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Does Your Hair Have Protein Overload? Here’s How To Tell!

Protein: it’s kind of a big deal when it comes to overall hair health. 
About 90% of our hair is made up of a protein called keratin, which is how protein gets its well-earned street credit for encouraging long, strong, and enviable hair. IIf you’re a queen of the hot tools or frequently color your hair, you may already realize that any hair that has undergone heat, styling and chemical damage often loses its protein. Case in point: protein treatments are often recommended for tresses that need rehab (the more you know!). 


Without enough protein, your strands lose their elasticity, sheen and fullness—that’s why protein-deficient strands tend to feel and appear dry, brittle, and weak. Ultimately, a protein deficiency can completely thwart our hair goals by causing breakage and recurring split ends.


True: Protein is essential for repairing severely damaged strands, but too much protein is your classic case of “too much of a good thing.” Healthy hair needs moisture too! The ultimate healthy hair formula is as follows: Protein + Moisture balance = stronger, healthier hair. Depriving your hair of moisture and solely focusing on protein treatments can cause more harm than good. 


If you’ve recently started a hair repair routine that includes lots of protein but your hair feels crunchy, straw-like, and stiff you may be experiencing protein overload. Let’s take a closer look at what causes protein overload, how you can avoid it, and the best solutions to help you find balance between protein and moisture to heal damaged strands. 

 

What Causes Protein Overload?

Protein overload is caused by an imbalance in protein, often from over-treating your hair to protein treatments as an attempt to course-correct stand damage. Implementing products like hair masks, oils, creams, and treatments that contain protein can help repair hair damage, but there is such a thing as overdoing it.


Does Hair Porosity Play A Role In Protein Overload? 

When your hair is showing signs of damage (stiffness, dryness, excessive shedding, and split ends), there’s a breakdown of keratin (protein). When this happens, your hair cuticles are lifted, leaving your hair extremely vulnerable to losing moisture and dreaded breakage. 


When your hair is at its healthiest, your hair cuticles lay closed and layered like shingles on a roof. When there’s damage, these cuticles are lifted, allowing moisture to escape. Your hair’s ability to retain moisture is known as porosity, and it’s an important part of assessing whether or not your hair needs protein, moisture or has the perfect balance of both. Not sure what your hair porosity is? Take our quick Strand Test to find out: 
To start, take a strand of hair and pull on it. Take note of how that strand reacted:
 

  • Did your hair stretch a bit before it snapped? Your hair is most likely craving moisture. You have low porosity hair.
  • Did your hair stretch and return to its original shape? You have medium porosity hair.
  • Did your hair immediately snap and didn’t stretch? Your hair is craving protein for strength. You have high porosity hair.

 

Protein + Moisture Balance = The Key To Healthy Hair

The protein and moisture balance is everything when it comes to caring for your strands and restoring damage.  All hair types and textures can benefit from a naturally powered hair repair routine that includes the right amounts of moisture and protein based on your unique porosity levels and the type of damage your strands are experiencing. Here’s how you can create a customized regimen that targets your specific hair repair needs: 


Low porosity

Go easy on the protein here. Too much protein on low porosity locks can create protein overload. Retaining the moisture you put in without weighing your strands down is key, that’s why we love using our Briogeo Superfoods™ Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Mask.

SHOP AVOCADO + KIWI MEGA MOISTURE SUPERFOOD MASK

 How to use:

- Shampoo, rinse, and gently wring out your hair to remove excess water

- Section your hair into 4 manageable sections and secure with a clip

- Start with 1 section and massage the mask into the hair

- Use the Briogeo® Wide Tooth Detangling Comb (our go-to tool for detangling) to evenly distribute the mask throughout your strands and to prevent snagging

- Continue and repeat on all 4 sections

- Leave the mask on for at least 10 minutes before you rinse it out

 

Medium porosity

Your strands have the ideal balance of protein and moisture, and your locks are less prone to damage—that said, it’s always good to take preventative measures! 

To protect and prevent damage to your locks, multi-mask with lightweight, strengthening hair and scalp mask treatments like our Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Deep Conditioning Mask and our Scalp Revival™ Charcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask. Pairing these masks together will help to clarify, cleanse, remove unwanted buildup (that can lead to imbalances in the hair cuticle), and nourish your strands—all while simultaneously focusing on your healthy hair and scalp needs.

 

SHOP DETOX + REPAIR MASKS

How to use: 

- Apply our Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask as detailed above, focusing on the mid-length of the hair to the ends 

- Add in our Scalp Revival Charcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask to the scalp 

- Leave both masks on for at least 10 mins before rinsing out

- Finish up with a few drops of our cult-fave Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Strengthening Treatment Hair Oil to help mend any split ends and add a glossy sheen to your tresses.

 

High porosity

Your hair is craving protein. All hair types and textures are affected by their porosity and protein levels, but curls tend to be more porous than straight hair—and thus, more prone to dryness, breakage, and frizz.  

If your hair is curly, mask up with our Curl Charisma™ Rice Amino + Avocado Hydrating Defining Mask. This lightweight hair mask is perfect for enhancing curls, hydrating, and sealing in the vital moisture that tends to escape high porosity hair.

 

SHOP RICE AMINO + AVOCADO HYDRATING & DEFINING MASK 

 

As an added nourishing treatment for your scalp, you can use our Scalp Revival™ Charcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask to soak up the benefits of multi-masking. 

How to use: 

- Apply our Curl Charisma™ Rice Amino + Avocado Hydrating Defining Mask as detailed above, focusing on the mid-length of the hair to the ends. 

- Add in our Scalp RevivalCharcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask to the scalp 

- Leave both hair masks on for at least 10 mins before rinsing it out


Find Your Protein and Moisture Balance 

Struggling with dry, severely damaged, brittle strands? Avoid protein overload and treat your strands to the perfect balance of protein and moisture in one bottle with our NEW! Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment

We’ve taken the guesswork out of protein and moisture treatments to deliver a premium, pro-strength, at-home treatment. As the latest addition to our Don’t Despair, Repair!™ collection, this formula is scientifically proven to strengthen hair up to 2x after one use and promotes stronger, healthier hair. The best part? This weekly treatment is the perfect addition to your hair repair routine when your strands needs lots of extra TLC: 

Your Ultimate Intensive Don't Despair, Repair!™ routine (for extra dry, brittle strands)
Set aside one day a week for a hair treatment day.

 

Step 1: Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Super Moisture Shampoo: Cleanse your hair with this sulfate-free, daily formula. Rinse and wring your hair of excess water.
Step 2: New! Don’t Despair, Repair!™  MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment: Apply treatment evenly throughout damp hair. Leave in for at least 10 minutes (or overnight, as desired), then rinse.
Step 3: Don’t Despair, Repair!™  Deep Conditioning Mask: Immediately following, massage this hair mask treatment into hair from mid-lengths to ends. Leave in for at least 10-15 minutes, then fully rinse.
Step 4: Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Strengthening Treatment Oil: Apply a few drops to dry or damp hair, focusing on mid-length to ends or other areas of damage. A little goes a long way!
 
Don’t let protein overload get in the way of your healthy hair goals! We’ve made it easier and more convenient than ever to find the right balance of protein and moisture depending on your hair type, unique texture, and damage type. 
 
Not only does our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment restore hydration and strength to severely damaged, dry, weakened strands, it’s also a pro-strength, at-home treatment that puts the power of hair repair in your hands. Ready to find your healthy hair balance? Shop our Don’t Despair, Repair!™  MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment today!

 

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Don't Despair, Repair! MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment
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Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Superfood Mask
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Scalp Revival Charcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask
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