The Best Hair Treatments For Damaged Hair, According To Experts
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By Marissa DeSantis
The causes of damaged hair can be as diverse as the symptoms themselves, which include dryness, breakage, split ends, frizz, and dullness or a lack of shine. If you're noticing any of these changes in your hair, it's time to identify the cause and turn to a restorative treatment, such as a deep conditioner or a hair mask. According to the pros, the best hair treatments for damaged hair include a range of products made with protein-based and/or moisturizing ingredients to strengthen and condition your hair. Jonathan Colombini,, celebrity hairstylist and creative director of style and color for L'Oréal Paris, also notes that you'll want to avoid treatments with sulfates, silicones, and parabens whenever possible.
For a quick refresh on what exactly is causing your damaged hair, AJ Lordet, a colorist at the Fekkai SoHo salon in New York City, shares the most common causes. "Bleached hair, which includes highlights or double-process platinum blonde, is delicate," she explains, adding, "Over-heating with styling tools can lead to damage, too." While these are the biggest offenders, factors like sun exposure and even chlorine from swimming can also take a toll on your hair's health.
To protect your hair from becoming even more damaged, both Lordet and Colombini agree that you'll want to avoid over-processing your hair and and overdoing it with hot styling tools whenever possible. They also suggest using a heat protectant on your hair when you do style it with heat, and recommend adding a hair mask into your routine. "A protein mask is good because the hair is made up of proteins, so it will help strengthen and restore the hair," says Colombini, who explains that keratin is the best protein to look for, as it’s the basic component of our hair, skin, and nails. "Always read the instructions on how often the brand requires you to use it," he cautions, explaining, "If used too often, protein masks may damage the hair more." Lordet adds that a moisturizing mask with ingredients like shea butter or coconut oil is also a good option to use in place of your usual conditioner once or twice weekly. When in doubt, Lordet says it's best to turn to your stylist or colorist for advice on what type of treatment your hair can most benefit from, and how often you should be using it.