Beauty · Hair Care

To Keratin or not to Keratin

In my previous job roles, I was the planner, coordinator or manager who worked long, crazy hours in an office, wore many hats, and rarely saw the light of day. I implemented other people’s ideas, supported busy multimedia account executives and/or design & engineering teams  24/7. The work environments were casual where “nice” jeans were my pants of choice, topped up with a funky blouse or t-shirt. This was appropriate attire unless you had the rare chance of taking part in a client meeting. Otherwise, I could show up to work in my pajamas and no one would care. From time to time, I mixed it up because I love to dress up. Which usually led to the question, “how did your interview go?” I often responded with, “nailed it!” My hair is sometimes out of control and a little on the wild side so throwing it back, putting it up in a clip, or a  ponytail were my standard go to hairdos — the easier the better. I recently changed careers. Ironically, I am now the Account Executive. The first impression customers get is me. My appearance is not only important to the prestigious company I represent it is very important that I represent myself in a professional light. I feel so grown up now. About time, huh?

Aside from spicing up my wardrobe (on a reasonable budget), I recently tried a new hair treatment — Keratin. Some of my coworkers have tried the Brazilian Blowout product line. I called my stylist Lisa Eldridge to find out more. She sold me on the treatment. What? She could help me control the frizz and calm down the wild beast that is my hair. Sign me up!

The Brazilian Blowout is just one of many types of keratin treatments. The name Brazilian Blowout (BBO) has become synonymous and a quasi-generic term for any Keratin treatment system. There are a number of products of hair smoothing techniques and brands such as iStraight Smoothing System, Bioxx (3 strengths depending on clients hair type) and Coco’s Keratin Chocolate which is what Lisa used on me. It all depends on the brand your stylist chooses. Lisa does not recommend a formaldehyde free formula as they are not worth the time and money. The formaldehyde, while a low percentage, is the key ingredient to keeping the hair smooth.

My Keratin Process:

  • I color my hair, so Lisa touched up my roots first.
  • I sat under the dryer
  • She washed my hair with the Keratin shampoo
  • Dried it
  • Applied the Keratin smoother product on my hair in small sections to make sure it covered each strand
  • Flat ironed my hair in small sections to seal the treatment in my hair to keep the hair smooth
  • Cut my hair
  • Done! The whole process took about 2 hours. The product smells like chocolate. I did worry that I would crave chocolate all day but I managed.

Post treatment: IMPORTANT!

  • Do not get it wet for two days. If you do get your hair wet in the first couple of days, blow dry if possible to keep smooth.
  • On day 2:  You can wet it and style it if you choose.
  • It is advisable not to use clips or ties in the hair during the first two days.
  • On day 3:  You can wash your hair using a sulfate free shampoo and conditioner (or a shampoo and conditioner recommended by your stylist after the blowout service), and style as you normally would.
  • The average length of treatment is about three months. It may be more or less depending on how much shampooing you do, and with which products. The less shampooing you do, the better your treatment is overall.

Lisa provided a great analogy: The Keratin treatment is for your hair like wax is for your car. Over time the shine dissipates. One thing to remember, it is a smoother, not a straightener. The fullness of your hair will not diminish, but the process will alleviate the frizz.

Below are my before and after shots. Okay, please bear in mind, no make-up so no judging.

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