Shiny, lustrous bouncy hair is every woman’s dream. In quest for such hair women have gone to great lengths. There are DIY hair mask and oil that some women put. Some swear by their oiling rituals and some go for protein treatments. But these are time consuming require diligent efforts and patience as well. Why can’t your hair look like you’ve just stepped out of a salon all the time? Well, they can, if you go for a keratin treatment.
Keratin treatment has become one of the hottest things for the past couple of years. From celebrities to housewives everyone has gotten these treatments done. They make your hair smooth and frizz free. A keratin treatment makes your hair silky, straight and frizz-free. Getting this treatment done saves you from a lot of hassle and putting on free you from putting on all those hair smoothing products as well. However, there has been a lot of controversy involved when it comes to these treatments. Most of the treatments available are formaldehyde based and have health hazards. So before you opt to go for a keratin treatment there is things that you should know about. Let us start by explaining what exactly is keratin?
- Keratin is a naturally occurring protein in your hair which gives your hair its binding properties.
- It reinforces and strengthens your hair structure giving your hair a natural shine
- Along with strengthening your hair keratin, eases the curls and de-frizzes your hair
- Fact: keratin itself doesn’t straighten the hair, but it is the chemicals added to keratin treatments. If you aren’t careful about hair care afterwards or have used these chemicals in excess it can lead to weakening of hair strands and breakage.
Here are some facts about keratin hair treatment which you should know before you hit the salon.
15. What Is a Keratin Treatment?
A keratin smoothing treatment is keratin based which relaxes and smooths your hair. It is a semi-permanent treatment; it softens your curls and has other chemicals added to achieve this purpose along with keratin. Usually keratin treatment involves chemical like formaldehyde, which gives the long-lasting smoothing effect to your hair, hair conditioners and the protein keratin which gives strength to your hair. The usual steps involved in this chemical treatment are:
- First your hair is washed with a clarifying shampoo to ensure there is no residue build-up.
- Then the treatment is applied for 15-20 minutes. Then the hair is blow-dried straight and straightened further with an iron. The heat activates the treatment.
- Hair is washed once and the whole process is usually repeated.
- Some salons also add keratin sealer shield to this whole process.
14. How is keratin Treatment Better Than Other Straightening Treatments?
Keratin treatment isn’t the only option available when it comes to straightening your hair. Before keratin, treatments such as Japanese hair straightening treatment, re-bonding and hair relaxing were widely popular. However, most of these are chemical laden and tend to make permanent changes to your hair structures. Therefore, these are quite damaging. These formerly popular treatments would give you dead straight locks which often seem quite flat. Whereas, a keratin treatment:
- A keratin treatment doesn’t bring about any chemical change to your hair
- Is a semi-permanent treatment and the results usually last from anywhere between three to six months depending upon your life-style and hair growth.
- Keratin smoothing treatment basically straightens and softens your curls, removes frizz and if proper care is taken the keratin can actually make your hair healthier over-time
- Keratin treatment if done right can actually better the health of hair which has been dyed or bleached, works as a support treatment for chemically treated hair.
“The harmful chemical in keratin treatment has or had is formaldehyde or formalin whose chemical name is methylene glycol. When formalin is heated to 450 degrees, it turns to formaldehyde. This should be kept in mind that this chemical is included in “Reasonably Anticipated to Be Human Carcinogens” by the Department of Health.”
13. Does Keratin Treatment Work If Yes, How?
The internet is filled with keratin treatment reviews. Most of them are great where people got amazing results after the treatment so the general consensus is in favor of the treatment, but how does it work? This is one of the most important things about keratin treatment that you should be aware of. The formula which is applied on hair is not chemical free. The main chemical which smoothens your hair is formaldehyde. Usually the formula is applied on hair twice and depending upon your hair structure your stylist will decide about how long to leave in your hair for.
- An authentic keratin treatment has safe amounts of formaldehyde, but it is never completely free of the chemical
- Excessive amounts of formaldehyde have been linked to cancer and may cause an allergic reaction to your scalp.
- It has a strong smell and also stings the eyes, so make sure you are careful.
