what is keratin

What is Keratin? Everything You Need to Know About this Hair Protein

Learn the ins and outs of this naturally-occuring protein.

Over the past few years, keratin has been one of the buzziest ingredients in the hair industry, and you may find yourself wondering, “What is keratin?” Keratin is a protein naturally found in our bodies. More specifically, it’s a family of structural proteins that makes up a lot of different parts of our bodies. From the outer layer of skin to our hair and nails, keratin plays a key role in your body’s makeup.

Keratin is present in both the outer protective layer of each hair shaft and the inner cortex. When hair loses too much of this protein, it becomes damaged. Along with switching up your diet, there are certain products you can incorporate to help strengthen your strands and restore some of that protein. Products like keratin shampoo, keratin hair oil, keratin treatments, and keratin deep conditioners can all help restore your strands. Keep scrolling to learn more about this protein and find out what products to use to achieve the benefits.

What is Keratin?

Not sure what exactly keratin is or how to start incorporating it into your hair care routine? We’re here to help you out.

How does hair lose keratin?

As we mentioned above, damaged hair is often the result of a loss of keratin. Hair dye processes and exposure to heat compromise the structure of your hair shaft. They’re two of the most common ways keratin is lost. You’ll notice visible differences in hair that have been damaged and are lacking proteins versus healthy strands.

Is a keratin treatment the same as Japanese straightening?

The chemicals found in a keratin treatment aren’t as harsh as the chemicals found in other straightening treatments. Traditional treatments often permanently damage strands and create a demarcation as hair grows out. Keratin leads to a much more fluid and smooth result. This makes keratin treatment for damaged hair, short hair, and wavy hair all great options.

Keratin Products to Use

Incorporating keratin into your hair care routine doesn’t need to be difficult. You can easily do it right at home with products you can get at the drugstore.

Heat Protection Spray

First things first: Do no harm. If you’re planning on continuing your heat-styling ways, you’ll want to start prepping your strands with a heat protectant. We love using TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Heat Defense Spray. This helps add shine and softness while shielding your hair from the damaging effects that hot tools can have on your strands. Plus, the protein and African Marula oil help fight frizz and any pesky flyaways.

Hair Serum

On a day-to-day basis, you’ll want to find a way to incorporate a product into your routine to promote the health of your hair. Suave Professionals Keratin Infusion Smoothing Hair Serum is one of our favorites. It’s a lightweight formula that will add shine to your strands while fighting frizziness.

Shampoo and Conditioner

Your hair care starts in the shower, so if you want to incorporate the most keratin possible without getting a keratin treatment, try using one of the best keratin shampoo and conditioner set infused with this protein in it. We love TRESemmé Keratin Repair Shampoo and Conditioner because it uses Bond Plex™ technology to help repair your strands. This duo is ideal for keratin treated hair as this smoothing keratin shampoo reinforces your treatment.

Hair Mask

Last but not least is Nexxus Keraphix Damage Healing Masque. This mask combines Black Rice extract, keratin, collagen, and elastin to deeply condition your hair and leave it more aligned, flexible, and smooth. We recommend using this mask once a week when your hair needs a little extra TLC. The extra dose of protein is truly a lifesaver for damaged strands. This is a great keratin leave-in treatment option!

Post-shower care is just as important, too, especially when you’re making sure your hair stays strong. A leave-in spray, like TRESemmé Pro Collection Keratin Repair Leave-In Treatment. We love this spray because it helps repair split ends to give you healthy-looking hair.

Should you get a keratin hair treatment?

Whether you decide to get a hair treatment or not is really based on preference. The treatment offers a variety of amazing benefits to your strands, like mending frizz, making hair more manageable, and increasing shine and softness. However, over time, these treatments can cause damage to your hair based on the formula used. Some keratin treatments use formaldehyde, which can do more harm than good over a long period of time.

If you want to stay away from additional chemicals, using keratin-infused products is the best way to go. You’ll achieve similar benefits without worrying about the upkeep and expense of a treatment.

To make your final decision, read up on the details and benefits of this treatment and find out if it’s the best option for you. If you do decide to try it out, snap a picture and tag us @AllThingsHairUS!

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