Protein vs Moisture for conditioning the hair


    Most conditioning treatments provide either moisturise the hair or add protein (or both). Almost everybody´s hair needs moisture but not all hair needs protein! This post will help you find out what your hair needs, and how to tweak your conditioning regime.
      Hair is made up of many different molecules, including amino acids and essential fatty acids. As hair is weathered and exposed to damage, and some of the molecules get eroded away, and the hair shaft has gaps in the stucture. Protein treatments helps to fill the amino acids needs; an oil or rich moisture treatment fills in the essential fatty acids gaps.

What does your hair need ?

The basic rules:

  • If you need to do both, do the protein treatment first, and follow it immediately with a moisture treatment.
  • If your hair just needs protein, follow it up it a moisture treatment anyway, since protein tends to leave the hair brittle and rough. The moisture treatment should counteract it.
  • Protein treatments should not be done too often. Some people like them once a week (usually those that have protein-depleted hair from dyeing, bleaching, relaxing, etc), but others do not tolerate them more often than once every two months. Signs of protein overdose are dryness, roughness, and crazy tangles. Try it out and see what works for you.
  • Moisture treatments can be done regularly. If your hair is very dry or if it is curly, you should definitely try the conditioner-only washing.

Which product has what?

  • Here is how to spot proteins on ingredient lists. And here is my post about moisturisers. It´s not hard to tell what´s in your hair masque.
  • You can also DIY a protein treatment. Yoghurt is the simplest one, also here is a recipe for a DIY protein treatment I love. You can also buy hydrolised wheat protein and other proteins from DIY cosmetic stores and add them to your consitioner.

    Does your hair like protein? Which is your favourite protein products?

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