How Do You Know If Your Hair Needs Protein

Let’s Talk About Moisture And Protein

Does My Hair Need Protein?

Im happy to say that at this point in my life, I avoid styling products and heat tools at all costs. I like to think I take the French-girl approach to hair, opting for effortless bedhead chic rather than sleek straight strands or polished curls. My flatiron, hair spray, and their uncanny ability to turn my hair into a brittle birds nest are things of the past. I combat frizz and straw-like texture with coconut oil and hair masks, and I must admit this low-maintenance approach to hair made me feel pretty proud of myself.

It wasnt until I decided to make a spontaneous salon visit a few weeks ago that a wise stylist told me that despite my efforts, I had actually been starving my hair all along. She taught me that healthy hair requires two thingsmoisture and proteinand that hair treatments are not one-size-fits-all. Some provide moisture exclusively while others offer protein, and knowing which your hair needs may be the difference between lifeless and vivacious locks.

Keep reading to learn the difference between protein and moisture, as well as how to tell what your hair needs!

Protein And How It Affects The Hair

Our hair is primarily made up of chains of amino acids and proteins called keratin. Think of the hair as a building with keratin as the bricks. Because of overstyling, chemical treatments, and environmental stressors, keratins become worn out, creating gaps in the hair which eventually leads to damage and breakage.

Below are some of the blatant signs your clients hair is in dire need of protein.

Hair Needs Moisture Heres How To Hydrate

Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Moisture-deficient hair has plenty of protein for strength, but not enough moisture for supple shine and hydration. Your hair feels rough, thirsty, and dry because very little moisture is making its way into your strands or you have high porosity hair.

Lack of moisture can stem from not using enough moisture-adding products like conditioner, masks, leave-ins, and oils. It can be a result of chemical, heat, or other type of damage.

It can be due to highly porous strands that lose moisture quickly. Whatever the cause, you need more moisture, STAT.

Try a deep conditioning hair mask. You can DIY or buy one to add much-needed moisture to your hair. Two of our favorite DIY moisture masks use ingredients you probably already have on hand!

  • Banana Honey Mask: 1 ripe banana, mashed + 1 tablespoon honey. Mix and apply to wet hair, concentrating on roots and ends. Leave it for 10-20 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.
  • Avocado Olive Oil Mask: 1/2 avocado, mashed + 1 egg + 1 tablespoon olive oil. Mix and apply to wet hair, concentrating on roots and ends. Leave for 10-20 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.

Use your hair mask after a warm shower for better moisture penetration. We recommend following up your DIY moisture mask with a leave-in conditioner spray to ensure plenty of hydration hangs around in your hair.

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Best Hair Protein Products For Curly Hair

Many products will advertise if they’re protein heavy with words like strengthening or repairing. Make sure to check the ingredients list to find proteins.

Here are some of the most common ingredients and their INCI names that will be listed in protein treatments. If you want to follow a vegan haircare, note that some of the most common proteins are animal derived.

  • hydrolyzed protein
  • keratin
  • oat flour
  • soy
  • collagen
  • amino acids
  • silk
  • wheat protein

Briogeo Dont Despair Repair Deep Conditioning Mask

Understanding The Protein

It must be the best protein treatment for damaged hair you could find. A little of it goes a long way, as it has a light yet super-moisturizing texture. It effectively detangles, smooths and makes dry hair feel silky soft. As it is gentler than other treatments out there, you can use it weekly, washing it out after 5-10 minutes. Youll be amazed at the difference before and after the treatment.

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Does My Hair Need Protein

First, all hair is made up of a protein called keratin. Sometimes damage from outside forces can damage the protein of the hair shaft, leaving it prone to breakage. Chemically damaged hair that feels mushy or cotton candy-like can benefit from a protein treatment.

Very fine or thin hair can also benefit from added protein, which can help make strands look thicker and stronger. If your hair looks stringy or limp, those may also be signs that your strands need more protein.

