The 10 Best Protein Treatments For Hair You Must Try In 2024

Cruelty-free, color-safe, vegan protein treatments nourish and make your hair stronger.

Reviewed by Alicia Igess, Hairstylist Alicia Igess Alicia IgessHairstylist facebook_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MA, Certified Skin Care Coach Oyendrila Kanjilal MA, Certified Skin Care Coach Experience: 2 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Shiboli Chakraborti MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , BTech Anjali Sayee BTech Experience: 7 years
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Say “hello” to the best protein treatment for hair and bid farewell to limp and flat hair. It is, indeed, true that dyeing your hair, lack of maintenance, and pollution can damage your hair quality. They break down the keratin, a protein type that makes your hair. This is when protein comes into the frame. A suitable protein therapy will repair your keratin bonds and make your mane stronger. It works wonders for highly-porous, natural, or even chemically-treated hair. So, give your hair that. Check our list of the 10 protein treatments that you must try right away.

Top PicksCheck Price
Best Vegan: Eufora Nourish Fortifi Keratin RepairPrice on Amazon
Best Nourishing: SheaMoisture Manuka Repair Protein Power TreatmentPrice on Amazon
Best Frizz Control: IGK Good Behavior Spirulina Protein Smoothing SprayPrice on Amazon
Best Gluten-Free: CHI Deep Brilliance Protein MasquePrice on Amazon
Best Damage Protection: Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Anti-Breakage Leave-In TreatmentPrice on Amazon
Best Heat Protection: L'Oreal Paris Elvive Total Repair 5 Protein RechargePrice on Amazon
Best Natural Ingredients: Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair Deep Conditioning MaskPrice on Amazon
Best For Color-Treated Hair: Aphogee Two-step Protein TreatmentPrice on Amazon
Best Paraben-Free: Orlando Pita Play Former GloryPrice on Amazon
Best PEG-free: Giovanni Nutrafix Hair ReconstructorPrice on Amazon

Top 10 Protein Treatments For Hair

1. Best Vegan: Eufora Nourish Fortifi Keratin Repair

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4.5

If you have weak, brittle, and damaged hair, you need this hair restructuring solution. The Eufora Nourish Fortifi Keratin Repair treatment is a weightless formula that enriches your hair with keratin to strengthen and improve its integrity. It also helps restore the hair’s natural bounce and shine while improving its elasticity. It contains thermally activated proteins that repair your damaged hair. It also has an anti-static formulation to prevent flyaways.

Hair Type: All | Item Weight: 8.3 ounces | Product Dimensions: 4 x 4 x 6 inches.

Pros 

  • Gluten-free
  • Mineral oil-free
  • Contains certified organic aloe vera
  • Paraben-free
  • Petrolatum-free
  • Vegan
  • Not tested on animals
  • Adds shine
  • Pleasant fragrance

Cons

None

protip_icon Pro Tip
Wash your hair with shampoo and dry it with a towel. Then, spray this product evenly on your hair as a pre-hairstyle treatment.

2. Best Nourishing: SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate + Repair Protein Power Treatment

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4.5

This hair protein treatment contains reparative proteins and butters. It contains nourishing ingredients like manuka honey, shea butter, and mafura oil that soften the hair, provide nourishment, make it shine, and keep it healthy. If your hair is color-treated or chemically-processed, this product can save the hair fibers by reducing breakage up to 76%. Check out this YouTuber’s review of this product and a tester’s experience of using it.

Hair Type: Dry

Pros
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Sulfate-free
  • Propylene glycol-free
  • Mineral oil-free
  • No animal testing
  • Petrolatum-free
  • Hydrates the hair
  • Reduces frizz

Cons
  • May feel heavy.

protip_icon Pro Tip
Apply this treatment from the roots to the ends of your hair and leave it on for 15 minutes. Then, rinse your hair with cold water to promote healthy hair growth.

3. Best Frizz Control: IGK Good Behavior Spirulina Protein Smoothing Spray

This protein smoothening spray contains spirulina protein that helps in strengthening and nourishing your hair. It has an innovative formaldehyde-free protein bonding polymer that needs to be activated by heat. This polymer offers you results similar to keratin treatment and makes the hair smooth. It has nourishing ingredients, is gentle, can be used daily, and is safe for color-treated hair. You can also check the reviewer’s experience in this video for a brief review of the product.

Hair Type: Frizzy | Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 1.5 x 4.2 inches | Weight: 2.4 Ounces

Pros
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Contains UV protection
  • Mineral oil-free
  • 24-hour frizz control
  • Provides heat protection (up to 450 oF)
  • Gluten-free

Cons
  • Strong smell

4. Best Gluten-Free: CHI Deep Brilliance Protein Masque

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4.5

This protein mask claims to reconstruct dry and damaged hair. It contains a blend of olive and monoi oils, along with a rich protein complex containing essential oils, botanical extracts, and vitamins that make your hair soft, manageable, and strong.

