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Hair - Japanese Hair Straightening/ Thermal Reconditoning



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rated 4.5(45 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 4.5
  • 88% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.3
  • Price: $$$$

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rated 5 of 5 on 10/2/2007 11:01:00 AM More reviews by terriprev

Age: 36-43 Skin: Acne-prone, Other, Not Sure Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Black

I got this done in Boston this past Sunday-yes SUNDAY!!!!!!!!!!! I went to an all asian salon after a ton of research (not in chinatown) primarily b/c they were the only ones who used the liscio product which transform the damaged parts of your hair so you don't have to cut them off. My hair was destroyed by straightening every day much less coloring for over 20 years every 10 days (yes I have WHITE hair which almost sparkles upon grown with dark brown hair). So I was very concerned about losing length.

I will tell you I have never walked out of the most expensive salons with hair this soft, shiney and yes FLAT! Almost too flat which I can live with for 4 days-i fear for tomorrow...BUT not only was I blowing my hair out but then straightening every day...with a halo forming mid day even on a nonhumid day and smearing shitloads of serum in it constantly. THEN I go to sleep and upon waking-it's fucking curly. It was never this curly when I was young so age apparantly has not been good to me. Think of it this way-my hair is five inches beyond my shoulder and when it's curly-it's SHOULDER length and I look like a moppet-not even pretty looking curlys.

SO, here's my advise. If you have curls that are beautiful but sick of them...think twice. If my curls were like that I would have loved REALLY experienced and also consider the newest product which is BKT (brazilian keretin treatment) which doesn't last as long BUT works BETTER on damaged hair - the more damaged-the longer and better.

I was lucky-even the owner said my hair exceeded their expectations (ouch like you didn't tell me upfront). and it cost me a wopping 800 with tips and products (cut was free-which they know how to cut asian hair obviously and it rocks!!!!!!!!!!!) I expected about 400 for the straightengin since I was not on newbury but ya know what you cannot be cheap when it comes to this process unless you have virgin hair-then go to your chinatown area and get it for 200 bucks. Think of it as a perm-if they leave the solution in your hair too long (tricky for highlights) you're screwed. At my age 40 somethin' I refuse to have short hair again and went in with the theory-if they fuck up. I'm not paying AND had a back up booking for extensions on Monday. EVIL aren't i?
Leaving off....love the silky tresses that actually are my own. One thing I have missed over the year is the "youthful" look of my hair. No shine. and baby I got it! Oh and by the way, I started retin a about a week before and my eyes look ten times worse than before (temp i know) BUT I had to look at myself for 5+ hours.....food for thought.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 9/24/2007 8:02:00 PM More reviews by Sage6o4

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Oily, Olive, Warm Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Coarse Eyes: Brown

This is the best thing I have ever done to myself, not even just my hair, best thing I have done to my entire appearance. Ever. I got this done at a high end salon, and it was incredible. The process took about 5 hours for the first time and then 4 hours when I went and got my roots touched up a few months later. The treatment lasts until the hair grows out, and is well worth it. I live in very high humidity, and I have very long hair that is naturally VERY curly, frizzy, dry, and rebellious. After getting this done, my hair looks like the commercials! Yay! It's now soft, managable, and gorgeous ALL THE TIME! It was wellll worth the price I paid. So worth it. If you're suffering from straightening your curly hair all the time, get this done, seriously. The whole process cost me abour $350 and concidering people spend that much on straighteners, I think it's a very reasonable price. Oh and btw, it really didn't damage my hair at all. Not compared to straightening it everyday! Come on people, do asains look like they have damaged hair? No, they don't. Btw, also can't wet your hair AT ALL!!!! For AT LEAST 3 days afterwards and you can't put it in a ponytail or basically do anything to your hair at all other than leave it down. Do not interfear with it because the chemicalls are still settling in. It's not worth the risk of losing perfect hair.

