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When E! News anchor Catt Sadler told us, "I love Olaplex conditioning treatment for my hair. I use it once a week and it works," color us intrigued.
As we started to investigate the Instagram-famous product, it also got us thinking about what else celebs do to maintain healthy, bleached locks, as seen on the heads of Kate Hudson, Reese Witherspoon and Emma Stone. The secret, friends, is in the maintenance.
"Dark hair reflects light while blond hair absorbs it, so that's why you see more shine on brunettes," informed Le Salon at Sofitel hairstylist Lindsay Taisor. Lighter locks may entail a smidgen more upkeep, but ice-blond strands on par with Ashley Benson's can be yours with these tried-and-true celeb stylist must-dos.
Sometimes, hair may seem too far gone to repair it, but there's a chance for revival. "Once hair is broken and damaged, there is no way to mend the split ends or broken hair without trimming," said Le Salon at Sofitel owner Angela Kalinowski. Thankfully, however, "there are now many additive products that keep the cuticle of the hair intact, even after lifting it up multiple levels (aka bleaching)," said E! Style Collective celeb hairstylist Jennifer J.
So What Is Olaplex? Olapelx is a hair color additive that eliminates the negative reaction oxygen has in chemically treated hair that leads to breakage. In other words, it "helps prevent further damage when lightening your hair; however, it does not repair hair that is already broken or split," shared Angela. To protect your locks from harsh bleach dye jobs, do as the celebs do and ask your stylist to include the add-in onto your own bleaching sessions. The company also makes a take-home maintenance version, Olaplex Hair Perfector No. 3, which is the one that Catt uses religiously.
The Verdict on Hot Oils and Other In-Salon Treatments. For in-salon quick-fix treatments, glosses like the custom-blend versions by Shu Uemura and Redken EQ Gloss are among the most popularly requested by Jennifer J and Angela's clients, respectively, but hot oils are unanimously overrated among the experts. Especially for people with hair on the finer side, "hot oil will just weigh hair down making it look greasy," said Jennifer J. "Any kind of treatment oil is usually so heavy that you have to shampoo it more than normal, which can also strip hair of natural oils and sort of defeats the purpose," she explained.
At-Home Hair-Masks Dos. Look for masks enhanced with reparative ingredients and use weekly. Hair is made of protein, so natural versions with protein-enriching vitamins work best to heal hair. "Apply the product mid to ends and apply in the shower letting it steam while shaving and washing," said Lindsay who prefers Vôce Hair Mask. "Once a week for five minutes is all you need," agreed Nicole Leal of Nine Zero One Salon. Nicole recommended the L'Oréal INOA protective Hair Mask, "because it contains green tea extract and is very concentrated."
And for Day-Of Shine? Shine Serums. "You will need a good shine serum for shiny hair in a pinch," recommended Angela. For instant shine, you want a topical product that gives the appearance of lustrous hair. While Nicole almost exclusively uses Shina Mist by Unite to top off styling, Angela gravitates toward Vôce Smooth Me pre and post blow-dry. For a pre-blow-dry product, Jennifer J's go-to is Shu Uemura Touch of Gloss Styling Balm made with Japanese Cherry Blossom petals rich in essential fatty acids. Just be sure to "use less than a dime size and smooth through the ends of your hair so that it doesn't appear greasy," suggested Angela.
Water Quality Matters. If you're really committed, pay special attention to how you're rinsing your hair. "Raindrops shower filter system is probably one of the best kept secrets," shared Nicole. The at-home water filtration system removes particles like iron and rust from steel piping, which, believe it or not, is one of the main but lesser known culprits behind dull, brassy hair.