Keratin hair treatment: how does it work?


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Trattamento alla cheratina: tutto quello che c'è da sapere

Nothing more frizz effect, straight, shiny, healthy hair, deeply restructured: the promises that the keratin treatment ago are truly remarkable. And, tempted by these highly coveted results, many women rely on this treatment to give new life to their hair, in the salon or by opting for do-it-yourself.

In both cases, there is one factor to pay close attention to: the possible presence of formaldehyde, indicated by IARC among the compounds of group I (certain carcinogens). It is used by hairdressers in combination with keratin to obtain a greater smoothing effect, but it is also present in many other cosmetic products. The difference is that while in creams the concentration is low and is inserted only as a preservative, in smoothing products its presence is much higher. Furthermore, its presence is often not reported on the label and this is potentially dangerous, given that some hair does not tolerate the substance, especially if in excessive quantities. Formaldehyde can also cause irritation, allergies and burns.

What is keratin?

Keratin it is a natural protein found in hair, nails and skin. Over time its quantity in the body tends to decrease. Specifically for hair, stress and atmospheric agents act negatively, which is why periodically a keratin treatment can be used to fortify the hair, restructure the hair and restore damaged parts.

Keratin treatment: how does it work?

keratin treatmentSource: iStock

There are two different types of treatment: smoothing and restructuring.

  • The straightening treatment with keratin it allows to obtain a perfectly smooth hair eliminating frizz, also thanks to the use of formaldehyde. After washing your hair with an alkaline shampoo, the keratin-based straightening product is applied and left on. Then we proceed with drying, with the help of the plate, to fix the treatment.
  • The restructuring treatment with keratin it is particularly suitable for frizzy and brittle hair: it forms a protective patina around the hair and makes the hair soft, shiny and hydrated. Unlike the straightening one, this is not harmful and has no contraindications. As always, we proceed with washing the hair, using a chelating shampoo and the specific restructuring product is applied; then proceed with a keratin pack and let it act by wrapping the hair in a cap. An additional restructuring mask is also applied before drying.

Do-it-yourself keratin treatment

There are also kits on the market, like this one for sale on Amazon, to do everything at home, alone. Of course, relying on a professional is preferable to do-it-yourself, but if you want to opt for something cheaper, without even having to leave home, it is advisable to make sure of the composition of the products: specifically the amount of formaldehyde contained.

Benefits of keratin treatment

what is keratinSource: Web

The use of keratin is very good for the hair: it nourishes it, repairs it, increases its brilliance and invigorates the color, making the hair soft and voluminous. It is also the enemy of the much feared electric effect, that frizz that sometimes cannot be controlled in any other way.

Keratin treatment: contraindications

Although the results of the keratin treatment are surprising, pay attention to the percentages of formaldehyde, which constitutes it main contraindication, being potentially carcinogenic and dangerous in several respects. Furthermore, prolonged use brings effects contrary to those hoped for: the hair weakens, the hair becomes brittle and dull.

The treatment, moreover, is quite expensive if done in the salon: it can even exceed hundreds of euros. The more experienced can also opt for a home treatment or, better still, the choice can fall on natural products, which can help a lot in hair care, such as DIY masks, essential oils, coconut oil.


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