Difference Between Keratin Treatment, Smoothening and Rebonding

Last updated: February 15, 2019
Published 12:00 am

Let’s face it. Not everyone’s hair can be tamed with regular shampoo and conditioner. Those long, luscious, silky locks aren’t as easily attainable as shows and movies make them out to be. For a lot of ladies out there, getting their hair to behave can be a massive undertaking, often resorting to professional assistance.

Fortunately for the modern woman, unruly hair can be managed through a number of ways. Hair treatments specifically to straighten and smoothen are available in salons everywhere. The three most common treatments are keratin treatment, smoothening, and rebonding. Though the three have the same goal – to help fight frizz and unwanted curls – each treatment has different processes.

Finding the right treatment for your hair’s specific type and the condition can be a bit tricky. You need to choose the right professional salon treatment if you want to get your money’s worth. While asking your friends and family for advice is a pretty good idea, sometimes their honest opinion on which treatment to take, though meant with the best intentions, can be a little uninformed. After all, they might just suggest the treatment that worked for their hair and, as we all know by now, there are a lot of types of hair out there. What works for your friends or family may not work for you.

Going through the deluge of hair care articles online can be overwhelming, not to mention time-consuming, so we’re here to give you a quick rundown on the difference between keratin treatment, smoothening, and rebonding. You’ll need to know the basics of each three before you rush off to the nearest professional salon.

What is a Keratin Treatment?

Keratin treatment is probably one of the more popular hair beauty treatments favored by celebrities and personalities around the world. It can subdue your wild and frizzy hair so you’ll be left with shiny and silky locks. At best, a keratin treatment can last for half a year before effects start wearing off. Though temporary, keratin treatment can leave you with a totally different look.

If the term keratin sounds familiar, that’s because it’s a natural component of our hair. Administering keratin treatment basically means providing more of this essential protein in order to give your hair a bit more strength.

Besides strengthening and smoothening your hair to get rid of all the frizz, a keratin treatment also nourishes your hair so it will have more moisture and can be so much easier to maintain.

What is Hair Rebonding?

Hair rebonding has been described as something like Brazilian blowout only the effects are permanent. That’s right, and this chemical hair treatment makes your hair beautifully straight, sleek, and shiny the longest out of the three popular treatments.  

Of course, because hair rebonding is permanent – at least until the hair fully grows out – this treatment is a bit more expensive. But considering its effects, you might actually end up saving more money in the long run.

This hair treatment targets the bonds that connect the proteins in every strand of your hair so no matter how thick, unruly or textured your hair, and it will be altered and restructured to a more maintainable state. Gals with gorgeous textured hair can save a lot of work and time if they get a hair rebonding treatment.

Over time, you’ll need to retouch your hair as your hair grows longer and the untreated portions become more noticeable.

What is a Smoothening Hair Treatment?

The main thing that you need to know about a smoothening hair treatment is that it’s like a rebonding procedure only much milder. You’ll still get your hair to smoothen, but a hair treatment like this won’t change the structure of your hair. In fact, with smoothening hair treatment, your hair will mostly retain its natural properties but will be less wild and frizzy.

Most would suggest taking this treatment if you need to seriously liven up your dull hair and get rid of split ends. Because it’s a less intense version of a hair rebonding treatment, there’s a lot less risk of damaging your hair with a smoothening hair treatment.

Keratin Treatment vs. Hair Rebonding

Though both have roughly the same outcome, the chemicals used in these two treatments are quite different.

Remember, in a keratin treatment, and the chemicals used will add more keratin to your hair. In hair rebonding, the chemicals will modify and restructure the very shape of your hair. Basically, hair rebonding uses a more intense formula than keratin treatment.

Moreover, keratin treatments last for six months at most so you’ll have to come back to the salon and retouch your hair frequently. Rebonding is permanent, so you’ll save yourself a lot of trips to the salon.

Hair Smoothening vs. Hair Rebonding

Hair smoothening is similar to hair rebonding except for the fact that it’s only temporary whereas the latter is permanent.

What you need to consider before choosing between these two is how much of your time and money you’re willing to spend. If you’re not yet ready to commit to a major procedure like rebonding, smoothening is the better choice since it will only temporarily change your hair. Rebonding is for those who want to say goodbye to curls and frizz for good.

Keratin Treatment Pros and Cons


For Everyone

Because a keratin treatment is meant to nourish your hair with more of its essential protein, you are assured positive results no matter what your hair type.


Moreover, because of its milder and more natural formula, a keratin treatment is a relatively safer bet when up against other straightening treatments. Assuming that you won’t administer the treatment too frequently than is recommended, your hair won’t be at risk of serious damage.



It shouldn’t come as a surprise that an effective but less damaging hair straightening procedure like keratin treatment will cost a few hundred dollars. This is especially true at a professional salon. There are alternative though such as an at-home keratin treatment that you can do yourself.


Depending on the keratin treatment you chose, you’ll need to retouch your hair frequently. There are keratin treatments that will last for a couple of months but most last only a little over three months.

Rebonding for Hair Pros and Cons


Saves Time

One major advantage of rebonding is that it’s permanent so you’ll never have to wake up at the crack of dawn to try and get your hair to behave for the day.

Goodbye, Frizz

Hair rebonding will save you all the time, effort, and stress of dealing with hair frizz every day.



While its permanence is considered an advantage for some, it can also be quite a major drawback for others. Remember, your hair will be permanently altered so there is literally no going back.

Possible Hair Damage

The chemical formula used for hair rebonding is known for having side effects. If something goes wrong or if your hair isn’t compatible with the treatment, you risk severely damaging your long locks.

Smoothening Hair Treatment Pros and Cons



Unlike rebonding, hair smoothening uses a gentler chemical formula. Your hair will be straightening but in a more subtle way so you’ll get a more natural look.

Less Maintenance

Because this treatment makes your hair look naturally straight, you won’t have to fret too much when the effects wear off. It’s likely that the difference between your straight hair and your growing hair won’t be too noticeable for a time.


Possible Disappointment

However, because it’s a milder version of hair rebonding, depending on the severity of your hair, smoothening might not be the best at straightening your tresses.


With this treatment, you’ll have to get a retouch done every few months if you love your straight hair look.