Perhaps the definition of a cult
Perhaps the definition of a cult beauty product is one you ask for by name amidst a sea of products claiming to offer the same result.
Salon hair color is not something I’ve ever asked for by name - even drugstore color to me is more about the pic on the box than the brand. But there wasn’t much real innovation in the category until INOA.
I had the privilege of receiving a color treatment from leading L'Oreal colorist, trainer and advisor (and salon owner) Jo Blackwell of Dop Dop in Soho. I went in with a hot mess of over-highlighted dirty blond hair with scary brassy undertones - I’m sure Jo wanted to jump out the window. Luckily we were below ground level.
After assessing said mess, we picked out two INOA tones - an almost silvery dirty blond and a more golden blond tone. These were mixed in a fat test tube, and Jo did a little show-and-tell explaining the first key difference of INOA color. It’s oil-based - the oil vs. water effect helps drive the hair color deep into the hair shaft, but also conditions and protects the hair.
The second difference was obvious as soon as she applied the single process treatment. INOA feels like a conditioning mask. Because there’s no ammonia, it doesn’t stink or sting. It was kind of revolutionary for me, because I’ve spent so much time suffocating under a hot lamp with a head full of toxic-smelling foils. I literally used to feel sick after getting my hair dyed.
When it was time to rinse, Jo explained the third difference - in order to break up the oils to rinse the product away, every INOA process ends with a HEAD MASSAGE. Hellooooo. I’m sold, I’m coming back next week to go red, black, whatever.
If you really must see my face … OK fine.
The end result was a more even (but still light-reflecting and dynamic) blond tone with a beautiful darker undertone and warmth instead of brass. It wasn’t a dramatic shift in shade - but it was an important shift in tone that really upgraded my hair. Also, my hair feels awesome 4 days later - conditioned, not stripped.
If you usually do single process color (brown, red, black) - I really recommend you seek out this color. You will be SO pleasantly surprised by the experience and result. INOA is only offered by L'Oreal-trained stylists, so ask your salon. If you’re a full head of highlights girl like me, book a consultation and see if this is right for you. For me, the all-over color had a much-need unifying effect and given summer’s coming, I’ll let the sun do its thing until next Fall.
You can book an appointment at Dop Dop in Soho, NYC by calling 212-965-9540. My colorist was owner Jo Blackwell - and I LOVE her.
Thank you to the Vogue Influencer Network for this complimentary treatment and everyone at Dop Dop for a fantastic experience. Top image via INOA.