A new gadget allows stylists to take an in-depth look at your scalp and hair. Edel Coffey goes behind the lens.
A couple of weeks ago, I went along to Dylan Bradshaw’s salon in Dublin to check out its new gadget, the scalp camera. Sounds scary but it’s a rather discreet looking contraption.
In fact, it looks just like any ordinary digital camera — it fits in your palm and has a small colour screen on the back for flicking through the images. But these images are a little different. They are magnified pictures up to 300 times.
Whatever about the camera never lying, there’s absolutely no hiding from the truth of a camera with that sort of magnifying power.
The point is to get an in-depth look at your scalp and hair shaft and to give a highly individual diagnosis, whether that is for more severe problems like alopecia or scalp issues for those undergoing chemotherapy (they do have a private room available for this) or simply to find out what shampoo you should be using.
A stylist can make an accurate diagnosis of a client’s hair by look and feel, but the extreme magnification of the camera allows them to see problems not visible to the naked eye.
The process takes a matter of minutes as a stylist takes pictures of four different points on your scalp and along the length of the hair shaft. I am expecting a bad diagnosis.
My hair is what can only be described as abused. I am addicted to highlights. The end of my hair has the feel of tinder but the pictures tell a different story — my hair is thick and strong. I see it on the camera. It is undeniable. We find only one split end. I feel a ridiculous surge of pride for my poor mistreated hair holding up under such strain and not making a show of me in front of the silken-haired stylist. My scalp is a little dry from washing my hair every day but it’s not a big deal.
A consultation costs €25 but that is redeemable against products bought in the salon (they stock Kérastase and MoroccanOil) and is free with any hair service in the salon.
Do be prepared to be disgusted by your own head though. Magnified 300 times it all looks a little too real but it’s fascinating, and more than any of this it will enable an incredibly accurate prescription for what shampoos and products you should be using, so the next time you do decide to drop €20 on a shampoo you won’t be disappointed by its performance. www.dylanbradshaw.com
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