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Waiting Period for Keratin Treatment: Why 3 Days? (2024)

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when can you wash hair after keratin treatment

You can wash your hair after a keratin treatment, but only after waiting at least 72 hours (3 days).

This essential waiting period allows the keratin coating to set and ensures the treatment’s benefits last for the full duration. Washing your hair too soon harms the keratin layer, causing frizz and reducing its lifespan.

So have patience – avoid cleansing for those first 3 days after your treatment. Using the right technique when you finally do wash is also crucial to making the most of your newly smooth, silky locks.

Want to learn more about properly caring for your hair post-keratin?

Key Takeaways

  • Wait 72 hours (3 days) after a keratin treatment before washing your hair.
  • Use sulfate-free shampoo and a microfiber towel during the first wash.
  • Avoid excessive heat styling and protect hair from sun and chlorinated water.
  • Apply protein hair masks regularly to strengthen and nourish hair.

When Can You Wash Hair After Keratin Treatment?

You should wait at least 72 hours after a keratin treatment before washing your hair. This waiting period allows the keratin to bond with your hair, increasing the treatment’s efficacy and longevity. During this time, avoid getting your hair wet or engaging in activities that may cause excessive sweating.

After the 72-hour period, you can wash your hair using a sulfate-free and keratin-safe shampoo, focusing on gently massaging the scalp and roots. Rinse the shampoo out thoroughly with lukewarm water and apply a keratin-safe conditioner to the lengths and ends of your hair.

After the first wash, it’s recommended to use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to gently detangle your hair while the conditioner is still in.

Waiting Period for Keratin Treatment

Waiting Period for Keratin Treatment

Waiting three days after a keratin treatment is vital for preserving the treatment’s longevity and preventing possible damage. The waiting period enables the keratin product to accumulate in your hair, extending the treatment’s lifespan and ensuring that it continues to control frizz and style.

Washing your hair prematurely can remove the product, reducing its efficacy and potentially harming your hair. By observing the recommended waiting period, you can reap the benefits of your keratin treatment for an extended duration.

Why the Wait is Necessary

Why the Wait is Necessary
You’ve recently received a keratin treatment and you’re keen to showcase your sleek, untamed hair, but a pivotal waiting period must be observed before you can cleanse it. This 3-day interval is paramount for the keratin coating to solidify, guaranteeing that you relish the comprehensive advantages of your expenditure for the duration of its lifespan.

Pre-First Wash Precautions

To safeguard the benefits of your keratin treatment, it’s crucial to adhere to certain guidelines during the initial 72 hours post-treatment. These measures will facilitate the solidification of the keratin layer and maximize the treatment’s longevity. Here’s a recap of the precautions prior to the first wash:

  1. Abstain from cleansing: Allow a minimum of 72 hours to elapse before washing your hair. This interval enables the keratin layer to harden and enhance its resistance to moisture and frizz.
  2. Employ sulfate-free shampoo: Opt for shampoos devoid of sulfates, which are more gentle on the hair and less likely to compromise the keratin treatment.
  3. Tepid water: Utilize lukewarm water for hair washing, as excessive heat can impair the keratin layer.
  4. Confine shampoo application to the root zone: When washing your hair, limit shampoo application to the root zone, avoiding the ends to prevent damage.
  5. Microfiber towel: Following washing, utilize a microfiber towel to delicately absorb excess water, as conventional towels may induce friction and compromise the keratin layer.
  6. Cautious detangling: Refrain from using a wet brush for detangling, as it may extract keratin and damage the hair.
  7. Restrain heat styling: Minimize heat styling during the initial 72 hours, as heat can impair the keratin layer and diminish the treatment’s effectiveness.

Post-Treatment Benefits

After a keratin treatment, you’ll immediately notice the time reduction for blow-drying. Your hair will go from a 90-minute process to just 10 minutes, making your blow-dryer your new best friend. The treatment eliminates frizz, giving you smooth, silky hair that lasts for six months. This is a game-changer for those with frizzy hair, as it decidedly enhances the manageability of their locks.

During the 72-hour waiting period after the treatment, it’s imperative to avoid washing your hair to allow the keratin to fully harden into the hair fibers. This guarantees the treatment’s longevity and effectiveness. After the waiting period, you can resume washing your hair with sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, using a microfiber towel to softly absorb excess water.

To maintain the benefits of the keratin treatment, it’s essential to use anti-residue shampoo to remove buildup, minimize heat styling, protect your hair from sun and chlorinated water, and use a heat-protective spray when blow-drying. Additionally, applying protein hair masks regularly can help strengthen and nourish your hair.

Myths About Washing Hair After Keratin

Myths About Washing Hair After Keratin
You might’ve heard that washing your hair too soon after a keratin treatment is fine, or that waiting three days is just a marketing gimmick. However, these myths can lead to reduced effectiveness of the treatment and damage to the keratin layer.

