One of the most popular buzzwords in hair care circles is keratin, which you've definitely heard when you've visited the salon for a haircut. Most frequently, it is touted as the solution for smooth and silky hair. Besides gaining the benefits of keratin from treatments done by professionals in a salon, it has also become an ingredient which has great value in the beauty sphere, especially for hair. If you read the ingredient list at the back of your shampoo bottle, you're certain to spot keratin in it. It is the same with conditioners, masks and basically any hair care product which can nourish the mane. Keratin works at the core to make hair strong at cuticle level so that it stays silky, smooth and resilient, no matter what comes its way. If you've ever wondered the way in which it works and how keratin can benefit the hair, we're answering all of your questions today.
What Is Keratin?
Keratin belongs to a group of fibrous structural proteins which are known as scleroproteins. In fact, it is the structural material and the very foundation of hair, nails, claws and hooves. Termed the building block of the hair, keratin is said to strengthen the strands so that it can withstand the effects of hair damage, environmental exposure, heat styling and any processes that can negatively affect hair.
How Does Keratin Benefit The Hair?
In order to give hair a smooth and frizz-free finish, keratin tames the cells that comprise the hair cuticle and is absorbed for its gleaming effects to show through. By repairing the structure of the strand and fixing the lack of protein in the hair, it makes the make thick and smooth.
Keratin Treatments In Salons
Keratin treatment that is performed in salons, also called Brazilian keratin treatment, is recommended for hair types and concerns facing frizz, damage and unruliness. The chemical treatment involves cleansing the hair, applying a keratin solution to it, removing its moisture through blowdrying and finally sealing it in with a hair straightener on high heat.
There are many precautions to take once you opt for a professional keratin treatment. For the first few days or a week, contact with water must be avoided for the process to actually have long term effects. Hair styling and tying can also change its shape and texture hence, must also be abstained from. In the long run, special shampoos and conditioners without sulfates must be used to avoid it affecting the chemically treated hair. Keratin treatment can be considered as an option if you spend much time and effort on regular hair styling.
Many keratin treatments in salons use or produce formaldehyde in the process which is a known carcinogen. Hence, it's important to choose the professional and salon that does the treatment for your hair extremely carefully. Keratin treatment contains multiple chemicals, can be expensive depending on the salon you choose and can lasts for approximately 6 months, depending on the care you take of your hair during its term and your hair growth rate.
Using Keratin At Home
Due to side effects associated with keratin treatments in salon, fortunately there are ways to get the benefit of keratin at home too. As mentioned previously, many shampoos, conditioners, masks and hair sprays are enriched with keratin so that they not only fulfill their purpose but also give tresses its smoothing and strengthening benefit.
Keratin being a protein, also comes in the form of capsules and ampoules which can be ingested internally. However this should be done only under the guidance of a medical professional. Beauty products and wellness items containing keratin can be seen as a safer option that salon treatments however it's results and longevity of them will definitely wary.
(Also Read: 7 Hair Creams To Protect And Nourish Your Locks)
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