Why Blondes Should Avoid Using Too Much Protein On Their Hair

There are a number of cliché assumptions out there about blondes: "Blondes have more fun," the "dumb blonde" trope, etc. While these broad stereotypes are not rooted in any legitimate evidence, there are some general facts out there that we do know about blondes. For instance, naturally blonde hair is actually extremely rare and only makes up 2% of the world, according to the World Population Review.

Another fact about blondes is that they often have fine, dense hair. Unilever Senior Scientist Diane Minar told SELF Magazine that while women with black hair have around 60,000 hairs on their heads, blondes typically have 7.5 times this amount. Meanwhile, brunettes and redheads vary between these hair counts. Blondes can fit more follicles on their head because they often have thinner hair strands.

But, blonde hair is often more porous, according to Hairstory. Which, means it is more susceptible to dryness. And unfortunately, even if you dye your hair blonde, you can't get that golden hue without this porous texture. So, many blondes, artificial and all-natural, will try to combat the dryness that this causes with protein. However, this could make your hair even more dehydrated.

Protein is often recommended for blonde hair

In hair terminology, the cuticle is the outer layer of the hair structure. If the cuticle is porous, as it is with blonde hair, this means it is not as thick and can be penetrated easier. So if your hair is blonde, it will be extra absorbent when it comes into contact with all of the pollutants and damaging substances you expose it to. Not only that, but this penetrability will make it more difficult for your blonde strands to conceal the moisture it receives. This causes it to dry out more than less porous hair shades.

Regarding porous cuticles, many hair care professionals will recommend you strengthen these weak barriers with protein treatments. Daboju Ogboru, a certified trichologist, told Byrdie that when you apply protein molecules to the hair, they clasp onto hair strands and seal the outer layers. However, when we are desperate to improve the condition of our hair, it's not uncommon for us to take advice and put it into overdrive. But, with protein, the more is definitely not the merrier for blondes.

What protein overload does to blonde hair

If you have been told that protein could improve your limp, dry blonde hair, this advice is not wrong. But if you take this information and start to drown your hair in anything labeled with "keratin" or "amino acid," that's when you'll start to run into problems. Professional colorist Jessica Gonzalez told StyleCaster that this is a major no-no for blondes. Gonzalez warned, "Right now, protein-based shampoos and conditioners are really popular but unfortunately, using them too often can have the reverse effect and make the hair brittle."

Too much protein can definitely be a bad thing. Hair specialist Tyler Moore explained to Refinery29 that going overboard with protein "...can prevent water and other products from fully hydrating strands, causing hair to become dry and brittle." Rather than being too porous, your hair will flip to being the opposite. For blondes, getting your hair to the right level of porousness to maintain its moisture is a delicate balance and protein should be applied in moderation.