The Balancing Act of Moisture + Protein For Your Hair

Simply put, all hair types and textures need both protein and moisture to look and feel their healthiest. But striking that perfect balance isn’t always the easiest thing to achieve.

For instance, if your hair is wavy, curly, or coily, moisture is essential when it comes to keeping your strands looking their best. Textured hair types have a dry, brittle nature so they often require hair care routines that are rooted in moisture: maintaining hydration, locking it in, replenishing it, and keeping your strands looking and feeling hydrated.

You’ve also probably heard a lot about the importance of knowing your hair porosity and protein for keeping your strands looking flawless. Between 80-90% of your hair is made up of protein or keratin—it’s the cornerstone of what makes your hair strong and healthy, which is why it’s such a vital part of your hair care routine.

Stacy of @itstheproductgirl using our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment

Stacy of @itstheproductgirl using our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment


Protein and moisture go hand-in-hand when it comes to healthy, thriving hair. However, too much moisture can result in hygral fatigue (over-conditioning your hair), limp, lifeless, lackluster hair, while too much protein can result in straw-like, dry, strands that have lost their elasticity.

Achieving the correct amount of protein and moisture is a very precise and delicate balance. Both have their benefits, and a well-rounded hair care routine includes products and treatments that help you balance the right amount of protein and moisture. The first step? Understand when your hair needs protein and when it needs moisture.


Becky of @beckytsivin using our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment

Becky of @beckytsivin using our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment


Discover everything you need to know about balancing protein and moisture and how your specific porosity levels play a role in how you should be caring for your strands. Once you're armed with this knowledge, you can find the best products with the highest quality ingredients and nutrients to create a personalized hair care routine that delivers real results.


What is Hygral Fatigue?

Too much of a good thing can happen when it comes to moisturizing your strands. Yes, proper hydration is necessary for keeping your strands looking soft, supple, and shiny, and has many benefits:

  • It supplies elasticity to prevent brittleness, frizz, static and breakage 

  • It works as a defense against environmental stressors (like extreme cold or heat, free radicals and UV rays)

  • It restores resiliency to damaged, stressed out strands

When your scalp and hair are healthy, your natural oils can provide moisture and help your hair thrive. However, sometimes your hair needs a little extra help from moisturizers, creams, serums, and oils that can replenish hydration to dehydrated strands.




Moisture can do wonders for your hair, but over-conditioning your strands can lead to hygral fatigue (extreme moisture overload) or damaged hair cuticles that are overworked and stressed out from constantly absorbing, contracting. This non-stop cycle of stretching, absorbing, and contracting occurs naturally when we apply moisture from deep-conditioning hair masks, water and creams, but done in excess, it puts a lot of strain on your strands. Eventually your hair will become weak, lose elasticity, and the structure of your hair will break down.

A few of the most common ways we stress our strands out with too much moisture are:

- Over-conditioning your hair with rich, heavy, deep-conditioning and moisturizing treatments

- Using too many deep-conditioning products that don’t include protein

- Adding moisture to our hair before it’s completely dried

- Applying heavy, deeply moisturizing shampoos and conditioners to hair that’s not completely dry


Signs of Hygral Fatigue

Before you dive into your next moisture treatment, check to see if your hair is experiencing signs of too much moisture and not enough protein.

Proteins are the building blocks of our hair, making them so beneficial to a healthy hair routine and why it’s super important to achieve the optimal balance of moisture and protein for healthy hair. Typically, you’ll start to notice signs of damage or an imbalance when your hair begins to break or if your hair feels mushy and too stretchy. These are a few other warning signs to be on the lookout for:

  • Curls will lose definition and structure, and will feel weak (an indication that your hair has lost protein) 

  • Wet strands will feel gummy or stretch too much before snapping

  • Hair feels light, lacks elasticity and looks limps

  • Hair begins to show signs of split ends and breakage

When your strands are experiencing hygral fatigue, it’s time to give your hair a little extra TLC with a treatment that will restore your strands to their healthiest, happiest state. Depending on your hair’s porosity levels you’ll be able to determine whether your hair is craving protein or moisture, or a little bit of both.