Our pick for strengthening protein-hungry hair? Toppik Hair Building Conditioner, which revitalizes and nourishes strands with a keratin complex that leaves hair looking stronger, thicker and healthier.

Signs Of Protein Deficiency In Your Hair

It’s important to know that protein and moisture treatments deal with two very different issues, but lets talk protein first. Hair is a highly complex appendage of the body that is created by many proteins, Dr. Tara Rao of Schweiger Dermatology Group in NYC tells Bustle. Anabel Kingsley, Brand President and Consulting Trichologist at Philip Kingsley, elaborates: Think of amino acids as the building blocks of your hair they give strands strength and structure. Without adequate protein, hair can become brittle and fragile.

Some signs of a protein deficiency can be stringy, limp, or sticky hair. Lack of protein can result in hair loss, and the growth of weak and brittle strands, Kingsley says, and board certified dermatologist Nicole Rogers, MD FAAD, Assistant Clinical Professor at Tulane Department of Dermatology and in private practice at Hair Restoration of the South, confirms that hair without enough protein might break more easily.

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Protein Or Moisture: What Does Your Curly Hair Need

A lot of people envy the curly locks of the Disney princess Moana. After all, it looks majestic as well as effortless.

But what people with straight hair dont know is that it takes a lot to maintain the structure of curly hair. Curly-haired girls understand the struggle of having voluminous, big waves today but limp, frizzy hair the next.

But dont give up just yet! In todays blog post, well explore whether protein or moisture is better for curly hair. Hopefully, this topic can help you in taking care of your beloved curls.

Theres Increased Shedding And Breakage


We normally lose up to 100 strands a day. But if your client is losing more hair that doesnt come from the root, then it is a protein issue and needs to be addressed immediately. Note: increased hair loss could be caused by many things: a hormonal imbalance, vitamin deficiencies, stress, auto-immune disorders, medications, chemotherapy and more.

Its important to thoroughly consult and analyze the scalp and hair before deciding a lack of protein is the culprit. Learn how to identify specific types of hair loss when you watch our Holistic Scalp Treatments Training Video.

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Signs Your Hair Needs Protein

Is your hair weak or brittle?

Or are you losing an unusual amount of hair?

These are warning signs that your hair might need protein. Damaged hair from either heat damage, regular relaxing, or bleaching requires more protein because it has lost some of the protective layers that hold moisture in and lost some native proteins.

Loral Professionnel B6 + Biotin Inforcer Mask

If you love the what Inforcer Shampoo and Conditioner do for your mane, complete the anti-breakage collection with this B6 and biotin infused hair mask.

LOréal Professionnel B6 + Biotin Inforcer Mask, $22.00 MSRP

Interested in more professional hair care advice? Use our salon locator to book an appointment at a salon near you.

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    A repairing hair mask for very damaged hair.

    Old priceNew price$63.00One size available

  • A Keratin strengthening treatment spray for overprocessed, damaged hair.

    Old priceNew price$23.00One size available

  • A hydrating mask to instantly nourish damaged and weakened hair.

    Old priceNew price$42.00One size available

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    Protein Vs Moisture: Which One Does Curly Hair Need

    Lily Plume


    Ever woken up with a head of hair that just doesnt look like your own? Maybe your curls are looking limp, lifeless and lacking elasticity or the texture feels dry and brittle Somethings not right, but whats going on?! Babe, you might have a protein-moisture imbalance on your hands.

    Your hair strands are made up of around 90% of fibrous proteins like keratin, which form the centre of the hair cortex and give your hair its elasticity. Protein also gives your curls strength, shape and structure, so without it theyll soon be looking weak, limp and lacking definition. You can add protein to your hair by eating more of it or using a protein hair treatment to reinforce the strength of your strands.

    But when it comes to protein, its also possible to have too much of a good thing. Also known as protein overload, too much protein and not enough moisture can leave your hair feeling stiff, dry and brittle . So how do you know if your hair needs protein or moisture? Keep reading to find out the optimal balance for boss babe curls.

