Protein treatments are used to add strength and resiliency to damaged hair by attaching hydrolyzed proteins directly to the hair follicle and hardening the cuticle layer. If there are holes in the hair cuticle, it will fill those holes or gaps while also placing a barrier around the hair shaft to lessen further damage. Most protein treatments are conditioning treatments. They can come be a deep conditioner, light, or reconstructor (heavy). There are several types that cater to your specific needs, but we came up with the top eight that will give you the best treatment for even the worst type of damage.
Read more: Does Natural Hair Need Proteins?
ApHogee Intensive Two Minute Keratin Reconstructor
You almost cannot discuss protein treatments without mentioning ApHogee. Water, emulsifiers, fatty alcohols, and hydrolyzed proteins make up this hugely popular protein treatment that will prevent breakage and lessen split ends while protecting the hair and adding body. It is a concentrated blend of keratin amino acids, oils, and vitamins made specifically for bleached, tinted, or chemically-straightened strands.
Aphogee Two-step Treatment Protein for Damaged Hair
Another favorite of curly girls, this two-step treatment will rebuild the hair structure with its unique formula of magnesium and modified proteins. A powerful protein treatment will restore your hair’s elasticity while softening those brittle and dry strands that have been damaged by chemical services and heat. It even helps to remove mineral deposits from swimming pools and hard water.
Tropic Isle Living Jamaican Black Castor Oil Protein Conditioner
Another favorite, and for good reason, this Black Castor Oil Protein Conditioner will feed your hair with a nutrient-rich formula that will rehydrate and strengthen your damaged strands. This quality treatment that restores your hair’s softness, manageability, and shine.
Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask
A deep conditioning protein treatment, Briogeo Don’t Despair gets much love from curly girls. This intensive deep conditioning treatment delivers an optimal blend of nutrients, vitamins, and natural oils that restore and replenish damaged strands all with 95% naturally-derived ingredients. This mask does not contain parabens, phthalates, sulfates, artificial fragrances, dyes, or gluten.
Creme of Nature Argan Oil Intensive Conditioning Treatment
This reconstructor by Crème of Nature is an intensive moisture infuser that strengthens and prevents further hair breakage. Hair is left softer, silkier, and full of body. Perfect for color-treated or chemically-straightened hair.
SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Treatment Masque
Utilizing ingredients like Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Shea Butter, Peppermint, and Keratin this mask can help restore and grow deeply damaged hair in less than an hour. This mask should be a go-to if you have experienced the backlash of over-straightening and chemical treatment to provide your hair with what it needs to bounce back.
Curl Junkie Repair Me! Reconstructive Hair Treatment
Replenish your curls with this deep-penetrating protein conditioner that helps fill in cracks in the hair shaft to give strength and prevent further breakage. Makes a great once-a-month protein treatment to help keep your hair in top shape! This treatment will moisturize your strands and improves your hair’s elasticity. Rebuild your damaged hair and stimulate the hair roots for healthier hair.
Ouidad Deep Treatment Curl Restoration Therapy
The Ouidad Deep Treatment Curl Restoration Therapy is an intensive conditioner that restores curl hydration, shine, and health to your strands. Added heat from wearing a processing plastic cap, mixed with the proteins and amino acids drive this formula deep into the hair’s cuticle for serious rejuvenation. Gain bounce, luster, and highly conditioned curls.
Read more: 6 Proteins that Must be Hydrolyzed...If You Want Them to Work