Keratin is a tough, fibrous protein naturally found in our hair, skin, and nails. It’s also a vital structural component that makes hair strong. The hair is up to 85% keratin which forms both the interior structure (cortex) and the outermost layer (cuticle).
The amount of keratin in the hair diminishes with age and can be further negatively affected by heat styling, chemical treatments, aggressive brushing, and environmental stressors.
When keratin in the cuticle layer is damaged, moisture escapes easily and your hair can become overly dry. Without a healthy and compact cuticle layer, the inner layer of the hair is exposed to damage, which leads to weak and inelastic hair. The loss of keratin also makes your hair dull and prone to tangles and frizz.
While that may sound grim, your damaged hair isn’t subject to a short (pun intended) life of being covered by hats and scarves. 🙂
With the reconstructing power of keratin masks, all of the unwelcome changes in your hair due to keratin loss can be minimized. In just 20 minutes, these intensive treatments will replenish missing or damaged keratin and dramatically improve the condition of your hair.
Will Keratin Masks Permanently Fix Damaged Hair?
Hydrolyzed keratin proteins in hair masks will not permanently renew damaged hair. Protein particles that bind to the hair will rinse off over time, which is why keratin hair masks should be repeated once a week or bi-weekly to keep dry and over-processed hair strong, soft, and frizz-free.
What Makes a Quality Keratin Mask?
Make sure to read the label and look for ingredients such as amino acids, hydrolyzed keratin, hydrolyzed soy protein, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and hydrolyzed silk. To be sure that your mask will provide you with precious benefits of hydrolyzed proteins, these proteins should be listed high up in the ingredient list rather than at the very bottom of it.
Some hair masks use “keratin” in their name, but don’t actually contain keratin proteins at all. These so-called keratin masks actually have a high content of silicones, which will either wash out with the next shampoo or build up on your hair and require a clarifying shampoo to eliminate them.
You should also avoid keratin hair masks that contain sodium chloride, which speeds up the process of stripping keratin from your hair.
Bellow are three exceptional keratin reconstructive hair masks you should consider.
Keratin Replenishing Mask
1. AG Hair Keratin Repair Reconstruct Intense Anti-Breakage Mask is an intensive conditioning treatment formulated to reconstruct dry and damaged hair that has undergone chemical treatments such as bleaching or chemical straightening.
Benefits: This hair mask claims to infuse the hair with much-needed moisture and restore elasticity, leaving your hair softer, smoother, shinier, more manageable, and more resistant to stretching and breakage when you brush it. It doesn’t leave residue behind or weigh down fine hair.
How it works: This hair mask is packed with keratin amino acids, silk proteins, and shea butter. Thanks to their small molecular weight, keratin amino acids penetrate the hair shaft to repair the damage while adding moisture, strength, and elasticity. They also repair damaged cuticles, giving your hair smoothness and shine.
Silk amino acids help preserve moisture and provide additional strength, suppleness, and glow.
The shea butter is a great emollient that helps lock in moisture and condition hair.
The Abyssinian oil keeps hair moisturized and improves its manageability and shine.
The blend of superfruits has antioxidant properties that promote hair and scalp health.
How to use: Massage into damp hair after shampooing. Leave on for 2-5 minutes. To intensify the effects, wrap your hair and apply heat for 10-15 mins. Rinse.
2. Phyto Phytokeratine Extreme Exceptional Mask is a regenerative conditioning treatment for dry, damaged hair. The main ingredient is botanical keratin composed of 18 amino acids. While a majority of repairing hair masks contain silicones in their formula, this mask is free of undesirable silicones, parabens, and phthalates.
- This regenerative mask deeply repairs and nourishes dry and damaged hair while restoring its elasticity and strength.
- It leaves your hair feeling smooth and frizz-free without affecting your natural curl pattern.
- It also eliminates tangles, increases manageability, and restores softness and shine.
How it works: Hydrolyzed corn protein, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and hydrolyzed soy protein imitate the natural keratin of hair, filling in the gaps in the damaged strands and sealing the cuticle to reduce frizz and boost shine.
Sapota Seed Butter contains double the omega 6 and 9 fatty acids as shea butter, so it nourishes the scalp and adds shine to your hair without leaving a greasy residue.
The baobab (Adansonia Digitata) oil restores the protective hydrolipidic coating around the hair strands and increases hair strength and suppleness.
The buriti fruit (Mauritia Flexuosa) oil is rich in essential fatty acids and has potent antioxidant and scalp soothing properties. It revitalizes dry hair, boosts elasticity, and fights frizz.
How to use: After shampooing, apply a small amount of the mask to mid-lengths and ends. Use a wide-toothed comb to coat your hair completely.
If your hair is fine or thinning, apply a smaller amount, focusing on mid-lengths and ends and leave on for 2 to 3 minutes.
If your hair is thick, apply the product more generously to the length and to the ends of your hair and leave it on for 5 to 10 minutes.
3. Deep Treatment Mask by Damila combines essential moisture with hydrolyzed keratin to provide remarkable restorative and conditioning benefits to damaged hair.
Damila Hydration Hair Mask utilizes several potent ingredients that work to repair and condition damaged and overprocessed hair, like hydrolyzed keratin, hydrolyzed rice protein, hydrolyzed soy protein, wheat amino acids, and collagen.
- With the very first use, the mask transforms damaged strands into silkier, shinier hair. With regular use, the mask provides cumulative effects, making hair feel stronger and healthier.
- The mask leaves behind a weightless layer of protection to shield the hair from the effects of blow-drying and heat styling and minimize future damage.
- It provides great slip, leaving your hair easy to comb and detangle and more manageable, so it takes less time to style.
- This mask hydrates and softens your hair, making it more resistant to frizz.
How it works: Keratin proteins repair damaged spots along the cuticle, leaving hair stronger, silkier, and shinier.
Panthenol is a highly effective humectant used in hair care products to help retain moisture. It also helps protect hair from breakage.
The collagen replenishes your body’s own lost collagen and helps improve your hair’s thickness while boosting its natural sheen.
How to use: Apply the mask to your clean, damp hair. Massage into the hair to distribute the mask evenly. Cover with a plastic cap and let it sit for several minutes. Rinse it out and blow-dry and style your hair. Use every 2 weeks or more often if needed.
I can’t help adding to the list another great keratin mask.
Luseta Keratin Smooth Hair Mask is infused with keratin to provide nourishment for dry, damaged and weakened hair.
It is free of sulfates, paraben, gluten, and other harmful ingredients. It is also free of cruelty and safe for color-treated hair.
Luseta Keratin Smooth Hair Mask is especially beneficial for dry, chemically treated, and damaged hair.
- Adds shine and softness
- Restores elasticity and prevents breakage
- Eliminates frizz and leaves hair gorgeously smooth
- Helps with detangling and makes hair more manageable
- Replenishes lost keratin and protects hair from future damage
Use this mask weekly and leave it on your hair for five minutes while in the shower.