My world was rocked recently when I stumbled upon this article. In information provided in just the introduction alone was enough to get me excited. Basically, they explained that most keratin proteins found in commercial hair products have gone through harsh processes into order to achieve that low molecular weight desirable for absorption into the hair strand. Unfortunately, the chemical process alters the effectiveness of the protein making it
Women who used conditioners with this functional keratin reported noticeably softer hair. This is due to the increased moisture retention that occurred once the strand was repaired. Since the natural structure of the hair is better protected, it's better able to retain moisture.
|Paul Mitchell Awapuhi (Ginger Keratin)|
The reason, for the drastic change in the health of the hair is due to the interaction of the functional keratin with both the inside and outside layer of the hair strand. Meaning, if applied to the hair right after the relaxer is rinsed, before neutralizing, the keratin is better able to penetrate while the strand is swollen post relaxer. They also noted that the strand had the ability to stretch an additional 20% when treated with functional keratin. Functional keratin also provided greater protection to color treated hair via UV ray sun protection.
After reading this, you know I was dying to get my hands on this functional keratin. Turns out that there aren't many brands on the market that offer this technology to at home consumers like you and me. I already have products with Keratin as an ingredient but after doing my research, I realize that all keratin is not created equal. Functional keratin is the equivalent of getting the raw, natural form that can easily be utilized by the hair. The other stuff,*cough* hydrolized keratin *cough*, is a mediocre substitute.
Here's the difference according to this article:
The difference between the two is the process by which it is extracted from its source and processed. Hydrolized keratin is extracted from the horns and hooves of animals, using acid and extreme heat. During this process, the proteins degrade and denaturalize. These proteins are so far removed in form from natural keratin that they do not offer any of the same benefits.Functional keratin, on the other hand, has been extracted from sheep's wool using patented technology that does not employ heat or acid. This technology allows the keratin proteins to remain in their original form and function as the natural keratin proteins do (hence the term 'functional keratin'). These keratin proteins can work in concert with your existing keratins to repair and rejuvenate hair and skin.Ok, ok, enough talking. Let's get to the nitty gritty and discuss how you can nurture your hair with the most effective type of keratin available. There's a salon quality product Keraplast Hair Rescue, but based on what I found so far, the product isn't available for purchase by non-professionals. No worries, because our peeps at Paul Mitchell have included three types of keratins, including oxidized keratin, functional keratin and hydrolyzed keratin in their Awapuhi line of products. Luckily for us, these products are readily available via a quick trip to Amazon.
The positive reviews of Awapuhi are strong on Amazon so you know I've already placed my order. Please come back and see me when I post my review of their Deep conditioning treatment.