Protein Doesn’t Remedy All Breakage!


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A few weeks ago, I was reading an article by DivaChyk of titled “Protein Doesn’t Remedy All Breakage!” In the article she discussed how often she sees people on hair forums recommend protein for breakage. She continued on about how protein hadn’t helped with her breakage issue at the start of her hair journey, and at times, ended up with protein overload. I’ll have to admit that in the past, I’ve suggested either a protein or moisturizing treatment to combat breakage. Though this is good advice since an imbalance of moisture and protein are known to cause breakage, there are actually several things that can cause breakage. I’ve comprised five of them below.

5 Causes of Breakage Other Than Protein and Moisture ImbalanceHeat Usage
Using heat often to either dry or style hair will eventually damage it. The cuticle structure, which protects the hair can endure only so much heat before it becomes weak and split. Limited heat usage will help hair to regain it’s strength. Try other options in place of heat such as air drying, drying your hair with a cool setting, and using rollers and rods to achieve hair styles.

Hard Water
Many people don’t know that hard water can contribute to hair breakage. Not only does hard water have minerals that stick to hair preventing products from working effectively and blocking moisture, but it is also alkaline which can change the hair’s porosity overtime. Check out this article on Hard Water and how to prevent it from damaging your hair.

Heavy Manipulation
Constant friction from combing, styling, or always touching your hair can cause breakage. It’s best to keep manipulation of hair to a minimal for optimal length retention. Low manipulation styling and protective styling will prevent excessive manipulation and the wear and tear of your hair strands. When detangling, always be gentle by either finger combing or making sure to detangling with a wide tooth comb starting from the bottom and working your way up to the root. This will prevent pulling through knots and tangles which can snap hair in an instant.

Improper Use of Chemical Treatments
Using chemical processes too often or incorrectly that are alkaline and acidic such relaxers and keratin treatments respectively, will ultimately cause breakage. When hair is being treated with a chemical, the hair is going under a harsh process which is imperative to complete correctly. When these treatment are used too often or incorrectly, e.g., relaxing previously relaxed hair, they can cause severe hair breakage. Stretching the time between chemical services will ensure that your hair is in optimal health to withstand the next chemical treamtment.

Drying Products
Products that dry out hair can range from alcohol filled products to using humectant based products at the wrong time. Make sure that you understand the ingredient labels on hair products to know how a product will react with your hair. It may be ok to use products that are made to dry quickly, but you’ll want to use these in moderation and in a way that it won’t make your strands brittle. The most common drying ingredients in hair products are alcohols. However, not all alcohols contribute to hair dryness. Many of them are fatty alcohols that act as emollients to condition hair. Drying alcohols may not be as drying in rinse out products. Below is a list of good, bad, and neutral alcohols.

Behenyl alcohol
Cetearyl alcohol
Cetyl alcohol
Lauryl alcohol
Myristyl alcohol
Stearyl alcohol

Alcohol Denat
Denatured alcohol
Ethanol/Ethyl alcohol
Isopropyl alcohol
Propanol alcohol
Propyl alcohol
SD Alcohol
SD Alcohol 40

Benzyl alcohol
Propylene Glycol

Do you know of any more ways that hair breakage is caused?

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