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Kerastase K Water: What is the lamellar water hair treatment?

13th February 2021 | Author: Victoria Woollaston-Webber

Almost all hair products promise to leave you with shiny, healthy locks but there are two that – if reviews are to be believed – are changing the game: K Water and Wonder Water.

K Water is actually the brand name of Kérastase’s in-salon treatment that uses so-called lamellar technology. Wonder Water is the name of L’Oreal Elvive’s alternative.

Lamellar technology and lamellar water traces back to a company called NeoPharm from South Korea which developed Multi-Lamellar Emulsion (MLE) – a mix of oil and water that mimics the “lamellar structure” found naturally in our skin and is responsible for its barrier, and how it works.

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What is lamellar water?

Kerastase K Water hair treatmentKerastase

Both Kérastase’s K Water and L’Oreal Elvive’s Wonder Water are lamellar treatments based on lamellar technology.

They both consist of lightweight molecules – up to 10 times smaller than those found in traditional conditioner and masques – which, when mixed with water form a topcoat, or barrier, on the surface of the hair.

This adds shine, acts as a barrier to protect your hair from pollution and damage and helps create a lightweight and fluid hair movement.

What’s more, it works instantly and presents a flawless finish to your blow-dry.

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More specifically, lamellar structures are made up of fine, alternating layers of molecules that form an even bond with the skin or hair.

Lamellar gel structures emulsify cosmetic oils to form an invisible film around the active ingredient.

Described as a “suit of armour”, the lamellar treatment protects via ingredients inside the product while also supporting the penetration and action of the active ingredients into the skin and hair so they work throughout the day.

The effect obviously wears off unless topped up.

Think of it as a moisturiser for your skin; moisturising once won’t keep your skin moisturised for good, you need to apply it regularly. The same goes for lamellar water, which means it’s how K Water and Wonder Water work.

Despite its name, lamellar water, K Water and Wonder Water don’t actually contain any water. They use an anhydrous formula of glycol, amino acids and other agents which make it ideal if you’re trying to reduce the amount of water in your routine. You can learn more about waterless beauty in our clean beauty guide.

The agents are activated when they come into contact with water, which is why lamellar water is used on wet hair.

A mixture of so-called lipid compounds and cationic derivatives “rush” to your hair’s fibres, forming neat layers that give the K Water and Wonder Water’s smooth finish.

The actives automatically bind to the areas that need the most care, staying away from sections of fibres which are healthy and this results in a lighter lamellar treatment. Often, hair treatments and conditioners can weigh down the hair, causing it to look shiny but flat.

K Water vs L’Oreal Wonder Water: How does the lamellar water treatment work?

Once your hair has been cleansed, apply the lamellar water product to your lengths and ends before instantly rinsing it off. This replaces the need for conditioner or masks.

The act of rinsing activates the molecules which bond to form ultra-fine topcoat on the surface of your hair and because it works instantly, it doesn’t add any time to your salon visit like a masque would.

K Water is only currently available in salons, and costs around £7 on top of your cut or blow-dry. When salons are open, it’s common across the US but is an exclusive salon treatment in select Rush Salons in the UK. You can find your nearest here.

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Obviously, with many of us on lockdown, going to a salon isn’t possible. A handful of sites sell Kerastase K Water for use at home – for around £30 a bottle – but reviews are not favourable. With some claiming that these sites are selling knock-off Kerastase products. As this is a product designed to be used in salons, we can’t recommend buying it for use at home.

L’Oreal Elvive’s Wonder Water, however, is freely available to buy from Boots, Lookfantastic, Superdrug and more – and it costs just £9.99.

Will K Water work on damaged hair?

Kérastase claims that K-Water suits all hair types because it mimics the natural structure found in the body rather than targeting specific areas or problems. However, if your hair is very damaged or coarse, Kérastase advises talking to one of their stylists about alternative treatments such as Fusio-Dose.

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