Protein hair treatments: What to know & DIY mask options

Taryn Davies
Published: February 23, 2018

Your hair is made up of protein, so it makes sense that when it’s lacking in it, you need to put more of it back into it, whether that’s through your diet or the products and treatments you use.

Protein helps to smooth the cuticle of the hair, creating smoother strands and stronger hair. When you’re lacking in protein hair is ultra fine, typically chemically damaged and feels really fragile. There’s a difference between hair that’s lacking in protein and hair that’s dry, hair that’s dry feels brittle or rough, it needs softening through moisturising shampoos and oils.

Why your hair needs protein

Your hair needs protein quite simply because it's made from it, keratin is a type of protein that makes up your hair and when it's deficient in protein it's easy to see. Usually we get enough protein from the foods we eat, but every now and then you might need to give it a little extra boost with the products you use.


For the most part, it’s likely that you get enough, but if your hair is particularly damaged through chemical treatments you might need to up it.

Protein treatments boost the hair with a variety of nutrients and proteins to help reconstruct and strengthen hair strands. By restoring those building blocks in your hair, you can help treat some of your top hair concerns.

Why your hair needs protein


DIY protein hair masks

Getting a protein treatment in a salon can be quite expensive to be done regularly, but it's easy to make them at home with products you're likely to have in your kitchen.

Egg mask

Egg yolks are rich in fat and protein, which help to moisturise, and then the egg white is packed with enzymes that helps to cleanse your hair and scalp. This is why eggs make a great simple and quick mask for your locks, you'll need one or two depending on the length of your hair.



Everything You Need To Know About Protein Hair Treatments

Greek yoghurt mask

Another kitchen product that has protein in it, Greek yoghurt, go for the full-fat option to help moisturise your locks too. Mix it with an egg, or apply to your hair and let it sit for 20 minutes. Rinse and shampoo your hair afterwards.

Mayonnaise and avocado

Avocado is rich in fatty acids, which makes it extremely moisturising for your hair, plus mayo is made from oil and egg, again moisturising for your hair. Mix a couple tablespoons of pure mayonnaise with half of a mashed avocado (remove the skin first), apply to hair and cover with plastic cap, let it sit for 20-30 minutes then rinse with cool water, shampoo and condition.

Protein-rich hair products

Philip Kingsley Tricho Pro Volumising Protein Spray

Tricho Pro is a volumising protein spray that not only gives you body and root lift, but also works to repair damage, protect the cuticle from future harm, and improve hair's natural shine.

Philip Kingsley Tricho Pro Volumizing Protein Spray

Phyto Keratine Reparative Serum

The Phyto Keratine Reparative Serum is ideal for those with damaged hair ends, and you can use this product regularly too. The formula contains both keratin and hyaluronic acid which work to deeply replenish your hair and help restore it's health.

Phytokeratine Repairing Serum

Redken Extreme CAT Protein Treatment

The CAT protein treatment from Redken works quickly and deeply to help reconstruct damaged hair. The protein inside the treatment pentrates the hair at it's core, so you build internal strength, so hair feels stronger over time. This stuff is worth it's weight in gold for helping truly damaged locks, and it doesn't weigh down your hair either.


Redken Cat Protein Reconstructing Treatment

Label.m Therapy Rejuvenating protein cream

The Therapy Rejuvenating Protein Cream from Label.m is a lightweight serum formula that melts into hair and instantly gives it a strong and healthy feeling. The advanced ingredients help to reverse the signs of ageing on your hair, so you're left with locks that look and more importantly feel healthy.


Label M Therapy Age Defying Protein Cream

This Aveda treatment is something that you don't need to use all of the time, but for those with really damaged hair it will work wonders on helping to restore your hair, thanks to the combination of pure plant oils and quinoa protein. If your hair is damaged due to over-dying, heat styling and the environment, you'll always want to have a tube of this to hand.


Aveda Damage Remedy Intensive Restructuring Treatment

Philip Kingsley PK4 Hair Protein Capsules

This protein product is a different approach, it's a nutritional supplement with amino acids beneficial to hair.

Philip Kingsley PK4 Hair Protein Capsules
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