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Some Things You Should Know About Keratin Treatments

Keratin treatment is one of the most popular haircare solutions for achieving smoother and shinier hair. Many women even consider it a miracle treatment. However, this treatment is not without controversies. While it effectively reduces frizz, gives your curls more life and makes your hair easier to manage, it does so by using harmful chemicals.

So, there’s no doubt that keratin treatment works, but does it have adverse side effects? The answer to that is yes, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up using it for good. There are ways to enjoy its benefits without suffering the consequences. Read on to learn about the side effects of keratin treatments and how to avoid them.

What Is A Keratin Treatment?

Keratin treatment is a chemical procedure typically done in a salon to make hair look and feel smoother and straighter. A stylist uses a mixture of chemicals to apply a coat of keratin to your hair during a treatment session. This process will seal your hair’s cuticles to keep moisture in, preventing its movement in and out of the strands.

Depending on your hair type, texture and length, a keratin treatment may take about one to three hours and last about three to six months. It can be incredibly effective in taming unruly hair and smoothening coarse strands. But since it involves high heat and strong chemicals, it can be harmful to your hair.

It needs to be stressed that keratin itself is not a harmful substance. It is a structural protein located in your nails, skin and hair. It plays a critical role in keeping them healthy and strong while preventing damage and breakage. Keratin can be found in many shampoos and conditioners currently on the market.

Who Should Get A Keratin Treatment?

Keratin treatments are not for everyone. For example, if you’re always dealing with frizz and have coarse hair, a keratin treatment might work well for you. However, if your hair has a delicate, thin texture or is overly processed, the treatment might cause your strands to be brittle and more prone to damage. That’s why it’s a good idea to consult with your stylist before booking a treatment.

Potential Risks of Keratin Treatments

Some keratin treatment solutions contain the chemical formaldehyde. It’s a colourless, strong-smelling gas responsible for keeping hair straight and frizz-free for months. Although touching it is not hazardous, experts have found that prolonged exposure to this substance could cause brain and nasal cancers. Other possible side effects of keratin treatments include the following.

Respiratory Issues Or Allergic Reactions

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the national public health agency of the United States, the common adverse effects of exposure to formaldehyde include scratchy eyes, nose bleeds and sore throats. It may also trigger allergic reactions, nose irritation, scalp irritation wheezing and nausea.

Salon customers getting this hair treatment don’t usually experience any strong reaction unless they are allergic to the chemical. Stylists, on the other hand, have experienced headaches and chest pressure that persist for days after giving keratin treatments to clients. Some have also reported suffering nosebleeds, eye irritation and difficulty breathing. For this reason, many stylists refuse to perform keratin treatment due to its serious consequences.

Hair Becomes More Prone To Breakage And Damage.

Keratin treatment involves exposing your hair to intense heat, something that can damage your hair. Applying too much heat or over-straightening your strands can make your hair dry out quicker than usual and lead to breakage.

If your hair has been coloured or chemically treated, a keratin treatment might make your strands weaker and more brittle, resulting in split ends and breakage.

Solutions To The Keratin Treatment Side Effects

Although the negative consequences of a keratin treatment can be concerning, it doesn’t mean you should avoid it altogether. Here are practical solutions to prevent any side effects.

Go For A Formaldehyde-free Version

Before going for a keratin treatment, make sure the salon offers a formaldehyde-free version of the process. The results of the treatment may be less dramatic and more temporary, but you’ll have peace of mind knowing that neither you nor your stylist has been exposed to harsh chemicals.

Do A Patch Test

If you’re not sure whether you’re allergic to the formula or not, it’s a good idea to perform a patch test. This way, you won’t have to deal with scalp irritation or any allergic reaction during or after the process.


Keratin treatments are undoubtedly effective when it comes to giving your hair more shine and making it smooth and manageable. However, make sure that you consider your hair type and texture before booking a treatment and, most importantly, make sure you go for a formaldehyde-free process.

Your hairstyling choices can sometimes cause you to experience hair loss. If you’re concerned about hair loss or thinning, get in touch with Vinci Hair Clinic. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation to all our new clients. Book your appointment today!