The company was founded in 1960 by hairdresser/chemistJheri Redding and actress/modelPaula Kent, thus the name, "Red-ken." Redken pioneered the "Scientific Approach to Beauty," and revolutionized the professional salon business by introducing the concept of protein reconditioning and developing new protein based products, which they patented.
In 1993, with sales at $160 million, Redken was sold to Cosmair, Inc. In 2007, Redken was named as one of the "Icons of the American Marketplace" together with 256 other American brands (out of 800 nominations).
In 2014 Lea T became the face of Redken, thus making her the first openly transgender model to front a global cosmetics brand.
^Vingan, Alyssa (4 November 2014). "Transgender Model Lea T Lands Big Redken Contract". Fashionista.com. Retrieved 6 November 2014. Now, Lea T has received her most groundbreaking campaign yet: She's signed on to be a brand muse for global haircare brand Redken, with print and digital campaigns set for a January 2015 release.