Design Essentials Review: Hair Care Products

About Design Essentials

Design Essentials wants to help you keep the hair you already have. So many of us deal with hair loss, or will in the future, and this brand has created a preventative solution. With its targeted formulas for men and women, the company’s goal is to get ahead of hair loss rather than trying to regrow it back later.

Though it’s a fairly new brand, Design Essentials has a steadily growing Instagram following of nearly 5k. Its products have also been featured in notable online publications, including Vogue, Allure, Marie Claire, and Good Housekeeping—the latter also gave the brand a 2021 Beauty Award for Best Fortifying Shampoo & Treatment.

Many of the brand’s customers report seeing results in just 4 weeks—could these preventative products help your hair, too? Keep reading this Design Essentials hair care review to find out.

In the following sections, we’ll delve into the company and its collection, provide customer testimonials, answer FAQs, and more, to help you make the best purchase decision.

Overview of Design Essentials

Hair and scalp scientist Design Essentials, along with Stephen Casper son and Staph Rose, founded Design Essentials in January 2019. While brands that claim to reverse hair loss have been popping up over the past few decades, this one’s founders wanted to do things differently.

Like many of us, the company’s founders have dealt with hair loss in different ways. Pop over to Design Design Essentials YouTube channel and you’ll find Staph discussing her struggles with postpartum hair loss (as if new moms didn’t already have enough to worry about). This problem is just one of the many that the brand aims to help with.

By taking a preventative approach, Design Essentials’ products are designed to keep your hair healthy. The idea behind its mission is that “getting ahead of hair loss is better than trying to regrow hair later.” Its clinically-tested shampoos, conditioner, essences, and treatments do just that—get ahead of potential loss.

Just like sunscreen helps maintain a healthy complexion, Design Essentials’ products keep your hair and scalp nourished. While genetics and age play a role, environmental and oxidative stress can cause premature loss—so its products are full of antioxidant salts, zinc antioxidants, and B-vitamins to give your locks their best fighting chance.

The company originally launched in New Zealand—a place it describes as having the highest “oxidative stress levels” that contribute to hair loss. It eventually expanded to the US in late 2020, and its headquarters are currently based in Cincinnati, OH.

Before diving into the brand’s collection, this Design Essentials hair care review will provide a quick overview of the highlights:


  • Unique haircare formulas for both men and women
  • Sold in kits that are tailored to different needs
  • Honest advertising—no sensational claims like some other hair loss brands
  • Clinically tested
  • Made in the US
  • Free shipping
  • 60-day money-back guarantee

Up next, this Design Essentials hair care review will introduce you to the brand’s two best-selling kits, one for men and one for women.

These kits are what the company suggests customers start with, but it also offers essential, color, and basic bundles, too. If you’re unsure which package is right for you, head to the Find My Kit quiz.

Prefer to pay in installments? Design Essentials has you covered with Afterpay.

Design Essentials Hair Care Review

In the brand’s Complete Kits, you’ll find everything you need to nourish your locks from start to finish. Though these two bundles contain the same products, they have slightly different ingredients and are packaged up differently.

Men will receive sleek white and navy blue bottles, while women will get relaxing white and purple ones.

Design Essentials Complete Kit for Women Review

Crafted to reduce daily hair loss, the Design Essentials Complete Kit for Women comes with a full routine’s-worth of products. You’ll receive:

  • The Pre-Cleanser: A water-clear cleanser that unclogs pores and purifies the scalp. Use it right before shampooing to help prep your scalp
  • Shampoo: A gentle shampoo that is safe for color-treated hair. It contains a blend of antioxidants, minerals, and B-vitamins, and is clinically proven to reduce daily hair loss by reducing scalp oxidative stress and nourishing your scalp and roots
  • Conditioner: A lightweight formula that strengthens each fiber to protect from loss due to breakage. It leaves your hair soft and ready to style
  • Essence: A daily leave-on treatment that strengthens roots to reduce loss. It contains the brand’s most concentrated dose of antioxidants, zinc minerals, and B-vitamins, but is safe for color-treated hair

Do you already have a washing routine that fits your schedule? You don’t need to change it. Even if you don’t shampoo every day, you’re still in good hands. On non-wash days, Design Essentials recommends using 8-10 drops of the Hair Anchoring Essence to reap the benefits. Washing and conditioning with the set will only enhance your results.

A one-month supply of the Design Essentials Complete Kit For Women costs $79.

