Ceramides can be found in many hair products, and product manufacturers claim that ceramide technology improves hair health. But what are ceramides? How can ceramides benefit your hair?
What are Ceramides?
Ceramides are naturally occurring lipids (or fatty materials) found in the hair fiber or naturally in the skin. According to Butler and Poucher, ceramides molecules that “bind the cuticle cells to the cortex and Ceramides naturally exist within the hair fiber, sandwiched in a region between the cuticle and cortex called the cell membrane complex (CMC). Here along with the proteins in the CMC, they regulate the flow of materials in and out of the cortex. Because they essentially bind the cuticle cells to the cortical cells, ceramides help keep our hair from falling apart! Ceramides are also believed to play a role in the hair’s transition from “live cells” within the follicle and beneath the skin’s surface, to the dead, keratinized hair shafts that we see.
Think of ceramides as hair glue. Without them, our cuticle layers would simply fall off and unhinge themselves, rather than gently weather and erode, from the constant damage they endure. Damaged hair has typically exhausted its natural supply of ceramides, and is often brittle, dry, and difficult to manage as a result. Many hair products contain synthetic, lab-created ceramides to help replace the ceramides naturally lost from the hair during regular washing, styling, and chemical treating. Ceramides are needed as a part of any basic moisture and protein conditioning plan to restore the hair’s health.
What Do Ceramides Do?
Ceramides perform a “barrier function” and help reduce the hair’s overall porosity. Ceramides bind to the hair fiber in damaged, vulnerable areas to help prevent natural moisture and protein loss that occurs when we manipulate our hair. Natural ceramides keep the hair fiber tight, and flat so that the hair shines and has low porosity.
Conditioners Containing Ceramides
Joico K-Pak Reconstructor [+]
Jane Carter’s Nourishing Conditioner [+]
Silicon Mix Conditioner [+]
Salerm Wheat Germ Conditioning Treatment [+]
Organic Root Stimulator Hair Mayonaise [+]
Aubrey Organics Honeyuckle Rose [+]