Keratin is a widely misunderstood ingredient that has been getting a bad rap in the news, beauty publications, and hair blogs over the past few years. Just uttering the word incites visions of beauticians wearing facemasks and the thought of embalming fluid comes to mind. Unfortunately one bad story, product, or headline can spoil the whole lot, and before you know it a common ingredient has been labeled as hazardous by the community. We are going to look at why keratin has become the latest victim of this phenomenon.
Keratin is an essential component to hair, as 90% of your hair is made up of keratin protein. It is a protein formed by the combination of 18 amino acids. Although hair also contains water, lipids, traces of mineral elements, and melanin, Hair-Science says keratin is its main component. Keratin is the key structural building block of hair, skin, and nails, so it can be strong, delicate, and vulnerable to damage. This explains why many protein hair care products have hydrolyzed keratin protein in them.
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