Myth 1: Washing Sooner is Fine

Washing your hair immediately after a keratin treatment may seem innocuous, but it can result in hair damage and diminish the treatment’s effectiveness. Stylists recommend waiting three days to wash your hair to allow the keratin layer to solidify. This interim period is paramount for preserving the treatment’s advantages, such as taming frizzy hair and imparting a silken texture.

Utilize the waiting period as an occasion to indulge yourself with a silk pillowcase or experiment with dry shampoo. Bear in mind that this waiting period isn’t a marketing tactic, but an essential measure to guarantee the durability of your keratin treatment.

Myth 2: Three Days is a Marketing Gimmick

Three days might appear lengthy, but it’s essential for the keratin treatment to yield desired results. It’s not merely a promotional ploy. The waiting period enables the keratin layer to solidify, safeguarding it from harm and prolonging the treatment’s effectiveness. Stylists recommend this pause as it allows for a customized approach, guaranteeing optimal outcomes.

Myth 3: Washing Too Soon Reverses Effects

Jumping the gun and washing your hair too soon after a keratin treatment is like undoing a masterpiece. It compromises the keratin layer protection, slashing the treatment’s effectiveness. Stick to sulfate-free shampoo, embrace the microfiber towel, and let dry shampoo work its magic.

Impact of Washing Hair Too Soon

Impact of Washing Hair Too Soon
Washing your hair too soon after a keratin treatment can have negative effects on the treatment’s longevity and the health of your hair. The waiting period allows the keratin to form strong bonds with the hair, ensuring long-lasting results. Skipping or shortening this waiting period can compromise the treatment’s effectiveness.

Damage to Keratin Layer

After your keratin treatment, it’s imperative to wait three days before washing your hair.

This waiting period permits the keratin layer to solidify, which is indispensable for the treatment’s efficacy.

Your hair’s porosity levels and scalp sensitivity may influence the rate at which the keratin solidifies, so it’s essential to adhere to your stylist’s post-treatment care recommendations.

Appropriate post-treatment hair care, including utilizing sulfate-free shampoo and a microfiber towel, can contribute to preserving the longevity of the treatment.

Reduced Treatment Duration

Essential three-day waiting period after a keratin treatment is paramount for the keratin layer to strengthen. Washing your hair too early poses a risk of compromising the layer, thereby diminishing the treatment’s effectiveness. Here’s what you should be aware of:

  1. Keratin layer strengthening: The keratin layer requires 72 hours to fully strengthen.
  2. Sulfate-free products: Employ sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner during this period.
  3. Washing technique: Adhere to the post-treatment washing technique to prevent damage to the layer.
  4. Post-treatment care: Limit heat styling and safeguard your hair from sunlight and chlorinated water.

Caring for Hair During the Waiting Period

Caring for Hair During the Waiting Period
During the waiting period after a keratin treatment, you should use a sulfate-free shampoo to avoid stripping away the keratin layer. Additionally, a microfiber towel and dry shampoo can help absorb excess oil and keep your hair looking fresh between washes.

Sulfate-Free Shampoo

Sulfate-free shampoo is a necessity during the waiting period for keratin treatment. These products safeguard the keratin layer, preclude hair damage, and guarantee treatment durability. Select sulfate-free shampoos that cater to your scalp health and hair type, guaranteeing gentle cleansing without stripping the keratin.

Microfiber Towel

Using a microfiber towel can help prevent hair damage during the drying process. When drying your hair with a regular towel, the hair proteins can weaken and fall off, especially when the hair is wet and more fragile. To avoid unnecessary hair damage, it’s imperative to dry your hair correctly.

Dry Shampoo

During the waiting period, dry shampoo is your best friend. It’ll soak up excess oil without stripping your precious keratin. Just be sure to choose a sulfate-free formula that won’t disrupt the treatment. Pair it with a microfiber towel and anti-residue shampoo for the best possible results.

Post-Treatment Washing Technique

Post-Treatment Washing Technique

After patiently waiting through the no-wash period, it’s time to embark on the first wash.

Consider it a graceful performance: commence with a dime-sized amount of sulfate-free shampoo to maintain the keratin strands’ alignment.

Rinse with the meticulousness of a laboratory technician.

Subsequently, a microfiber towel emerges as your compassionate companion, tenderly drying your locks with the utmost delicacy.

Refrain from indulging in protein hair masks for the moment; they constitute the subsequent stage in this capillary choreography.

Maintaining Keratin Treatment

Maintaining Keratin Treatment
To prolong the effects of your keratin treatment, you’ll need to use an anti-residue shampoo periodically to remove buildup and prevent dulling of the treated hair. Additionally, protect your hair from heat damage by using a heat-protective spray before blow-drying or styling, and nourish your strands with protein hair masks to maintain their strength and smoothness.

