So, you’ve decided to give keratin treatments a try. You’ve gotten fed up with chemical straightener, hot irons, and the like, and want to do something real nice for your hair for once. Good choice! Okay, now you’ve got another choice – do you go to the salon, or do you just do it at home?
Both options are great ones – and there are pros and cons to each one, as well as things you should know before making an informed decision. Let’s go through the basics of each option, their effectiveness, and facts you need to be aware of regarding salon treatments vs. at home treatments.
Salon Keratin Treatments
Effectiveness: Moderate-High, depending on your hair type
The pros of getting a salon keratin treatment are pretty clear – just think about why you would get your hair colored or cut in a salon, and you’ve got some pretty solid reasons right there. Difficulty involved in the process is non-existant – you can just sit back, relax, and let them do the work. Since stylists (hopefully) know what they’re doing, the process will be pretty quick and painless, as well as fully effective.
However, getting to a salon can be inconvenient if you’re busy, and the cost of a salon keratin treatment can be very high, anywhere from 100-300$, plus your chosen tip. This sometimes can discourage you from getting a keratin treatment in the first place, but read on if this is a concern for you.
Some things to ask your stylist:
If you do decide to go for an in-salon treatment, there are two things you should ask: 1. what product they use and 2. what the results are going to be for your specific hair type.
Check out the product they say they use online, and take a look at the ingredients. It should be formaldehyde free at the very least, and also not emit any formaldehyde during the heating process. The products that have nothing to hide will usually list their OSHA test results to prove that their product is safe.
Keratin works differently on every hair type, and it is also progressive. If you have really dry, damaged, frizzy curly hair, the likelihood your hair will be stick straight at the end of the process is lower than someone with fine, wavy hair. Keratin rebuilds your damaged hair, and as a result your hair is straighter, smoother, and more manageable. You may not see perfect results after your first treatment – but after several treatments, your hair will become naturally stronger and healthier – thus, easier to manage and straighter. Your stylist should explain this to you so you know what you’re paying for.
At Home Keratin Treatments
Effectiveness: Moderate-High, depending on your hair type and product choice
The biggest reason people turn to an at home keratin treatment is the cost – at home treatments range from 50-100$, which is less than the price you will probably end up tipping your stylist for a salon treatment. Also, a lot of us just prefer to do our own hair, because we know our own hair best. An at home treatment allows you to do your treatment on your own time, and many products are just as effective as the salon treatments because a lot of brands produce similar formulas for an at-home kit as they would for a salon product.
Just like dying or cutting your own hair, doing your own keratin treatment is not for everyone. It does take a little bit of patience, and you need to pay close attention to learning the process directed by that specific product, even if you’ve seen a keratin treatment done before.
Things you should know:
Doing your own keratin treatment means being up to date on what makes a good keratin formula and what your expected results will be from each product.
Do your research to find the right at home treatment. You want a salon quality experience with the same process as a salon treatment – so skip the keratin sprays, shampoos, and conditioners, which will be expensive yet only give you temporary results. A good home keratin treatment will include a couple products – at the very least, a separate cleanser and keratin product. Many kits will also include combs, shampoos, conditioners, etc. to make the process easier and more effective. It is definitely recommended you get the shampoo and conditioner that compliment the kit you choose – but make sure it is salt and sulfate free to extend the life of your keratin treatment.
Also, formula is important. Just like if you were getting a salon treatment, look for a brand that has a formaldehyde-free product. Don’t hesitate to call a company to find out about their chosen ingredients.
A good at home keratin treatment should give you similar results as a salon treatment, but as mentioned before, your hair type will affect this, so does the progressive nature of keratin treatments. Different products will be applied differently, feel differently, and even smell differently – so read up carefully so you know what to expect. While some treatments feel wet and heavy after application, others have more of a waxy feel – it all depends on the formula. Also, every formula differs in after-care – some at home treatments will have you wait to wash where others you can rinse out with a conditioner right away. Or, some treatments will allow you to dye your hair or do other treatments to your hair in the same sitting, while it might disturb and strip out others.
Home treatments are great, and smartly cost effective – but you definitely should do your research. Just because a brand of treatment is a big name in the world of beauty means nothing in the world of keratin. Sometimes it is best to go for a smaller brand whose main focus is their keratin products for the best, safest formulas.