You’ve heard it dozens of times – bleached hair is usually synonymous with damaged hair.
Fortunately, there are ways to repair the damage dealt by the bleaching process.
The most effective and reparative of these are protein treatments that give you back your hair’s strength, bounce, and softness.
But what’s the best protein treatment for bleached hair?
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Benefits Of Using Protein Treatments
Protein treatments have exceptional reparative properties, so they’re perfect for damaged hair that is dry and brittle.
Proteins restore and restructure the hair to make it more resilient.
That’s why many hair care products labeled “for damaged hair” contain proteins.
When hydrolyzed proteins sink into your hair cuticle, they add a protective layer, making each strand sturdier and less prone to breakage.
Since they fill in gaps and holes in the cuticle, they make your locks smoother too.
Most protein treatments are rich in vitamins and nutrients the hair needs for health to be restored, such as vitamins B and E.
These work hand in hand with proteins to ensure you get your elasticity and bounce back in your tresses.
When your hair has enough protein, it looks full and luscious, leading to gorgeous volume and movement.
If your hair has been limp, lifeless, and stringy, it’s probably begging for some protein.
Protein is also responsible for hair’s elasticity, or how it holds a curl pattern.
Healthy hair should be able to hold curls or waves well.
If your hair always falls flat when you style it, it might need extra protein.
In a nutshell, proteins allow your hair to go from parched, brittle, and straw-like to soft, silky, and strong.
Why Does Bleached Hair Need Protein Treatments?
The long and short of it is that hair is protein in itself, so building up damaged hair with more protein repairs the hair and makes the cuticle stronger.
Every strand of hair is made of keratin, a fibrous protein.
And when you damage your hair with heat styling or chemical treatments like bleach, parts of the cuticle lift and open up to release our natural color.
This breaks down the keratin and leaves gaps in the cuticle, making your hair thin, brittle, and dry.
The hair is overly porous
Bleaching amps up your hair’s porosity, or how many gaps and holes it has in the cuticle because of chemical damage.
The more porous your hair, the harder it is to retain moisture, which can account for why your hair is so dry after bleaching.
The hair also becomes extremely weak, which is why it feels so dry and lifeless.
The bonds of your hair can break, leading to split ends.
You may even notice that your hair can’t hold your natural hair texture properly anymore.
The best way to build your hair back up and restore its health is by replenishing your strands with the protein they lost.
And how do you do that?
By using your trusty protein treatment, of course.
Proteins fill in those gaps – at least temporarily – to make your hair stronger and “thicker” so it can get that healthy bounce and glow back.
It also helps your hair retain moisture for longer so that your hair can stay soft and hydrated again all day long.
Because proteins seal the cuticle and fill in those rough gaps, you’ll feel your hair become super soft and easy to manage during styling.
It will also become easier to detangle because it’s so smooth.
That’s the magic of protein treatments; they press reset on your hair, so it feels brand new.
It’s also a bright idea to use a protein treatment right before you bleach your hair.
Since extra protein makes the base of your hair stronger, it should be able to take the chemical damage like a champion, and the after-effects might not be so horrible.
Best Protein Treatment For Bleached Hair
If you’ve been looking for the best protein treatment for bleached hair, then your search has come to an end.
I’ve reviewed nine great products that can strengthen your hair after the bleaching process.
Fortifying Protein Hair Mask and Deep Conditioner with Argan Oil and Macadamia Oil By Arvazallia
This Arvazallia mask is another one made with restorative proteins paired with rich, nourishing oils for your dose of both strength and moisture.
This mask is formulated with hydrolyzed wheat proteins that strengthen and repair your brittle, damaged hair.
It also has rich macadamia oil, luxurious argan oil, and nutrient-rich aloe to add moisture and shiny luster to the hair.
Though the ingredients sound thick, this mask actually gives added volume to the hair, especially when your strands are naturally fine.
- Has wheat proteins to strengthen and repair brittle hair
- Macadamia oil, argan oil, and aloe add moisture and shine
- Creates added gorgeous volume to fine, thin hair
- Free of potentially damaging ingredients, like sulfates and parabens
- May leave the hair greasy if too much is used
Eufora Nourish Fortifi Keratin Repair
This spray treatment by Eufora has proteins that are activated thermally, so it makes an awesome pre-styling treatment before you use hot tools.