Hair Type: Treatments | Product Dimensions: 1.75 x 1.75 x 8.13 inches | Weight: 5.11 Ounces

Pros
  • Paraben-free
  • Sulfate-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Makes hair manageable

Cons

Expensive for the quantity

5. Best Damage Protection: Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Anti-Breakage Leave-In Treatment

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4.6
Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Anti-Breakage Leave-In Treatment 8.5 Fl Oz (Pack of 1) Image: Redken

This is a leave-in protein treatment for dry and brittle hair. This 5 in 1 damage protection treatment protects your hair from chemical, thermal, surface damage, and breakage. It is formulated with a protein complex and ceramides that strengthen the hair from root to tip. This product is a part of the Extreme hair care line by Redken and provides the best results when used with the rest of the products. If you need more convincing, feel free to take a look at a tester’s experience in this YouTuber’s video on the merits and demerits of the product.

Hair Type: Split Ends, Damaged | Product Dimensions: 2.6 x 1.5 x 7.9 inches | Weight: 8.1 Ounces

Pros
  • Prevents breakage
  • Fixes split ends
  • Prevents frizz
  • Makes the hair soft

Cons
  • May make the hair greasy.

6. Best Heat Protection: L’Oreal Paris Elvive Total Repair 5 Protein Recharge

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4.4

This is a protein-enriched leave-in conditioner and heat protectant that claims to address five signs of damage – split ends, weak, rough, dull, and dehydrated hair. This hair treatment combines almond extract and protein that helps replenish the hair fibers, gives 450-degree heat protection, reduces breakage by 97%, and also offers restorative care to the hair.

Hair Type: Damaged,Dull | Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 2.38 x 7.76 inches | Weight: 5.1 Ounces

Pros
  • Prevents frizz
  • Makes hair soft
  • Prevents breakage
  • Protects hair from everyday damage

Cons
  • Might feel a bit greasy.

7. Best Natural Ingredients: Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair Deep Conditioning Mask

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4.3
Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair Deep Conditioning Hair Mask Image: Briogeo

This is an intensive, weekly hair treatment for chemically-treated, dry, damaged, and brittle hair. This hair mask is formulated with the NOVA complex, which is a blend of transformative nutrients derived from B-vitamins, natural oils, algae, and biotin. These ingredients fortify your hair, enhance its resilience, and help in restoration of the hair health, and. It is best for chemically and keratin-treated hair and is free from animal testing.

Hair Type: All, Dry, Damaged | Product Dimensions: 3 x 3 x 3 inches | Weight: 1.76 Ounces

Pros
  • 98% naturally derived ingredients
  • Sulfate-free
  • Silicone-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • DEA-free
  • No artificial dyes
  • Paraben-free
  • Cruelty-free

Cons
  • Expensive

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Cover your hair with a plastic cap after applying this mask. Sit under the dryer for 30 minutes, then rinse your hair for deep conditioning.

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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

More than 3,141 customers have given the product positive reviews on Amazon.

8. Best For Color-Treated Hair: Aphogee Two-step Protein Treatment

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4.5
 Aphogee Image: Aphogee Two-step Protein Treatment

This is a two-step protein treatment for damaged hair meant for professional use. It helps stop hair breakage and restore your hair health when used as per the directions specified by the brand.

Hair Type: Damaged | Product Dimensions: 4 x 6 x 8 inches | Weight: 1 Pounds

Pros
  • Ideal for permed and colored hair
  • Reduces breakage
  • Makes hair soft

Cons

None

9. Best Paraben-Free: Orlando Pita Play Former Glory

This protein-infused spray is a blend of amino acids, protein, and other vital nutrients that strengthen chemically-treated, over-processed, and brittle hair. It contains a Fortifinity complex that combats four types of damage: thermal, chemical, mechanical, and environmental. The key ingredient of this spray is biomimetic ceramide, a molecule that strengthens and helps in replenishment of the hair cuticle and keeps it smooth.

Number of Items: 1

Pros
  • Safe for colored hair
  • Paraben-free

Cons

None

10. Best PEG-free: Giovanni Nutrafix Hair Reconstructor

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4.4

This protein building treatment can be used as a therapy for weak hair. It provides deep and intense conditioning to undo the damage caused by chemical or color treatment and excessive heat styling. It contains a blend of organic oils and other botanical extracts that fortify each hair strand and restore its vitality.

