After noticing a handful of ultra-sensorial movies on my TikTok For You web page that showcased Japanese head spa remedies (as of this writing, #headspa has 168 million views on the app), I used to be tempted to offer my scalp just a little TLC of its personal. So—for the sake of analysis and the sorry state of my strands (and since there isn’t at present a head spa in my house metropolis of San Francisco)—I flew to Los Angeles for an appointment with Sayuri Tchushitani at Head Spa EN in quest of higher hair days.
What’s a Japanese Head Spa?
Although head spas have solely just lately turn out to be well-liked within the West, they’ve lengthy been widespread throughout Asia, and provide therapeutic massages that promote a wholesome scalp, robust hair, higher sleep, stress reduction, and extra.
The remedy itself focuses on the scalp and hair. “It includes deep clear, detox, therapeutic massage to nourish the scalp and hair,” says Keiko Uehara, co-founder and CEO of Blow Me Away Natural Salon and Head Spa in Los Angeles. “It incorporates Japanese therapeutic massage approach with natural merchandise to stimulate blood movement and promote wholesome hair development.”
The time period ‘head spa’ is used interchangeably to explain each the salon and the remedy itself, and its origins may be traced again to Ayurvedic drugs in India, which has lengthy relied on herbs and oils for hair development and to nourish the scalp.
“In Japan, hair is taken into account an necessary side of magnificence and grooming, and caring for the scalp is seen as an integral a part of sustaining wholesome and exquisite hair,” explains Uehara, “It’s a custom in Japan to obtain a head therapeutic massage whereas doing different hair remedies and that contributed to the event of head spa in that space.”
Rising up in Japan, Tchushitani discovered firsthand about the advantages of those remedies. However when she turned a hairstylist within the West (particularly in New York, London, and Los Angeles), she observed an inclination to cowl up scalp points with over-the-counter lotions and ache relievers as an alternative of coping with the foundation trigger. “Many remedies put band-aids on the problem relatively than treating the issue on the supply,” she says.
So she determined to open a head spa of her personal that might provide a extra holistic method to hair care than what we’ve historically seen within the US. “Stress causes extra issues than we give it credit score for, and the top spa is a small sanctuary from all of that,” she says.
The advantages of Japanese head spas
Your motive for visiting a head spa might vary from treating cussed dandruff to stress-free your thoughts after an extended day. No matter why you have an interest, we break down the entire advantages under.
Scalp points are a serious draw for head spas. Irritation, dryness, extreme oiliness, and dandruff are points that Tchushitani sees on a regular basis. She views the top spa remedy as a reset button in your scalp. A wholesome scalp helps facilitate wholesome hair, so customers usually discover a rise in shine and luster after their remedy.
Past that, head spas are mentioned to encourage hair development. Although there may be restricted analysis on the subject, Kari Williams, MD, a board-certified trichologist, licensed cosmetologist, and pure hair specialist, sees the connection. “Sustaining wholesome hair development is supported by using merchandise that can maintain the scalp and hair follicles freed from buildup and preserve wholesome blood circulation within the scalp,” she says. “So in that means, these explicit scalp care practices do support and promote wholesome hair development.”
That being mentioned, Tiffany Libby, MD, a board-certified dermatologist based mostly in Rhode Island, cautions in opposition to utilizing this as a remedy for a medical situation. “It sounds beautiful, and seems to be a self-care observe that could be a ‘nice-to-have’ not a ‘must-have,’” she says.
For Tchushitani, the advantages of Head Spa lengthen past cosmetics. Sure, shiny strands and a fuller mane are nothing to sneeze at, however she is rather more within the stress reduction and sleep support unwanted side effects.
In her house nation of Japan, insomnia charges are a few of the highest on the earth. When she bought to the US, she realized the scenario was not significantly better. “Individuals don’t notice how negatively stress impacts their lives,” she says, “It’s so necessary to search out small methods to mitigate stress in your each day routines.”
That’s the place the top spa is available in. Her purchasers vary from youngsters in search of out anxiousness reduction to middle-aged males preventing insomnia. No matter why they search out the remedy, most of Tchushitani’s purchasers fall asleep inside the first 10 minutes. Uehara additionally notes how the observe may help relieve rigidity and stress within the head and neck.
What occurred once I tried it
At Tchushitani’s salon, my head spa expertise started with a session. Utilizing a microscope, she combed by my half and confirmed me close-up photos of my scalp. Pink patches round my crown meant irritation, whereas oily clumps round my hairline meant build-up. Fortunately, Tchushitani assured me that this was nothing just a little cleaning couldn’t deal with.
As an alternative of leaping instantly into shampooing, Tchushitani adopted the session with a neck and shoulder therapeutic massage that included sizzling stones, a soothing sound machine, and a dimly lit room. She talked about that lots of her purchasers go to sleep throughout the remedy, which I might actually relate to as my very own eyelids began to get heavy (however for the sake of this story, I stayed awake).
Subsequent, it was time for the wash. Not like at salons, the place water usually drips down your brow and suds make their means into your eyes, Tchushitani was meticulous. Her nimble fingers ran throughout my hairline with precision, making a small moat for extra water, and shortly returned to the again of my head, her knuckles lifting, urgent, and shaking till the suds absolutely retreated.
Then got here the steaming step, which is what usually will get TikTok voyeurs commenting, “I would like this in my life!” Tchushitani hooked up an extra-large steaming bonnet to my head to open the pores on my scalp to permit for a deeper clear. From there, she gave me a deeper and extra concerned therapeutic massage, which was nothing in need of superb (critically—the shampoo-step therapeutic massage doesn’t even examine to this prolonged model). As soon as once more, I struggled to maintain my eyes open whereas she rubbed and tapped at uncared for areas of my scalp.
I finally got here out of my haze when she completed with one more neck and shoulder therapeutic massage which was fantastic despite the fact that it signaled the tip of my dream state.
Tchushitani was gracious sufficient to complete my remedy with a blowout, which is obtainable for an additional cost. To cap issues off, she ended the appointment by revisiting my scalp underneath the microscope, which revealed that my pink spots had returned to their regular shade of peach and the oily blobs had vanished. As an added bonus, my blowout regarded bouncy and full.
The fee for the remedy varies, however at Head Spa EN, Tchushitani provides two choices. The 40-minute prices $110 and the 60-minute prices $150 with a further $60 cost for a blowout.
Scalp pleasant merchandise
If this remedy seems like what you want however you may’t discover a salon close to you, don’t fret. These merchandise promote a wholesome scalp surroundings, and just a little DIY-scalp therapeutic massage may help you replicate the stress-free surroundings of a head spa in your personal rest room.
Watch a (fairly disgusting, but oddly satisfying) scalp facial:
Our editors independently choose these merchandise. Making a purchase order by our hyperlinks might earn Properly+Good a fee.