Are All Thermal Reconditioning Results the Same?

No! Thermal reconditioning (also called thermal hair straightening, thermal hair rebonding or Japanese straightening) is a method of permanently straightening curly, frizzy or unruly hair. The brand that your stylist uses will determine the type of results that you get.

Allow me to explain. Let's take the Yuko method of thermal reconditioning (to be referred to as TR from now on) as an example. The Yuko method is perhaps the best known. It was the first TR method to be introduced in the United States, therefore it has been around slightly longer than the rest. The Yuko method was developed in Japan and the type of results it produces are usually what people think of when they speak of "Japanese Straightening".

The Yuko method results in hair that is pin straight. The hair is sleek and healthy (when performed by an experienced stylist, of course). On many women it can tend to look almost flat-ironed when allowed to dry naturally. Some of the disadvantages are that the hair may end up looking quite flat to the head. Hair that has been treated with this procedure lacks body and will not hold any sort of bend or curl. Women who have had their hair "Yuko straightened" are locked into one hairstyle, which consists of being worn straight, straight, straight.

Another example of thermal reconditioning is the Liscio Method. The Liscio method is generally referred to as thermal reconditioning as well as Japanese hair straightening. This particular method of TR permanently straightens the hair but allows it to retain body and it can be curled and styled. I personally have found that most women want to retain body and bounce in their hair and want the option to use a round brush or curling iron. Yet another method is called Bio Ionic. This falls into the same type of straightening category as the Liscio method in that the hair can still be curled and will retain body.

All three of these TR methods permanently straighten the hair and result in healthy, humidity-proof hair that will not frizz in foggy or humid conditions. As you can see, however, the actual results vary. I hope this clears up some of the confusion that I often hear. You can find out more by visiting these websites:, and (I am also available in San Francisco to answer any questions in a complimentary consultation. Email me by clicking the free consultation button below.

~ Blair
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Adding Hollywood Glamour to Thermally Reconditioned Hair

April 19, 2014

Sometimes a picture really IS worth a thousand words. One of the qualities that makes the Bio Ionic hair straightening procedure so attractive is that unlike some of the other treatments out there, your hair can still be styled and curled.

Melissa has been having Bio Ionic Thermal Reconditioning procedures done for 9 years. She has beautiful long red hair but its natural texture is coarse, wavy and frizzy.

Here is a photo of her hair before she is having a retouch service. We will be treating only the regrowth and the rest of the hair will have protective products applied.

This is her hair right after we have straightened the roots with the Bio ionic permanent straightening procedure.
Melissa came back months later because she wanted an "old Hollywood glamour" hairstyle for a party she was going to. With a little product and a curling iron, we were able to achieve the look she wanted.
This hairstyle would have been impossible to achieve if she had been having some of the other types of thermal reconditioning done instead of the Bio Ionic. With some of the others, her hair would have barely taken a bend and even if it had, it would have lost the curl very quickly. Bio Ionic rocks.
~ Blair

Yuko 101

October 8, 2013

I recently attended a Yuko Japanese Straightening class as an observer. We stylists who were already experienced were there to watch the other stylists learn how to perform the Yuko procedure and of course, learn little tips and tricks in the process. There is always something new to learn which keeps our profession interesting.

As an observer, I had time to take a lot of photos and I want to share a little bit about the process with you. I tracked the progress of two models in particular.

Both model's hair were analyzed for proper solution type, timing and application of protective products. Next they were shampooed and their hair was pre-treated with protective products. After that, the 1st straightening solution was applied.
After the appropriate timing, each model was shampooed and their hair was treated with more protective products. At this point, the tedious work begins. The hair was divided into 4 quadrants. Each quadrant was blow dried to about 80 - 90% dry.

After each section was blow dried, very small sub sections were painstakingly flat ironed. It took about 2 hours to flat iron EACH model properly. The heat from the flat iron is what re-forms the softened internal bonds of the hair into its new, straight configuration.
By now the hair looks perfect but it's not ready yet. A neutralizer gets applied over all of that beautifully flat-ironed hair! Basically the neutralizer 'sets' the hair into its new shape. After 5 minutes the neutralizer get rinsed off and the hair is shampooed, conditioned and blown dry. It is straight . Yay! .
The final step involves flat ironing the hair again. Fortunately, this step does not need to take a long time. The hair is flat ironed quickly and it goes from straight to shiny, lustrous and absolutely pin straight. After each model receives the final style, they are finished. Another Yuko miracle has been performed!.
~ Blair

Tales from Behind the Chair

September 10, 2013

A new client came in for a haircut. As I was cutting and combing, she asked me not to let the comb touch her head in a certain spot because she had been mauled by a lion when she was younger. Hmmm..... I told myself that she must have told that story way too many times for me to ask her to tell it again so I kept quiet. I kept cutting and cutting and finally blurted out, "Ok, I'm sorry but I just have to ask......"

Well, apparently she had been playing tennis with several girlfriends one day when she was a young teen. She said that her hair was so long at the time that it fell below her short tennis skirt.

She and her friends were invited to someone's house afterwards. The owners lived in a wealthy enclave with peacocks roaming the grounds. The owners mentioned that they had a baby lion on the premises. Would the girls like to see it? Of course! Thinking that the little guy was in a cage, they were led into a room. The baby lion was not in a cage, he had the full run of the room that he was kept in. Well, you know how kittens like to play with yarn? Yep. That little lion took one look at her long hair... She said that she can still remember it leaping across the room towards her. She said she always remembers it in slooooow motion. He pinned her down and started playing with her hair until they could entice him off of her. This is a true story and these types of stories are the reason that my profession is never boring!
~ Blair


Blair Everett

1889 Union St

San Francisco, CA 94123

(415) 279 2044

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