How to determine what your strands need by porosity levels

Your hair’s porosity levels are important to understanding how much protein and moisture your hair needs. Discovering your hair’s porosity can be done easily at home by taking a quick Strand Test. To do, take a strand of wet hair and pull on it, and take note of how that strand reacted: 

  • Did your hair stretch a bit before it snapped? Your hair is most likely craving hydration and moisture. You have low porosity hair.

  • Did your hair stretch and return to its original shape? You have medium porosity hair.

  • Did your hair immediately snap and didn’t stretch? Your hair is craving protein for strength. You have high porosity hair.

Once you pinpoint your hair’s porosity levels, you can treat your hair with the best products and essentials to support your hair care concerns. Here’s a few things to keep in mind when adding in moisture and protein into your routine based on your porosity levels:


High porosity: Keep humidity, tangles, and frizz in check by adding in protein. All hair types and textures are affected by porosity and protein, but curls tend to be more porous than straight hair, and thus, more prone to dryness, breakage, and frizz from humidity. Add our Curl Charisma™ Rice Amino + Avocado Hydrating Defining Mask as a lightweight, protein-free hair mask to your masking routine. It’s perfect for enhancing curls, hydrating, and sealing in the moisture that tends to escape high porosity hair.

Medium porosity: Your strands have the optimal balance of protein and moisture, and your locks are less prone to damage. Help your hair thrive with our Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Deep Conditioning Mask or our Scalp Revival™ Charcoal + Tea Tree Cooling Hydration Scalp Mask to clarify, cleanse, remove unwanted buildup (that can lead to imbalances in the hair cuticle), and nourish your strands, while simultaneously focusing on your healthy hair and scalp needs.

Low porosity: Retain the moisture you’re putting in and go easy on the protein here. Using a hair mask like our Briogeo Superfoods™ Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Mask will help you maintain moisture with the right amount of hydration and nutrients to keep your hair strong, soft and hydrated. Too much protein on low porosity locks can create protein overload or dry, brittle, weak hair, which can lead to tangles, frizz, split ends and dreaded breakage.


Maintaining The Optimal Balance of Protein and Moisture

Noticing lots of breakage? It might be time for a protein and moisture treatment. When your hair is craving moisture and protein, you’ll not only see signs of hygral fatigue, you’ll also notice severe signs of damage: lots of frizz, dryness, straw-like texture, brittleness and breakage (especially if your hair is color treated, chemically processed or damaged from heat styling).

Once a week, use our NEW Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment—it’s ideal for getting breakage under control, thanks to our pro-grade, highly effective formula that’s scientifically proven to strengthen damaged hair and prevent future damage. Infused with 6-Free™, clean and naturally-derived ingredients, this naturally powerful, dual-action formula gives you the perfect balance of rice water protein and moisture for stronger, healthier strands:

Rice derived water, hydrolyzed protein ferment and oil: Protects hair against future damage by strengthening the cuticle with vital protein.


B-Vitamins: Improves texture, adds body, and boosts shine while repairing and restoring nourishment to hair that’s been damaged by heat and/or chemical treatments.


Rosehip oil: Provides essential fatty acids, which are essential in maintaining hair hydration and controlling frizz.

Rosehip Oil


Our newest addition to the Don’t Despair, Repair!™ collection is an at-home, hair repair solution to balancing protein and moisture for hair that needs a lot of love. We took the guesswork (and the mess) out of two powerful formulas—protein and moisture—and combined them in one convenient bottle to deliver strength, hydration, and protection to your strands.



Meet Your Ultimate Intensive Don't Despair, Repair!™ Routine 

Set aside one day a week for an intensive, deeply nourishing and reparative routine hair treatment day that harnesses the power of our entire Don’t Despair, Repair™ lineup:


The art of balancing protein and moisture is delicate, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Having a grasp on your hair porosity, type, texture, needs and concerns can make the process of finding the optimal balance of protein and moisture easier and beneficial to your specific hair care needs.



We created our Don’t Despair, Repair!™ MegaStrength+ Rice Water Protein + Moisture Strengthening Treatment to provide your strands with the ultimate at-home, pro-strength treatment to restore and repair your hair. If you’re lacking the optimal balance of protein and moisture, this 2-in-1 duo will bring your strands back to life and transform your damaged strands. Ready to experience the power of rice water + moisture for longer, stronger and healthier hair? Shop this post today!



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