Q & A – Post Straightening Treatment Breakage

Wednesday, October 17, 2012
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Question: Help!!! I think I’ve over-everythinged my fine, thin hair and now it’s breaking off and strands are just falling out in larger than normal amounts! I did the Keratin straightening treatment, have been using their supplied protein-enriched shampoo/conditioner, plus gotten highlights all in the last year but about 5 weeks ago all hell broke loose. My hair is literally falling out. What can I do?

Answer: So sorry this is happening to you. I'd first like to go on record that I do not recommend straightening treatments such as the Brazilian Blowout or other "keratin" straightening treatments. Please read this post to learn more about their toxicity.

If you are suffering from breakage, you need to identify the cause of the breakage. If your hair feels brittle, you may need to lay off the protein based shampoos and conditioners and use moisturizing products instead. It may be worthwhile to try and oil based product such as Moroccan Oil or L'Oreal Professional's Mythic Oil. You can't repair breakage that has already occured, only try to prevent further breakage. If the breakage is substantial, a sizable trim may be the best answer.

If your hair is falling out, there isn't a lot I can recommend. I read that you can try deep cleansing your scalp and hair with a clarifying shampoo to remove any residue that could be contributing to your hair loss. (I like Paul Mitchell's Shampoo Three and Redken's Hair Cleansing Cream.) It wouldn't hurt to try this, just be sure to follow the treatment with a moisturizing conditioner. You can also supplement your diet with a vitamin containing Biotin, which may support hair growth. The good news is that other women who have encountered similiar hair loss after a straightening treatment did notice that their hair started to grow back in time. Be patient and go easy on your hair for a while. Definitely take a break from bleach or high-lift color processes and flat ironing.

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