There’s a horde of products in the haircare industry, and several of them promise you a time machine.
These big companies know that you likely ruined your hair hopping on a trend. So when someone recommends a product, it’s not your fault if you doubt it.
Sometimes though, it’s panic-inducing to feel your hair gummy and stringy after you shower, and you just want to grab any product that advertises to bring it back.
This time you might have heard Olaplex is the key to your problem. Can Olaplex fix gummy hair? Will this brand be a saving grace or another product that will worsen the state of your hair?
It’s time to delve into what Olaplex can do for your damaged hair and how you can make your repairs with fundamental changes in your haircare routine.
What does it mean when your hair feels gummy?
Watching DIY hair tutorials is a rabbit hole—everyone who got convinced that coloring or bleaching your hair by yourself can confirm that it is true. You started by clicking the play button and ended up with stains all over your bathroom floor.
But that is merely the beginning.
You stay hooked until bleaching, coloring, and thermal styling become an addiction.
Of course, until your hair gives up and one day, you wake up with hair that feels covered with gum. It’s mushy and clumped. It feels stretchy but snaps when brushed wet.
You may also notice how brittle and dry it gets once it dries. In conclusion, the damage may be severe.
So what caused this phenomenon?
Gummy hair can result from over-processing with bleach, chemical straightening, or perming.
While you may get out unharmed once, repeated chemical treatments multiply the risk of damaging your hair. Other important factors also include daily grooming habits and environmental pollution.
Gummy hair should serve as your stop signal. It’s your hair’s cry for a reset before it becomes an irreversible dilemma.
To better understand how you can help your hair, you need to understand it better.
Your hair shaft consists of three layers: cuticle, cortex, and sometimes, a medulla.
Keratin, a protein that provides structural support, is responsible for the mechanical properties of your hair, aka it’s the reason your hair feels strong.
Your cuticle is a layer of dead keratinized cells that provide a protective barrier against physical and chemical stressors.
Bleach, especially, strips away the keratin in your cuticles, exposing the majority of your hair fiber and developing follicles found primarily in your cortex.
This loss of protein in your hair results in a lack of elasticity and high porosity, which everyone describes as gummy.
When your hair is in that state, you need to address it with protein treatments.
A weakened cuticle layer is similar to an abandoned building. It is still standing tall, yes, but adding another stressor may likely topple it over.
Protein treatments fill in the gaps between these cuticle layers. Think of scaffolding tied to buildings. These proteins will temporarily hold the structure in place of the lost keratin.
Unfortunately, protein treatments will not be the only treatment or product you will need to revive your hair. Your hair needs fixing within its internal structure so it can function anew.
Here comes the part where you search for trusted products such as Olaplex to help you.
Does Olaplex fix snapping hair?
Olaplex is an independent hair care brand known for its patented technology and innovative products which focus on “bond-building”.
If that seems new to your ears, that’s because they birthed this new category of haircare with only one ingredient: bis-aminopropyl diglycol dimaleate.
The keratin that protects your hair includes many disulfide bonds, water, and salt, maintaining its shape and function. These strong bonds contribute to a third of your hair’s strength and overall stability and structure.
These bonds must remain intact and aligned so your hair stays healthy and shiny. Broken disulfide bonds result in dullness, brittleness, and split ends.
Thermal tools and chemical treatments are your hair’s main aggressors.
They will break these disulfide bonds causing the keratin to deform and no longer function, so your hair appears mushy or gummy.
Breaking these bonds will not only affect a tiny section but the entire hair fiber. This results in damaged hair which snaps easily when dry and feels stretchy when wet.
Olaplex can help fix your dire situation. It is not a protein treatment— that’s a myth already debunked in an Olaplex blog.
Olaplex’s active ingredient, bis-aminopropyl diglycol dimaleate, links these disulfides back together and repairs the root of the damage. Unlike protein treatments which act as a supportive external barrier, Olaplex rebuilds your hair internally.
Think again of the building. Using Olaplex is like reinforcing it with good structural support so it can stand strong again on its own and will less likely need external help.
So while you need to head out for immediate treatment to replenish your protein levels, it’s your best intention to grab Olaplex on your way home and make it your staple everyday product.
Don’t know where to start? Although their active ingredient is present in all of their products, you might want to initially check out these four specific “bond-building” products.
- Olaplex Intensive Bond Building Treatment No.0— their most popular product. It is scientifically proven to repair the hair by 68% and leave it 3x stronger. A must-have along with the next one.
- Olaplex Hair Perfector No.3 — a weekly at-home treatment best used with No.0.
- Olaplex Bond Maintenance Shampoo No.4– suitable for all hair types and free of harsh ingredients. This is color-safe and formulated for daily use.
- Olaplex Bond Maintenance Conditioner No.5– the perfect everyday pair to No.4 and protects hair from frizz and split ends.
Olaplex has specific products for in-salon treatments: Olaplex Bond Multiplier No.1 and Olaplex Bond Perfector No.2. These are stand-alone products that require professionals.
They also have a leave-in styling cream, bonding oil, and hair mask, so your hair regains its strength and shiny texture faster.
How do you fix gummy damaged hair?
While it may seem like the only option is to go entirely bald, don’t jump to the extremes yet!
Gummy hair is repairable. It takes time, so you need to consider it an investment. Hey, you waited patiently for your Netflix show’s next season — you can exercise the same effort here too!
You may need to trim the ends before you proceed with any treatments. The ends of your hair take most of the damage. However, if you feel like it’s salvageable, you may want to invest in Olaplex or other products meant to strengthen and repair.
The first step is to schedule a protein treatment, as mentioned beforehand. However, as much as you require it, you must remember that overloading your hair with protein may cause a minor shedding. The build-up of protein will dry the hair and contribute to its brittleness.
Salon treatments use high potency hydrolyzed proteins, but low-level protein treatments are available for at-home use. In that way, there’s a lower risk of negative impact on the scalp and hair. Start with once every two weeks for those with damaged hair.
Second, your hair needs an extra boost of hydration. Protein-moisture balance is essential to keep your hair healthy. The added moisture will support protein treatment. Hair that lacks moisture snaps off easily, consequently stunting hair growth.
It would help if you also changed your diet and your grooming habits. It will include taking hair supplements, particularly ones with keratin.
When it comes to washing your hair, it’s best not to do it frequently. Your hair is highly porous, and overwashing it opens the cuticles more, leading to dryness. Sulfate-free shampoos are your go-to, along with masks, oils, and conditioners.
Lastly, stay away from any thermal tools and let your hair breathe from dyes and bleaches. You are in your repair phase, and going back to square one isn’t productive for you and your hair!
Your best bet is to follow a hair care routine religiously. After you succeed in this ordeal, you can laugh about how it became a close call.
And the next time you color or bleach your hair, you already know how to prevent the damage you now experience.
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