Does my hair need protein?

For the past month my hair (2a) has been on a healing journey, after I had accidentally spent the two months previous over-conditioning it. But now, it's back to normal...almost. My hair is probably 1 or 2 washes away from where I want it to be, but it's appearing to be harder than I had anticipated.

I have been using a sulfate-free shampoo with no protein in it (Loreal EverPure) and Suave Keratin Conditioner. This was working fine for the past few days, but now my hair is feeling slightly stiff when I get out of the shower and let it air dry, and the ends have begun breaking off a little. (Only a little! This is me stopping it before it gets bad! XD) I can only assume this is due to the protein in the conditioner.

However, as I try to find new conditioners to use, I see that most of them lack protein. I am very hesitant to remove protein from my hair routine because of my heinous over-conditioning experience, but I don't want to make my hair stiff either. Is it possible that I've added enough protein in my hair during the past month that it's had enough? Or should I find a product that still has protein but less of it/more gentle protein?

To protein or not to protein?
It might be good to have a protein-free conditioner at hand to use in your routine when your hair needs it. You could try the protein-free CO once or twice and see if it helps with the stiffness.
When your hair feels good you can swap back to the protein CO.

In my experience it's easier to overcome over-conditioning than to overcome over-proteining.

HTH

2b-3a med-fine low porosity
Blog: KrullenWijzer.nl
2B/C-3A) fine - low porosity
Routine:
Wash: Daily Fix,SMT, Kesham, Urtekram
RO: Motions CPR Li, Inecto Cocos co, AO GPB, KCTT
acv-rinse, sometimes honey-rinse
LI: coconut oil (winter), CJBC-LI
Styling: AVG, Etos Solid Power Gel, Taft gel, CJPP
, JCCC, BRHG
Plopping~Pixiecurl diffuse~clipping
KrullenWijzer.blogspot.nl
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1,073
For starters, not all protein is the same or even all formulations that contain the same protein, for that matter. Hydrolized keratin, although it would seem like the most logical choice, is notorious for hardening hair, so it's best to have different types of protein available. Personally, I like silk protein and collagen much better, the last one I seem to not get enough of, it's in my VO5 KWL that I use as a co-wash and lately as a LI.

And as suggested by Rapunzel4ever, it's a good idea to have a protein-free CO to alternate with. Suave has them and VO5 also has a few, at least 2 of them in the Tea Therapy line and at least one in the Moisture Milks one.
Thanks! I do already have a protein free CO but I haven't been using it...guess I should start!

Is hydrolyzed what protein as notorious as keratin? I have another conditioner that I might switch to that has that protein
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1,073
I don't recall having heard anything bad about wheat protein, but that also depends on the person. I did a search and found this useful info and I have to agree with it: What
I don't recall having heard anything bad about wheat protein, but that also depends on the person. I did a search and found this useful info and I have to agree with it: What
Originally Posted by CGSince2002
Thanks for the link!

2b-3a med-fine low porosity
Blog: KrullenWijzer.nl
2B/C-3A) fine - low porosity
Routine:
Wash: Daily Fix,SMT, Kesham, Urtekram
RO: Motions CPR Li, Inecto Cocos co, AO GPB, KCTT
acv-rinse, sometimes honey-rinse
LI: coconut oil (winter), CJBC-LI
Styling: AVG, Etos Solid Power Gel, Taft gel, CJPP
, JCCC, BRHG
Plopping~Pixiecurl diffuse~clipping
KrullenWijzer.blogspot.nl
You seem to have a handle on the concept that sometimes hair needs protein and sometimes it doesn't. Good for you. A lot of people way overthink the whole protein vs. no protein thing.

If I were you, I would alternate depending on what your hair feels like each time you wash. If it's stiff, no protein. If it's normal, protein. etc etc.
2c-3a - coarse - normal-high porosity - high density - growing out to donate

NP/LP: KMF Whenever Cond./ YTCucs, Giovanni TTTT
RO/LI: Sevi Pumpkin Seed DC / CJ Argan & Olive Oil, KCKT, YTBbs
DT: Coconut Oil + scalp massage
OIL/STYLER: SM Elixir / KCCC, SS CEJ
COLOR: henna, amla & indigo

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