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best hair care products without chemicalsThe tag line for celebrity hairstylist Tara Smith’s new line of haircare products is “tested on film stars, not animals,” and while it’s clever and cute, it’s also very true.

London- and Los Angeles-based Smith put her decades of experience doing hair on set for films like Quention Tarantion’s Grindhouse and Sex and the City, and for clients like Demi Moore and Rosario Dawson, to develop the products, which are made with vegan, mostly natural ingredients.

And not only do they really work, they don’t have some of the hangups of other cleaner brands.

While plant-based skin-care products have come a long way, hair care has lagged behind, retaining a reputation for shampoos that leave hair feeling heavy or not as clean, silky, and frizz-resistant compared to chemical counterparts.

Smith says she saw that happening, even as interest in cleaner products grew, and wanted something that could meet the high standards she was forced to work with. “All the actors and artists wanted more natural products, but I had to have it perform,” she explains.

best hair care products without chemicals The line includes four shampoo-conditioner sets with different effects—Feed the Root, Gorgeously Gentle, Working Curls, and Shine On. Plus, styling products like the Base Coat Serum that’s a miracle worker when it comes to preventing frizz and the Shining Moment Glosser, which you can spritz on to give hair an instant, shiny pick-me-up throughout the day.

Products are made with interesting, effective plant ingredients like red seaweed, which is a great silicone replacement, she says, and olive squalane for smoothing and preventing UV damage. And while the ingredient lists are not 100 percent natural, they’re without parabens and other big chemical offenders.

“Everything on your scalp is being absorbed into your body,” Smith says, of her inspiration, “and then it goes into the drainpipe and out into the world. I think, ‘let’s try to be as clean as possible.'”

Also, if you’re a sucker for packaging that adds a design element to your shower situation, all of the bottles come adorned with the faces of pretty, colorful birds, adding a playful element to the line. “To me, these birds are a free spirit,” Smith says. “My name is on the bottle and it’s a representation of me.” And, of course, of the happy animals watching as film stars get spritzed with “tester” bottles. —Lisa Elaine Held

For more information, visit www.tarasmith.com

(Photos: Tara Smith)