Amino Acid Hair Treatments: What they are and why you need one.

Your hair is your crowning glory, but it can take a beating from the environment, styling tools, and all the hair products we love to use. If you’re ready to give your hair a break, then amino acid hair treatments might be just what you need!

They’re the latest and greatest in hair care technology and they just might be the ticket to getting that gorgeous, glossy mane you’ve always dreamed of. Amino acids are protein-building blocks that help to fortify your hair from the inside out.

If you have frizzy, brittle hair, flaky scalp and/or dull color, poor you! Read on for a look at why you should give them a try! 

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What are amino acids?

Amino acids are small, organic molecules that make up keratin, the protein found in nails, hair and skin.

These organic compounds play a key role in all kinds of body functions and processes, from metabolism and digestion to forming certain cells, tissues, and organs. So they’re essential for human health in a lot of ways.

Found in all types of food from meats to nuts, amino acids break down into their own unique components which the body then uses to grow and repair itself.

So basically, it’s like these little guys are adventurers who explore every corner of our bodies so we can stay healthy!

What is an amino acid hair treatment?

Amino acid hair treatments work by infusing your strands with essential nutrients that promote healthy hair growth and improve shine, texture, and manageability.

They’re a new type of deep conditioning treatment that uses natural ingredients, and no chemicals like formaldehyde or sodium hydroxides, to nourish and restore the natural health of your hair.

These treatments help amino acids penetrate deep into the follicles, providing intense hydration and nourishment to each strand of hair.

The keratin-based nutrients can help repair split ends and damage caused by over-styling and chemical treatments.

As a result, your hair will become stronger, shinier, softer, and more manageable after regular use. 

Plus, they may even help to protect against color fading so your salon visits will last longer! 

Why are amino acids good for hair?

Amino acids are tiny protein molecules that are essential for healthy hair growth and repair.

They’re stuffed with moisturizing properties that help keep the scalp hydrated and prevent dryness or dandruff.

They also contain antioxidants which help protect against environmental damage like pollution or UV rays.

When used as part of an amino acid hair treatment, these molecules can help to strengthen and nourish your locks from within.

Benefits of Amino Acid Treatments 

When it comes to natural hair care, amino acid treatments can provide a number of benefits:

  • They can help repair damage caused by heat styling tools or chemical processes like bleaching, dyeing or relaxing.
  • They also help protect your hair from further damage by forming an invisible protective layer around each strand, which helps keep moisture in and pollutants out.
  • Amino acid treatments help lock in color for longer lasting results, making them great for color treated hair! 

Amino acid hair treatment before and after

amino acid hair treatment on natural hair before and after instagram post
amino acid hair treatment instagram post
natural hair curly hair brazilian blowout before and after instagram post

How to get an amino acid hair treatment.

If you want to upgrade your hair-care routine with a keratin-infused amino acid treatment, you’re in luck.

Part folicle spa, part science experiment, amino acid treatments are the new way to pamper yourself and your hair.

All you need is an appointment at the salon and you’ll be on your way to a healthy yet fabulous ‘do!

Once there, your dedicated hair stylist will customize an amino acid treatment specifically for you and provide deep nourishment for severely dry or aged hair.

The process works by applying amino acid infused keratin to strands of your hair which are then sealed by heat — leaving you with softer, smoother locks and an afterglow that no other salon treatment can match.

The whole process takes about 2-3 hours and costs upwards of $100+ depending on the length and condition of your hair.

Can I do an amino acid treatment at home?

It is possible to achieve a keratin-enriched amino acid treatment right in the comfort of your own home. But it’s not easy!

While nothing quite replaces the expertise and care of a professional hairdresser, there are amino acid and keratin treatments available for at-home use that can boost smoothness, strength, elasticity, and hydration from the comfort of your own bathroom or kitchen.

Like a keratin treatment or Brazilian blow out, it takes a lot of patience! So it can be hard to do by yourself. Follow these four steps for the best results at home, first time:

Step 1: Shampooing 

The first step in any good hair care routine is shampooing. To get the most out of your amino acid treatment, use a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo that won’t strip away essential oils or damage your hair.

