Hair treatments are the go to for a high power shine and quick hair health pick me up. Salon and at-home treatments can absolutely get and keep your hair looking at it’s best.
What is Keratin?
Hair and nails are made of the protein keratin. Hair is produced from the hair bulb located at the bottom of the hair follicle. Each hair bulb has it’s own blood supply. Meaning hair and nails for that matter are alive at that earliest stage; however, once it emerges from the skin or nail bed that blood supply is gone and it’s no longer alive. Any imperfection in the structure is there to stay. Skin is similar in that the outmost or furthest from the layer that lacks a blood supply.
Keratin is a protein that looks a bit like DNA. It forms a helical structure with disulfide bonds between those strands. Products like Olaplex(R) and Redken’s new Acid Bond System help to bring those bonds together to strengthen hair.
Keratin Treatment/Brazilian Blowout
Keratin treatments work to physical fill missing keratin protein inside the hair shaft and smooths the hair cuticle. This decreases frizz and leaves hair smoother. It does require high temperatures (>450F) to ‘active’ or bond the keratin protein.
A true Keratin Treatment is also known as a Brazilian Blowout although there are lots of keratin treatments available on the market. Shampoo and Conditioner with Keratin isn’t going to give you the same results as a true Keratin treatment.
I used to get a salon brazilian blowout every 5 months for years and they’re amazing. Depending on where you live they can cost a finger ($200) or the entire arm ($500 and up). Getting them 2-3 times per year can start to add up if you’re getting your hair colored every 2 months and adding that on. It takes 2 hours per treatment and it really does leave hair feel great but it is a treatment I’d suggest people make an appointment at a salon.
There are some at home treatments that aren’t too bad but for maximum benefit and happiness. If you aren’t familiar with the system you can damage your hair. Plus your arms will get tired.
Japanese Hair Straightening System
Another treatment growing in popularity that I am trying this fall is the Japanese Hair Straightening System. This is like a Brazilian Blowout on steroids. Where the blowout will only smooth away the frizz, the Japanese Straightening system will give you that very Asian-esque straight hair and do more repairing of the hair.
Rachel (an American expat living in Japan) of Rachel and Jun had her hair straightened 7 years ago and it looked amazing. She does a time lapse of her hair air drying and it’s super straight. Mine is wavy in weird places and completely straight in other places kind of like Rachel’s. incredibly long hair. My hairdresser and I decided to try this instead of going the Korean body wave route. I personally prefer minimal work to achieve my look. Definitely a salon treatment as well although you can buy the Shiseido Hair Strengthening System. Make sure to buy the one based on your hair condition (bleached/color-treated, curly, or straight). I have seen it on Amazon. Buyer beware of professional products purchased on Amazon.
Not a new comer to the market. OLAPLEX has been around for a decade moving from a salon only treatment to availability in many retail markets including Sephora and Ulta and the OLAPLEX online store. With a growing line that includes smoothers, shampoo, conditioners, deep treatments, and masks there’s lots to choose from. As a user of nearly all of it I will say there are products that work and products that are meh. For sure No 3 is as the top of my list followed by No. 8, No. 9, and the hair oil. No 0 Intensive bond building treatment didn’t do anything for my hair that No 3 didn’t already do.
- The No 3 Hair Perfector is the OG OMG this works instantly product. If you get bleaching jobs, this is a must for at home hair maintenance.
- The No 8 Bond Intense Moisture Mask is basically No 3 on high. This is great to use right after a bleach job or once a week to keep your hair pretty.
- If you have frizzy hair or you live in a dry environment like I do right now then No 6 is going to be amazing for you. I use it regularly and it’s officially on my repurchase list. 2 pumps will do my waist length hair and it will legit work for 48 hours easily.
- No 7 hair oil is that extra boost of moisture and shine my hair adores to keep itself looking its best and it last forever.
- I haven’t used No 9 yet, so it’s hard for me to comment on how well it works. Not sure what else my hair requires to look it’s best.
Do you need all of these things to get mind-blowing hair, No. OLAPLEX is by far the best of the at-home treatment systems that are honestly worth their money. If you’re putting in hundreds of dollars into your hair dye and cuts, a $30 OLAPLEX investment is minimum investment to keep that cut and color investment looking as good as it can. If you only wanted to invest in 1 product, I’d suggest either No 3, No 8, or No 6.