You are NOT Protein Sensitive

Protein Sensitivity. We've all heard of it, wondered about it, puzzled over it. Are we? Aren't we? What does it mean? 

Enitan Agidee, founder of the Healthy Hair Studio, breaks down the myth of protein sensitivity and we are absolutely here for her insights!  

What is your take on Protein Sensitivity? 

Okay, allow me to break this down. The outermost layer of the skin is made of Keratin and it is because hair is part of skin, that too is made up mostly of keratin.

One can argue that because hair is keratin, it can't be sensitive to itself but that is not the direction I'm going to take because although the human body is made up of 60%, water, there are people that exist that have an allergic reaction to water.

You are not protein sensitive because hair is a dead keratin cell that degenerates daily and has no nerve endings. What you may experience is protein overload.

So should we be avoiding protein or is it something that our hair needs?

In order for the hair to reach maximal potential it requires amino acids to do so. The replenishment of the hair with cysteine which is one of the 4 amino acids needed to produce keratin will serve several benefits such as acting as a filler to reduce the rate at which moisture is lost.

Photo by Guy Bourdin
What if the hair in question is chemical free hair with normal porosity, does the hair still require protein?

The answer is yes in the following instances:

  • Hair that is twisted/braided- handling of the hair in this manner will require protein to fortify the hair.
  • Hair that is washed - over long term, the process of washing hair will result in the hair eventually losing its original shape, the correct type of protein will have the ability to support the natural structure of hair.
  • Hair that is exposed to the sun or chlorine requires the correct type of protein in order to give hair the ability to hold more water than its body weight. Therefore, acting as a conditioning agent.
What type of protein treatments work best?

You will never get any of these benefits from eggs/mayonnaise or yoghurt because they do not have molecules small enough to penetrate the hair. These will just give an illusion of strength, although they are protein from a nutrition point of view they have zero impact as an effective protein treatment.

The incorrect use of traditional protein treatments for example apoghee or hair mayonnaise will lead to protein overload because they need to be followed up with a moisturising treatment afterwards. If used correctly they can serve the hair with durability.

Protein Defence Treatment - Healthy Hair Studio by Enitan
Tell us about The Healthy Hair Studio's protein treatment 

The protein defence+ from The Healthy Hair Studio by Enitan is a pure hydrolysed protein that does not require to be followed up with a moisturising treatment but can lead to breakage resilient hair that will not give the stiffness that traditional treatment give.The innovation of the treatment gives results that reduces friction and builds up robustness in the hair long term. The protein defence+ has shown us that strength does not need to mean hard hair.

Any final takeways for our readers?

You can not reach your hair's full potential if your regimen does not contain protein. It is important that both moisture and protein levels are balanced as an overload of moisture will cause breakage. The goal is not to wait for the hair to start become weak or break but to keep elasticity and strength balanced through the year.

Shop the full range of Protein Treatments on

Root2Tip Triple Protein Deep Conditioner Masque


Design Essentials Deep Moisture Masque on


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Our mission is to arm you with the best products for textured hair and to guide you in finding the best routine for YOU.

Winnie Awa, founder of Antidote Street