The natural state of my hair is neither wavy nor straight but somewhere in between, seemingly without rhyme or reason. This means that I need to style it almost every day to achieve anything approaching polished. But it wasn’t always this way. When I was younger, my hair was naturally shiny and smooth, with a slight curl near the ends. But over the years, due to things like heat damage, color treatments, and environmental stressors, the texture changed into its current straight-wavy combination. This seemed, ironically, like the price of beauty, and I didn’t think anything could be done about it, until I heard about a buzzy new treatment — hair Botox. No, it doesn’t involve any injections like traditional Botox, but it can repair your hair and get you back to the healthier, undamaged condition it was in when you were younger.
Hair botox is essentially a deep conditioning mask that works to revive and repair hair damage and broken hair fibers. It uses a concentrate that includes natural ingredients like caviar oil, antioxidants, vitamin B5, vitamin E, and collagen complex to deliver hydration and fill in any broken areas of the hair. Read on for all the details surrounding the buzzy treatment and whether or not it’s the right choice for you and your hair.
What Are The Benefits Of Hair Botox?
“The purpose of hair botox is to bring your hair back to its healthiest state, and embrace the texture you have at its fullest potential — feeling and looking its best,” says Juliana Ohlmeyer, a hair Botox guru to models and editors who works out of Bassia Bassia in Manhattan’s East Village. Hair that’s been treated with the key ingredients in a hair botox treatment typically looks healthy, shiny, and soft to the touch.
“Caviar oil contains antioxidants that help fight free-radical damage that can cause oxidative stress on the hair, leading to hair damage,” says New York City-based cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Michele Green. “Collagen is a protein that can help repair dry and brittle hair, especially if the damage is done by chemical processes and styling with heat. Hair botox contains hydrating ingredients, which improve the elasticity of the hair and restore shine.” In other words, the first step towards hair botox working its particular magic is the specific cocktail of reparative ingredients. But there are several steps you’ll go through during an appointment to unwind the clock on your damaged hair.
Who Is A Good Candidate For Hair Botox?
“Hair botox is wonderful for people who are trying to restore their hair from excessive heat styling, coloring or highlighting, or environmental stressors from the harsh summer months — filled with sun, salt water, and cold air conditioners — and winter, including cold dry air and hot heating units,” says Ohlmeyer. It’s also a particularly good choice for those with gray hair, which can become wiry over time and lack shine and adequate moisture. It also works well for those with natural hair.
What Happens During An Appointment?
The first step is getting your hair shampooed. Then, the treatment will be applied to the hair, along with a relaxing scalp massage. You’ll then be placed under a steamer cap for about 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the length of your hair. After that time has elapsed, your stylist will remove the cap and shampoo out about half of the remaining treatment and blow dry your hair. Then, they will go over each strand of your hair with a flatiron approximately 15 times, using a heat protectant. The purpose of the flatiron isn’t to give you permanently straightened hair — hair Botox won’t do that — but rather to lock in the treatment. After that, you’re all set to go. Depending on the length and thickness of your hair, you can expect the whole treatment to take between two and four hours.
How Do You Maintain The Results From Hair Botox?
Results are visible immediately after a hair botox treatment, but you’ll need to practice proper aftercare to maintain your results. “At home maintenance is crucial to the success and longevity of the treatment,” says Fourteenjay salon co-owner, colorist, and certified consultant trichologist David Adams. “This is particularly important when it comes to best practices for shampooing and conditioning at home.” In general, people will want to avoid any shampoos or conditioners with sulfates, and wait 48 hours after the treatment before washing their hair. Opt for a shampoo like Act + Acre’s Cold Processed Hair Cleanse, which is not only sulfate-free, but also excellent for the scalp, and the brand’s companion conditioner and mask, which are perfect sulfate-free companions to hair Botox.
Which isn’t to say you should be lathering up every day, unless you absolutely have to. “Try to wash less than you’re used to after hair botox,” Ohlmeyer advises. “Each time you wet the hair, it opens the cuticle and your treatment will become less active. It’s also best not to use products like salt spray, which can weaken the treatment.” She also recommends that anyone going into a pool, hot tub, or ocean to coat their hair with conditioner or oil to create a barrier from the water and your hair to prevent your results from fading.
Some stylists, like Dr. Green, also recommend using a heat protectant spray to minimize heat damage whenever styling with heat tools and taking other precautions to extend the life of your treatment. “Use a deep conditioning mask once a week to maintain moisture,” Green recommends. “Use protective hairstyles when sleeping to avoid damage from friction, and protect your hair from harsh weather by wearing a silk cloth.”
How Much Does Hair Botox Cost?
The cost of hair botox will depend on the location of your stylist, the length of your hair, and the salon you visit. But you can expect to pay somewhere between $80-375 in a salon.
How Long Does Hair Botox Last?
The amount of time hair botox lasts will vary person to person and depend on the quality of their aftercare, but the approximate amount of time is 2 to 4 months. Many people who get hair botox do so approximately once a season, with a potential exception in the summer months for those who spend a great deal of time in pools or oceans (which might counteract the efficacy of the treatment). “For those who have very damaged hair, it may be beneficial to have the treatment more often until the hair’s condition improves.”
In all, hair botox is an excellent resource for anyone looking to smooth, restore, and deeply nourish their hair without any chemicals present in other smoothing treatments, like Keratin. “Hair botox embraces what you have and turns it into its healthiest version, like when you were seven years old and had buttery, silky soft, juicy hydrated hair,” Ohlmeyer says. “It is as if you ate the world’s healthiest, most nutrient dense salad, filled with the highest level of antioxidants, and chugged a 16-ounce liter of water.”
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