Thanks to the exceptionally humid climate in Singapore, frizzy hair is a common problem for most types of hair. Expats often struggle with it when they first arrive, and even without rushing around or getting caught in the rain, it’s almost impossible to keep a hairstyle looking fresh all day here. To help tackle the problem, we’ve rounded up some of the top frizzy hair treatments, offered by our favourite hair salons across town.
The treatment: Brazilian Blowout
The salon: Expat Hair Studio
This was my first time trying a Brazilian Blowout and it definitely won’t be the last! I have hair a little past shoulder length and I usually dye it every six weeks to keep the grey at bay. Unfortunately, no matter how much energy I spend on my hair – be it colour or conditioning – I still have no option but to wear it up due to the frizz. I can blow-dry my hair smooth, but once I step outside, it becomes like a bird’s nest, as if I’ve not brushed it in weeks.
So I decided to take a chance with the Brazilian Blowout (from $250) at Expat Hair Studio. I first had my hair touched up with colour, and then four days later I went to get the treatment. Getting the touch-up beforehand was ideal because after the blowout you can’t do any chemical treatment for about 14 days.
Junior Stylist Andrew talked me through the procedure and I felt comfortable knowing what was going to happen. When the blowout was done, my hair looked great. But what would happen next, as soon as I stepped out of the salon or went for a workout? Could anything hold up to Singapore’s humidity?
I proceeded to put the frizzy hair treatment through its paces. I went swimming and exercising, and after washing and drying my hair, it still looked like I was straight out of the salon. On one occasion, I felt it was a little too flat, so I sprayed on some dry shampoo and touched up the tips with hair oil. It looked fantastic. I’m thrilled to have done the treatment and I will be doing this again for my frizzy hair. Thank you, Andrew and Kat of Expat Hair Studio!
– Jennifer Compton
The treatment: Advanced Sugar Hair Lamination
The salon: Chez Vous
After moving from Hong Kong recently, my hair was a mess! To be honest, it looked and felt like a broom made from coconut husk. The change in weather and stress of moving had clearly had an effect, and something needed to be done. Enter the Advanced Sugar Hair Lamination service (from $235) at Chez Vous. The experts at the salon designed this treatment for those who love their natural curls and waves, but find them unmanageable and unruly in a climate like Singapore’s. It aims to soften the hair without completely sacrificing the natural curls. It sounded like it was designed for me!
The frizzy hair treatment started with a quick but relaxing massage by hair technician Winnie Wong, which was just the thing I needed after a long week. My hair was infused with an added dose of vitamin C, an integral part of the treatment. This was followed by a thorough wash. While Winnie worked her magic, I couldn’t help but be lulled into a state of deep relaxation while looking up at the silk towels hanging from the ceiling, folded to look like flowers. It was simple, calming and definitely better than staring at a blank wall. You have to love the attention to detail.
My fairy godfather for the afternoon was Associate Director Readen Chia, and he explained the treatment every step of way while working his magic with Oribe products, blow-dryers and tongs. Within an hour, my hair was transformed from dry, frizzy and unmanageable to smooth, silky, luscious and red carpet-ready.
This treatment is meant to last four to six weeks. It’s not permanent, so the effects will reduce a bit with every wash, but you can help it last longer with the Oribe haircare range, which can be purchased at the salon.”
– Komal Lakhani-Shankar
The treatment: K18 treatment
The salon: The Parlour
After years of colouring and heat damage, my hair is dry and brittle – I’m always trying different products to improve its condition. I read some good things about the K18 anti-frizz and strengthening treatment, so I jumped at the opportunity to try it out for myself at The Parlour.
K18 is available as an add-on treatment with a colour or another service at the salon ($40) or as a standalone treatment ($70) including a blow-dry service, which was what I had. My lovely stylist Sylvie explained that unlike other hair-repairing treatments and bond rebuilding products, K18 is a leave-in treatment and is applied directly after shampooing the hair. It works by penetrating the cortex of the hair and repairing broken keratin chains using its star ingredient, the K18Peptide. The peptide transports amino acids into the hair shaft to help repair damaged bonds and restore the hair’s strength, shine and elasticity.
One of the best things about this treatment is that it takes only four minutes to work its magic, and by retaining the active ingredients in your hair, the benefits last longer. I was also happy to learn that K18 products don’t contain any nasties such as sulphates, and they’re vegan and cruelty-free.
After only 30 minutes in the salon, I left feeling really pleased with my hair – it had a lovely shine, and felt and looked much healthier. I was also amazed at how immediate the effects were. Even my husband and daughter commented on my smooth and shiny locks when I returned home. That must mean it’s really good!
– Juliet Keys
Psst… We did an online review of the K18 leave-in hair mask, which is also available for purchase at selected hair salons. For more information on the full range of K18 products, visit woorailoora.com.sg.
Your secret solutions to frizzy hair
When we asked you lot on Facebook how you all cope with the humidity, we received lots of weird and wonderful tips. From homemade recipes to slimy showers, you’ve all tried and tested these interesting (and affordable) tricks. And, not ones to keep secrets, we’re sharing the good stuff with the rest of you so we can all have a crack at finding the perfect anti-frizz solution.
Jennifer Jenkinson Cormier
“I use one tablespoon of baking soda to a cup of water (no shampoo). Condition with an organic conditioner, lightly rinse, then use a sulphate-free and alcohol-free styling product. My curly hair loves it and I’ve been getting a lot of compliments lately.”
“Turkish olive oil soap can be used to wash hair. If you add a squirt of conditioner to a jug of warm water and pour over your hair it acts as a leave-in conditioner – this is a tip from Kelly Hoppen who has amazing curls.”
“Coconut oil works great for moisturising and fighting frizz, but keep it off of the roots. Concentrating an oil control shampoo primarily close to the scalp (try not rub the lather everywhere) helps to dry the roots but not the rest of the hair. Towel dry your hair then add a leave-in conditioner mixed with frizz-control serum – work it through the hair. Blow dry on the cool setting. Use a lightweight hair spray!”
“Red wine vinegar rinse (diluted, of course) helps with the grease – but the smell can be offensive so add a few drops of essential oil!”
“Apply olive oil for five minutes before washing. I also used Goldwell Rich repair treatment shampoo and Oscar Blandi smoothing hair treatment. My hair is much better now!”
Cathy Lindsay Jones
“I don’t know yet about the humidity but I am learning how to deal with curl and fight frizz. The key is moisture and Deva’s Moisture Masque is amazing. Use sulphate-free shampoo, condition well, and try a curl gel or mousse. Blow-drying just makes it worse.”
“I learnt the best system from Alison Kerlin. Shampoo once with a 20-cent size amount of shampoo – the point isn’t to build up a big lather, just break the oil/water resistance – then rinse. Shampoo again with same amount and lather up very nicely, rinse again. Lastly, apply conditioner only to the ends. The most important bit is the rinsing. For short to medium length hair: one minute after the first shampoo, two minutes after the second shampoo and three minutes after the conditioner. For longer hair – longer time. My hair looks amazing now.”
“Lemon and green tea rinse. And don’t forget to use an ion-emitting brush.”
This article first appeared in the August 2021 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!
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