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rated 4 of 5 on 9/12/2007 11:33:00 PM More reviews by cordelia100

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Green

I had this done about 3 years ago. My hair was very long, thick and slightly wavy and frizzy. I rang around a few salons and the price was about $500 for my hair type, which I couldn't afford. Finally I found a salon that charged only $120 including a cut-YES $120!!! So of coarse I booked myself in right away. I went to the salon (in a cheap part of the city) where they examined my hair and said my hair was healthy enough to have this straightening procedure. After the wash, cut and straightening, it ended up taking 5 hours. I couldn't wash my hair for 3 days after that and I also had to go back to the salon where they put something in it and sealed it using a hair straightener I was so happy with the results, it was just what I wanted! I didn't need to blow dry or straighten my hair ever! It was literally pin straight.

The only thing I didn't like about it was that it left my hair looking quite flat. But it wasn't a big deal to me because my hair was straight, still looked good and saved me so much time! Everyone commented on how straight and beautiful my hair was. I had always dreamed of washing my hair or swimming at the beach and not have to worry about my hair being frizzy and just letting it dry naturally with a salon looking finish. This hair straightening technique let me do this!

The reason I did not get this done again is because I grew to miss my thick volumous hair and when it starts to grow out it looks weird and you have to straighten only those top bits, which was difficult and annoying. It looked okay on me because my hair wasn't overly frizzy or curly to begin with, so I could get away with it. But someone with curly hair, if you let it grow out enough, you will be left with the grown out curly part at the top and the rest straight. Unless you are willing to keep getting the roots re-done, this hair straightening technique can become quite a pain! I wasn't willing to keep drying out and damaging my hair just so it could be straight. For me it wasn't worth it, plus I learned to like my thick, slightly wavy-frizzy hair better. It was much healthier that way.

By the way I live in Melbourne, Australia so if anyone in that area wants the name of the salon just email me.

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rated 4 of 5 on 9/11/2007 10:26:00 PM More reviews by MintMeowMix

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

Ive gotten this done twice. once at a salon in manhattan called mannish, it was around 300 without tip, and then I had it done in 8th ave brooklyn for 150. afterwards my hair was super super super flat, but after I washed it and put on some volumizing mousse it looked much better and very sleek. I actually like my hair more about two month afterwards because it seems to have more body. However, I hate when my roots grow in because even with a flat iron, its still really kinky. I would really recommend this if you have frizzy hair, or would just prefer a straight style. if you have any questions you can message me.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 9/11/2007 3:00:00 PM More reviews by joiseygirl27

Age: 56 & Over Skin: Normal, Fair, Cool Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I've done this 3 times in NYC & am going to get it done again. I love it. The only con is that my hair has no body afterwards and you can't wash your hair for 48 hours. It takes around 3-5 hours. I have naturally wavy hair & this was a lifesaver. I always used regular shampoo & conditioner & it only took me 5 mins to blow dry my hair. I can go up to a year between touchups. Make sure you get an experienced stylist. When I had it done last, I was working full time & taking care of a relative who had a stroke & it was a time lifesaver. If you are taking care of someone disabled, I would recommend to make your life easier.

I would at least try to wear it curly & deal with it before resorting to this. IMO, this is something you do if as a last resort for problematic hair. At least try to work with your natural texture before having this done. Now it has grown out on my hair & I'm going to get it done again this week. I used to get complimented all the time on my hair & since the straightening has grown out, I have gotten none. I tried to work with my natural texture but wearing my hair wavy requires too much time & effort & $$ for products. What is sad is that after I get this done, I will even out or save money since I don't be buying tons of products anymore.

Edit: 3/13/14
I get a lot of PMs asking about the salon in NYC.... it no longer exists & I no longer live on the east coast so I don't have another place to recommend.

My hair is long, fine & thin, appts currently take about 3 hours.

I can now only go between 4-5 months between touchups because my hair grows fast & is curly at the roots.

If you get this type of straightening done I recommend NOT having highlights because it won't straighten evenly (the highlighted portions process faster).

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rated 5 of 5 on 9/11/2007 2:12:00 PM More reviews by tiff22

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Red, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

LOVE this process! Ive only gotten it done once but I would not hesitate to get it done again when my hair needs it! All my life I have had thick, coarse, wavy, unmanagable hair.. and this gave me straight, glossy, easy to manage pretty hair! I have before and after pics in my profile, check them out! It is a long process, just 3 hours for me though compared to other girls 4-6 hours, and its annoying to not be able to wash your hair for three days, but the results are more than worth the annoyance IMO! =)

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 9/11/2007 1:34:00 AM More reviews by Angel_Ling

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Hazel

I've gotten my hair thermal reconditioned three times. For reference, my hair is thick but fine-stranded, and wavy in a unkempt, frizzy way. For anyone who's interested in TR but hasn't had it done yet and is curious about what it entails, I'll try to add on to what has already been said below.