Design Essentials Complete Kit for Men Review

Design Essentials knows that both men and women can suffer from hair loss for different reasons. The Complete Kit For Men comes with the same four products, but with slightly different ingredients to target problems that are specific to men. You’ll receive:

  • Pre-Cleanser
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Essence

This kit, which features a beneficial blend of antioxidants, minerals, and B-vitamins, is loved by men. In fact, Men’s Health gave it an Editor’s Choice Award in 2021.

As far as what to expect, our Design Essentials hair care review discovered that customers report improvement in as early as four weeks, noting their hair is fuller and stronger. After eight weeks, they’ve noticed less hair in their brush.

Like the previous bundle, the Design Essentials Complete Kit For Men provides a month’s worth of products. The set is available for $79.

Who Is Design Essentials For?

If you have hair and want to keep it on your head, then Design Essentials is for you. It’s especially beneficial for anyone who knows what’s coming down the line. If hair loss warning signs are already starting, or if you know that your mother’s bald spot is your same fate, then why not get a preventative start?

The company offers targeted solutions for both men and women. The ingredients included in the different formulas vary slightly with differing potencies, so you’ll want to be sure to grab the one formulated for your sex.

Unfortunately, if you’ve already started losing your hair, the brand can’t help you in that department, since its products aren’t formulated to regenerate lost hair. If that’s the case, its team recommends that you speak to a dermatologist to discuss other options.

How Does Design Essentials Work?

In this Design Essentials review, we learned that their products are designed to relieve oxidative stress at the scalp level and strengthen hair roots. The company has researched oxidative stress, also known as environmental stress, and has found that it can weaken the scalp’s grip on roots, leading to the eventual falling out of hair.

To combat this problem, the brand’s team has created formulas that are high in antioxidants and vitamins. In turn, these effective ingredients reduce the amount of oxidative stress on your scalp. In other words, they protect what your mama gave you!

How Much Does Design Essentials Cost?

This Design Essentials hair care review discovered that the brand offers 5 different bundles. Which one you choose will depend on your hair care routine and hair type. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Complete Kit (for men or women): $79
    Includes Pre-Cleanser, Shampoo, Conditioner, and three Essences (one-month supply)
  • 3-Step Color Care (for women): $69
    Includes Shampoo, Conditioner, and three Essences (one-month supply)
  • Essentials + Hydration Kit (for men): $69
    Includes Shampoo, Conditioner, and three Essences (one-month supply)
  • Essentials Kit (for men or women): $59
    Includes Shampoo and three Essences (one-month supply)
  • Basics Kit (for men or women): $49
    Includes three Essences (one-month supply)

Comparison: Design Essentials vs. Nutrafol

In researching remedies for hair loss, you might come across Nutrafol, a company that takes a natural, holistic approach. Similar to Design Essentials, the competitor offers a one-month supply of products for $80.

The biggest difference you’ll find between these two brands is that while Design Essentials comes in topical form, Nutrafol’s formula takes shape as a pill. The competitor’s approach targets the whole body to remedy hair loss, which comes down to taking a pill.

Nutrafol reportedly takes more time before you’ll start seeing results—6 months compared to just four weeks with 4 weeks. This timeline makes sense given the competitor’s goal of healing hair loss from the inside out.

As you can see—both brands tackle hair loss differently. This Design Essentials hair care review found that both have a solid reputation across the web—which one you choose will likely come down to whether you’d rather take a pill or apply products.

Design Essentials Reviews: What Do Customers Think?

While reading about a brand’s products is useful, to really learn about how they perform, we’re going to need to hear from customers. This Design Essentials hair care review sourced testimonials from across the web that reveal more about its products, practices, and policies. Let’s dive in.

The company’s best-selling kits have all earned dozens of ratings on Design Essentials. We put together a short list with their scores:

  • Complete Kit for Women: average of 4.4/5 stars from 178 users
  • Colorcare Kit for Women: average of 4.3/5 stars from 69 users
  • Complete Kit for Men: average of 4.6/5 stars from 70 users
  • Basics Kit for Women: average of 4.4/5 stars from 92 users
  • Basics Kit for Men: average of 4.4/5 stars from 67 users

We chose to take a closer look at the Complete Kit for Women because it’s the brand’s most popular product. Many shoppers reported that after using the products, they stopped seeing as much hair in their comb. Check out this example:

“After 3 weeks I noticed almost zero hair in my comb and when I went to see my hairdresser she could definitely tell the difference. I gave her the link and she is going to pass it on to her other clients.”