Focus on massaging the product into your scalp – not just your lengths – to ensure that all of your strands are fully cleansed.  

Step 2: Strengthening 

Once you’ve finished shampooing, it’s time for strengthening. You can do this by applying a protein-rich amino acid hair conditioner or deep conditioning mask to help repair any damage caused by things like heat styling or sun exposure.

Leave this product in for around 5 minutes before rinsing thoroughly with cool water. 

Step 3: Treatment   

Now comes the actual treatment! Start by sectioning off your hair so that you can easily apply the product evenly throughout each strand.

Use small amounts at a time and focus on getting those ends – they need all of that extra TLC!

When you’re done applying, leave the product in for 15 minutes (or as the instructions direct) before rinsing out with cool water once more. 

Step 4: Sealing with Flat Irons

To seal in all of those amazing benefits from your amino acid treatment, use flat irons or straightening tools on low heat settings (around 180°F).

This will not only help lock in moisture but also give you sleek and shiny locks that last for days!  

With an at-home keratin treatment, you can enjoy a spa-like experience from the convenience of your own home. Keep in mind that results may vary compared to what a professional can provide you but with consistent maintenance it certainly sounds like a great way to maintain those luscious locks!

Watch and learn: How to do an amino acid treatment

Here’s a great video that shows you how an amino acid treatment is done by a professional to repair breakage, dryness, reduce humidity frizz and smooth out tangles in natural hair.

YouTube player

Best amino acid treatments at a glance.

Keratin ProductLooks likeBest forRatingBuy now
K18 Leave-In Repair Hair Mask Treatment to Repair Dry or Damaged Hairq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B09HR5KSR8&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 20&language=en USir?t=colouredhairc 20&language=en US&l=li2&o=1&a=B09HR5KSR8Coarse, thick, frizzy hair. four star icon Edited
Vitamins Hair Serum q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01456DJ66&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBbest keratin products vitamins hair serumEvery day quick fix. three star icon Edited 1
Hairfinity Hair Strengthening Amino Treatment Masque - Hydrating Hair Mask and Deep Conditioner q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01JF9449O&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 20&language=en USir?t=colouredhairc 20&language=en US&l=li2&o=1&a=B01JF9449OGreat value for money and results. five star icon Edited 1
Keratin Hair Serum Capsules Treatment with Amino Acids, Silk Protein & Vitamin B5 q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B075D8BW8K&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 20&language=en USir?t=colouredhairc 20&language=en US&l=li2&o=1&a=B075D8BW8KDry, damaged hair. four star icon Edited
Aminotouch Natural PURE PROTEIN TREATMENT q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01ES4FJEU&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=kitqueen 21&language=en GBir?t=kitqueen 21&language=en GB&l=li2&o=2&a=B01ES4FJEUHard to tame, colored locks. five star icon Edited 1
Kiehl's Amino Acid Conditioner with pure coconut and Jojoba oilq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B006KHMALO&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 20&language=en USir?t=colouredhairc 20&language=en US&l=li2&o=1&a=B006KHMALORestoring and nourishing. five star icon Edited 1

TOP PICK! Best amino acid hair treatment.

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B006KHMALO&Format= SL450 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 20&language=en USir?t=colouredhairc 20&language=en US&l=li3&o=1&a=B006KHMALO

If you’re looking for a conditioner that will give you all the impressive results of salon-grade products but without the hefty price tag, Kiehl’s Amino Acid Conditioner is just what you need.

Packed with powerful amino acids, this conditioner cleanses your hair thoroughly while also delivering a surge of moisture to leave your locks feeling soft, hydrated and healthy.

Better yet, it won’t weigh down your hair as it quickly absorbs into strands – no matter your hair type.

What sets this conditioner apart is its blend of fairly-traded coconut oil and jojoba oil, which promotes impressive silky-softness and enviable gloss.