First, your hair needs to be in pretty decent shape -- it can be colored or highlighted, as the hairdresser would put on some chemical solution to buffer the hair against the perming solution (I had to have this done the 3rd time I got TR, because the tips of my hair still contained old highlights); you'll probably have to pay a bit more for this, though. I really doubt that already-permed hair could withstand TR, however. A good, experienced stylist should be honest and straightforward with you about whether your hair is in good enough condition. DEFINITELY get a consultation first, to have the stylist check the condition of your hair and answer any questions you have.



With respect to stylists, this is one procedure that you simply must have an experienced stylist, otherwise you'll end up with really damaged, not-nice-looking hair. If you don't know anyone who's had TR before (so you could get a referral), then check online. Try sites that have reviews on places or events, like citysearch.com or yelp.com (especially yelp.com -- it's like MUA's Productville, but for places!). [I'm not affiliated with either website, etc.]



So once you've selected a stylist and made an appointment, you'll need to bring a thick book, because the entire process will take at least 3 hours -- more like 5, particularly depending on your hair (whether it needs extra protection or requires more work). And once you've left the salon, just like with any perm, you cannot get your hair wet for at LEAST 48 hours afterwards (not even damp!), because it can cause your hair to kink up again. These 48 hours are crucial! So, in the shower, use a shower cap -- but don't tie up your hair or use elastic bands! Just try to gently push the hair into the cap, careful not to have any hair very strongly bent. Sleeping during this time is also tough, because we all have bedhead in the morning; you don't want your newly permed hair to be all messed up and bent and whatnot. It's tough. So, if you find that your hair has been bent and is sticking in that position, you have several options -- if it's just minor bend, you can try to fix it yourself, by flatironing it straight again. If it's a very major bend and you're freaking out, I'd suggest going back to the salon to have them take a look at the damage (though I think they'll just wind up flat-ironing the kinks out too).



Once the crucial 48 hours are over, you can wash your hair, but what products should you use? You can use the shampoo/conditioners made specifically for TR'd hair, but that can be really expensive. My stylist said that products that say "for color-treated hair" are usually mild enough for TR'd hair. Nioxin was recommended, and it worked out well for me; I've also used higher-end products like Pureology, which was also good, but the point is, stick to a gentle, mild shampoo and conditioner.



When I first got TR, I was worried about styling -- would I have to blow dry it completely everyday in order for it to be straight? Could it air dry straight? Would I have to style it straight? It sounds like this varies from person to person, depending on the type of hair you have, the strength of the chemical relaxers put on your hair, and the expertise of the stylist. Personally, my hair was able to air dry to a pin straight look, nary a frizz in sight. So, I never had to style it, or even blow dry it (heaven!). Very, very low maintence.



For the first 2 weeks after getting TR, you have to be careful not to bend the hair in any way -- so no barrettes, ponytails, clips, etc. And you can't change how your hair was parted, either! It may be tempting to do something to style it , because it can appear really flat (especially on top, near the roots), but resist! After about 2 weeks, your hair will start to grow in, and this will give you some lift and the roots and give your hair some body, so it's no longer so thin and flat.



The worst part about TR (aside from the money and the time spent in the salon) is the grow-out period. TR is permanent, so your natural hair will grow in (kinda like seeing the dark roots on a person who has bleached their hair). This regrowth may be noticeable, it may not be. In my case, my hair is already flat and straight towards the roots, so I was able to go for about 10, 11 months before getting it retouched. Others, with curlier hair, may have to get it retouched after 2 months.