Meanwhile, a skeptical user is now a desiccated convert: “It took about a week before I noticed a difference. I was convinced this was just another scam and I had wasted my money but then all of a sudden I noticed there was less hair in my brushes and the drain. My husband commented that he hasn’t seen the regular trail of hair around the house. I will be buying again!”

To see how well these sentiments held up, we next turned to a blog—Lisa La Mode. Lisa started using Design Design Essentials products after suffering from postpartum hair loss. Here’s what she had to say about how they worked:

“Design Essentials Essence works, but it takes time. Their website also makes it plain that it’s important to start using the products as soon as you notice your hair loss, so admittedly, I’m a little bit late to the game. That being said, in three weeks’ time I’ve noticed increased volume at my hairline.”

Lisa also shared photos of the progress her hair has made. She noted that her “hair is stronger at the roots, and while [she] can’t say with absolute certainty, it looks fuller too.”

While they aren’t currently available from this site, some shoppers have left reviews for the Essentials Kit for Men on HairCode. Currently, the bundle has an impressive 5/5-star score from 25 users, who note that the formulations “smell awesome,” are “nice to use,” and generate noticeable results. Take this glowing testimonial:

“I am very happy with this product. The shampoo is nice to use and the hair anchor system is working well. I have noticed less hair fall and my balding patch is not there anymore. This is after 6 months of use. The design of the new packaging looks great…”

The only complaint we found is that some customers have a hard time extracting the last bit of product from the bottles—always a struggle with shampoo. Hopefully, the brand finds a way to make this process easier for customers.

All in all, we were hard-pressed to find negative reviews about this company. Design Essentials provides quality products that generate real, fast results for the majority of users.

Is Design Essentials Hair Care Worth It?

This Design Essentials review found that while the products are on the pricier side, they are a great investment if you care about your hair and want to keep it. The products seem to result in healthier, fuller hair, and the results are pretty conclusive.

The brand is especially worth checking out for the quality and simplicity of its products. It’s worth noting that, unlike other hair growth products, you really don’t have to alter your routine to use Design Essentials. The fact that you’re able to use it as you would normal shampoo and treatments is pretty neat!

The only way Design Essentials wouldn’t be worth it is if you’ve already lost a substantial amount of hair. As mentioned earlier, it essentially anchors what’s already there, and doesn’t grow new hair. See a dermatologist if you’re looking for hair regrowth solutions.

Design Essentials Promotions & Discounts

While this Design Essentials hair care review didn’t find any active promo codes, we did learn that the brand offers an ongoing rewards program. All you have to do is sign up and start earning.

You earn a point for every $1 you spend, and you get 100 points just for signing up. 100 points equals $10, which you can put towards future purchases.

Where to Buy Design Essentials Hair Care

The brand’s products are only available on its website: Design


Where is Design Essentials made?

All Design Essentials products are made in the US. They are manufactured, inspected, and shipped from within the country.

Does Design Essentials test on animals?

Design Essentials is a cruelty-free brand that commits to never testing on animals. They do, funnily enough, test on people (voluntarily, of course) for their clinical trials to ensure the products work.

How will I know Design Essentials is working?

Design Essentials claims that if you feel a cooling/tingling sensation after using its products for the first time, then it’s starting to work.

It can take up to four weeks for benefits to become apparent, though. After this time, you should see less hair in your brush. These results should keep increasing for up to six months. For some users, it might take more time.

What are the side effects of Design Essentials?

Like many hair treatments, you might notice flakes after using some of Design Design Essentials products. But, this side effect is usually a result of using too much product, so try to apply less next time. Similarly, make sure to fully massage it in.

While most people don’t notice any side effects at all, if you start to notice consistent scalp irritation, Design Essentials recommends you stop using its products and go see a dermatologist.

Are Design Essentials products safe to use on color-treated hair?

Most Design Essentials products are safe for use on color-treated hair. Only the brand’s Pre-Cleanser doesn’t have that label. The Color Care Kit was specifically curated for colored hair, and if you don’t wash your hair often because of dye, the brand recommends applying the Essence on non-wash days.

What is Design Design Essentials Shipping Policy?

The brand offers free shipping across the US, and it doesn’t ship outside the country (yet). There is no estimated delivery timeframe provided—we expect this information to be calculated when you check out.

What is Design Design Essentials Return Policy?

Design Essentials offers a 60-day money-back guarantee, but you can only take advantage of this guarantee once (per household). It may take up to 5 business days for the full refund to show up on your credit card.

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