The Best Keratin Treatments Without Formaldehyde

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In-salon, professionally done hair-straightening treatments (such as Brazilian Blowouts) contain formaldehyde, which is a chemical that many people prefer to avoid. The best keratin treatments without formaldehyde are, in actuality, hair serums, oils, and masks, assuming that you’re looking for something you can use from the comfort of your own bathroom. Though you won’t get the same dramatic smoothing results with an at-home keratin treatment, you will still experience sleeker, softer hair, but more importantly, you won’t be exposing yourself to formaldehyde. You’ll also be saving yourself a few hundred dollars, and several hours stuck in a salon chair surrounded by overwhelming fumes.

To figure out which at-home keratin treatment to buy, think about your current hair styling routine. Where would a treatment fit in best — in the shower? Before blow drying? While puttering around the house with air-dried hair? There are also more practical things to consider, like your budget, and any existing brand loyalties you may have.

Ahead, you’ll find six great at-home keratin treatments to choose from, from $7 drugstore masks and luxurious oils to pre-styling creams and individually packaged capsules for travel — all conveniently available on Amazon. Scroll on to find the best match for you.

1. The Overall Best Leave-In Keratin Treatment

A favorite of Amazon reviewers, this best-selling keratin oil has been awarded over 2,000 five-star ratings thus far. It’s made with keratin amino acids, murumuru seed butter, and several plant-derived oils to deeply nourish, strengthen, and smooth all types of hair while also enhancing shine. You just need two to three pumps of this oil, which can be applied to damp hair and then air dried or heat styled as usual. You can also use this on dry hair anytime to smooth down flyaways and soften split ends. A little product goes a long way, so this one bottle will last you a while.

2. The Best Keratin Treatment Capsules

Each one of these tiny capsules contains the perfect amount of hair serum, which prevents you from doling out too much (and thus wasting any) product. The serum is made of keratin amino acids, hydrolyzed silk protein, and pro vitamin B5 to promote smooth, shiny hair, whether wet or dry. The capsules themselves are biodegradable and plant-based, and the non-greasy serum inside is suitable for all hair types. You can find plenty of creative uses for this bottle when it becomes empty, too.

3. The Best Keratin Hair Mask Under $10

For hair that’s damaged or dry, try the affordable Marc Anthony Grow Long Mask — at just $9, why not? It’s loaded with nourishing ingredients like keratin, caffeine, avocado oil, argan oil, and ginseng to strengthen weakened hair and reinvigorate its luster. Over 4,000 Amazon shoppers gave this mask a perfect five-star rating, with one person writing, “I have extremely curly, frizzy, dry, thick hair that looks like straw most of the time. I have tried literally every hair mask in existence and THIS one is the winner! My hair is so silky and smooth now that I don’t even need to use a flat iron. I’m ordering 6 more of these right now so I never run out! The price is great, too!”

4. The Best Luxury Keratin Hair Mask

VIRTUE’s Restorative Treatment Mask is perhaps as close as you can get to an in-salon keratin treatment at home. It’s made with the brand’s signature Alpha Keratin 60ku(R), which greatly resembles the type of keratin that we naturally produce, making it easier for our bodies to recognize (and thus welcome) it. When used on hair, it genuinely helps to repair it (meaning less split ends, thicker individual strands, and enhanced shine) — so this is another amazing treatment for people with dry, damaged hair. And that’s not the only powerhouse ingredient in the formula: it’s also rich in baobab seed oil, brown algae, and various botanical extracts to further protect and hydrate hair.

5. The Best Travel-Friendly Keratin Mask

You get 12 individual packets of Hask Keratin Protein Deep Conditioner with this purchase, so you won’t have to neglect your hair when you’re on your next trip. In addition to keratin, it’s rich in nourishing ingredients like collagen, coconut oil, and jojoba oil, which all work together to deeply condition and strengthen damaged hair. Just use it in place of conditioner after shampooing, leave it on for about 10 minutes, and rinse.

6. The Best Keratin Treatment For Styling

If you plan on blow drying, straightening, or curling your hair, first apply the heat-activated CHI Keratin K-Trix 5 Smoothing Treatment to damp or air-dried hair. Made with jojoba and argan oils, keratin amino acids, hydrolyzed silk, and panthenol, it’ll help protect your hair and make it look smoother and silkier by keeping humidity out. Using it just once should keep your hair moisturized and smooth for up to five days.