Coloured hair is awesome, truly it is. But it isn't all glamour, it's not a case of whacking it on and leaving it be. The colouring process is like a storm that relentlessly batters your hair, sucking all of the life out of it. In order for coloured hair to look great, a lot of hard work goes into maintaining not only the colour but also the condition of the hair. Without this hard work, it would look scraggly, faded and generally unappealling. Having said that, I think it's definitely worth the effort!
As some of you may know, I went a bit colour crazy with my hair in 2013. To begin with I just had a Turquoise ombre, then I went all-out purple, decided I didn't like that so went all-out turquoise for most of the year before going for a two-toned turquoise and lavender style in December. So you can imagine then that my hair has taken more than its fair share of punishment througout the year.
When it came to going turquoise, I had to bleach my hair twice to get the colour right. When I did eventually manage to get the colour spot on, it was fantastic, bright and super vibrant - think of a Parrot's tail! On the other hand, my hair was knackered. It felt mushy and elasticy when wet, and extremely brittle when dry. To detangle, I was going through cases and cases of Johnson's No More Tears Detangling Spray with a rake - Ok, not really a rake, but at times it felt like I needed one!
In my attempts to bring back some life to my coloured hair, I've trawled the internet looking at all manner of remedies - some amateur home remedies, some professional treatments - I ruled nothing out. But it was protein treatments that really caught my eye. The first one I tried was Aphogee's 2 Step Protein Treatment which worked a treat! Unfortunately it's a messy, lengthy process - see my post on it HERE.
I'm always sad to see a product that actually worked for me run out, so when the bottle finished I was a little upset. But on the other hand I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to look at other protein treatments, perhaps something a little less messy and a little less time consuming!
eBay once again proved to be my saviour of sorts, where I found Babyface Pure Protein Treatment. The listing had paragraphs and paragraphs of literature singing it's praises. I don't usually like that, it's like the seller was trying just a little too hard to drum up interest. I had a look at the size of the bottle on offer, just one ounce! This intrigued me, so with my Aphogee finished and nothing to lose I thought I'd give it a whirl.
A few days later and it had already arrived through the post, a good start! I knew the bottle would be tiny, but just holding it there in my hand actually quite surprised me! The instructions are printed on the label stuck to the bottle, and for me this was a good sign - it definitely wasn't going to be an Aphogee style all-nighter!
I shampoo'd my hair twice before towel drying, to the point where my hair was no longer dripping but still quite damp. I poured out a capful of the pure protein treatment and mixed it in with my conditioner.
In this case, I used Organix Hydrating Macadamia Oil conditioner. In the picture above, you can just about see the darker oily-looking liquid that is the Pure Protein treatment sat around the edges of the conditioner. You need to give it a good thorough mix to combine the two together.
I oversaturated my hair with the mixture and instead of running a comb through my hair, as directed in the instructions, I ran my fingers through my hair to evenly distribute the product. I'd recommend using your fngers if your hair is susceptible to breakage whilst combing. Then I popped on a shower cap and let the treatment work its magic!
The rebellious streak within me refused to follow the instructions to the letter, and instead of leaving it on for 20 minutes, I went for a whole hour instead to really give my hair a chance to soak up all the protein-y goodness before giving it a thorough rinse.
After rinsing the product out, I could feel a bit of a difference already. Detangling was a breeze, I didn't even need to use a separate detangler. A promising start!
If the start was promising, things were about to get a whole let better. I began to blow-dry my hair, and amazingly enough it dried a lot quicker than usual. Normally it takes an eternity to dry my hair, but after one application of this treatment it only felt like half an eternity! The more porous the hair is, the longer it takes to dry. So as my hair was drying quicker than before, the protein treatment was already taking effect.
Not only did my hair dry quicker, it also felt incredibly glossy, outrageously soft and silky smooth. For a moment, I let myself get carried away and imagined my hair in one of those old Timotei adverts from the 90s! But seriously, my hair felt a lot thicker and quite bulked up. The real acid test for hair condition is the elasticity test. Before the treatment, my hair was giving up very little resistance before snapping, whereas afterwards it was putting up a fight, stretching quite far before returning to it's normal length. YES! *swish*
Since then, I've used this on a monthly basis and my hair is going from strength to strength (pun fully intended!) and I've had a few people comment on how sleek and silky my hair is looking these days, which is quite the rarity as not many see beyond the colour!
Just a few final points to mention: always use protein treatments sparingly, never ever use more than a capful. Over-use can overload your hair with protein, causing it to start breaking off. Personally, I will only use one protein treatment per month as my hair is quite damaged from the bleaching. If your hair is not damaged, please avoid using these treatments. There are plenty of internet horror stories out there of healthy-haired ladies destroying their barnets with protein treatments.
Have you ever tried protein treatments? What do you swear by?