Is your hair lacking moisture or protein?
Updated: Jul 19
And how does lacking moisture or protein affect hair?
Your hair, like your skin, sometimes gets dry, breaks down and needs extra care. Not only what you eat is important for the health of your hair, but also what you use on it plays an important role in the way it looks and behaves. But how to tell what your hair needs?
Well, it is hard to be in tune with yourself and understand what your hair deficiencies are. But being able to identify some very specific signs gives you a huge advantage in tackling hair problems, and taking the right steps to make your hair shine and beautiful again.
If you feel your hair is dry and brittle, and it is often tangling or breaking down, it may be lacking moisture or protein. In this post, you will understand the signs your hair shows when it is suffering from a moisture or protein deficiency, and how to deal with that.
TABLE OF CONTENT
What is moisture and why is it important for your hair?
Moisture is liquid such as water. So, hair moisture means the ability to control the water in the hair by sealing it with moisturising products. The main function of these products is to prevent the loss of water in the hair, which can leave it dry, frizzy and brittle.
And how do you know when your hair lacks moisture? Well, a very clear sign is when your hair starts getting split ends and tangles easily.
You can also make a simple test to determine if your hair is lacking moisture: take a strand of hair and gently pull. If the strand snaps straight away, you need to moisturise your hair.
What to do when my hair needs moisture?
Curly and kinky hair tend to be drier by nature, and therefore they need more attention. In addition, using a blow dryer, hot comb, or curling iron can also damage the hair, which then loses elasticity and increases the risk of breakage and reduces moisture retention. So, if your have needs more moisture, take a look at these tips:
Use moisturising shampoos and conditioners. A great tip here is to do a pre-poo on your hair. This method consists in applying oils or conditioner treatments to your hair before cleaning it with shampoo. This provides a protective layer to your strands.
Use strengthening hair treatment masks, also known as deep conditioners, regularly. Choose products that have some type of oil in its constitution, such as shea, olive oil, jasmine, and etc.
Use humectants products once in a while, such as this Olive Moisturiser, which contains cold pressed organic olive oil. They reset natural moisture, reduce frizz and flyaway, and provide intense moisturising effects to the hair.
Use and abuse of the LOC method. This method consists in using Liquid, Cream, and Oil: start applying light moisturising products till you reach the heaviest ones. This allows the liquid and the creamy product, which are lighter, to sink into the hair. Then, seal with the right butter or oil products, which are heavier.
Apply moisturising products when the hair is still warm and wet, so it is easier for them to be absorbed by the hair strand.
Use proper accessories to detangle the hair and trim your ends when necessary.
Water resistance and moisture
Whereas some types of hair absorb water easily, others have some kind of water resistance. Think about your own hair: does it get wet easily? If it does not, it means that you have hair with low porosity. Porosity determines the ability of your hair to absorb and retain moisture. Therefore, knowing your hair type helps you determine the products you use, how you use them and how often.
Low porosity hair is characterised by having a tightly bound cuticle layer. For that reason, it usually needs more moisture, because it cannot easily absorb water, oils or other types of hair products. High porosity hair, on the other hand, has gaps and holes in the cuticle. This means that it absorbs water and oils easily, but cannot retain them.
The best way to improve the quality especially of your low porosity hair is to use moisture rich products that contain butter or oil: for more tips, follow the tips above. Another great solution is to apply moisturising deep conditioner every week, or at least every 15 days. You can either apply the deep conditioner after the conditioner, or substitute it. Most deep conditioners nowadays only need 3 to 5 minutes to work, others take up to 15 to 30 minutes. The best thing to do when applying a deep conditioner is to be consistent: use this type of product as often as you can. Plus, use a shower cap or heat cap on for better results!
What is protein and why is it important for your hair?
Proteins are large, complex molecules that act in many and important roles in our body. They do most of the work in cells and are needed for the structure, function, and regulation of our body’s tissues and organs. Hair is also constituted by protein: hair follicles are mainly made up of keratin protein.
But how do you know if your hair lacks protein? Well, if you notice that your hair is or has become brittle and thin, as well as has a slow growth and even loss, your body might be lacking protein. This can be the result of low consumption of dietary protein, such as meat, dairy products, nuts, and certain grains and beans. Hair loss, in particular, can also be the result of hormonal changes, medication, stressful periods, hairstyles and treatments, and others.
Porosity can be caused by external factors like heat and chemical processing. In this particular case, high porosity hair tends to need more protein in order to recover the structure of your hair strand.
Another way to verify if your hair lacks protein is to make a very simple test: take a strand of hair and gently pull. If the strand stretches really long before breaking off and then snaps, then you have too much moisture and you need protein.
What to do when my hair needs protein?
When you know that your hair has a protein deficiency, you need to:
Choose products that contain protein. In this case, make sure to choose the ones that have the words “repairing”, “restoring”, “strengthening” or “rebuilding”, because they will likely include protein. This restorative mask, for example, is rich in amino acids and with a high concentration of vegetable keratin, and it promotes deep repair, restoring the vitality of the hair. This Liquid Vegetable Keratin, on the other hand, is a spray that promotes an intensive restorative treatment for dyed hair, which has been chemically treated and extremely damaged by mechanical processes, such as the frequent use of irons or dryers.
You can also look for products that contain ingredients such as oats, wheat, rice, keratin, soy and milk.
When using a hair mask, apply it weekly or monthly, depending on the need of your hair, and leave it for 30 to 45 minutes, and sometimes overnight.
Also make sure to eat products rich in protein, such as meat, chicken, salmon, eggs, lentils, beans, and etc.
Signs of protein overload in hair
Overuse of protein treatment can leave your hair with build-up, which in turn can result in split ends and brittle, and breakage-prone hair.
If you think this is happening with your hair, make sure you to:
remove any product that has protein from your daily hair routine;
use a clarifying shampoo or conditioner to remove any build-up. In this case you can do a no-poo or low poo:
NO-POO is a method of cleaning your hair without using traditional shampoo. Instead of using shampoo, you can use alternatives such as a cleansing conditioner, such as the Jessicurl Hair Cleansing Cream.
3. add extra moisturising products into your hair routine.
Balance is essential for hair
Having the right balance of both moisturise and protein is beneficial to increasing hair elasticity, reducing split ends, and fixing dehydrated hair. The result is defined and bouncy curls, shiny and soft hair, and strong hair strands. Protein and moisture go hand to hand: without protein and with a fragile structure, the hair can easily lose moisture, and without moisture, hair will look and feel dry and opaque.
What to do now?
Well, the best thing to do now is to try to figure out what your hair needs. Do the test with the hair strand, pay attention to the signs your hair is showing, and use products that tackle its problems.
But even if you still feel lost after doing all of these, just contact us and together we can find your answers.