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Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Hair Hydrolysed proteins

  • Hydrolysed proteins

    Posted by Belassi on November 16, 2017 at 5:45 am

    How many hydrolysed proteins have been tested in shampoo? I can immediately think of several: keratin, wheat, rice, soya, oats. I tried making hydrolysed oatmeal myself and was very happy with the result. 
    But what about other proteins? EG gram flour, millet flour, there must be a whole catalogue of grains from different countries that could be tried.
    The thing is, it is beginning to look to me as if you can add a lot of organic material to a shampoo and the results can be very impressive. Softness and shine are markedly improved.
    I think I will set about obtaining a good variety of grains, hydrolyse them, and see if I can begin some basic research on the topic.
    First of all though.  By weight, raw oats are 66% carbohydrates, 17% protein, 7% fat and 11% fiber. So why are we saying “hydrolysed protein”? What happens to the carbs (if anything) during hydrolysis? At the very least, adding “hydrolysed oat protein” probably means adding 66% carbs and 11% fiber as well. Not to mention the fat.

    aperson replied 5 years, 1 month ago 7 Members · 11 Replies
  • 11 Replies
  • Doreen

    November 16, 2017 at 7:07 am

    I love the effect of hydrolized proteins, the only thing I hate is the smell. Are there proteins that are smellier than others? I bought hydrolized wheat protein recently and it smells sour. I would like to try oat protein, but I’m afraid it might be too smelly.

  • Lainee

    November 16, 2017 at 8:33 am

    What happens to the carbs (if anything) during hydrolysis?”

    They are broken down into sugars.

  • antmagn

    November 16, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Wheat and keratin protein makes my hair hard, dry and tangly. I prefer no protein products but I found that simple egg yolk (not the white) mask every month makes my hair smooth but I always followed with deep conditioner and soften back my hair….

  • Belassi

    November 16, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    Sucrose is nonreactive with dilute sodium hydroxide
    Van Nostrand’s Scientific Encyclopedia
    The hydrolysis (of oats, at least) takes place with a quite dilute solution. Perhaps the carbs remain as carbs. I suspect this is true because after neutralising the product, the appearance is of “liquid oats” it has the same colour, no unpleasant smell really.
    I’ve got to go shopping this morning so I will look for a few likely grains in the supermarket… 
    I have a strong suspicion that the beneficial effects are not just derived from the protein component. 

  • Belassi

    November 16, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    I bought some quinoa seed but it didn’t work out too well. The flour did hydrolyse to some extent - I could tell by the typical smell - but it wasn’t satisfactory. Now I am wondering if the quinoa seed - like the amaranth seed they sell - is baked? If so, I can’t see that being any use.

  • kot

    January 24, 2018 at 11:21 pm

    I cannot find the 100% info on at which phase to add proteins.

    Some are saying that proteins are stable enough to go to a heated phase, moreover, they must be heated to avoid contamination of the final product.
    And some are saying that proteins have to go in at the end of formulation, cold… Which one is correct?

    Same story about Hyaluronic acid and about D-panthenol!
    Confused! Could someone clarify this? Please! 

  • Belassi

    January 25, 2018 at 5:20 am

    Well. Perry and one or two others will say it’s all nonsense, but … our most succesful product is based on a fairly high % of pea polypeptides, which are protein fragments. I once made a batch and added the active at too high a temperature, and it made it into pea soup, and it was useless. Anything over about 44C is too high. The preservative takes care of everything.

  • OldPerry

    Professional Chemist / Formulator
    January 25, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    I wouldn’t say it’s complete nonsense. Hydrolyzed proteins do have a humectant effect as do Panthenol and Hyaluronic acid.

    As far as when you add them it’s important to know why ingredients are added at the temperature they’re added at.

    All things being equal you would add ingredients at room temperature.  However, formulas are heated for a few reasons:

    1.  Heating speeds up the time it takes to incorporate some ingredients
    2.  Heating melts ingredients that have a melting point higher than RT
    3.  Heating helps make oil phase particles smaller for a more stable emulsion

    But some ingredients will chemically change when heated.  Ingredients like formaldehyde donor preservatives will convert to formaldehyde too quickly so they lose effectiveness.  Some of the components of the fragrance will evaporate off so the product won’t smell right.  Some proteins or enzymes will chemically denature if heated too high. Many botanicals will chemically degrade if heated too high.

    So, ingredients like fragrances, heat-sensitive preservatives, and active ingredients are all added at cooler temperatures.

    To your specific question about hydrolyzed proteins, panthenol, and hyaluronic acid.  I say it doesn’t matter at all. Hydrolyzed proteins are already broken down so heating them won’t have any effect on their performance. Panthenol is not heat sensitive and neither is Hyaluronic acid.

  • Doreen

    January 25, 2018 at 4:24 pm

    Heating (>70C) only causes panthenol to racemize (especially if you heat it for a longer time, just prior to emulsification isn’t a problem I think). And it’s only the D isomer that is converted into panthothenic acid in the skin. Both isomers do have hydrating properties however, so I agree with Perry that you won’t notice a difference.

    I’d love to hear more about your grain hydrolysis adventures.
    So you did try quinoa. In @David08848 ‘s post I suggested it (the shaving cream ingredient), but didn’t know you’d already tried it.
    I would also like  to know if it is mostly the protein or also the carbs in oats that have soothing properties. Oat also has about 20 unique polyphenols (avenanthramides) that seem to be soothing, anti-inflammatory. Point is, I hate the smell of hydrolyzed grains. You say liquid hydrolyzed oat doesn’t have an unpleasant smell? Hmm I might embark myself on this project as well…

  • Belassi

    January 25, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    You say liquid hydrolyzed oat doesn’t have an unpleasant smell?
    No, not when properly prepared. When hydrolysis takes place it produces a characteristic odour. However, the odour fades after a while. The non-neutralised product has a dark colour too. When properly neutralised the odour rapidly disappears and it regains the colour of oatmeal flour. It does not sink to the bottom in a shampoo as does oatmeal flour.

  • aperson

    April 28, 2018 at 10:38 pm


    original discussion at:


    Hydrolized proteins can be done with acid, a base, or an enzyme. What you get left over, depends on your method. Unless you act to isolate it, protein is not the only component. Sugars as I recall, usually survive. I do not think carbohydrates make it through as-is. Starches in particular, are usually modified.

    Depending on what your source material is, there is usually one method favored; usually for practical reasons (wrong material for breakdown turns it into a gel, typically).

    If I end up reading up on this topic, I’ll come back and post here.