Hair masks are a great way to repair damaged hair, support hair growth, add shine and reduce frizz. There are many different types of masks you can choose from so it is important to understand what your options are, the different types out there and the benefits of each as well as which masks to choose from depending on your hair type. In this comprehensive guide, you will find everything you need to know about hair masks and choosing the right one for you.
First things first, what is a hair mask? A hair mask is an intensive hair care product that is designed to nourish and rehydrate your hair, providing it deeply ample support by creating a barrier around the hair shaft. Typically, they are thicker than traditional conditioners and should not be used at the same time as that can cause product buildup.
There are a wide range of benefits to using a hair mask and depending on what your specific needs are, different hair masks can address different concerns. Here are some of the primary benefits you can get by using a hair mask:
The primary benefit of using a hair mask is to rehydrate your dry and damaged hair. Hair masks typically contain shea butter as it is a key natural ingredient in locking moisture in and coating the hair shaft so you are left with deeply nourished hair.
Repair Damage and Strengthen:
Hair masks are also designed to repair the damage from environmental stressors such as UV, heat styling or chemical treatments. They also help to form a barrier around the hair shaft which can prevent split ends and strengthen your hair follicles.
Increase Your Natural Shine:
Hydrated hair is naturally going to look shinier and healthier than dehydrated hair. Hair masks help to do this by smoothing out any frizz or flyaways, creating a shiny appearance.
Protect Your Colour:
If you have just been to the salon, incorporating a hair mask designed to protect your hair colour is something to consider. These masks are specifically designed to help you retain your colour and retain it for longer.
Scalp health is another bonus of using a hair mask, however when selecting one choose one specifically designed to address scalp health. This is because if you are suffering from specific scalp issues, the heavier masks could exacerbate the problem. For example, Pump's Sugar Scalp Cleanser is specifically designed to alleviate oily roots and rebalance the natural oils in your scalp.
There are several hair masks on the market that are specifically designed for different hair types or specific hair treatment goals. Here are the most popular types you can get and how they benefit:
Moisturising masks are beneficial if you have dry, frizzy or damaged hair as they are specifically formulated to bring nourishment and hydration back into your hair follicles.
Repairing masks work to form a barrier around the hair shaft, protecting it from splitting or becoming brittle. These types of masks are typically formulated with keratin or collagen to support your hair follicles.
Colour-protecting masks are another popular mask type designed to let your colour-treated hair remain fresh and vibrant for longer. If you have bleached your hair, look for one specifically for bleached hair such as the Pump's blonde hair mask as it will keep the brassy or unwanted yellow tones away.
Volumising masks or thickening masks are designed to pump up your hair follicles and add volume to your hair without weighing it down. Selecting one that is equally lightweight but adds volume can be tricky, that is why we suggest Pump Thickening Mask as it works to swell the hair follicles without weighing your hair down.
Curl-enhancing masks are great if you have curly to coiled hair or even wavy hair and are looking to get a curl definition, minimise frizz and bring intense hydration to your hair follicles. Heed of warning if you have wavy hair, these masks tend to be quite thick so be sure to not overuse them.
When deciding what types of hair masks to use it can be beneficial to determine what your hair type is and the specific issue you are suffering from:
If your hair is dry or frizzy, choose hair masks that are rich in hydrating and deeply nourishing ingredients such as shea butter, argan oil or jojoba seed oil. This is because these ingredients work to deeply nourish and support your hair, helping to reduce frizz and bring back a natural shine.
For fine or thin hair, it can sometimes be tricky to strike a balance between a product that gives you volume without weighing your hair down. For this reason, opt for ones that are lightweight and specifically designed for your hair type. Keep your eyes peeled for ones that contain hydrolyzed rice proteins or contain words such as "weightless" for best results.
If you have curly hair it is important to select one specifically designed for your hair type as your natural hair needs masks to boost hydration more than other hair types. Choose one that is curly girl friendly or contains ingredients such as shea butter or aloe vera as these ingredients are known to deeply hydrate your hair.
Similarly to fine and thin hair, lighter-weight formulations will be best for your hair type. Look for products that contain hydrolysed keratin for that extra shine and moisture boost. You can also experiment with different types of hair masks as everyone's hair will take to different products in their way so don't be afraid to experiment with different products or frequencies if you have this hair type.