s all to say that Beyoncé grew up with a deep knowledge of hair care, and she has put that expertise to good use throughout her decades-long career. Not only has she bleached her hair for years, but performing comes with its own stressors: product build-up, sweat, high-tension updos, you name it. Neal Farinah, her hair stylist and collaborator for nearly 20 years, said that she’s concocted hair potions and slathered her hair in oil to combat damage for as long as he’s known her.

cécred nourishing hair oil

Courtesy of Cécred

Cécred Nourishing Hair Oil

Naturally, Farinah, who is now the lead global stylist of Cécred, hounded her about starting a hair care brand for years. Each time, she’d wave him off, insisting that it wasn’t time. It’s not hard to figure out why; Beyoncé is a born perfectionist. We’ve all seen the footage of her rehearsals—she practices with her team until every move, every pause, and every detail is just right. In preparation for Cécred, the honey-blonde bombshell spent spare time during the pandemic mixing ingredients and testing them on herself while the rest of us were baking sourdough.

She, Ms. Tina, and Farinah bounced ideas off each other and eventually brought on a panel of experts. It was a collaborative effort, and extensive research and testing went into the line. Beyoncé focused on creating efficacious formulas, spending time in development labs to perfect the products. All of the hard work paid off—they came up with a patent-pending ingredient they call a bioactive keratin ferment derived from honey, keratin, and lactobacillus ferment that powers Cécred’s products and penetrates hair to repair hair of all textures.

The name Cécred embodies the ceremonial act of doing your hair and its importance within Beyonce’s family. She told Essence, “I think that connection of community, mother and child, father and child, and respect— and allowing yourself to be taken care of, especially for Black women, who are always taking care of everyone else—it’s all sacred. So I took the end of my name, Cé, and made it the beginning of the word sacred to create Cécred. From my mother’s salon, daily rituals with my father, and years of experience in developing a hair care line, the journey has been just that: Cécred.”

cécred foundation collection

Courtesy of Cécred

Regardless of if you have straight, wavy, coily, virgin, or damaged hair, taking care of yourself and your hair is often a sacred process—making sure the line could serve everyone was essential to Beyoncé. Creating such a product line seems impossible, but when has our Queen Bey ever stayed within the supposed realm of possibility? According to Ms. Tina, their team discovered that as long as the products met the strength and moisture needs of textured hair, the shampoos, conditioners, and treatments could help every other hair type and texture. The rest of Beyoncé’s family has gotten in on the fun, too; Farinah reported that he applied Cécred’s hair oil on Blue Ivy Carter before she stole the show at the Grammys this year.

cécred foundation collection

Courtesy of Cécred

Cécred’s foundational portfolio consists of a clarifying shampoo and scalp scrub ($38), hyaluronic acid-infused shampoo ($30), deep conditioner ($38), strengthening hair mask ($42), moisture sealing lotion ($38), a moisturizing hair oil ($44), and fermented rice and rose treatment ($52) in powder form—Farinah’s hero product. “As you know, Beyoncé colors her hair a lot. So we wanted a great product that instantly helps repair hair, and that’s my favorite,” he tells ELLE.com.

A single signature scent unites the collection: Temple Oud, a fragrance with notes of bergamot, neroli, jasmine, and sandalwood. Meanwhile, containers inspired by ancient stone structures built by humanity’s ancestors house the formulas. Upon using the line, you get the sense that Cécred marries tangible, results-driven science with the sacredness of hair care and ancestral knowledge. And this is just the beginning—Farinah intimated that styling products may be in the works.

cécred foundation collection scent

Courtesy of Cécred

I was lucky enough to experience the line earlier this month at Neal Farinah’s salon in Brooklyn, NY. Before heading to the sink to begin the process, I sat down with trichologist and Cécred’s head of education, Dr. Kari Williams, for a scalp consultation to check out the state of my scalp. I had told her before the appointment that my main concern was excess sebum, and that’s exactly what she found. I had washed my hair just the night before, so it didn’t look oily, but my roots were encased in my natural oils. I was trapped in a cycle of washing my hair daily to keep it looking clean, and now I knew why. She brought good news with the bad: the new clarifying shampoo and scalp scrub would zap that sebum and build-up right out of my scalp.

I sat down at the sink, and Farinah and his assistants treated me to a regimen of the scrub, shampoo, deep conditioner, hair mask, and fermented rice and rose treatment. Even before I touched my hair post-treatment, as the stylist handled my hair in the sink, I could feel that my strands behaved differently as the products worked their magic—my scalp felt clean and refreshed—clarified—and my hair flowed through the stylist’s fingers, moisturized and tangle-free.

The difference, however, was most palpable once I was in Farinah’s chair. He blew my hair out with his expert fingers and a Dyson hair dryer, creating a chic, side-parted bob sans the help of any styling products or oils. Everyone in the salon gasped at the movement and undeniable shine of my hair—even Ms. Tina, who graced the space with her presence and expertise that day. We could see the transformation in my scalp, too. Dr. Williams ran the camera through my roots again, and the sebum that once suffocated them had virtually disappeared.

Even after just one Cécred session, my scalp and strands felt transformed. Not only did my hair stay moisturized and shiny long after my salon visit, but I also went two more days without washing my hair. Despite the longer interval, my roots weren’t nearly as oily as they had been for the past few months. I haven’t had access to the products since I first tried them weeks ago, but I’ve been able to get away with washing my hair just every other day instead of every single night. I’m a believer—I’d recommend everyone looking for a hair glow up to try the line.

The most painful part of the experience was leaving all those beauty products behind when all I wanted to do was stock my shower with Cécred. But nearly a year after Beyoncé first teased the hair care line, I can (and will) finally get my hands on the collection again starting today—and so can you. There’s a philanthropic element, too: Cécred will be partnering with Beyoncé’s philanthropic foundation, BeyGOOD, to annually allocate cosmetology school scholarships and salon business grants to support aspiring stylists and the salon community. The products are now available, exclusively at Cécred.com.

Shop Cécred’s Foundation Collection

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