    What Are The Best Products For Protein On Natural Hair

    Does Your Hair Need Protein or Moisture?

    What to know one of the best products for protein and natural hair?

    The answer is hydrolyzed wheat protein, because the protein molecule size in hydrolyzed wheat protein is small enough to soak into your hair strands and protect the inner layers all while large enough to create a flexible and breathable coat on the outside of your hair.

    And the best part is:

    Hydrolyzed wheat protein is also very water-soluble so it’s easy to get rid of any build-up with just ONE wash. This one’s a no-brainer!

    So look:

    Let’s talk about protein overload for a quick second, because:

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    There Are Some Simple Steps To Healthy Natural Hair

    Your hair needs nutrients and vitamins to grow. You need to keep your hair and scalp clean if you want healthy hair. You need to fight tangles in order to prevent breakage and hair loss, and of course, your hair needs moisture to look and feel healthy. You also need to seal moisture into your hair, to prevent it from drying out. But this isnt a perfect recipe to healthy hair. It lacks one key ingredient: protein.

    You may know that protein is necessary for hair growth you may even incorporate protein into your diet or give your hair regular protein treatments. But what does protein really do for your hair? What happens if your hair lacks protein? How does protein balance with moisture in healthy hair? And what happens if your hair gets too much protein? Keep reading this guide to find out:

    Do I Have To Eliminate All Protein From My Regimen

    No, not necessarily. Your hair still needs protein to maintain strength. Make sure the products you use on a daily or weekly basis are protein free, and do a light protein treatment every 8 weeks. If the treatment makes your hair stiff or crunchy, be sure to follow it up with a moisturizing treatment.

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    Your Hair Has High Porosity

    Photo Credit:

    Hair with high porosity often has tears and gaps in the strands that make it more susceptible to damage. These gaps and tears allow the hair to absorb too much water, which can cause frizz, tangles, and even color loss on color-treated hair. In order to fill in the gaps, you need a protein treatment to strengthen your strands. The treatment works by nourishing the hair with vital proteins that help seal those gaps and create a stronger canvas for styling.

    Can We Live Without Nitrogen

    How to know if Your Natural Hair Needs Protein #shorts

    Nitrogen is an inert gas and is not toxic. But breathing pure nitrogen is deadly to humans, since it displaces oxygen in the lungs. Hence, humans are unable to live without nitrogen as there are severe complications, dynamics and various parameters are essential to be cooperative for life without nitrogen.

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    Are Certain Hair Types Protein Sensitive

    There isn’t a correlation between curl pattern or hair texture and protein sensitivity. Whether your hair is 4C, 3A, or 2B, you can have protein sensitive hair. However, protein sensitivity is more common in those with low porosity hair. When your hair is low porosity, it can be very hard for moisture to enter your hair. So even a small amount of protein can set off the protein-moisture balance of hair that naturally doesn’t hold much moisture.

    Not everyone with low porosity hair is protein sensitive, but if you know your porosity is low, you might want to be careful around heavy protein treatments.

    Does Your Hair Need Protein Or Moisture Conditioning

    Damaged hair can be caused by a number of reasons from poor hair care or diet, over or improper use of brushing or heated styling instruments, chemical processing, sun overexposure or hair accessories. With the many different ways hair can become damaged, there are two common damaged conditions that can be helped if the correct treatment is applied regularly: dry, brittle, rough damage or weak, mushy damage.

    There are different damaged conditions that require varying treatment and determining the kind of damage your hair has can help you can choose the best treatment.

    Your hair texture/thickness of the strand and porosity also contribute to how well your hair responds to treatment. Hair that is dry, brittle, or rough needs softening and moisturizing through fatty acid-rich ingredients found in plant, nut, and seed oils and aloe vera gel.

    Hair that is ultra-fine or chemically damaged to the point of having a mushy, cotton candy-like feel, needs protein.

