What you need to know about keratin treatments

What you need to know about keratin treatments

If you’re someone who struggles with unwanted frizz, live (or holiday) in a humid environment, or your hair simply won’t play ball, you may want to consider trying a keratin treatment.

Known to make home hair-care a simpler affair, they can smooth, add shine and soften, but there are things to be aware of before booking in.

Here’s what you need to know.

What actually is a keratin treatment?

A chemical treatment in which keratin – a type of protein that is naturally found in the hair – is applied to the hair and then sealed in with a hot straightening iron. There are different types – some simply smooth frizz and create a glossy finish to the hair, while others straighten it entirely – but whichever one you choose, they work by smoothing and sealing the cuticle for smooth, frizz-free hair that’s less likely to break.

What do they do to the hair?

As well as amping up shine and taking down frizz, they’re also a great treatment if you want to make hair more manageable. After having a keratin treatment, you’ll notice hair is particularly swishy and easy to deal with, plus you’ll rarely wake up with bed hair. Keratin treatments also make hair easier to style – you can expect drying time to decrease. Many people find that when they have the treatment, they don’t use as much heat on their hair, which also improves its health over time.

How long do they last?

They can last up to six months, depending on the type of keratin treatment you have. You should avoid washing the hair with shampoos that contain sulphates, and try and minimise how often you wash it generally, to help extend the amount of time it lasts.

Can you combine with colour treatments?

Yes, although they should be done a few weeks apart, rather than at the same time.

Other things you need to know

Try and avoid keratin treatments which emit formaldehyde (a carcinogen) during the process – a good salon should be able to advise what they have on offer. Formaldehyde-free treatments work just as well and don’t harm your health.