Let’s say that you’re holding a product that has ‘keratin’ or ‘hair repairing’ on its ingredients list. If this is the case, chances are that you’re taking protein treatment for your hair. These products can potentially strengthen the links between strands and repair the broken follicles.
But as with many other products, protein-based treatments should be used moderately to avoid damaging the hair unintentionally. As we’ll explain in the paragraphs below, misuse of proteins might cause even more brittle hair. So, read on for instructions from experts.
What Are the Benefits of Protein Treatments for Hair?
You’d be amazed if we told you how much of the hair consists of proteins. Over 95% of it is made of a protein named keratin. Keratin is found in different parts of your body, including hair, skin, and even nails, and it’s responsible for strengthening the structure in these areas.
A bad hair routine with excessive heating, bad hairstyling, or severe chemical processing could lead to breakages or frizzy hair. Proteins combat these effects and many more.
Repair Damaged Strands and Prevent Breakage
Matt Newman, a hairstylist based in NYC, states that while recreating the same protein that bonds our hair together is nearly impossible, synthetic proteins created in labs can function as “Band-Aids” by repairing the broken hair strands. Combining them with other ingredients such as biotin, amino acids, or silk protein strengthens the resistance against breakage.
Boost Hair Growth
Annagjid “Kee” Taylor, a well-known celebrity hairstylist, reports that “a good protein treatment can aid in the repair of severely damaged hair, hair growth, and the penetration and healing of a dry, flaky scalp…” Longer hair starts with the protection of your current strands, and protein treatments ensure healthy hair that grows at a quick pace.
Beautify Your Hair Appearance
More people want longer and denser hair because that immediately translates into more styling options and an improved general look. Also, protein treatments not only make your hair shinier but also assist in managing split ends by sealing down cuticles and making them less obvious in the overall appearance of your hair.
Does Your Hair Need Proteins? (Take this Test!)
When hair suffers from a lack of proteins, it shows in its appearance in the form of brittle, dry hair that resembles straws. Newman states that hair loses its elasticity when proteins are scarce. He suggests applying a “stretch test” to estimate whether the hair contains enough proteins. The test is pretty simple:
- Pick up a strand of hair from the hairbrush and apply pressure to it.
- Well-nourished hair that contains sufficient protein shows elasticity by bending, while the hair lacking in proteins breaks in half.
Proteins are not the only element that maintains your hair’s elasticity. Besides proteins that nourish and strengthen the strands, your hair needs enough moisture to allow expansion and styling without breakage. All of this needs to be done in a controlled way, otherwise you’ll be causing what’s known as “protein overload”, which turns hair brittle and dry.
The Right Way of Using Protein Treatments
Conditioners, shampoos and numerous haircare products contain considerable amounts of bond-building proteins and other ingredients. However, for truly effective treatments, it’s recommended that you apply proteins in a mask form where the concentration is higher. Here are some additional tips for fitting protein treatments into your haircare routine.
- Apply the selected product into moisturised hair all down the length of the strands.
- Depending on your type of hair, you might need to set it into a bun and wrap it into a shower cap, even though not all treatments require covering.
- Heat helps open the cuticles for the hair to absorb nutrients more thoroughly. Use a blow-dryer with care or simply stay a little longer in the shower steam.
- After the specified treatment time ends, wash it off and shampoo or condition your hair if the application instructions recommend doing so.
How Frequently Should You Apply Protein Treatments?
The specific traits of your hair, such as type, styling, curl pattern or porosity directly affect the amount of protein suitable for your haircare routine. Also, this might change depending on the outside temperatures.
If the water evaporates instantly due to high temperatures or high porosity, then you’ll need more moisture than protein. However, experts have offered their routine suggestions.
- Hair with porosity ranging from low to medium should be treated with proteins once a month and three times per month with a moisturising mask.
- Hair with high porosity should be treated with proteins and a moisturising mask once or twice per month.
- Hair with considerable damage should be treated with proteins two or three times per month and once or twice per month with a moisturising mask regardless of its porosity.
For those who want to strengthen their hair bonds with minimal effort, protein treatments can be truly beneficial. Helpful in restoring broken strands and giving your hair a shiny look, they definitely are worth adding to your haircare checklist. However, strengthening your hair might be tricky, and sometimes protein treatments are not enough.
That’s when hair transplants and other medical treatments come into play. If you suffer from extensive brittle hair falling in considerable amounts, then it’s time for a consultation with an expert. Vinci Clinic offers a free consultation to its clients worldwide. Book your appointment today!