This Is the Leave-In Conditioner InStyle's Associate Beauty Editor Swears By
I put my hair through a lot.
Although I have since cooled it in terms of how often I used to color it—I used to be on the Katy Perry schedule a few years back—it still has some damage and split ends from all of the heat styling I do. Blowout bars are my guilty pleasure, and when I'm doing my own hair, I tend to veer between heavy use with either my flat iron or curling wand, depending on whether I want to be Posh Spice or Chrissy Teigen for the day. That being said, a good thermal protectant is key in my lineup, but I'm pretty particular with the formulas that actually make it into the hair drawer in my bathroom.
What, like you don't have an entire drawer full of tools and styling products?
They can't be too heavy, but need to pack enough moisture to glue my split ends back together. If I want to switch up my style the next day with one of my hair tools, I can't have the product flaking off with the heat I apply. Above all, it's got to smell good. I found all of this in Shu Uemura's Blow Dry Beautifier Thermo BB Hair Cream. Try saying that five times fast.
The cream is available in two different formulas—one for fine hair, and one for thick hair—so I use the latter since my hair basically looks like a lion's mane when I let it air-dry. I work it through my ends while it's still pretty damp, then rough-dry it until most of the water has been removed. This makes for a less aggressive arm workout than starting from 100% soaked. I love how the product is lightweight, but still strong enough to fuse my frayed ends back together. The formula is rich in ginko biloba extract, which helps keep my strands hydrated and healthy, and it also gives you some flexibility if you want to experiment with different textures over the course of your blowout.
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The cream is infused with a special wax, which coats the hair and melts to your shape of choosing once you apply a curling wand or flat iron, and once it cools, the wax locks in the form. If you want to go for a different look the next day, your heat tools will once again melt the wax to make your hair more pliable, and sets your new texture into place as it cools. You don't have to worry about the product flaking off, and it still delivers the same protection from the heat as it did when you first applied. Above all, it smells great—it's slightly reminiscent of this gorgeous lily fragrance my mom bought from Victoria's Secret back in the '90s, but has since been discontinued. I've been searching for an imitation for what seems like decades, so I was pleasantly surprised that a few floral notes in this somewhat mimicked the scent, with a refreshing green element added in.
Pick up a tube for yourself at shuuemuraartofhair-usa.com, priced at $39.