Protein Vs Non-Protein Hair Care – Which Is Best For You?

Benefits of  Protein Hair Care

There has been much debate about Protein Hair Treatments versus Non-Protein Hair Treatments. One side of the debate strongly believes that Protein treatments are the “end-all-and-be-all” of hair care while one the opposing team, Non-Protein Treatments are championed as the premiere method.

While not taking any sides, in particular, we would like to offer some information to better guide you to the paramount hair care for you.

Our hair is conceived of almost 91% protein as long chains of amino acids. As the cells in your hair develop, they fill up with a fibrous protein called  – get this – keratin. The keratin found in the hair is an insoluble protein called “hard” keratin as it does not dissolve in water, and is pretty irrepressible.

As the hair is mainly comprised of protein, it is logical that if your hair became protein deficient at any time, just a protein treatment could help remedy the problem – even if only temporarily.

Conditioning with protein can be advantageous in almost anyone’s regimen whether natural or relaxed.  For relaxed hair, it maybe even more beneficial to use a protein conditioner. Relaxer chemicals tend to break down the bonds in your hair and thus makes it imperative to use a protein conditioner to make the hair stronger.

Protein offers these additional perks:

  1. Strengthens dry, brittle hair.
  2. Keeps hair strong prior to relaxer application and afterwards.
  3. Administers to damage from heat styling.
  4. Temporarily repairs split ends.


Protein conditioning treatments drill-down deep into the hair-shaft to deter hair breakage. The protein attaches to your hair in the areas that are weak to build up the strength in the hair. The protein also  hardens the cuticle layer and puts a protective barrier around the weakened hair. It re-structures your hair for shine and growth.


Despite the fantastic functions of protein to the hair, it is critical not to overuse this product on your locks. For example, do not use protein treatments like you would your regular hair conditioners – at every hair wash. Too many protein treatments to the the hair-shaft can actually cause breakage.

Now, there are various types of protein conditioning treatments:  the hardcore re-constructors, deep penetrating conditioners or light protein treatments, and protein paks. Treatments such as the hardcore re-constructors and even the deep penetrating conditioners can be applied by a professional stylists if you’re not comfortable with doing it yourself. The lighter treatments can be easily administered domestically.

How Often Should You Use a Protein Conditioner?

Application of Protein Conditioners is all dependent on the state and texture of your hair.  With relaxed hair it is recommended to do a treatment at least once a month but more preferably every other week.  You should also apply one within two weeks of relaxing your hair. For natural hair, you can use a treatment every month or every 2 months depending upon the condition of your hair. Now natural hair Ladies, if you do feel there is a need for it more frequently as a result of the damage, still be cautious regarding overuse.

WARNING: Only use a hardcore treatments if you’re experiencing severe breakage and ensure to follow the instructions for use, precisely.  Typically, it only takes one treatment.


Protein Sensitivity and Non-Protein  Hair Treatments

So are you of the belief that Protein treatments do not work for you or that your hair is Protein Sensitive? Well let’s examine this a little further.

Often times individuals are of the opinion that their hair is Protein Sensitive when in fact they have exercised overuse or mis-use of Protein treatments. When following a particular Protein treatment it is integral to be careful to follow the instructions specifically. It is also essential to follow-up with a moisturizing conditioner to obtain the best results possible. If not, you will achieve the exact results that you are trying to protect the hair from.

It should be noted that Protein conditioners have one fundamental responsibility and that is to Build-Up Your Hair through temporary reconstruction.  When used properly, the protein molecules in a deep conditioner will bind to the hair and strengthen it. Will there be a tendency for your hair to feel hard? Yes! But do not panic. It is supposed to.

Protein should not be contained in your Serum, Leave-in Conditioner, Curl Enhancer, Hair Voluminous spray etc.  Protein should ONLY be part of a deep conditioning treatment that you use to strengthen your hair.  Leave In Conditioners, Serums, Curl Enhancers etc, should NOT contain protein. Why? Because protein should only be used with heat as part of a treatment to strengthen the hair.

It is advisable that whether or not you’re currently experiencing hair damage that protein treatments should be a consistent part of your hair care routine. Furthermore, remember that how you treat your hair after a protein treatment is just as important, if not more.

Happy Hair Care!