What is Hair Lamination: A Detailed Guide to the Treatment
Hair care is one of the more popular aspects of cosmetics since both men and women are eager to protect their hair from damage. The prospect of going bald is the main motivation for hair upkeep in men, but everyone wants their hair to look good. Hair products remain one of the most sought-after cosmetics worldwide, leading to a massive industry designed to cater to our desire to look good.
This is not to say there is anything wrong with wanting your hair to look good, but that many companies capitalize on it. As a result, many cosmetics companies sell "miracle cures" and beauty products designed to enhance your hair's health and appearance. Unfortunately, many are greatly exaggerated, and their effects are not as effective as they claim.
Other hair treatments are strictly aesthetic and designed to enhance the glow and appearance of your hair rather than improve its health. Dozens of shampoos and conditioners claim to restore your hair's glow. Countless more home remedies claim the same ability, but the biggest industry for this particular effect is hair stylists. One of the most recent additions to this phenomenon is a hair treatment called hair lamination.
If you have not heard of it before, there is no shame in it since it is not widely recognized in the hair care industry. Nevertheless, it is growing in popularity, and knowing what it is and how it works is almost essential to staying ahead of the industry.
What is Hair Lamination?
Hair lamination is a new treatment designed to improve the hair's appearance but also seems to focus on protecting it from damage. The main focus of hair lamination is to restore the glow and sheen of your hair by applying a laminate to the strands. Anyone who has ever worked in an office is familiar with lamination, though this usually refers to coating paper or cardstock in a thin layer of plastic to prevent damage.
While plastic is not the medium used, hair lamination seems to follow a similar idea by coating our hair strands in a laminate made from cosmetic ingredients. The problem is that there is no definitive version of the treatment since different stylists use different compounds to create their laminate. Most stylists use tried and true ingredients and offer a professional-grade version of the treatment. Unfortunately, professionals are not the only ones recommending the treatment.
There has been a recent surge in popularity for the treatment on the social media platform TikTok. Ordinarily, TikTok is used to create brief videos that recreate popular Internet trends for clout and followers. Recently, certain influencers have used it to offer life advice, including hair care treatments. The version of the hair lamination treatment circulating on TikTok uses ingredients that might not be the best choice for those with sensitive hair.
One salon began adding sugar to their laminate to enhance the volume and bounce of hair while incorporating all the other benefits associated with the treatment. While the results seem promising, there is a connection between excess sugar causing hair loss (though this is primarily attributed to overconsumption rather than direct application).
While you might be opposed to using sugar in your hair, it is worth noting that most lamination treatments use compounds proven to help hair. Specifically, most laminates include keratin, one of the most important compounds in hair and skin. Therefore, the laminates using keratin and other natural compounds are among the most beneficial. Of course, you might still have questions concerning its effect on your hair and what these laminates can do.
How is Hair Lamination Performed?
Applying a hair laminate might seem like a complicated process considering the implications "lamination" produces. However, it is fairly straightforward and so easy to complete that it is possible to perform it at home rather than going to a salon (though it is not recommended for beginners to do so). The first step of the treatment is putting your laminate together by combining the necessary ingredients.
As mentioned, many laminates contain keratin but are primarily made from gelatin and oils with other potential ingredients that benefit hair. Once the laminate is made, the application is fairly easy to perform but requires patience. You must mix the laminate with your conditioner of choice to apply it, allowing the conditioner to serve as a vehicle for the laminate.
Before applying the laminate, you must wash your hair thoroughly and dry it with a towel (hair dryers or other methods might cause damage). The most challenging part is applying the laminate/conditioner combo to each strand of hair, ensuring they are all covered. Ensuring every strand is covered is essential since one uncovered strand could interfere with the treatment's effectiveness.
Once fully coated, you must protect your hair from being washed out, ideally with a shower cap or a warm towel. The mixture must sit for 45 minutes to be effective and then rinsed completely to soften and restore your hair. You can wash your hair afterward to get it clean, but this is optional.
Applying a laminate at home is not difficult, but some people prefer to let a salon do the heavy lifting. The biggest problem is that letting a salon perform the treatment means you are limited to their laminate recipe. Conversely, a home treatment allows you to make your own laminate and control what compounds are used in your hair.
For most, creating the laminate is the most difficult part since not everyone is skilled at mixing their compounds (especially since you need to be able to work a stove or other heating device to make a laminate mixture). If you plan on performing a home treatment, you might want to know what benefits it allegedly provides before making a laminate from scratch.
What Benefits Does Hair Lamination Provide?
As mentioned, hair lamination is designed to improve the aesthetic and feel of our hair, with possible benefits for its health going forward. Unfortunately, there is very little information about the treatment outside of the salons that offer it and no research on the treatment's benefits as a whole. While the ingredients of certain laminates (i.e., keratin) have proven benefits, most of hair lamination's benefits are anecdotal.
