Does Your Hair Need Protein? |

All Your Hair Questions, Answered

Is Your Hair Lacking Protein? Here's How To Tell

18 April 2018
photo of woman brushing hair with comb
Jelani Addams Rosa

Jelani Addams Rosa

Associate Editor,

As an employee of L'Oréal, Jelani brings her knowledge and passion for hair care to Before joining the team, she spent time at Celebuzz, Seventeen, and Cosmo for Latinas.

If you're recently feeling like your hair won't DO anything, it could be due to a range of issues. Everything from shower water to new styling products can throw your hair routine off. There's one aspect of hair health that's not as frequently discussed, however: hair protein.

Much like your body, protein is one of the crucial building blocks of healthy hair. When you hair has enough protein, it looks shiny and has major body and bounce. If you feel like your hair is not living up to its full potential, it may be time to ask yourself: Does your hair need protein?

While your hair gets a lot of its protein from your diet, you may have to take a more direct approach. Not sure if your hair is lacking protein? Travis Parker, L’Oréal Professionnel brand ambassador, is here to school you on how to identify if your hair is lacking protein and what to do about it.

How to tell if your hair is lacking protein.

Parker says there are five common signs that your hair is lacking protein:

  • Your mane looks stringy and limp.
  • Your locks are more easily tangled than usual.
  • Your strands lack elasticity.
  • Your locks look dull.
  • Your hair feels gummy.

Many things can compromise the protein in your hair, including day-to-day wear and tear. However, Parker says he almost always sees a lack of protein after mishandled chemical treatments or on a client whose diet lacks protein.

If you’re unsure if your hair is lacking protein, reach out to a trusted hair care professional. A quick trip to the hair salon is worth it, since an expert should be able to identify the your problem.

How to restore the protein in your hair.

Once you know your hair is lacking protein, it’s a pretty easy problem to solve. Start by swapping out your regular shampoo and conditioner for a system with a protein-enhanced formula. Parker recommends L’Oreal Professionnel’s Inforcer Shampoo and Conditioner. Its strengthening, anti-breakage formula is infused with vitamin B6 and biotin for instant reduction of breakage.

Opting for a hair care system with a protein-based formula is a good start, but the stylist says you’re going to have to enlist the help of a professional if you really want to rehab your locks.

“I highly recommend an in-salon concentrated protein treatment such as L’Oreal Professionnel Powermix Force about every four to six weeks in addition to your regimen at home,” he says.

Even though professional protein treatments can help your hair look and feel it’s best, too much protein can wreak havoc on your locks. Your stylist should know what treatments to administer and how often, but Parker says as a general rule people with coarse or thick hair need protein treatments more often than people with fine or thin hair.

Protein is crucial in maintaining healthy hair, but too much of a good thing has its consequences. Too much protein can make your strands feel stiff, making them more prone to breakage. If you’ve been packing on the protein-based products and notice your hair beginning to harden, Parker suggests swapping out your protein shampoo and conditioner for a moisture-based range. The stylist recommends the L’Oreal Professionnel Nutrifier range

Next time you head to the salon, be sure to ask your stylist if you’re due for a protein treatment.

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