Keratin Treatments: Your 2021 Guide to Smooth, Frizz-Free Hair
How to choose the right keratin treatment.
- Is a professional salon treatment the only valid option?
- How long should you wait before washing your hair after?
- What’s the best aftercare routine to extend the life of your keratin treatment?
This, and more, in our complete guide to keratin treatments.
What exactly is keratin? Is it really plastic?
The name sounds sciencey, sure. But Keratin is no such thing: it’s a protein that is naturally present in your hair, nails, and skin.
Keratin is one of the strongest molecules in your body, made to protect other, more fragile cells, like the outer layer of your hair, the cuticle.
Think of Keratin as the brave, bold bodyguard of your outer hair layers. The Kevin Costner to your Whitney Houston.
Unfortunately, Kevin-the-keratin doesn’t last forever. Sunshine, air pollution, and stress make this knight in shining armor get depleted
And so, with time, your otherwise glossy and healthy hair cuticles lose their protector.
Queue in hair frizz, split ends, and low self-esteem.
What is hydrolyzed keratin?
Keratin is a large molecule. Applying it to your hair just like that would make no sense because it wouldn’t be able to enter between the damaged layers of your hair cuticle.
This where science lends a helping hand.
Hydrolysis is nothing more than breaking down the larger keratin molecule into smaller pieces. This way, hydrolyzed keratin can enter between the damaged layers and seal them together.
This is what keratin does for your hair:
- Repairs and nourishes your hair
- Removes frizz
- Reduces hair dryness
- Makes your hair silky & smooth
In short, treating your mane with a keratin touch-up brings your hair back to life.
What are keratin treatments?
Would you apply fresh paint to your shutters before scraping off the chipping paint? Probably not, as it would make the fresh paint last less than your junior-high crush.
As with all repairs, your hair needs proper treatment, too. It means that the process should not only be based on applying keratin to your hair, but follow these 3 essential steps:
Keratin treatment types: which one is right for you?
There are three types of keratin treatments. They differ mostly by:
- The time it takes to complete the treatment
- The ingredients they contain
- How long they last
- How much they will set you back for
1. Salon keratin treatment
Professional salon keratin treatments have the most long-lasting effect, but they are also more expensive than at-home treatments and express blowouts.
The most important characteristic of professional salon keratin treatments is that they contain formaldehyde. This is an efficient but highly volatile chemical compound and should never be applied at home, on your own.
When to go for a salon keratin treatment?
- If you have extremely coarse or thick hair
- If you plan to travel abroad for some time and don’t want to risk going to an unknown hairstylist for a keratin touch-up
2. At-home keratin treatment
Whoever invented at-home keratin treatments deserves a star on the Walk of Fame. If not a Nobel prize for more peaceful households.
Comfortable, quick, convenient, and safe because at-home keratin treatments are formaldehyde-free.
They last less than a professional keratin treatment. But hey, you can pop a bottle of your fav Chardonnay, invite your girlfriends over and have a super hair-straightening, gloss-giving, shine-repairing keratin treatment in the comfort of your home.
And it will cost you a third of what a professional keratin treatment costs.
When to go for an at-home keratin treatment?
- For any hair, even the thinnest and fairest type
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding
- If you don’t have the time to visit your hair salon
Get your at-home keratin treatment just right by following this guide.
3. Keratin Express Blowout
If even an at-home keratin treatment-slash-girl-party isn’t an option, you can get a quick fix with an express keratin blowout. This treatment usually comes in a spray mist and is applied to your hair before blow-drying.
An express keratin blowout is a great option for spot treatments like frizzy bangs or puffy summer hair. The quick lifesaver comes with a downside, though: expect your express keratin treatment to last only until your next wash. That’s because the keratin applied during this type of treatment acts mainly on the surface of your hair.
We suggest to use the keratin express blowout in between your regular keratin treatments to extend their effect.
Find our here all there is to know about an express keratin blowout.
When to go for a keratin express treatment:
- When you find out about your girlfriend’s soiree something like two hours in advance. But you won’t let the short notice stop you from having Instagram-perfect hair.
- If you’ve been lazy on your keratin aftercare and realize your hair is losing its gloss but there are still a few weeks before your next full keratin treatment.
Before and after keratin treatment: examples
1. At-home keratin treatment: dark hair type 2a–2b with balayage highlights
2. At-home keratin treatment: on dark hair type 2c
3. Salon professional treatment: on blonde & thin hair
Keratin treatment aftercare: extending the life of your keratin treatment
You’ve prepped your hair and chosen the right keratin treatment. The morning after feels like a dream: your hair is soft and glossy, the frizz gone.
How can you make days like these last as long as possible?
With a proper aftercare routine like:
- Using the right shampoo & conditioner
- Protecting your hair during styling
- Using hair masks
|Pro tip: Discover these 6 essential tips for a perfect keratin treatment aftercare.|
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can benefit from a keratin treatment?
Keratin treatments are great for those who want to straighten their hair. But they go much further than that.
Bring back the shine with a proper keratin treatment.
Give yourself an at-home keratin treat and give mother nature a nice big finger snap.
How long does Keratin treatment last?
- An at-home keratin treatment (formaldehyde-free) can last up to 60 days.
- A professional salon keratin treatment can make your mane manageable and shiny for up to 90 days.
But remember: you can achieve such long-lasting results only with proper aftercare.
Can keratin damage your hair?
Keratin is a protein that’s naturally present in your body. It protects your hair’s structure, shine, bounce, and strength. But over time, your body loses keratin due to environmental elements, chlorine, exposure to the sun, chemical processing, and even aging. Our Keratin-infused products can be used everyday to help repair, restore, and boost your hair’s natural health.
Will my curls go away?
A Keratin treatment is a semi-permanent hair straightening solution. It won’t break your hair’s natural structure. Instead it will strengthen its appearance and overall health.
Can Keratin help with dandruff?
To the best of our knowledge, no. Dandruff is usually caused either by excessive sebum from the gland which is attached to the hair follicle, or fungi.
Keratin’s role is different. It penetrates your hair to smoothen and strengthen its outer layer, the cuticle. To fight off dandruff, we suggest you use specific products. Better yet: visit your dermatologist first to determine the cause of your dandruff problem.