What is Keratin Treatment – Types, Side Effects, Precautions & more

Keratin is a protein that is the main component of hair, nails and skin. This protein protects epithelial cells from getting damaged by physical, chemical and environmental factors. Keratin determines the strength of hair as it acts both as outer protective and inner structural protein. 

What is Keratin Treatment? 

Keratin Treatment has always been a trending topic in the beauty world. Keratin Treatment is a semi-permanent method for straightening the hair. In this treatment, liquid keratin complex is filled in the gaps between the layers of the cuticle. In Keratin treatment, Keratin and other conditioning agents help in nourishing and strengthening the hair. It is advised not to wash your hair for three or four days after getting the treatment. That’s because the solution takes time to work. This process prevents humidity from penetrating the hair, thus locking out frizz. Keratin treatment makes hair smooth and silky. It removes frizz from the hair and makes them more manageable. These effects usually last about three-five months. 

Different Types Of Keratin Treatments

  1. Brazilian Keratin Treatment 

Brazilian Keratin Treatment is a simple five-step process that includes SHAMPOO – DRY – APPLY – BLOW DRY – FLAT IRON. In Brazilian Keratin Treatment, Keratin and other amino acids are filled in the gaps between the layers of the cuticle. This treatment eliminates the frizz from the hair and provides silky, smooth hair. The procedure takes an hour and lasts for about three to six months. 

  1. Soft Keratin Treatment 

A soft keratin treatment is free of formaldehyde-producing ingredients. It aims at gently eliminating the frizz while keeping curls intact. Soft Keratin Treatment is an ideal treatment for those who like their curly hair. In Soft Keratin treatment, first hair is coated with the solution and after that, they are blow-dried and ironed by using a ceramic flat iron. Ironing locks the solution in the hair. This treatment makes hair shiny and manageable.  

  1. Japzilian Keratin Treatment 

The Japzilian Keratin Treatment is a combination of the Brazilian Keratin Treatment and the Japanese Hair Straightening system. The Japanese Hair straightening Treatment works to straighten hair by coating the strands in keratin. The keratin is sealed with heat from irons. Japanese hair straightening treatments changes the internal structure of the hair to create straight strands. This leaves the hair straight and more strengthened. This treatment makes hair stronger and shinier. Over a period of several weeks, the treatment will wash out. The hair progressively returns to its original state.

 Japzilian Keratin Treatment has advantageous qualities of both these treatments. Here Brazilian Keratin Treatment is used to loosen the curls and while Japanese treatment is used to polish the cuticle and lock out frizz. The best part of this treatment is that it does not require heat styling as air-drying giving a completely straight finish. 

  1. Keratin Express Keratin Treatment 

Keratin Express is different from traditional Keratin Treatments as it is hassle-free and takes less time. This gives you smooth, shiny, healthy hair. Keratin Express Keratin Treatment doesn’t use formulations that contain formaldehyde-producing ingredients. Keratin Express uses Cyprosil Complex, which includes cationically modified hydrolyzed keratin and cysteine peptides which produce immediate and noticeable smoothing. 

  1. Soft Chocolate Keratin Treatment 

Soft Chocolate Keratin Treatment is free of formaldehyde producing ingredients. This process is suitable for individuals with medium texture to very coarse or resistant hair. This treatment aims at reducing the frizz without completely eliminating the curls by making use of cocoa butter.

  1. Chocolate Keratin Treatment 

Chocolate Keratin Treatment formulation contains natural antioxidants and a special blend of amino acids. It is suitable for those individuals who have extremely tight curls and it also works on medium texture to very coarse or resistant hair. 

  1. Advanced Keratin Treatment 

Advanced Keratin Treatment aims at straightening the hair by eliminating frizz and curls. This treatment is suitable for all hair types. Advanced Keratin Treatment formula contains Brazilian nut oil, collagen, keratin and argan oil which are known for their vitamins and minerals content. 

  1. Daily Keratin Treatment 

Daily Keratin Treatment is the perfect `mini treatment` for those individuals who want to get introduced to the benefits of Keratin Treatments. This treatment is suitable for all hair types. It has a lightweight and non-greasy formula whose thermal protecting properties protect the hair from heat styling tools. It controls frizz, repels humidity and lock-in colour until your next shampoo.

What are the keratin treatment side effects? 

  1. Hair damage

Keratin Treatment gives you shiny and lustrous hair but as time passes you will notice that this shine starts fading away. The formulations used in Keratin Treatment contain many harmful chemicals which damage the hair. The degree of damage depends upon several factors such as the type and amount of keratin mixture used, temperature at which straightening was done, natural texture of your hair and its original health. Most people who originally had dry and damaged hair, notice that their hair has become even more damaged after this treatment. 

  1. Hair fall

Chemicals used in Keratin Treatment damage the hair and spoil the hair texture. Long term effects of damage caused by the chemicals are thinning of hair, weakening of roots and ultimately hair fall. Many individuals experience excessive hair loss after the keratin treatment. The reason behind drastic hair fall could be the high temperatures used while hair straightening treatment.

