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April 10, 2023

How to Wash Your Hair (the Right Way) with Mara Roszak

We have been big fans of Rōz founder Mara Roszak's styling and treatment oils since their debut, so when we heard she was launching a shampoo and conditioner we couldn’t have been more excited. Cleanly formulated and with the same intoxicating smell as her oils, these products work on everyone (seriously!) and give us the hair we all want - soft, silky, and not even a little bit weighed down.  Mara walked us through her tips for getting a thorough cleanse, how she uses her products to achieve easy, polished styles and much more. 

You are launching one shampoo and one conditioner - what about these formulas makes them work so well for all hair types? 

I don’t believe in having a lot of products. I am only interested in formulas that are clean, really do what they say and are necessary for everyday styling or treating.  With the shampoo and conditioner, I really wanted to accomplish the same goals for all hair types.  We all want hair to feel cleansed of oil and buildup but not stripped. All of us struggle with dry hair, and I want our conditioner to fix that. You are essentially just going to use more or less depending on your hair type, which also goes for our styling oil. 

Let's get into the nitty gritty - tell us about the shampoo. 

I called our shampoo the foundation because to me it is like starting with a clean slate.  We used coconut based surfactants to give that foaming cleanse because a lot of clean shampoos haven’t offered that. I tried so many, especially when I was pregnant, and it was so hard to find one that gave me a good clean and made my roots feel lighter. 

What did you envision for the conditioner as you were formulating? 

I wanted the conditioner to be really smoothing, softening and hydrating. I’ve been able to give it to all of my clients to try and it hasn’t weighed fine hair down (through using a bit less) but it also works on my coarse, curly, frizzy hair. It makes my hair feel amazing in the shower, is combable and leaves my hair really shiny and soft. I really could not find that before in a clean formulation without silicones. That was the biggest hurdle. 

You have a similar ethos for your styling oil, right? 

Exactly. Our styling oil is lightweight enough for my clients with finer hair that still want shine and de-frizzing and definition in their hair. I can also use it on someone like Zoe Saldaña or my own hair. Maybe I’ll use a couple of extra pumps on that kind of hair, but it's the same product. 

What do people get wrong about shampooing?

I’ve found that clients forget about the back of the head and nape of the neck when shampooing, so it can get really heavy with buildup. There is nothing a dry shampoo can do about that, so you really need to get in there and make sure you aren’t forgetting that area. 

Can you walk us through your shampooing process? 

Make sure your hair is super saturated with water and start shampooing at the back of the head. Really work the product in, and get a bit more water to activate the foaming of the shampoo so that it spreads. The same way you are getting in there to shampoo, you should get in there to rinse.  It's almost like brushing your teeth - you need to spend some time cleansing. It should take about a minute. Once a week I like to shampoo twice to remove built up residue and oil. 

What about conditioning?

Some people don’t think they are conditioner people, and for them I say just to it on the mid-lengths and ends.  For thicker, coarse hair I suggest applying conditioner all over. Across the board I like to recommend having a brush or comb in the shower to brush conditioner through. It disperses the product a bit and helps it stay on longer, almost like a mask, but won’t load it onto the roots.  I find that brushing out of the shower causes more damage and stress so I like to do my work there. 
Manta Hair Brush

All of your products smell amazing - it definitely improves that extra time cleansing and conditioning. How did you land on your signature scent? 

I worked closely with a fragrance house to get a scent inspired by a trip I made to Big Sur. One misty morning we were walking through the redwoods to get our coffee and there was this green, moist, grassy earth smell that I loved. I gave them some examples of similar feeling fragrances that I liked and over the course of a few months we came to this scent that we now use in all of our products. 

When you are working with a client for an event, do you ask them to do anything special with their hair in the days leading up to it? 

I will often tell them to sleep in our Willow Glen Treatment Oil the night before or to apply it that morning if they are working out and leave it in. Then, because I like to be able to start with a clean slate, I tell them to wash their hair the night before or morning of the event and let it air dry naturally. Even if I’m doing an updo, I would rather use products to build up texture rather than use what exists. I also find that people like the sensation of their head under water - that zen, fresh feeling. 
Roz Willow Glen Treatment Oil

What would you suggest as an award show-worthy updo us novices can do at home? 

I love a slicked back, center parted bun. I use Santa Lucia Styling Oil or the Willow Glen Treatment Oil (depending on how much shine I want) over the top of the hair and use a Mason Pearson Bristle Brush to smooth it along the hairline, pulling it back into a little knot and using a hair pin. For extra security I'll sometimes use an elastic first. 
Santa Lucia Styling Oil
Mason Pearson Bristle Brush
Chunky Cream Pearl Forks
I take a little bit more of the oil (the Willow Glen Treatment Oil will really tame flyaways) and run it along the hairline. You can also mist some hairspray along the hairline so that it holds - Oribe Superfine Strong Hairspray is bananas for a look like this to keep everything in place. 
Oribe Superfine Strong Hairspray

How about something a little more cool or undone for a night out? 

If you are trying to zhuzh dry hair for a night out and don’t want to shower, make two very loose braids on each side of your face, leaving the front section of your hair loose. With that section, make two twists around your finger and pin them back behind your ears to create a separate natural wave. Use a salt spray to dampen your hair just a little bit so that your hair holds the memory of the shape. Leave that while you are doing your makeup.  Take everything out and you’ll have beautiful waves!
Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray

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