I'm always down to try anything that will help to nurture my hair, especially since I’m still struggling with breakage and shedding after my postpartum hair loss saga. Deep conditioners never really worked for me, and at-home oil treatments left my hair looking greasier than Danny Zuko on his best day.
But just last week, I was able to try out the first mass haircare product in the United States to utilize something called Lamellar Water Technology via L'Oréal’s brand-new Elvive 8 Second Wonder Water.
Before I went in to receive the treatment at the L'Oréal offices in New York City, Dr. Rocio Rivera, the brand’s Vice President of Scientific Communication, explained the science behind the launch and exactly how the Lamellar technology works.
First things first: a crash course in Lamellar technology. "Lamellar technology is a L’Oréal technology that refers to a highly efficient and targeted delivery system, which deposits ultra-fine caring actives on specific damaged areas of hair in very thin layers (called 'lamelles'), without over-coating or over-treating the hair," Dr. Rivera explains.
It's pretty similar to micellar water technology, which uses micelles to trap dirt and remove it from the surface of the skin, but works the opposite way. "'Lamelles' in L’Oreal Lamellar Technology deposit caring actives (like amino acid and protein) to the hair cuticle," she says. The best part? It only delivers to areas that are damaged. Through advanced chemistry, Dr. Rivera explains that the positive charges of the lamelles attract to the negative charges of damaged areas of the hair, binding the caring actives to smooth the hair fiber exactly where it's needed.
The positive charges of the lamelles attract to the negative charges of damaged areas of the hair, binding the caring actives to smooth the hair fiber exactly where it's needed.
Then, she showed me an unforgettable visual demonstrating how other hair treatments work via magnets, with magnets attaching all over the hair strands. She then showed how lamellar tech enables Wonder Water to only "stick" to the areas in need. Essentially, Lamellar technology provides healing hydration using moisturizers and amino acids only where it’s needed, which then leaves the hair feeling soft and silky, and looking healthier. Plus, it’s safe for color-treated hair and all hair types.
"The product works on fine, thin texture all the way to curly," Dr. Rivera says. "What we heard from consumers was that, depending on your hair type, different benefits were appreciated."
So, for those with fine hair (me!) she said she often hears people will appreciate the lightweight conditioning that softens and smooths the hair. For those with curlier or thicker hair, they appreciate the detangling and shine factor.
(She also said that while the product can be used by anyone, you should test a bit behind your ear if you have any doubts, and always avoid the eye area.)
Though there have been a few other lesser-known products on the market that claim they utilize lamellar water technology, Dr. Rivera says the technology is exclusive to L'Oréal and patent-pending. "Today it is only otherwise available in K-Water by Kerastase as a back-bar salon service," she says. In other words, this would be the first time L'Oréal is launching an at-home lamellar water product. The L’Oréal Paris 8 Second Wonder Water formula was created for consumers to be able to benefit from this breakthrough technology from the comfort of their home for a much lower cost.
The morning of the treatment I threw my hair in a damp braid and called it a day. (Hence the texture in my before photo.)
My treatment began with a double shampoo: first, a more intense washing followed by a lighter one. Immediately after, the stylist applied Wonder Water all over my hair straight from the bottle, fully saturating my locks from root to tip.
For a product that isn't made with actual water, it's clear in color and has a mostly watery, silky consistency that smells fruity and clean but not overly perfume-y, either.
Within seconds of application, once the product was activated by my wet hair, I felt a relaxing warming sensation that made me feel like it was really working. (You know how when you use a toner and it stings a little, or when Chapstick starts to tingle so you’re convinced it’s already working? It was like that.)
Then, the treatment was rinsed away thoroughly with warm water and at the suggestion of the stylist, we skipped using a conditioner to see Wonder Water’s effects without any additional product. My hair was then blow-dried using a round brush.
Because my hair dries fast, it was instant gratification and I saw the results immediately.
My hair felt so healthy, smooth, shiny and weightless. I’m also overdue for a trim (partially because I hate cutting my hair and also because, well, mom life) but the lamellar water technology made my ends look almost instantly repaired and healthy. It also smelled amazing.
I truly couldn’t have been happier with the results or more impressed that this was an at-home and affordable treatment. Wonder Water lives up to its name.
The product will sell for a suggested retail price of $9.99 will be available at mass food, drug, and online retailers.