It’s infused with keratin proteins that repair damaged and uber-brittle hair, balancing hair porosity before you style it.
The product also has an anti-static formula that eliminates frizz to ensure your hair is super manageable after just a few spritzes.
The formula is vegan, as with most Eufora products.
It also doesn’t contain potentially harmful ingredients like mineral oils, parabens, and petrolatum.
- A spray-on treatment, so it’s more convenient than a hair mask
- Thermal-activated keratin proteins repair damaged hair
- Has an anti-static formula to eliminate frizz
- Vegan formula with no mineral oils, parabens, and petrolatum
- Doesn’t add moisture to the hair
CHI Deep Brilliance Protein Masque
CHI is the queen of hot tools, so it only makes sense that the brand creates a fantastic protein treatment to repair damaged hair.
This masque is made with a protein-rich complex that includes botanical oils to provide your hair with protein-moisture balance.
Keratin and silk proteins reconstruct your damaged hair strands, while olive, coconut, and monoi oils nourish your hair deeply, making them incredibly soft and smooth.
It also has essential oils and extracts from lavender, peppermint, chamomile, and more for hydration.
- Keratin and silk proteins repair damaged hair strands
- Olive, coconut, and monoi oils nourish dry hair deeply
- Has many botanical essential oils to hydrate the hair and leave a fresh fragrance
- Makes hair soft and manageable
- The tube is quite small for the price
Aphogee Two-step Treatment Protein for Damaged Hair
If you have extra time on your hands and don’t mind pampering yourself for longer than your usual rinse-off protein mask, use this treatment by Aphogee.
It contains proteins and magnesium to strengthen and fuse into your damaged hair to fortify it, rebuilding your hair structure to prevent breakage.
Apply this mask to your hair and wait for it to dry completely.
Your hair will be hard, but don’t worry – it’s part of the process.
Rinse off, moisturize your hair, and you’re good to go with strong, resilient hair.
- Proteins and magnesium strengthen your thin, damaged hair
- Rebuilds your hair structure within six weeks
- Prevents breakage and snapping of the hair
- Contains urea, which softens and adds light moisture to hair
- The treatment process takes a long time, which can be inconvenient
SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate + Repair Protein-Strong Treatment
This SheaMoisture protein treatment has achieved holy grail status in the curly community for its combo of intense moisture and strong repairing power.
This rich and creamy mask contains shea butter, mafura oil, and baobab oils that provide deep moisture to bring your dry hair back to life.
It also has anti-oxidant rich manuka honey and protein-rich yogurt extracts to repair and restore your hair from bleaching damage.
Even if this mask is thick and rich, it never leaves your hair crunchy.
Instead, you can expect soft, defined curls each time.
- Shea butter and mafura and baobab oils moisturize the hair deeply
- Manuka honey and protein-rich yogurt repair damaged hair
- Leaves hair soft and touchable, never crunchy
- Makes your curls look super defined
- Can be too heavy and waxy if you have fine hair
Aveda Damage Remedy Intensive Restructuring Treatment
Aveda’s natural formula restores the health and integrity your hair lost after you bleached it, repairing it from the root to the tip.
It’s packed with quinoa proteins that deeply repair your damaged hair, fortifying it to make it stronger.
Meanwhile, the lipids in jojoba oil and castor oil moisturize the hair.
They also add a layer of protection to prevent further damage that can make your hair weak and brittle.
This treatment leaves your hair with a fresh, fruity, and floral scent, thanks to extracts from bergamot, mandarin, and ylang-ylang.
- Restores the integrity of your damaged hair
- Quinoa proteins provide deep repair and fortification to each hair strand
- Lipids in jojoba and castor oils provide moisture and added protection
- Has a fresh and floral scent from fruit and flower extracts
- Can take some time to see a noticeable difference
Sachajuan Hair Repair
Smooth, sleek, and strong hair has never looked this good.
This Sachajuan repair treatment is infused with wheat proteins that repair damaged locks, as well as castor oil and red algae extracts to restore hydration in your parched strands.
It’s made with the brand’s signature Ocean Silk Technology, which helps soften the hair and rebuild strength by promoting cell regeneration.