We tried it on frizzy, curly hair and got silky smooth results with little effort. Team it with the shampoo for long-lasting results.

Amino Acids Treatments vs. Keratin Treatments

In the eternal pursuit for smooth and healthy looking hair, what’s better: keratin or amino acid treatments?

Well, keratin treatments can help you to achieve your desired sleek look, but don’t always come without potential down sides.

Keratin treatments typically involve harsher chemicals such as formaldehyde that can be damaging over time and irritating to the scalp.

So they’re stronger and better at straightening or relaxing curly and natural hair, but they can be more damaging too.

Amino acid treatments on the other hand have no dangerous ingredients and don’t release any harmful toxins into the air when applied.

But that does mean they might not always work on your type of hair.

It’s important to read up on what you’re planning to put in your hair before deciding on the right product for you.

keratin hair treatments vs amino acid treatments infographic

Are amino acid treatments good for natural hair?

Yes, amino acids are a great choice for those with natural hair! With keratin as the primary ingredient, these treatments are capable of rebuilding broken bonds within your natural hair strands.

Thanks to their small size, these nutrients can penetrate deep into your hair shaft giving you moisture and strength all in one step.

The result? Hair that looks and feels smoother than ever before! No matter what type of texture you have, amino acid treatments are here to help keep your natural hair looking its absolute best.

Are amino acid treatments good for curly hair?

If you have curly hair, amino acid treatments may just be the keratin-infused answer to your frizzy, unruly curly mane.

These treatments are known to improve shine and condition while living up to the fond expression – they CAN tame even the wildest of curly locks!

Amino acids help repair damaged cuticles and strengthen hair strands. Not only do they help define curls better but also hydrate even coarse textures, ultimately giving any type of curly mane the fullness and lushness it deserves.

Are amino acid treatments good for colored hair?

Amino acid treatments offer a great solution for keeping colored hair looking vibrant and healthy.

With keratin proteins that bond to the cuticles, amino acid treatments help lock in the color, so your salon-perfect hue will stay bright and beautiful for months.

Plus, keratin is a powerful protective ingredient that acts as a barrier against harmful UV rays and other environmental aggressors that can quickly fade color.

So in addition to being maintenance-free and having long-lasting color protection, you’ll enjoy an extra boost of natural volume with each treatment!

How long does an amino acid hair treatment last?

An amino acid keratin hair treatment can provide your hair with incredible softness and shine that will last for up to four months.

While it definitely does depend on your hair type, lifestyle and styling expectations, most keratin treatments tend to last for about 3–4 months.

With regular maintenance and proper care, that could even extend a little longer.

Is an amino acid hair treatment safe?

With a pH level of 1.5 and containing no harsh chemicals that can damage your hair, amino acid treatments are perfectly safe for your locks. Hurrah!

A keratin-infused amino acid hair treatment is the perfect way to give your hair an extra boost of shine and strength.

It not only re-strengthens keratin bonds in your hair and helps to lock in your hair color, but also nourishes it while restoring length, body and natural health — all without causing damage that other treatments like coloring or relaxing typically can.

Pros and cons of amino acid hair treatments.

Parting words

There’s no denying that amino acid treatments offer numerous benefits for those looking for healthier-looking locks.

But just because something is popular doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for everyone—it’s important to weigh the pros and cons carefully before deciding whether or not an amino acid treatment is the right choice for you!

Of course, consulting with a professional stylist always helps ensure that any product used on your mane is both safe and effective! Good luck!


  • Nicola Freeman
    Creative Director & Owner

    With over two decades of passionate hair dyeing experience, I've experimented with nearly every shade imaginable. My journey began long before blogging; as an award-winning copywriter in London and New York, I shaped narratives for iconic brands. However, when friends sought advice during Covid for at-home hair dyeing, I realized my true calling. Beyond being your hair color expert, I'm a mom of two girls, wife to artist Tony, and an avid soccer player. Win me over with a plate of sushi anytime!