For everything you do right for your straight relaxed hair, we bet you’re getting some things wrong from time to time. Remember, because relaxing is a process of permanently straightening hair by chemically breaking its bonds, your mistakes are affecting texture and strength most. So, sit back and take note of these tips to go from straw to silky.
The importance of protein... and where to find it
Why is protein so important to hair? Turns out it’s what every single hair shaft consists of. The main “ingredient” of hair, like nails, is a structural protein called keratin. And like all body tissues, keratin is nourished by the food you eat – which means your diet is important if you want healthier hair. Skimp on protein and you may find yourself with dull, limp and brittle locks because they’re starved of the “good stuff” they need to replenish, reconstruct and revitalise themselves.
Of course, you know gulping down dozens of eggs and a couple of steaks every day isn’t great for your cholesterol and waistline. Fortunately, there are many low-fat, healthy ways to include more protein in your diet, which will in turn bolster the development of your hair.
Salmon and tuna are excellent seafood options. They’re also rich in omega fatty acids, which strengthen hair follicles. The same goes for almonds and sunflower seeds. You can also eat more chicken breast, whole eggs and dairy like yoghurt and cottage cheese. For vegetarians, oats, broccoli, lentils, beans and quinoa are alternate high-protein options.
Changing your diet is one way to reap the benefits of protein from the inside out. Another way to “feed’ your hair is with a protein treatment applied directly to your locks. To avoid DIY egg mask disasters, though, it’s best to turn to the experts. Stylists can perform a specialist high-performance protein treatment in their salon. They’ll also likely recommend a professional quality product for convenient use at home.
For example, there’s Mizani’s Kerafuse Intense Strengthening Treatment, which is recommended for African women who have undergone a lot of chemical processing of their hair. This dual-action fortifying treatment restores the protein and moisture levels of hair strands with a custom blend of coconut-derived clarifiers, botanical extracts, tea tree oils, aloe and a concentrated dose of protein. Damage is reversed and hair looks attractively sleek and shiny.
Meanwhile, Redken’s Extreme line has been specially formulated to strengthen hair with a unique RCT (Root Core Tip) Protein Complex that, when used as a system of shampoo, conditioner and mask, makes hair 15 times stronger. The smart complex acts where damaged and distressed hair needs it most, reinforcing structure and restoring strands. Both leave-in and rinse-out treatments are available.
Redken Extreme, the Mizani Kerafuse treatment and many more specialist protein products are available at salons. Click to find your nearest stockist, and pump up your hair’s protein quotient.
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