Ever wondered whether a new beauty launch or trending product is truly worth the hype? Good news—you’re in the right place. I Just Tried… is our regular beauty column where we test out everything from new formulations to cult classics to find out whether they’re really worth your money. Oh, and we’ll even answer the most-searched-for questions so you don’t have to.
It takes a lot for me to get excited about a hair product. I've spoken previously about how totally inept I am at styling my own hair. As long as it's clean, then I'm happy. This is why I simply put the L'Oréal Elvive Wonder Water 8 Second Hair Treatment to one side to test out later when it plopped through my letterbox last month. Sure, the press release had me slightly intrigued—this is one of the best-selling hair treatments in the United States, with one bottle selling every minute—but like I said, I'm just not that fussed about hair stuff.
However, all that changed when basically every beauty editor I know started raving about this hair treatment. As a collective, beauty editors are not that easy to impress. We try a lot of products, so for one to come along that truly causes a stir is pretty rare. My Instagram feed was suddenly full of people singing the praises of this new launch, so I knew I had to try it immediately.
Ahead, I've got the full low-down on everything you need to know about the L'Oréal Wonder Water as well as my honest first impression.
Mica Ricketts before using the L'Oréal Wonder Water.
A little bit on my hair type before we get into my review: It's generally wavy (although some strands are straighter or curlier than others), is always dry (no matter how many hair masks I apply), and would traditionally be described as "frizzy." Although, if I'm being honest, I've always found that hairdressers are more bothered about slicking down my flyaways than I am. I'm actually quite fond of my natural hair texture and never feel quite myself when it's too sleek.
I took my before photo the day after I washed my hair. I had followed my usual routine of shampoo, conditioner, hair mask, and serum before rough-drying and plaiting my hair before bed. (I find that this is the best way to get my hair into some kind of style without having to spend hours messing around with curling tongs and straighteners in the morning.)
So onto the results…
Mica Ricketts after using the L'Oréal Wonder Water.
I have to say, I am seriously impressed with this product. I used two doses of the product and found it really easy to use, without any of the warmth or tingling effects that some people have reported feeling on their scalps. I skipped using both conditioner and serum afterwards, then rough-dried and plaited my hair as usual before bed. This was the result come morning.
My hair felt so soft and shinier than it's possibly ever been from an at-home treatment (trust me—my hair is pretty coarse in texture and never looks shiny), and I could actually glide my fingers through it. Bonus: It also smelt amazing. In fact, the Wonder Water actually smoothed my hair so much that I don't think my hair had enough texture to keep my natural waves in place. Things are definitely looking a little flatter in my after photo, although not in a bad way.
I think that L'Oréal recommends that you use this treatment two or three times a week, but honestly, I've used this every time I've washed my hair since I first started testing it because I genuinely love how my hair feels after using it. Yes, I am slightly obsessed and can confirm that the L'Oréal Wonder Water is definitely worth the hype. At just £10 a bottle, I'll be stocking up, as I predict that this is going to be a sell-out.
What is L'Oréal Elvive Dream Lengths Wonder Water 8 Second Hair Treatment?
Put simply, the L'Oréal Wonder Water is a liquid conditioner. Yes, unlike the creamy, viscous formulations that we're all used to, this conditioner feels just like applying water to your hair. It promises to transform strands in just eight seconds, leaving hair 10 times smoother than before.
How does it work?
This innovative hair treatment is powered by Lamellar Water Technology. Effectively, it's a combination of moisturising agents and amino acids that specifically target dry and damaged areas of hair. Once located, it forms thin layers—called lamella—on those specific areas of damage to smooth the hair's surface and lend it a silkier, shinier appearance.
How do you use it?
After shampooing your hair, use the nozzle tip to apply the product directly to the mid-lengths and ends of your hair. Massage it in for eight seconds, then rinse out. You can follow with your usual conditioner if you like.
How much should you use?
The L'Oréal Wonder Water bottle comes marked with 20 ml doses so you know exactly how much to apply to your hair, something that I'm very much into. L'Oréal recommends one dose for fine-to-medium hair types, two to three doses for thick, curly, or textured hair types, and an extra dose if you have extra-long hair.
Is lamellar water good for your hair?
Yes. It's a rinse-out treatment, so the lamella (those thin layers I mentioned earlier) only bond themselves to the areas of your hair that really need conditioning—so hair doesn't feel weighed down. It's silicone-free, and it works on all hair types from fine to curly. Basically, it makes your strands look and feel healthier.
Shop lamellar hair treatments:
Trust me—this is going to be one of the most popular beauty products of 2021.
This rinse-out treatment also uses lamellar water technology but is specially formulated for bleached hair.
A high-shine finish is the name of the game with this rinse-out lamellar conditioner.