The cuticle, which is the top layer of hair formed by different layers of cells. The cuticle is responsible for about 30% or our hair strength and the cortex give us about 70%. The cuticle should remain closed in order to protect our hair from damage and breakage. From the moment our hair is expose to, keratin straighteners, excessive use of heat, relaxers, texturizers and other related chemicals, the cuticle becomes weak and some times extremely damaged ‘in this case, the cuticle can not protect our hair cortex and becomes vulnerable to dehydration causing hair breakage and hair loss’. African American hair cuticle is really rough, that is why it is said, that “African American hair is layered twice as much as Caucasian hair”.
The hair cortex, is what gives us fine or thick hair texture as well as the strength and color, “African American Hair Cortex is very small, much smaller than other races and is more prone to breakage"
The Medulla is the deepest or last layer of the hair, the medulla helps to expel un-wanted substances or damaging chemicals, also helps to retain the moisture our hair needs to remain healthy and grow. The main function of the medulla is not completely known and only people with thick hair have a medulla.
Most African Americans have very fine hair and it is often exposed to relaxers, excessive heat and other harsh Processes. We often ignore that immediately after a chemical procedure is done to our hair, the cuticle is destroyed and becomes vulnerable to hair breakage and hair loss.
Improper hair care can lead to severe hair damage and hair loss
Protein is indeed a very important element for our hair nutrition. Lack of protein on our diet can affect our hair health and growth. However, Natural or unprocessed hair don’t necessarily need to be treated with protein treatments.
You should only use protein if your hair is chemically treated or if your hair is being exposed to excessive heat, which can definitely cause permanent damage.
Relaxed African hair is prone to dryness and breakage.
All chemical procedures including; relaxers, texturizers and keratin straighteners can damage our hair. Protein treatments are excellent to repair and strengthen damaged and chemically treated hair and restore our hair health.
Note that some protein are stronger than others, we must be careful. The constant use of strong protein treatments can dehydrate your hair and cause more harm than good.
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Avoid Protein excess on natural hair.
Natural hair does not need a high level of protein unless your hair is often exposed to heat or permanent hair colors. Excessive use of protein could cause dehydration, breakage and severe hair loss. Avoiding products that contain high levels of proteins could be the key to keep your hair soft and curls defined.
There are different types of hair products; some are based in protein and some are based in moisturizers. Although protein treatments contain some levels of moisturizes, the basic ingredient is protein.
We should have a reason to use protein on our hair. For example, it is good to treat your hair with the right level of protein one week before and the week after flat ironing, relaxing, bleaching or any other chemical procedure
The main Purpose for using Protein treatments is to strengthen and replace the Keratin our hair looses when is exposed to heat damage or chemical products, such as bleach, relaxers, texturizers, keratin and straighteners.
Hair is made up of dead cells filled with protein or keratin, lipids (fats) and water produced by the hair follicles. The hair structure consisting of different layers:
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