I Tried The Viral Japanese Head Spa Treatment: Here’s What I Thought

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By Natalie McGowan | 15th March 2024

For better or for worse, I’ll admit, I’m quite susceptible to being influenced – throw an ad at me and I’m pretty much sold. So when my FYP and IG feed started presenting me with video after video of people indulging in Japanese head spas, I knew I had to try it for myself (in the name of research, of course).

A quick Google search showed there was a clinic near me offering the treatment, so I booked myself into atama, a dreamy, holistic clinic based on James St, and eagerly awaited the date. In the meantime, I started looking up all the info I could find on the treatment so I knew exactly what to expect.

What is a Japanese head spa?

As the name suggests, the treatment was popularised in Japan and has since gained traction all over the world thanks to social media. With a focus on nourishing and cleansing the scalp and hair, a head spa is essentially a facial for your scalp. After all, just like the rest of your body, your scalp needs a little TLC! 

What are the benefits?

  • Strengthens hair follicles
  • Stimulates blood flow (which can aid in hair regrowth)
  • Can help reduce dandruff
  • Can help ease headaches and tension
  • Cleanses the scalp and hair

Come with us to try the viral Japanese head spa 🙌🏼 #fyp #foryou #stylemagazines #headspa #japaneseheadspa #spa #selfcare #atama #atamaheadspa

♬ Fire for You (Sped Up) – Cannons

The treatment

The team at atama were lovely and welcoming, allowing me to get settled in with a tea before beginning my appointment. To start, we talked about my hair type and addressed any concerns I had about my scalp before bringing out the big guns: a small microscope attached to an iPad so that I could get up close and personal with my scalp – and I mean close. I saw my hair follicles, pores, and even three moles on the back of my head that I never knew were there (next stop: dermatologist!).

After my somewhat-disturbing-but-overall-interesting-and-educational look at my scalp, off to the treatment room I went to enjoy the main event. 

The experience began with an *incredible* neck and shoulder massage before my chair reclined back, and the hair washing, shampooing, misting, and massaging began. As a hardcore head massage enthusiast who believes the way to my heart is through my hair, this was practically heaven for me.

The therapist tailored the products to suit my specific needs and combat the mild dandruff I’m prone to and, after wrapping up at the Yume DX – a Japanese-designed reclining chair that encourages decompression of the spine, with an attached basin – I was lead back to the area where I had my consultation to receive my blowdry and finish up. The entire session lasted just over an hour, and let me tell you, I happily would’ve stayed another hour (or five).

The results

By the time I left the clinic, I felt so zen and honestly just wanted to crawl into bed. When I finally did, I fell into one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a while. Plus, my hair felt so clean and soft and looked noticeably more shiny and healthy – what a win!

Overall, my Japanese head spa experience was a huge success and, if you’re anything like me and think the best part of the hairdressers is having your hair washed, this is the treatment for you. 

Header: @atamaheadspa

By Natalie McGowan Office DJ and serial online shopper, Natalie’s idea of self care is watching reality TV and getting a spontaneous tattoo.



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