Would you set your hair on fire for the possibly of having more luscious and luxurious locks? It looks like celebrities and supermodels already have. The new beauty trend popping up from Brazil is called Velaterapia, and it’s causing quite a stir in the fashion world. The treatment is being done (and Instagramed) by models and celebs and involves taking a lit candle and actually burning the ends of the hair. This sounds crazy right? Well apparently it’s been a favorite way of treating split ends since the 1950s.
A photo posted by @alessandraambrosio on May 29, 2015 at 3:33pm PDT
The treatment reportedly originated with Mercedes Dios, a Brazilian hairdresser in the ‘50s who perfected the burning process. By twisting small pieces of the hair, areas that need to be trimmed, such as breaking strands and split ends, are revealed. A stylist then runs a lit candle vertically up and down the twist to burn off these damaged ends. It’s a way of “cauterizing” the tips to remove the dead ends and prevent breakage in the future. Then the stylist goes in and trims extra split ends by hand. Apparently it takes a few hours to complete, but results in a softer smother mane, without losing any of the style or length.
A photo posted by @bebel_espacoparabeleza on Jul 2, 2015 at 6:44pm PDT
While the trend has been around for a number of years—it popped up briefly in the early aughts and again for a quick stint last year—this time around it may have some staying power thanks to supermodels like Alessandra Ambrosio and Izabel Goulart Instagramming their treatment. Of course if you’re not a fan of the smell of burning hair, or don’t like the idea of setting your strands on fire, this might not be for you. Across the board hair stylists suggest you ditch any ideas of trying it at home (apparently it needs to be said) and go to a Velaterapia-trained pro. As it is a Brazilian specialty it might be harder to find a practitioner in the US or Europe, but next time you’re in São Paulo you might want to give this hair burning thing a try.