Hair Type: Damaged | Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 1.9 x 6.7 inches | Weight: 10.4 Ounces

Pros
  • Paraben-free
  • Color-safe
  • Cruelty-free
  • USDA certified organic ingredients
  • 100% vegetarian
  • No animal testing
  • Cruelty-free
  • Dye-free
  • PEG-free
  • Sulfate-free

Cons

None

Protein is the main component of hair, which means it is necessary for overall hair health. But, growth, environmental factors, hair care products damage the hair and strips the strands of the natural protein. Although there are several hair products which add protein externally, how do you decide which one works best for your hair? Well, given below are a few factors to keep in mind while you choose the best protein treatments for your hair.

How To Select The Best Protein Treatment For Hair

  1. Intensity

Symptoms like excessive hair loss, lack of elasticity, high porosity, breakage and split ends, limp appearance, and stringy texture are all signs of concern. Pick a treatment according to your symptoms. For routine hair care regimes, a light protein treatment is enough. This is in case the hair is not heavily damaged and needs regular care and maintenance.

For damaged hair, a reparative treatment is required. Choose an intensive protein treatment formula that offers keratin and high protein content.

  1. Type

Pick the type of protein treatment according to your convenience and comfort. You have leave-in creams and conditioners, protein masks, protein smoothening sprays, and protein-rich shampoos to choose from.

  1. Ingredients To Look For

Depending on how damaged the hair is, choose strong proteins with higher penetrability. Choose formulas containing natural oils, algae, ceramides, B-vitamins, keratin and biotin. These will fortify, repair, and aid in the reconstruction of hair. The ingredients will also strengthen the hair, minimize frizz, and add hydration to the scap.

  1. Ingredients To Avoid

Look for ingredients that offer restorative care but avoid ingredients like parabens, mineral oil, petrolatum, phthalates, sulfates, propylene glycol, silicone, or DEA. These ingredients offer short term benefits to the hair and formulation, but when used regularly, these cause excessive dryness and long-term health effects. Also, avoid gluten and artificial fragrances in your protein products, and opt fot cruelty-free and vegan products to watch out for the animal kingdom.

The Bottom Line

It’s time to bid farewell to limp and flat hair with the best protein treatments. If you want to restore your hair quality that has been damaged due to pollution, UV rays, heat styling, or wrong products, you need the best professional-grade protein hair treatments. Alicia Igess Jones, a hairstylist, says, “You can also consider using a moisturizing conditioner or leave in conditioner after you use a protein conditioner if your hair tends to feel hard.” A suitable protein-based hair repair aids the keratin bonds and gives you stronger tresses. It works wonders for natural, highly porous, or even chemically-treated hair. Try the the Eufora Nourish Fortifi Keratin Repair for improved hair elasticity and shine. Try the Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Anti-Breakage Leave-In Treatment for soft, frizz-free hair. Choose the Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair Deep Conditioning Mask for a natural, cruelty-free hair mask to repair and restore chemically-treated hair health. Each of these reviewed options is devoid of harsh chemicals that make them a safe choice to revive your hair.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

Oyendrila Kanjilala, the author of this article, is all about skin and hair care. She constantly studies and keeps up to date with all the latest products and trends in hair care. She compiled this list of the best protein treatments for your hair after trying several of them on herself and sifting several user reviews online. These protein treatments are formulated keeping in mind the effect of stress on your hair and give you strong and healthy hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should you do a protein treatment on your hair?

Use it weekly for the first month. Later, you can use it once or twice a month.

What does a protein treatment do to your hair?

Protein treatment helps to restore elasticity and prevent hair breakage.

How do you know if your hair needs protein?

If your hair looks limp, breaks easily, lacks bounce, and becomes brittle and sticky, it might lack protein and needs a protein treatment.

Does protein treatment make your hair grow?

Yes, protein promotes growth in the hair follicles and helps increase the length of the hair. It also prevents hair fall and hence gives the appearance of fuller, longer hair.

Are protein hair treatments safe to use long-term?

Yes, overuse of protein treatments makes your hair brittle and damaged.

How long does the effect of a protein hair treatment last?

The effect of a protein hair treatment lasts for 2-3 months.

Which type of hair gets benefits from protein treatments?

Hair protein treatment benefits dry, damaged hair and curly hair.

What are the ingredients to look for in protein treatments?

The best protein treatments contain keratin, collagen, yogurt, vitamin B5, creatine, or amino acids (silk, wheat, and milk).

What ingredients should I avoid in protein treatments?

Avoid ingredients like sulfates, parabens, silicones, formaldehyde, isopropyl alcohol, polyethylene glycol, etc.

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Alicia Igess

Alicia IgessHairstylist

Alicia Igess is an accomplished and award-winning stylist with over two decades of experience in hair design. She is the owner and founder of Urban Tangles, a hair and makeup studio focusing on makeovers. She, along with her team, has experienced tremendous success in building an exclusive “referral-only” clientele consisting of many of the who’s who of Atlanta.read full bio