12. Is Keratin Treatment Suitable for You?
Obviously not every treatment is for everyone! So, how to determine if you are a suitable candidate for keratin treatment? Do you have unruly frizzy hair and it takes you a good hour or so to blow dry and straighten your hair? Is the frizz in your hair during summertime unmanageable? Does your hair lack shine and always seems dull? Do you wan to know how to get rid of frizzy hair? If your answer to more than one of these questions is yes, then you might be a suitable candidate for getting a keratin treatment and a keratin smoothing treatment will help you. Keratin treatment is also suitable for African-American hair as it relaxes it and gives it a new life. It is important though that you visit a certified salon to make sure that they use safe amount of formaldehyde. You must avoid getting a keratin treatment if you
- Are pregnant as the chemicals seep into your skin and can be harmful to the fetus
- If your hair is severely damaged due to prior chemical treatments such as bleaching and it is already thinning, in this case a keratin treatment can be more damaging than helping
- If you have slightly wavy hair and like wavy hairstyles and you want to keep the wave as a keratin treatment will give you dead straight hair which could even look flat
- If your hair is weak and cannot take heat up to 450 degrees.
11. Is Keratin Treatment Safe? What is all The Controversy About?
There has been some controversy when it comes to keratin treatment. We have all heard it is not safe. The harmful chemical in keratin treatment has or had is formaldehyde or formalin whose chemical name is methylene glycol. When formalin is heated to 450 degrees, it turns to formaldehyde. This should be kept in mind that this chemical is included in “Reasonably Anticipated to Be Human Carcinogens” by the Department of Health. The chemical has been associated with certain cancers such as leukemia. It can also cause severe allergic reactions in people who are allergic to it. You can always treat allergy reactions using some simple home remedies for allergies. However, whether keratin is completely safe or not depends upon a couple of things.
- First off, if you are an expectant mother keratin treatment is a big no for you
- Check if you are allergic to formaldehyde or any type of aldehydes in general
- The risk is higher for stylists who are exposed to the chemical several times a week than the clients
- Go to a certified salon to make sure they are using safe and well concentrated quantities of formaldehyde
- In a salon where proper care is taken for capture ventilation, the risk is minimal even for irritation of eyes and throat.
“Keratin treatment has become one of the hottest things for the past couple of years. From celebrities to housewives everyone has gotten these treatments done. They make your hair smooth and frizz free. A keratin treatment makes your hair silky, straight and frizz-free.”
10. What if a Salon Claims Their Treatment is Formaldehyde-Free?
You might have come across some salons which offer formaldehyde-free keratin treatments. Now we have told you before that keratin itself doesn’t straighten the hair but it is the added chemicals which make your hair frizz free and more manageable. In these cases you must understand that they are using some other chemical, it is important you know which one they are using. You can always try some effective home remedies if you’re wondering how to get straight hair without using any kind of chemical.
- Some alternatives to formaldehyde which are now being used are: glutaraldehyde or oxaldehyde, note both are forms of aldehydes.
- Another chemical is ammonium thioglycolate which has been used for perming previously
- Also the results for these treatments are slightly different than the original formaldehyde keratin treatment. So you should also ask how long the results will last and what sort of results should you expect.
9. Consider Your Hair Type
Just because your hair doesn’t behave how well you want it to, it doesn’t mean you go for keratin treatment right away. There are several things you should consider before making a decision. There are actually different types of keratin treatments available. Consult your stylist before going for any treatment. The stylist will make recommendations based upon your hair type. You might consider a keratin treatment if you:
- Need to blow dry or use a straightening iron constantly.
- Does your hair become frizzier during summers so much so that it is impossible to even run a brush through them?
- The type of treatment will also depend upon the strength and thickness of your hair shaft.
8. Which Keratin Treatment Is For You?
There are many different types of keratin treatments available out there, from the most popular Brazilian blow-out to strawberry keratin treatment. With all this choice it can be a bit baffling to chose the right treatment for you. It is best to consult your stylist, most offer free consultation and will help you making the right decision and do not forget to do your own homework as well, which the next few headings will help you with.
- The results vary slightly and how long they will last will depend upon your hair type and lifestyle
- There are at home keratin smoothing treatment kits also available. These are free of formaldehyde but not completely aldehyde free. Therefore they are less irritating; however, the results don’t last as long as the salon treatments.
7. Keratin Complex
Keratin complex is a popular type of keratin smoothing treatment. Keratin treatment reviews for this type of treatment claim that the initial results are amazing however; the results don’t last as long as the manufacturers claim. Usually its effects start wearing off after one to two months. If you have wavy and moderately frizzy hair you might be able to ditch the straightening iron completely.
- Key ingredients: Biformyl, Hydrolyzed Keratin
- Average Cost: $350
- Results: claim to last from 3-5 months
- Post care: hair shouldn’t be washed, tied for the next 72 hours.