  1. Cancer-causing elements

Keratin Solution which is used in Keratin Treatment contains many chemicals. Some of these chemicals may have harmful effects on the body. Keratin solution contains Formaldehyde which is also known as Formal, Formalin, Methanal, Methyl Aldehyde, Formic Aldehyde, Paraform, Methylene Glycol, Methylene Oxide, Methanol, Oxomethane or Oxymethylene. These all chemicals have cancer-causing properties. Formaldehyde when used in small quantities in cosmetics is not considered dangerous but excessive use of formaldehyde in Keratin Treatment is proven to be carcinogenic. During the straightening process, Formaldehyde is converted into fumes at high temperatures. Inhalation of Formaldehyde fumes can cause throat and eye irritation, nausea and skin sensitivity. Formaldehyde fumes cause irritation and itching on the skin and scalp thereby weakening the roots. 

  1. Harmful reactions

Keratin solutions contain chemicals out of which some are really harmful. You should try to avoid this treatment if you are allergic to any of these. Any kind of allergy to these chemicals can lead to harmful skin ailments like dry skin, itching or even eczema. Inhalation of fumes of these chemicals can lead to irritation of sensory organs and even the respiratory system. 


  1. Never forget to do a small skin patch test first on your arm or leg before undergoing Keratin Treatment to make sure you don’t have a negative reaction. 
  2. If you are suffering from psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis or any other skin problem then it’s mandatory for you to consult your dermatologist before undergoing Keratin Treatment. 
  3. Always make sure to tell your hairstylist that the treatment he or she is going to use should not contain formaldehyde or formaldehyde-releasing ingredient.
  4. Avoid getting Keratin Treatment from a salon that doesn’t have multiple settings and just use one temperature for all types of hair.  
  5. You should not use sulphate containing shampoos and conditioners as they can cause damage to the hair. 
  6. It is advised to use sun protection or a leave-in treatment against UVA and UVB rays as sun exposure can dry out hair and can cause a lot of problems. 
  7. It is especially advised not to wash their hair for at least 24 hours so that the keratin gets tightly bound with the hair.

Myths and facts 

Myth: A keratin treatment is the same as a straightening treatment

Fact: NO. Keratin Treatment and Straightening Treatment are two very different things. In Keratin Treatment, Keratin solution is applied to the hair after shampooing and then the hairs are ironed. Ironing is done to make the Keratin adhere or make the bond with the hair and not for straightening. Keratin polishes the cuticle or outer layer of your hair to make it smooth. This polishing makes your hair smooth, shiny and frizz-free. 

Myth: After-care is not that crucial if the Treatment has been done nicely 

Fact: It is very essential to take proper care of your keratin-treated hair if you want your treatment to last long. If you take proper care then it can last up to 4 – 5 months.  

Myth: All Keratin Treatments contain formaldehyde.

Fact: NO, Formaldehyde is a gas that is produced by other chemicals like methylene glycol. During Keratin Treatment these chemicals release formaldehyde gas which has many harmful effects on the body. 

Myth: Having a Keratin Treatment will cause breakage.

Fact: It is seen many times that when your hair gets damaged due to a keratin treatment the fault mainly lies in how the ironing was done. It is very important to adjust the temperature according to the hair type otherwise it can lead to the breaking of your hair. Therefore always make sure to ask your stylist what type of hair iron he or she is using and how he or she will adjust the temperature. 

Myth: I can’t get a Keratin Treatment because I color my hair.

Fact: NO. It’s just a myth that you cannot get a Keratin Treatment just because you colour your hair. Keratin Treatment just polishes your cuticle and brings shine to the hair. If you have coloured your hair recently then getting a Keratin Treatment will lock that color in and will make your colour last longer.  

Frequently Asked Questions 

Question: What results should be expected after the keratin treatment?

Answer: You can expect your hair to become more manageable. They will become more soft, smooth and silky after the treatment. 

Question: What should be done if the hair gets wet undeliberately during the 72 – hour waiting period?

Answer: If your hair gets wet during the 72 – hour waiting period then you should immediately blow-dry the hair and flat iron with medium to low heat.

Question: Re-application of the treatment should be done on the entire head or just on the new growth?

Answer: Ideally re-application should be done on the entire head as this will help you in building up the keratin lost from the hair. 

Question: How long should I expect the treatment to last?

Answer: The treatment can last up to a duration of three-five months depending on how much care you have given to your keratin-treated hair. 

Question: Is Keratin treatment safe for pregnant or nursing women?

Answer: No. We do not recommend you to undergo this treatment if you are pregnant or a nursing woman.

Question: What does Keratin Treatment exactly do to our hair? 

Answer: Keratin Treatment is a semi-permanent method of straightening the hair in which a liquid keratin complex is filled in the gaps between the layers of the cuticle. This helps in softening the curls by eliminating frizz from the hair. In this treatment, Keratin and other conditioning agents help in nourishing and strengthening your hair. This treatment makes hair shiny, smooth, detangled and frizz-free.

Question: Is there any significant difference between Keratin Treatment and Japanese Straightening? 

Answer: Japanese hair straightening treatments are a permanent change and aim at changing the internal structure of the hair to create straight strands. This process can be damaging. On the other hand, Keratin Treatments are semi-permanent methods of straightening or softening the curls to eliminate frizz. Keratin Treatment causes less damage than the Japanese straightening treatments. 

Question: What are the benefits offered by Keratin Treatment?

Answer: Keratin Treatment provides strength to the hair. It brings shine and lustre to the hair and also makes the hair smooth and silky. Keratin Treatment aims at straightening your hair by softening the curls that’s why this process is less damaging than Japanese straightening treatments.

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