The treatment also reduces frizziness so that you can maintain smooth, velvety locks with glamorous bounce.
- Wheat proteins repair and fortify damaged hair
- Castor oil and red algae add moisture to your locks
- Made with Ocean Silk Technology to soften and strengthen hair
- Reduces frizz to ensure your hair stays smooth and soft
- Promotes cell regeneration to restore hair health
- Some users find the scent a little strong
Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Anti-Breakage Leave-In Treatment
Protein treatments don’t always have to be fussy and messy in the shower.
This one by Redken, for example, comes in the form of an easy, breezy leave-in.
It’s made with soy proteins and an exclusive fortifying complex technology that penetrates the hair deeply to strengthen it from the roots.
It’s also infused with ceramides to add moisture, softness, and shine to the hair.
The leave-in treatment helps reduce breakage and split ends by up to 75% and even protects your hair from heat.
- Made with a fortifying complex technology to penetrate the hair deeply
- Reduces hair breakage and split ends by 75%
- Has ceramides to soften and add shine to the hair
- Acts as a heat protectant
- Protects the hair against damage
- Contains silicone
Evo Mane Attention Protein Treatment
While it’s pertinent to replenish your hair with protein post-bleaching session, you need to balance it out with moisture too.
This protein treatment by Evo was designed to bring back both moisture and strength to chemically-stressed hair.
Soy proteins repair and patch up the broken bonds in your hair, fortifying each strand to make it stronger.
Meanwhile, argan, jojoba, and macadamia oils are coupled with rich shea butter to provide deep moisture in your thirsty locks.
They also add shine and softness to the hair.
- Soy proteins repair your damaged hair bonds
- Has plenty of rich oils for deep moisture replenishment
- Easily detangles hair to make it softer and more manageable
- Leaves hair soft and easy to manage
- It leaves your hair looking radiant
- Designed specifically for chemically-stressed hair
- Can be too nourishing if you have oily hair to begin with
I know you are interested in learning about the best protein treatment for bleached hair.
But what if I told you there’s a great alternative to protein treatments that works to repair your damaged hair inside out?
One word: Olaplex.
While protein treatments fill in the gaps and holes in the cuticle, the Olaplex treatment goes inside the cuticle and repairs from the inside.
It works internally, inside the hair shaft to repair the bonds in your hair.
The bleaching process damages the disulfide bonds that are responsible for binding the keratin particles in the hair.
This is where Olaplex patented single ingredient – Bis-Aminopropyl Diglycol Dimaleate – comes in to repair the broken disulfide bonds.
The good news here is that you can combine Olaplex with protein treatments or moisturizing treatments.
Olaplex Hair Perfector No. 3 Repairing Treatment
Olaplex is known in the hair world as a luxurious brand that offers top-notch bond-repairing products.
This bestselling treatment is the product that made Olaplex a household name.
It contains the Olaplex molecule, an oil and silicone-free ingredient that strengthens the hair and rebuilds broken bonds to make your locks more resilient, especially when it’s gone through the stress of bleaching.
It has jojoba oil and aloe to add hydration and shiny gloss to the hair.
These ingredients leave the hair super soft and touchable as well.
- The Olaplex molecule strengthens hair with one treatment
- Rebuilds the bonds of your hair to make them more resilient
- Leaves the hair incredibly soft and glossy
- Jojoba oil and aloe hydrate the hair
- Doesn’t have parabens, phosphates, and phthalates
- Can leave your roots a bit greasy
If your fave stylist has ever told you to think twice about having your hair bleached because of the damage it entails, join the club.
Bleaching your hair may cause damage, but sometimes, you gotta risk it for the biscuit.
But how else are you supposed to rock that awesome blonde look you’ve been eyeing for a while.
We cannot miss out on fun things like bleaching our hair when there are products we can use to maintain its strength.
And I assume this is why you are keen on finding out which is the best protein treatment for bleached hair.
The truth is, restoring your hair health after bleaching takes a whole lot of patience, commitment, proper research, and a tub of the best protein treatment you can find.
Get your hair back in shape to regain bounce and elasticity so that you can flaunt your light-colored hair or trendy blonde balayage with confidence.