6. Brazilian Blowout Keratin Treatment
The Brazilian blowout keratin treatment is one of the most popular ones out there. This is ideal for women with coarse thick hair. This promises minimum damage and lives up to the expectations. Most keratin reviews for this treatment say that those who tried it could completely ditch their irons and blow dryers. The hair becomes naturally straight and you will be completely frizz free. The treatment is also considered milder as it doesn’t have that strong smell or irritates the throat and eyes as much as some of its counterparts.
- Key ingredients: Proprietary polymers and Brazilian nutrients which the company keeps secret
- Cost; $350
- Results: 3 – 4 months
- Post care: You can style or wash or hair right after the treatment. There is no special post care required, however, sulfate-free shampoos are recommended.
“Usually keratin treatment involves chemical like formaldehyde, which gives the long-lasting smoothing effect to your hair, hair conditioners and the protein keratin which gives strength to your hair.”
5. Peter Coppola Keratin Concept
This is another keratin smoothing treatment. The results and effects are similar to the Brazilian blowout treatment. The company claims their product is completely free of any sort of aldehydes; however, they refuse to release complete ingredients. This is more suitable for people who have color treated hair or have gotten highlights or low lights done in their hair. This will completely straighten your hair and you would not need a straightening iron for quite some time.
- Key Ingredients: Keratin amino and ceramides
- Average Cost: $350
- Results: 3 to 4 months
- Post care: there is no special post care involved and hair can be washed or styled immediately after the treatment.
4. Lasio Keratin Treatment
Lasio offers three different types of keratin smoothing treatments. Most of the users have been very happy with the results and claim that the treatment has become a ritual for them. This is suitable for people with slightly damaged color treated hair. It makes the hair smooth and shiny, takes away the frizz and there is no need to use a hair iron for quite some time. This formula also seems mild as most of the reviews say that the users felt no itching or irritation in their eyes as they were getting the treatment done.
- Key Ingredient: varies depending upon the chosen treatment and these are methylene glycolor completely aldehyde free
- Average cost: $300
- Results last: 2 – 3 months
- Post care: You cannot wash or style your hair for the next twenty-four hours.
Some say it is the best keratin treatment out there. Although depending upon your hair type it might take up to five hours the first time followed up by another two hour session. However, this gives the most long lasting results. It is ideal for any hair type; whether your hair is African American frizzy, wavy, curly, chemically treated or dyed. Some reviews even claim that the hair grows out but the treatment doesn’t wear out even after eight months. So try this treatment if you want strong, smooth and shiny hair.
Also Read: Hair Growth Tips
- Key ingredient: formaldehyde, nano-molecular keratin particles
- Average cost: $350
- Results: 4-6 months
- Post care: You cannot was your hair for the next 72 hours, the max you can do is tie it in a lose ponytail.
2. What Are The Benefits?
So it makes your hair smooth, shiny, frizz free, manageable. It definitely saves you a lot of time. You can just leave your house straight out of the shower and your hair will dry naturally straight and frizz free. The major benefits of keratin smoothing treatment which has made it so popular are as follows:
- Unlike other hair straightening treatments keratin doesn’t change the texture of your hair.
- This is a short-term procedure and the hair which grows from the scalp intact your hair’s original texture
- This is relatively less damaging because of the protein keratin in it. It can even add volume to thin hair
- Another benefit is that keratin treatment is suitable for almost any type of hair and texture.
1. Is it Worth the Price?
On an average a keratin treatment costs $350, but off course depending upon your hair length and thickness it can be anything in between $250 and $400. If you compare the benefits in the long run and consider how much time you will be saving I think it is worth the price. You might also want to add the price of special shampoos and conditioners which would be part of post care, but then again compared to the time and effort you save up on I don’t think it is that high and it is worth the money.
- Look at it this way, if your keratin results last up to 3 months that comes to $3.50 a day. On an average we pay more than that for our coffee so I’d say if you need it go for it.
Maintaining Keratin Treatments & A Few More Considerations
Consider these facts about keratin treatment your little handbook; we have done most of the homework for you so you don’t have too. Here are just a few more things which you should keep in mind when going for a keratin smoothing treatment.
- Before opting for the treatment, check your allergies
- The treatment is not recommended for expecting and nursing mothers.
- Always use sulfate free shampoos, homemade shampoo and conditioners to make sure your keratin treatment lasts long
- Whenever going for a treatment be ready that you would not be able to wash your hair for the next couple of days, so go on days when you can afford to go without washing your hair.
- Always consult one or more stylists and see what do they recommend for your hair and which is the best treatment according to your hair and lifestyle
- The at-home keratin smoothing treatment is also one option which is more pocket friendly and less harmful as well. The only downside is that the results usually last up to 30 days or a bit more.