The main benefits associated with hair lamination include:
- Smoother hair.
- A superior sheen that gives your hair a subtle glow.
- Improved elasticity and softness of the hair strands.
- Sealing the cuticles of your hair against the elements and damage.
- Improved hydration for the hair.
- Prevention of split ends.
- Reduced frizz and tangles.
- Easier detangling of hair.
These benefits simplify hair management and improve your hair's aesthetic so you can take pride in your appearance. Unfortunately, the process of hair lamination does not have much research behind it, so whether it actually provides these benefits is open for debate. Fortunately, the ingredients used in most laminates have proven to improve hair health and enhance its appearance. The question is: Which ingredients in hair laminates are helpful?
The Benefits of Gelatin for Hair
Gelatin is one of the main ingredients in most hair laminates and serves as a base on which the other ingredients can rest. Most people associate gelatin with desserts since there is a literal dessert named after it, but there is much more to gelatin than people realize. Gelatin is a protein harvested from animals like cows and pigs and contains a significant concentration of beneficial nutrients.
The main ingredient in gelatin is an amino acid called glycine that our bodies actively use to produce the proteins we need. Glycine plays a direct role in our health but also has certain cosmetic benefits due to the proteins it helps create. Above all, one protein is most important for our hair and skin because it is directly responsible for its creation. This protein is collagen, which is exclusively found in animals and is what we have to thank for our skin being created. While collagen is primarily linked to skin, it is also responsible for hair growth to a certain extent.
Our bodies naturally produce collagen, but we slowly lose the ability as we age and end up producing the bare minimum. This causes certain signs of aging, like baldness and wrinkles, but it is possible to supplement our collagen levels. Glycine is one of the major structural amino acids for collagen, so adding more to our diets and skincare regimens gives our body access to the raw materials needed to make more.
Using gelatin as an ingredient in your hair laminate will yield a similar effect, though ingesting it might be more effective. Regardless, glycine does play a role in enhancing our hair's health and appearance by promoting a protein we need. However, that alone is insufficient to justify hair lamination treatments. Fortunately, there is still more to learn about laminate ingredients that genuinely help.
The Benefits of Keratin for Hair
Like collagen, keratin is a protein our bodies need to produce several parts, specifically our hair, nails, and skin. In some ways, keratin is more important than collagen, but we ultimately need both. The problem is that keratin is not a single substance with several variants that play different bodily roles. There are 54 kinds of keratin in the human body that can be divided into 2 types:
- Type I Keratin: Out of the 54 in our body, 28 keratin forms are type I. Of these 28, 17 are epithelial keratins contributing to skin growth and health. The remaining 11 are hair keratins that focus on hair growth and health.
- Type II Keratin: The remaining 26 types of keratins are type II. Twenty of these keratins are skin cell keratins, while the other 6 are hair keratins.
We need both types of keratins, but hair laminates only require the 17 that pertain to the hair. Like collagen, we naturally produce keratin so our bodies can grow hair and skin without relying on diet or outside forces. Unfortunately, keratin is prone to deficiency, meaning we could lose significantly, and our hair and skin would pay the price. Fortunately, keratin can be supplemented directly or indirectly.
Collagen is the main building block our bodies use to produce keratin, so adding more collagen to your regimen will give your body the resources it needs to produce more keratin. It is important to note that keratin is a structural protein, meaning it cannot correct baldness or improve your hair's aesthetic. Rather, keratin helps your hair grow stronger than it did before by reinforcing the initial structure.
There have been some records of keratin supplements preventing split or broken ends, but more research is needed to confirm that benefit. Regardless, keratin is an excellent addition to a laminate recipe and can give your hair the tools it needs to strengthen the strands. Alternatively, collagen can be used to help your body produce more keratin.
Finding the Right Blend
Hair lamination treatments might help with short-term aesthetic concerns, but little evidence suggests long-term hair quality or health improvements. This does not discount the treatments since they have become popular for a reason, but you might need a direct supplement if you want lasting changes.
Fortunately, supplementing keratin or collagen is easy and can give your body the natural boost it needs to keep your hair healthy and beautiful. The challenge is finding a vendor that offers these proteins in a natural state so you can either use them as supplements or use them to make a laminate.
We at Teami believe in the body's healing power for both health and cosmetic improvements (aside from major health issues). We realize how important hair is to one's self-confidence and appearance, which is why we have an entire catalog dedicated to hair care. Our products include our Grow + Glow, Hair and Nails Support Gummy Vitamin (which contains keratin), and our Beauty Butterfly Collagen.
While we cannot provide hair lamination treatment, we can provide resources you can use to enhance your hair's health and appearance. We encourage you to visit our website today and try one of our products yourself. After all, finding the right blend is a Teami effort.
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