Asian woman with long, black hair

Although it’s a widely used and marketed treatment, there’s still a lot of controversy around keratin for hair. Keratin treatments are in high demand at salons, especially among women who want smoother, shinier hair. However, some go in with unreasonable expectations (like expecting super straight hair) because of a lack of information. In this article, we dispel the myths surrounding keratin for hair and give you the facts.

Keratin Treatments Are ‘Pangmayaman’

Some salon can indeed burn a hole in your pockets. Usually, they range from P3,000 for an “express blowout” to around P5,000 to P9,000 depending on hair length, for more long-lasting treatment. However, it is false to say it’s only pangmayaman.

Experts have successfully formulated shampoos with effects similar to a salon keratin treatment. They promise smoothness, softness, reduction of frizz, and lots of shine. Of course, it’s not 100% the same, especially minus the ironing process, but they do help the hair out with continued use.

TRESemmé Keratin Smooth KERA10 Smoothing Mask, for example, is available at P232 a tub. For something that you only need to use twice a week, that’s a steal and will probably last for three to six months, depending on hair length. Expertly crafted with KERA10 Complex, you get 10 salon benefits in one wash.

Keratin Will Straighten Your Curly Hair

Some individuals with curly hair steer clear of anything with keratin, thinking it will damage their curls and make them limp and lifeless. This, again, is a myth. Keratin isn’t hair straightening, at least not on its own. It’s only become associated with hair straightening because most salon treatments use an iron — but believe it or not, making your hair pin-straight is not the intention.

Your hair comprises keratin so getting a keratin treatment means polishing the hair cuticle with more of the delightful stuff to make it smooth and shiny. It also minimizes frizz and helps damaged hair. After applying the treatment and drying the hair, stylists iron it to lock the treatment in and bond it with the hair. It may straighten the hair temporarily (an iron was used, after all), but don’t worry, your curls will spring back to fighting form in no time — .

Keratin Makes Hair Color Fade Faster

Keratin treatments will not change the color of your hair. Using for its many benefits. First, it repairs the inevitable damage from coloring. Since it’s a chemical process, whether you get it at a salon or from a box dye, hair coloring will make your hair dry and brittle without proper care. Keratin acts as a protectant, locking in the color while rebuilding the protein structure of damaged hair.

All Keratin Treatments Are Bad for You

A few years ago, there was controversy about particular salon keratin treatments. Allegedly, they posed a danger to both the client (you) and your stylist. The United States Food and Drug Administration found harmful ingredients such as formaldehyde, formalin, and methylene glycol. These can cause adverse effects such as headaches, dizziness, coughing, wheezing, nausea, chest pain, rashes, irritation. Moreover, formaldehyde has been classified as a human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

However, keratin itself isn’t the enemy. You can find these harmful ingredients mostly in old formulations. If you’re getting salon keratin for hair, go to a reputable salon and a trusted stylist, and do your research on what formulas they use. It wouldn’t hurt to ask if their products have any formalin in them, since the stylist can also be affected by the substance once it’s released into the air.

The bottom line is there’s nothing to fear about keratin for hair. It’s a natural substance that can help repair damage while making it softer, shinier, and frizz-free. If you’re still apprehensive about in-salon treatments, that’s okay. You can try at-home keratin products to get you started.