One of my many (and I mean many) guilty pleasures is indulging in spa treatments. I love facials, massages, manicures and pedicures. However, I’ve never, ever done anything for my scalp. I never even knew there were scalp treatments to be had, until the friendly team over at Noel Sy in Bala Cynwyd introduced me to their scalp treatment (yes, there’s no fancy name, they call it like it is).
I was a bit skeptical. What exactly was I getting myself into? They explained that it was simply like getting a “facial for the scalp.” It’s a relaxing, indulgent 90-minute facial for the scalp, to be more exact. I felt this neglected area of my body certainly deserved some attention, so I obliged. The change of seasons always makes my scalp feel a little tight, and there are certain spots right around my hairline that I believed would benefit from some special attention, so I couldn’t wait to hear an expert opinion on what condition my scalp was in.
Specialist Claire Chae performs the treatment in a quiet, Thai-inspired private room upstairs at Noel Sy. Chae uses an innovative technology called Beauty Scope to observe and magnify the scalp. The magnified image of the scalp is projected onto a screen, allowing Chae to diagnose the scalp with any issues like dry or oily hair, sensitive or dandruff-prone scalps, and psoriasis.
I was definitely feeling vulnerable when my scalp was projected on the screen. It was like sitting in the dentist’s chair waiting for him to scold me for not properly flossing. I had no idea what was going on underneath my thick head of hair. Although I would say that the scalp is definitely not an area of the head that should be magnified, I will admit that it was pretty interesting to see up close and personal.
Chae was very kind and reassured me by saying my scalp looked “pretty good.” There were a few dry spots, which is quite common. What grossed me out was when she told me that everyone had dust in his or her hair. It makes sense, since we walk around all day with our hair exposed—of course, some dust is bound to land there. It just wasn’t something I ever thought about. She also told me that my hair was a bit oily (and here I always thought my hair was dry), but that was it.
My favorite part of the treatment was when Chae brushed my hair simultaneously with two paddle brushes to massage the head and stimulate blood circulation. It was absolute heaven. I could have left after this, completely happy and satisfied.
The next part of the treatment was treating the hair with a protein-based fortifying oil, which strengthens and repairs damaged hair follicles. While I waited for the oil treatment to soak in, Chae gave me a complimentary paraffin wax treatment for my hands and a lavender eye compress to totally chill out. OK, at this point, I started to doze off because I was so relaxed. I perked up when the oil treatment was rinsed out, which was followed by an aloe-rich exfoliating cream that smelled like peppermint. It felt so refreshing.
The fabulous stylist Traviss Kraisopraphong then blow-dried my hair—and I could devote a whole other story to what an amazing job Traviss does with blowouts. My hair looked fabulous.
I went back upstairs for Chae to run the scope over my freshly treated scalp. What a difference. She showed me how clear it looked around the hair follicles and how the hair looked much smoother. I was sorry I ever doubted the treatment! And if the image on the screen wasn’t enough to convince me, the way my whole head felt certainly did.
I felt so much lighter, similar to how I feel after I get a massage. My hair looked so silky and shiny that I wished I had somewhere important to go that night. Chae left me with the reminder that, if you want beautiful, silky hair, you can’t forget to maintain the scalp with regular treatments.
After this experience, I promise you, scalp, I’ll never neglect you again.
Prices range from $95 to $150, depending on the severity of problem areas and the selection of products used. Shorter treatments are also available and start at $35.
Noel Sy, 321 Montgomery Ave., Bala Cynwyd; (610) 667-8777, noelsy.com