    Hair textures and conditions that respond well to most of the protein added to shampoos and conditioners are fine and weak to mushy damaged – which can include straight, wavy, curly and extra curly hair types with any density – low to high – which is how much hair you have on your head. The right hydrolyzed protein will help temporarily strengthen, fine, mushy, weak hair through reconstruction. It will not repair the hair permanently though.


    The elasticity test.

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    What Is The Difference Between Protein Sensitivity And Protein Overload

    If protein usually doesn’t bother your hair, you might not have protein sensitive hair your hair is probably just overloaded with protein. Anyone can overload their hair with protein, but only some people have protein sensitive hair that reacts badly to any amount of protein.

    The outcome of both protein sensitivity and protein overload is the same- stiff, hard, crunchy hair. Try this trick: take all products with protein out of your regimen and heavily moisturize your hair for a couple weeks to get rid of the protein overload. Then, try a protein treatment again. If your hair feels good, you just overdid it last time 🙂

    Hair Looks Limp And Stringy

    Protein overload

    Is the hair not as full and bouncy as they used to? Dull and limp hair is a sign of protein deficiency. Most clients will think it just needs a bit of hair styling product to bring it back to life, but this practice actually compromises the health of the hair significantly. Layering more products on already weak hair will weigh it down, causing it to look stringy.

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    How Do You Know If Your Hair Needs Protein Or Moisture

    When your hair has the right level of hydration, nutrients and strength to prevent breakage and split ends, thats when you know youve got the optimal protein-moisture balance. Finding that balance is not so simple it depends on your curl type, hair porosity and styling routine. But once you get to know your hair and its needs, youll be able to tell when to add or cut back on moisture and protein.

    A simple test you can do to see if your hair is lacking in protein or moisture is by stretching a strand of your hair down towards the ground and seeing how far it extends before breaking.

    Balanced hair: the strand stretches a little then bounces back to its original length without breaking.

    Too much protein and not enough moisture: the strand stretches more than usual then breaks, feels dry, stiff and brittle.

    Too much moisture and not enough protein: the strand keeps stretching without breaking, feels weak, mushy and limp.

    If in doubt, remember that curly and textured hair tends to be on the drier side, so using moisture-boosting products is always a good idea. A good rule of thumb is to make sure your curls get twice as many moisturising treatments as protein. If your hair is damaged from too much styling, youll need to up the protein and conditioning at the same time.

    How Do You Fix Protein Overload In Hair

    If your hair is suffering from symptoms of protein overload, the best thing you can do is cleanse and moisturize. Strip away protein buildup with gentle hair care products or essential oils, then lock in moisture with a deep condition or a leave-in conditioner. You should avoid any products that contain proteins such as:

    • Wheat, rice, or quinoa protein
    • Hydrolyzed collagen

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    Best Protein Treatments For Hair

    Theres an abundance of protein treatments for hair out there, from protein oil for hair to deeply conditioning protein masks. But how do you know which products are worth investing in? So that you dont have to spend hours binge-watching videos on YouTube, we have stepped up and done the research do you.

    Does My Curly Hair Need Protein Or Moisture

    Does Your Hair Need Protein or Moisture??

    Does your hair need protein or moisture? If youre looking for answers to this question, youre in the right place. To put it simply, protein is what keeps your hair strong, adds shine, hydration and helps reduce breakage. Protein is also used to temporarily repair damaged areas in hair by filling in gaps in the cuticle. When used well, protein keeps your hair hydrated by slowing the loss of water from hair. This is also essential is you have wavy, curly or coily hair. The hair structure differce from straight hair and makes it more prone to hair breakage.

    Moisture on the other hand is essential to retain hair elasticity and prevent it from breaking off, especially if you have curly hair. The curlier the hair is makes it harder for the sebum to travel from the root to the ends. Because of this people with curly hair tends to have drier hair and scalp than people with straight hair. So if you are a curly girl, ensure to keep a close eye on this. When your hair is moisturized, water molecules bind with the protein present in the strands. It is this way that they are able to absorb and perform their hydrating duties.

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