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I Tried This 10-Minute Japanese Hair Treatment—And It Revived My Damaged, Colored Hair!

Whether you’ve just had your hair colored, rebonded or permed, this Linkage Meu treatment by Japanese brand Milbon can bring your hair back to life.

Colored, bleached, rebonded, permed—chemically treated hair seems to be the norm, everywhere you go. Why bother ironing or styling your hair everyday when you can have it permanently straight or permed? And don’t get us started on the colors and variations you can try with your hair: ombre, balayage, ash blonde, pastel pink, the most elusive platinum  blonde—our hair goals seem to go on and on!


But while we spend so much money and time making our hair fabulous—to the point of damage, we tend to forget that we also need to take care of it after an intense hair job. I, myself, am guilty of this. I would color my hair differently every month, but I would always say I have no time to go for a hair treatment. Ergo, damaged and frizzy hair. 


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But it so happened that the hair gods took notice of my dying crown of locks and invited us at Metro.Style to the Creative Mix Inc. ''CMI'' studio for a Milbon Linkage Meu hair treatment. CMI is the exclusive Philippine Distributor of Milbon, the manufacturer of Linkage Meu. Dubbed as Japan's No. 1 Professional Hair Cosmetics brand, Milbon is trusted by over 40,000 salons worldwide. Milbon has more than 50 years of experience developing hair products in collaboration with expert hair stylists. All Milbon products are backed by rigorous scientific research and high performing ingredients to ensure and preserve the hair's integrity.




The Subject

So let’s get straight to it. You want to know how they revived my damaged locks, right? I went to the CMI Studio for the treatment with level 9 bleached hair (level 9 means the hair is super light and can only be achieved through a number of bleaching sessions) that’s colored red, damaged, and frizzy. Full disclosure: my hair feels like Barbie hair to the touch, and I dread combing it every morning because of tangling and frizz. 


I also came with two anxieties in mind: that my hair was too damaged to be revived, and that the treatment might make my hair bleed out its color. So, I was the perfect lab rat to this experiment. Will this hair treatment bring back my faith in haircare products?



The Treatment

So what kind of treatment did I end up getting? The Linkage Meu (pronounced as “myoo”) treatment is a quick 3-step salon treatment system that includes aromatherapy. It’s designed to instantly improve the hair—even extremely damaged hair—so it can again appear healthy, smooth, and shiny. 


It all sounds like the promises of your usual hair treatment—your mom’s favorite hot oil treatment, your officemate’s Keratin treatment, or that bottle of hair spa you buy from the local drugstore. But there are three things that differentiates Milbon’s Linkage Meu treatment from others.


One, it’s so quick! The treatment takes 10 to 15 minutes from start to end. No need to schedule an hour-long appointment at the salon because you can literally go out of the office during lunch break and be back for a full-course lunch meal.


The author, Jovi Figueroa


Two, the treatment is personalized and specifically designed for Asian hair. Western products usually design their treatment according to the condition of the hair—is it healthy, is it dry, etc. But all Milbon products and services target the needs of your hair according to its texture—whether it’s fine, normal, or coarse hair. 


Three, the treatment is complemented by a home care system that extends the treatment’s benefits until your next visit to the salon. Because let’s admit it, no treatment can last forever. But if you can prolong its effects as much as you can, isn’t that so much bang for your buck? This weekly hair care component improves the quality of your hair with each use and comes with every purchase of the treatment.



The Process

We did say it takes only as quick as 10 minutes to do the Linkage Meu treatment, so here’s the breakdown of the whole thing.


First, the hair technician determined my hair texture: fine hair, normal hair, or coarse hair. Then, she prescribed the right kind of products depending on my hair type. This is so the hair is not overburdened or undertreated, so she matched the right kind of product and system for me.


After I was led to the shampoo station, she started shampooing my hair with a Milbon shampoo called Neu Due (pronounced “noy doo-weh”). I especially appreciate that she used a shampoo like Neu Due because it’s designed to improve the texture of the hair without stripping the hair of its color. Neu Due products also come in three variants, depending on hair texture.


After rinsing, that’s when the 3-step system was applied. The Linkage Meu treatment is called as such because the three products used are linked together to improve the elasticity and moisture of the hair.


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Since I had normal hair texture, they used the Linkage Meu 1+ on me for Step 1, which is an amino oil that smoothens out the bumps on the hair surface. After that is Step 2, which is a moisture veil that bonds with amino oil and retains moisture. Step 2 is the same for all hair types. After Step 2, the hair is rinsed well and combed. For Step 3, they use the Linkage Meu 3+ on me, which acts as the smooth top coat over the moisture veil. This is the last step before the final rinsing. 


Sounds quick and easy? Well, it is! There’s no need to leave the products on for a certain amount of time to process because they work as soon as you apply them on the hair. That’s why the treatment is so quick to do. Saves a lot of time, right?


After the hair is rinsed, the appropriate Elujuda variant is applied on the hair before blow drying. Elujuda comes in two variants, depending on your  hair texture. This product contains the special Baobab oil, an oil that comes only from South Africa and Australia, that’s the closest oil variant to our real hair oil so there’s no greasiness. 



The Verdict

I have so many thoughts about the Linkage Meu treatment because I got out of the CMI Studio feeling like a new woman! First, the treatment smells so good. No headache-inducing salon smells and there’s no formaldehyde compared to keratin or other treatments so it’s perfectly safe, even for pregnant women. They did claim the treatment is also an aromatherapy of sorts, and the products delivered that well. Each step was like a different aromatic journey—from citrus scents to floral scents, it was really relaxing and soothing.


Honestly, after a blow dry session, any hair looks like amazing hair. I know that for sure, that’s why all salons end their treatments and whatnots with a good blowdryer. But once you touch your hair, that’s when you know if the treatment worked or not. Remember I said my hair was Barbie hair to the touch? After the Linkage Meu treatment, for the first time in two long years, my hair felt like virgin hair again. In fact, I woke up the next day and I noticed the silkiness did not fade at all! For the first time, I was able to run my fingers through my bed hair—and it went through fine, like I was going through silk.


Did the treatment mess with my hair color? Not even a bit. The thing with Milbon is that they also have a great line of hair coloring products, so they make sure that all their treatments and over-the-counter hair products sold in leading salons are safe for colored hair. Hallelujah! The hair technician did recommend to have the Linkage Meu treatment right after an intense hair job like coloring or rebonding, so as to bring back the hair’s life and vigor.


So overall, did I like the Linkage Meu treatment? Oh, I loved it! Goodbye Barbie hair, hello new life. 



Final notes

Remember that we did say that the treatment comes with a home care system? That meant four vials of Linkage Meu 4, a specialized home care repair treatment that you should apply once a week at home. And these four vials come free of charge, too! By using these four vials weekly, alongside Milbon’s specialized Neu Due shampoo and conditioner that you can purchase in salons offering the treatment, you can keep your hair looking like you just came out of the salon for 4 to 5 weeks. 


The Linkage Meu treatment is available in many leading salons nationwide, with an SRP starting at P1,500. Price varies depending on the salon and hair length.



Photos courtesy of Milbon