Thermal Reconditioning

Are Japanese Hair Straightening and Thermal Reconditioning the same treatments?

faq1Yes. The hair is permanently straightened and reconditioned or repaired simultaneously through compressed thermal heat generated from a flat iron. The compression and heat transforms the bonds in the hair to a straight configuration. The ironing process, which can take several hours, also seals previously applied proteins and conditioners into the hair, leaving the hair softer and glossier.

My hair has been colored and highlighted. Will Thermal Reconditioning work on my hair?

faq2Yes. However, the highlighted sections are treated differently from the non-highlighted sections. For example, the highlighted areas might require a milder processing solution, shorter processing time, additional proteins/conditioners to repair/protect the strands, and application of cooler temperature during the ironing process than for non-highlighted areas. I customize every straightening treatment to address each client’s unique hair type and condition. The majority of my clients have colored and highlighted hair. This personal attention yields fantastic results.

Explain the thermal reconditioning process. What does it entail?

faq3Thermal reconditioning includes a two-step chemical process, a flat-ironing segment and continual infusion of proteins/conditioners into the hair. First, an alkaline straightening solution is applied and removed when the hair reaches its optimal elastic state. Second, quarter-inch sections of hair are meticulously flat-ironed throughout the head. This process simultaneously straightens and repairs each hair. Third, a chemical neutralizer is applied to “set” the hair in its straight configuration. Fourth, the hair is rinsed, blown dry and flat-ironed to a straight, glossy finish. The entire process can take an average of 5 hours. Extremely tenacious, thick, long hair could take longer to complete.

I am pregnant and plan to breastfeed. Will it be safe for me, and my baby, to have my hair permanently straightened?

faq4According to the producers of the thermal straightening treatment, there has been no scientific evidence that shows this process could be harmful to mother or baby. However, I encourage you to consult your physician. I would be happy to provide your specialist with information about the processes.

I am bi-racial and I have used lye-based relaxers on my hair. Would this be a problem if I wanted to get my hair permanently straightened using Japanese technology?

faq5First, I do not recommend applying Japanese technology over lye-based relaxed portions of hair. However, the virgin regrowth can benefit from Japanese technology. Optimal outcome will result on virgin hair.

How does thermal reconditioning differ from traditional relaxing methods?

faq6Good question. First, traditional relaxing methods only relax hair, which eventually “snaps back” to its original configuration: these methods, unlike thermal reconditioning, do not permanently straighten the hair. Relaxers are often lye-based with a Ph ranging from 10.0 to 14.0. In contrast, thermal reconditioning Ph hovers at a consistent 9.0.

Second, unlike traditional “paste & comb” relaxing methods, thermal reconditioning requires the infusion of proteins/conditioners to maintain the integrity of the hair. Thermal reconditioning requires the use of heat compression (i.e. flat iron) to realign the hair bonds into a permanently straight configuration leaving the hair straighter, glossier and healthier looking compared to other methods.

How long should I wait to shampoo or color my hair after a thermal reconditioning treatment?

faq7Wait 48-72 hours to shampoo or wet your hair. Wait one week to two weeks to color or highlight your hair. Following thermal reconditioning, hair will become more structurally porous, not visually porous, so I recommend using a lower volume peroxide to touch up previously thermal/highlighted hair, and using 1-2 shades lighter than before when choosing an all-over color.

Virgin re-growth, however, can endure 40-volume high-lift color/bleach. Inform your regular stylist about the structural change in your hair so he or she can compensate for this when you have your color touched up.

What qualifications/background should I look for when determining if a hair stylist has undertaken adequate training to perform Japanese hair straightening or thermal reconditioning?

First, the stylist needs to be a licensed cosmetologist.

faq8Second, the stylist should have been educated by at least one out of two global leaders/providers of permanent Japanese hair straightening technology. These include: Yuko System and Liscio Thermal Reconditioning.

Caveat: various companies have developed inferior “copies” of the “Major-2” systems hoping to capture the “lower-end” market share. Rest assured that a percentage of salons will embrace this option, resulting in lower quality service.

Again, I have been trained by both systems in order to provide my clients with optimal education, skill, service and results. As of October, 2013 I have successfully performed over 2000 straightening procedures.

What can I expect to pay for thermal reconditioning and how long will it take?

faq9My base fee for this service is $420 for the first 3 hours. Afterward, the fee increases $60 per half hour. For example, if it takes 5 hours to straighten your hair, the fee will be $620.00. The fee structure is subject to change.

To provide you with the best personal service and the highest quality most beautiful results, I require an in-salon consultation to help you determine whether this treatment is right for you, and to establish more accurate cost estimates. The average length of time to complete the process is 5 hours.

Will I need to use special shampoos and conditioners following this process?

faq11I always advise clients to use quality support products on their hair. Following a thermal reconditioning treatment, I recommend using products designed by one of the leading providers/educators: Yuko or Liscio.

Since these companies created the “Major-2” Japanese hair-straightening systems, their products provide the best follow-up care. I have select items from these lines available to you upon request.

What is the history of thermal reconditioning? I’ve recently become aware of the treatment.

faq10aThermal reconditioning or Japanese hair straightening emerged in Japan about 12 years ago. Since, Yuko System and Liscio Thermal Reconditioning have obtained separate U.S. patents that reflect each provider’s unique “spin” on the technology.

These providers/educators comprise the two global leaders in this revolutionary technology which, for the first time in history, has enabled people to transform their curly/frizzy/bushy locks into permanently straight hair. The process has successfully penetrated the Pacific Northwest, with LeResh at Matthew’s Salon in Portland, OR as the premiere provider.

How often will I have to have a thermal reconditioning treatment? Will my hair grow out straight?

faq12No, your hair will not grow out straight like the “old growth” that was permanently straightened and will remain straight. The “new growth” or virgin hair will require a follow-up reconditioning treatment in time. The frequency will primarily depend on the hair’s rate of growth, the texture/tenacity of re-growth and your preference. The average time line for root touch ups is every 6 months, at which time the new growth would be about three inches.

However, some clients might opt for touch ups every 12-16 months, because they have a loose wave that can be “blown out” with a hairdryer and brush.

My touch up fee will depend upon the length of time it takes to complete the procedure, usually less time than the original service. Nationwide, salon touch up fees are closer to the original cost.

What hair types or under what conditions would you elect not to straighten someone’s hair?

faq13Hair types that I might exclude from the process would include: (a) very dark hair that has fine, evenly distributed, overly bleached highlights throughout the head. Because of severe differences in tensile strength between the dark and light strands, the dark strands could be less straight than the light pieces, resulting in uneven straightness; (b) hair that has been severely damaged by an all-over bleach to the extent that the hair has become “transparent”.

Conditions under which I would determine not to provide the service include: (a) on children below 8 years old because of the length of service (the process is safe for all age groups, however); (b) on a person who cannot sit for several hours at a time, possibly due to back pain or other disabilities that could restrict their mobility.

I have a 9 year old daughter who has impossible hair. Is she too young to have her hair straightened with the Japanese system?

5aSeveral of my clients have been 9 years old and older. Young people benefit from this service tremendously because it boosts their self-esteem. However I have set an age limit of 8 years old.

How can I find out who in my area performs the Japanese hair straightening procedure?