View Full Version : Can hair need BOTH moisture and protein?

July 8th, 2014, 08:06 AM
Hi all! I've read lots of articles describing the protein/moisture balance as two different ends of a scale, so if you add more than one it kind of takes away the other. But then I've read the odd one where it says that sometimes your hair may be damaged in a way that it needs both protein and moisture. Confusing, eh? Im wondering your thoughts on this. Has anyone ever found their hair needs both?

My hair is in a drastic state at the moment. Hence why I'm wondering about this. I'm finding shed and broken hairs all over the place and I can't figure out what it needs. When it is wet, my hair is rough, squeaky, really tangly and has no "slip". But when it's dry it's limp, looks kind of greasy and stringy/mushy especially underneath, but is still tangled and a bit dry on top. The ends are breaking off ridiculously considering I had a trim less than two weeks ago. A strand has been floating in water for nearly an hour now and products seem to build up and not penetrate it easily, and when I stretch a strand it only stretches a teeny bit and doesn't spring back at all. Oh and I have clarified too.
Any ideas? Protein? Moisture? Both? What is thiiiis?

P.s. I know I've posted another fairly similar thread about my hair problems so sorry for thread-mayem, I thought it was an interesting question!

July 8th, 2014, 08:19 AM
You can definately need both protein and moisture, in fact it's usually best to follow up protein with moisture.

I'm sorry I can't be much help with your particular problems. I'll let someone with more experience with damaged hair answer that part. Good luck!

July 8th, 2014, 10:20 AM
Thank you for your reply :) I had heard that's best. I wish I knew if that's what my hair needs :confused: . Do you still need to condition after if the protein mask itself is supposed to be conditioning?

July 8th, 2014, 10:34 AM
I would say, based on the mushy feeling and lack of spring back that you are in need of protein first and foremost, as those are usually signs of a ratio where the moisture is too high (though after the protein, you may need to add more moisture, depending on how damaged your hair is.)
Also though - have you clarified and/or chelated recently? You may also be having some good ol' fashioned buildup (of products or of scale from hard water.)

July 8th, 2014, 12:09 PM
Hi :) I clarified a couple of washes ago using bicarbonate of soda in a regular SLS shampoo, but it made no difference except making the squeakyness and tangles worse. I'm starting to wonder if I have hard water though cause nothing seems to be helping so I've ordered a free testing kit.
I'm thinking I may try a protein mask and then keep conditioning and just pray to god it stop breaking :'(

July 8th, 2014, 12:23 PM
Words like stringy, mushy, limp indicate you need protein. A couple of protein treatments are most times enough, so I'd start with this. You can follow this up by moisture as an extra, and if you notice you got enough protein you can focus on moisture. Good luck!

July 8th, 2014, 12:29 PM
I am still new here but when I first joined in January I know I tried too many things at once. Have you read this article by Nightshade yet? It is a good one, I thought I would pass it along. http://web.archive.org/web/20120125071723/http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=79

July 8th, 2014, 01:46 PM
Hmm... I think this might be my problem too, but in a different way. You see, my canopy hair is dry and frizzy (in need of moisture) but the hair underneath the canopy is soft, limp and looks greasy quickly.

Maybe I should try moisture treatment on the top half of my head and protein treatment on the lower half? :hmm:

July 8th, 2014, 02:03 PM
If you're dealing with mushiness, definitely start with protein for all of it, because the protein will also help your hair hold moisture. Pretty much the only time I'd suggest only protein-treating part of the hair is if the virgin hair dislikes protein, but there are bleached sections that need it. Most people don't have particularly bad reactions to protein, so it's not terribly likely to hurt if at least part of your hair wants it.

July 8th, 2014, 03:11 PM
Thanks so much for the replies :)

The only thing I have at the moment with protein in is mane n tail shampoo, so do you think it would affect it if I did the deep condition first and then washed it out with the mane n tail and condition as normal? Or is it best to do the protein first ?

I guess I could try an egg and olive oil treatment first and then deep condition but my problem is that I need to wash out the conditioner really well or my hair will be weighed down and greasy again. Hmmmm...

July 8th, 2014, 03:55 PM
Eggs aren't the best for hair. The proteins in them are too large to penetrate the hair shaft. Personally, I use Knox plain gelatin and just make it with warmish water, don't let it cool and apply it to my hair (I mix a bit of conditionner in to make it thicker/easier to apply.)

July 9th, 2014, 09:29 AM
Ohh right, thanks for the warning I definitely won't try egg then.

I've just booked in for an intensive moisturising treatment at my salon on friday ( I'm SO desperate for it to look nice for my graduation on Monday!!) so I'll try some shampoo/conditioner with hydrolysed wheat protein just before then. Eek fingers crossed!! I can't handle it being like this.

July 20th, 2014, 06:45 AM
Clarify (NOT baking soda which is damaging) and chelate, then try a basic deep condition (product rich in the major emollients: fatty alcohols and cationic surfactants). I wouldn't shampoo with protein before a major event unless you know your roots are damaged. Consider experimenting on shed plughole hair instead of using your whole head as a laboratory.

Protein can be moisturising in that it has humectant (water attracting) properties. The protein-moisture balance is poorly named IMO. People often erroneously use the word moisture (= water) when they actually mean emollience (softness/ slip) or conditioning.