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Hydrolyzed Silk Protein and Hair Health

September 2nd, 2014

High quality image. Woman with smooth hairThere are multiple ingredients and many ways that have been shown to improve overall hair health.  One of these ingredients is known as hydrolyzed silk protein. Silk is typically known for being soft and lustrous and when hydrolyzed silk protein is applied to brittle hair, the results are no different.  Hydrolyzed silk protein does indeed come from silk which is deemed to be one of the strongest fibers on the planet.

What does “hydrolyzed” mean?

In layman’s terms the word “hydrolysis” simply signifies when a chemical compound is divided into smaller components with the addition of water.  The reason why some products contain hydrolyzed proteins is so that they are easier to incorporate into formulas and so that the proteins are better able to be dissolved in water.

Protein and Hair

Hair is mostly made up of a protein known as keratin.  Protein provides the hair strands with strength, protection and structure.  While some may actually weaken the hair, when applying shampoos and conditioners enriched with proteins such as silk protein, they actually reinforce the strength and structure of weakened hair strands.

Everyone’s hair is different but typically those with color treated hair or those who have undergone similar hair treatments are at a greater need for added protein. Chemical treatments performed on the hair have been known to cause damage as they break up the protein bonds.  However, there are also other reasons for a needed boost of protein including, genetics, hormones and diet.  Whatever the case may be, it is very important to try and maintain a balance between protein and moisture within the hair because too much of one can also result in breakage.

Benefits of Hydrolyzed Silk Protein

Hydrolyzed silk protein has the ability to replenish the hair with cysteine which is one of the 4 amino acids needed to produce keratin. Additionally, as a result of hydrolysis, hydrolyzed silk protein has a low molecular weight which means it has a greater ability to infiltrate the hair strands.  As it penetrates the hair, it improves its elasticity against breakage while also forming a protective barrier on the hair.  This barrier or shield serves as a means to improve shine while also preventing the hair against moisture loss.

Tip: When searching for a shampoo or conditioner with hydrolyzed silk protein, also look for beneficial moisturizing ingredients like jojoba oil to help keep the protein and moisture levels balanced.

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