As someone who embraces the latest and greatest innovations in the beauty industry (much to the detriment of my bank account), I like to believe that it’s my personal duty to spread the word about the ones that I find that are truly life-changing. So take it from me, if you have even the slightest bit of damage in your hair: You need the L’Oreal Paris Elvive 8 Second Wonder Water rinse-off hair treatment in your life.
Admittedly, when I first heard the product name, I was skeptical of its claims, but after months of using it, I can, without any hesitation, vouch for the fact that the Wonder Water does deliver on its promises — just eight seconds was all it took for my frizziness and coarseness to transform into silky softness. And unlike so many of the other buzzworthy salon and celebrity hairstylist lines on the market, this one comes at an almost astonishingly low drugstore price: $9. But what makes it even more priceless in my book is that in addition to saving you money, it really does save you time.
Before I get into how to use it, though, it’s important to understand what makes this mass-market hair mask so magical in the first place. Using L’Oreal’s proprietary “Lameller technology” the liquid hair treatment is formulated to deposit restorative proteins and amino acids (aka “lamelles”) only where the hair follicle needs it. So the more damaged your hair is, the more the active ingredients will be attracted to those spots, instantaneously laying down a blanket of hydration.
OK, now back to the fun part: The Wonder Water in-shower experience. Per the instructions on the bottle, apply it on wet hair directly after you shampoo, and you can use it up to two to three times a week (though, even with thick, coarse hair, once a week is still enough for me to notice results). One dose, which is equal to 20 milliliters, is suggested for fine to medium hair; two to three for thick to curly hair; and if your hair is longer, you may even want more. There are about 10 doses in each bottle, and I go through about one bottle per month on average (I’m such a loyal fan, in fact, that I now get it delivered monthly via Subscribe & Save). The best part of the bottle design— yes, it deserves to be shouted out — is the apothecary-style tick marks right on the back, which clearly indicate the amount in each dose. That means no more squinting or second-guessing yourself as you try to pour, which is a small but significant victory!
The liquid looks and feels very watery, which means it’s very easy to miss your head. My advice: Step away from the showerhead, point the applicator toward the length of your hair (just be sure to avoid the scalp), squeeze the product out, check to make sure your proper dose has been distributed, and then repeat as necessary. Then immediately use your fingers to comb it through your strands from top to bottom. You may feel a gentle warming sensation on your scalp right away, which is normal — it means the ingredients are going to work. From there, count to eight, and then rinse. With such an immediate smoothing effect, you could easily stop your shower at this point and forgo conditioner (yet again saving you time and money). However, I still prefer to condition my ends on days when my hair is particularly parched from hot tools.
For even greater results, the brand recommends following your treatment with a blow-dry, but I’ve personally had fantastic results even when I don’t. In fact, it doesn’t seem to matter what variable I throw into my grooming routine, I know when I incorporate the Wonder Water, my hair will be smoother, less frizzy, and glossier. It will also feel lighter and bouncer, and if you know me, then you would realize those are not words I would previously have ever used to describe my own hair.
While the formula is sulfate- and silicone-free, you’ll want to consider that fragrance is fairly high on the ingredient list. That potent, chemical-ish floral scent is actually the only gripe I have with the product because it lingers and it’s not the most pleasant on my nose. Still, it’s a trade-off I’m willing to make for all of the other major benefits.
Scan the Amazon reviews section and you’ll discover plenty of other fans — with varying hair types from mine— gushing about their "amazing" results, too. “I have 3c type hair type hair and struggle with a lot a breakage, unmanageability, and moisture. [...] I have never in my 22 years felt my hair like this. I feel like I have a completely different head of hair,” boasts one. Adds another, “I have used it two times on my fine, thin, color treated hair and WOW!! It smooths out your hair leaving it so soft and shiny, and here is the kicker for me, WITHOUT WEIGHING YOUR HAIR DOWN! In fact my hair had so much volume!”
So if you're ready to get yourself some instant hair gratification, this L’Oreal Paris Elvive 8 Second Wonder Water treatment is worth grabbing.