With a good TR, the first day that you can wash your hair and step out into the world, you'll get compliments left and right; I remember the first time I got TR'd -- I have NEVER received so many compliments on my hair before in my life! The results can be really dramatic. But I'm a fickle girl, and decided (3 times) to grow out my hair to its natural state, which it is currently in. But right now, I am totally, totally lemming to do a TR again. Once you see how low maintenence it is, you can get seriously addicted to it. PS: Apparently, there is a new type of TR called "volume TR" or something; I can't find stylists here in the US who do this yet (right now, it's done more in Asia), but apparently you get more body and volume with it than a regular TR. If I could find someone who would do this, I'd get it done in a hearbeat!

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rated 5 of 5 on 8/8/2007 7:36:00 PM More reviews by nicolley77

Age: 25-29 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

i've been doing this straightening perm consistently since 2000. i started doing it a korean salon, and back then it was called the "magic straight perm." this is the best thing that has ever, ever happened to my hair. after the perm, hair is just wash and go. no need to worry about frizz or ANYTHING. the absolute BEST place to do this perm is at the kim sun yung salon in korea town, los angeles. they used to charge me $170 for medium length hair, and $200 for long hair. i've had to stop going there since i've moved to the bay area, but i have to tell you that NO ONE has come close to doing the wonderful job that kim sun yung does. they have 3 girls working on your hair at one time, and it always comes out stick straight and glossy, with no breakage. perfect every time!

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 7/27/2007 12:50:00 PM More reviews by shyviolet

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Olive, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I have been doing this process for several years and my only regret is not doing it sooner.

My hair is naturally curly in the bang area, straight on top, tight ringlets underneath and waves on one side. Majorly frizzy all over. My hair usually ended up in a scrunchy with a bandana over it, unless I was willing to spend an hour straightening it everday.

The first time, I got Liscio done on my just below the shoulder-length hair. I could not believe the difference in my hair texture. It was perfectly straight with mirror shine and felt like silk. I NEVER thought I could have hair like that. I never have to style my hair. No dryers, no irons, not products - nothing. Wash and go. And I get so many compliments on it.

I didn't need a retouch until the following year. I went to another salon and paid a fraction of what I did the first time and it came out incredible once again. I have been keeping it up ever since. I do my whole head annually, and my bang are every 6 months.

My hair is now almost down to my waist and very healthy. It would never have grown like this without the thermal reconditioning.

UPDATE: Almost 16 months since my last touch up and I was due. Problem was, I moved and the salons in my new location
a. don't use Liscio, and
b. said that my hair will not come out straight (uh, ok so what's the point?)
After consulting with a fellow makeup alley user, I felt brave enough to retouch my hair at home. I figure if it will not come out right in the salon anyway, I will save myself a couple hundred dollars. I had about 5 inches of frizzy Jan Brady curls around my hairline that needed to be straightened. I used Thermal Ionic by Jheri Redding, the formular for Bleached/ Tinted Hair (I only have a few highlights in the back, but was not taking any chances). The process took me about 4 hours. The result was silky, shiny hair with no frizz, even in 99% humidity! I cannot believe that my hair came out this great at home. It is not "stick straight" as I am used to, though if I blowdry for just a minute, it will be. But with the total lack of frizz and silky texture, I do not care that it is not "pin-straight". I think next time, I can try the regular strength formula, since it was all virgin hair that I straightened anyway.

I will stick to doing this at home from now on!

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rated 5 of 5 on 4/3/2007 9:33:00 PM More reviews by heather_kipp

Age: 30-35 Skin: Oily, Fair-Medium, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Relaxed, Fine Eyes: Green

My hair has endured the 6 hour TR process three times and in August I'll be going back for a fourth. I LOVE what this does from my half curly, half wavy hair in the CT humidity. I finally have the pin straight, super shiny hair that I should have been born with. Process here is outrageously expensive ($800+tip) and takes my hair dresser and her assistant 6 hours to do my mid-back length FINE hair. God knows how long it would take if my hair were thicker. But as the treatment can be very damaging if used by the wrong hands, I'll shell out the money to the only other person I let touch my hair.

As a few reviewers have said, you can't wash your hair for at least 48 hours and no tucking or pining hair. This is always a huge issue for me as I wash my hair daily and am a disgusting grease ball during the recovery period. Thankfully those are telecommuting days. LOL

If you've dreamt of shiny, super sleek hair, this is the process to get. So expensive, but so worth it.

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