Anti-Residue Shampoo

To maintain your keratin treatment and guarantee its longevity, it’s imperative to utilize the appropriate shampoo. Sulfate-free shampoo is essential, as sulfates can remove the treatment and harm your hair. Here are four tips for choosing the right sulfate-free shampoo:

  1. Select a shampoo that’s specifically formulated for keratin-treated hair. This will guarantee that the product is designed to work with your treatment and won’t strip it away.
  2. Look for shampoos that contain natural ingredients like glucosides, taurates, fatty acid isethionates, glutamates, and amino acid sulfosuccinates. These ingredients are gentle on your hair and won’t negatively impact your keratin treatment.
  3. Avoid shampoos that contain harsh chemicals like sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), which can dry out your hair and cause irritation.
  4. Opt for shampoos that are certified organic, as these will be free of harsh chemicals and more gentle on your hair.

Heat-Protective Spray

After your keratin treatment, think of heat protective spray as your hair’s new best friend. It’s the shield against the heat that could turn those silk proteins into unwanted white flakes. Plus, it helps keep your blow-drying time on the fast track.

Before During After
Frizz Protection Silkiness
Long drying time Reduced heat damage Quick styling
Product buildup No white flakes Smooth texture
Unruly hair Efficient use of product Lasting results

Protein Hair Masks

Protein hair masks are an indispensable ingredient for preserving keratin treatments and sustaining the strength and health of your hair. These masks infuse protein into the cuticle layer of your hair strands, which can help minimize breakage and impart lasting strength. Here are four crucial aspects to bear in mind when utilizing protein hair masks:

  1. Hair fortification: Protein hair masks aid in the repair of damaged hair by imbuing strands with an equilibrium of protein and moisture.
  2. Hair nourishment: These masks have the capacity to enhance the overall condition of your hair, rendering it more robust and healthy-looking.
  3. Deep conditioning: Protein hair masks are formulated to penetrate the hair shaft deeply, providing intensive nourishment and repair.
  4. Damage mitigation: Consistent use of protein hair masks can help avert future breakage and preserve the well-being of your hair.

To use a protein hair mask, follow these steps:

  1. Application post-shampooing: Apply the mask to towel-dried hair and distribute it evenly to ensure thorough coverage.
  2. Allow penetration: Leave the mask on for 5-10 minutes, enabling the protein to penetrate the hair shaft.
  3. Thorough rinsing: Rinse out the mask using lukewarm water to eliminate any excess product.
  4. Conditioner application: Always apply a conditioner after a protein treatment to facilitate detangling and soften the hair.

Remember to use protein hair masks every two to three weeks, contingent upon the condition of your hair. This will help maintain the strength and health of your hair, ensuring that it continues to look and feel its best.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I use dry shampoo after keratin treatment?

Yes, you can definitely use dry shampoo after a keratin treatment. It’ll help absorb excess oil and prolong that sleek, frizz-free look without washing your hair too often.

What should I do if my hair gets wet after keratin treatment?

You’ve done the keratin treatment, only to get caught in the rain – a hair nightmare! Don’t panic, gently blot and dry your hair. Avoid washing for at least three days to let the treatment settle properly.

Can I tie my hair up after keratin treatment?

You can normally let your hair hang straight down for about 15 minutes without a hair tie while gently running your fingers through it to loosen it up.

After the first week, you can use soft hair ties to tie your hair, keeping it loose to avoid any stretching or tension-building.

It’s best to avoid tight ponytails or updos during this time, as they can stretch the coating and cause your hair to become frizzy and difficult to manage.

Can I use a hairdryer after keratin treatment?

Yes, you can use a hairdryer after keratin treatment. However, it’s recommended to wait 72 hours before washing your hair to allow the keratin layer to harden. After washing, you can blow-dry your hair, but avoid using heat styling tools for the first 8 hours. Use a heat protectant spray when blow-drying to minimize damage.

Should I avoid using conditioner after keratin treatment?

You can apply conditioner on dry hair just before taking a shower after a keratin treatment to keep your hair moisturized and prolong the treatment’s effects.


Patience is paramount when you wash your hair after a keratin treatment.

Like a butterfly emerging from its cocoon, your tresses require that imperative 72-hour waiting period to fully blossom into silky, frizz-free perfection.

Protect your investment by avoiding those sudsy strands until the third day arrives, allowing the keratin coating ample time to adhere.

With proper post-treatment washing techniques, you’ll relish your newly smoothed locks for weeks to come.

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Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and beard care expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and get fatter. His work has been mentioned in countless notable publications on men's care and style and has been cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.