Case Study

From UX to HX Human Experiences for Testing and Refining New Hair Care Products


A technology-driven brand known for innovation teamed up with C+R to develop ground-breaking hair tools for a well-saturated, multi-billion-dollar beauty industry.

Of the brand’s two products, the first was already available in the market and needed refinement; the second was a highly confidential working prototype. To help refine both products, the brand called on C+R’s expertise working with products and positioning concepts at all stages (including prototypes) for some of the world’s biggest brands.


Seeking Comprehensive Feedback on a Highly Confidential Product

Our client wanted to evaluate consumer experiences with their two products. Everything from relevance, functional, emotional, and social benefits to product usability, aesthetics, packaging, and pricing needed to be tested qualitatively.

Adding another layer of complexity, while one of the products was currently on the market, the other was a highly confidential working prototype.


In-Home Use Testing, Video Journaling, and In-Person Usability Testing

To kick the project off, we met at our client’s offices to align key stakeholders across the strategy and goals of each research phase. Engineers unveiled their working prototype, providing valuable context and allowing the group to discuss internal hypotheses. During the meeting, a few of our moderators even tried the prototype on their own hair – anything for research!

Next, we shipped the on-market product to participants’ homes. Participants were asked to film their personal hair care products and tools for a week before beginning their usage journal. Using film and video, participants showed us where and how they stored and used the product during the testing period. Participants were also asked to film any surprises or notes of dissatisfaction that could be used to refine the product.

Since confidentiality was a primary concern for the working prototype, C+R conducted in-person usability testing in a bathroom environment (e.g., sink, counter space, two-way mirror, spacious backroom, etc.). Each woman brought a bag of personal hair styling products and tools to demonstrate their typical routine; by the end of the session, participants had also used the working prototype and shared their contrasting perceptions, behaviors, and needs.

The result

Showcasing Women’s Authentic Reactions and Need States

Thanks to C+R’s In-house Production team, we were able to deliver a video report with multiple story reels. The videos pinpointed participants’ authentic reactions and need states from the usability testing and in-home journaling, increasing the client’s empathy for women’s hair styling processes, rituals, and desired results.

This hybrid qualitative methodology topped off with compelling video reporting was the solution our client needed to quickly substantiate user errors, expose what was working, and optimize its products.

proven experience

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