Is your hair not looking as good as it should right now? Got a few too many split ends and aren’t due a cut for another few weeks?
Maybe the combination of the sun, hair dye and using straighteners has made it gone a bit too frizzy overall?
Or perhaps, it’s just not looking as glossy and bouncy as it usually does and you want to make it look healthier?
Hair SOS times like these call for hydrating hair masks that are made from natural ingredients and are designed to repair and nourish dry and damaged hair.
But with so many different conditioning masks out there, it can be difficult to know which is the best one and, more importantly, which one will work wonders on your hair.
That’s where this article comes in. Consider it your guide to the best hydrating hair masks that have been hand-selected by us to make it easier for you to decide which hair mask to choose.
They’ve been selected based on a combination of our hair mask insight and feedback from customers who’ve tried and tested (and loved) these products!
So keep reading for the lowdown on which conditioning masks are up there right now, as well as useful practical hair mask advice.
How to use hair masks
Hair masks aren’t something you use every single day, no matter how desperate you are to make your hair look better!
You only need to use them once or sometimes twice a week; it’s always best you follow the manufacturer’s guidance on this.
Once you start buying and using hair masks you’ll also find that the instructions aren’t the same on all of them.
Some you just leave on for 1 to 2 minutes, while others should be left for 15 minutes or more, or even, overnight.
9 tips for using hair masks
Get into the habit of using them on a regular basis. Just because you don’t see the results you want right away; doesn’t mean they aren’t working deep down to strengthen and improve your hair!1
You can apply them to dry hair. In fact, try this….put your mask on your hair for 20 minutes before you have one of your morning showers. It’s a great pamper treat to save for Sundays!
If your hair is mega frizzy and dry, put your hair mask on just before you go to bed and keep it on overnight.
Apply it after you’ve washed your hair at the end of your evening shower or pop it on dry hair and then wrap your hair in a silk scarf or shower cap to protect your pillow and bedding.
Doing this will also help make sure the mask stays put and really soaks in. The next morning, rinse it off in the shower.
Use a wide-toothed comb or something similar to gently distribute the hair mask evenly throughout your hair, making sure to comb it right through to the ends.
If you find your hair’s greasy after using a hair mask, assess the mask you’ve selected. Chances are you’ve chosen one that contains ingredients that are too rich and heavy for your hair, which leads us to our next tip….
Select your hair mask based on your hair type/issue. For instance, for fine, coloured or curly hair or brittle, damaged or dull hair etc.
If your ends are particularly dry and in need of some extra TLC, apply more of your hair mask to the ends rather than your scalp.
To help your hair mask penetrate your hair follicles that little bit more, put it on at the start of having a shower, then put a shower cap on and shower as you usually would.
The hot steam from your shower will open up your hair follicles and help the mask to soak in better. Once you’ve finished showering, wash the mask out of your hair.
When washing out your hair mask, make sure you still use your shampoo and conditioner. This will make sure the mask is washed fully out of your hair and you don’t wind up with any product build-up.
Which hair masks are the best?
The following hair masks have all been highly recommended by our customers:
Best hair mask for dry hair
This nourishing hair mask is made with organic coconut oil to naturally hydrate your hair and scalp.
It’s hydrating for normal to dry hair and made with 100% natural fragrance and essential oils. It comes in 100% recycled and recyclable packaging.
Customer rating: 5 stars
Free from: Parabens and SLS.
Directions: Shampoo your hair as you normally would - use Faith in Nature shampoo for best results. Apply the hair mask to wet hair and leave for 3 to 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water for detangled, nourished hair.
‘I love this hair mask. As someone with fine, brittle hair that has been damaged by dying and heat,, but has a tendency to be greasy, I find masks hit and miss. This mask has been amazing, even when left on for the full 10 minutes. It rinses off well and my hair feels light, but nourished. I highly recommend it to help with damage.’ – the_gerrings
‘I’ve been using this hair mask for a little while now and I love it. I treat my hair to a mask once a week as it’s bleached and slightly damaged. The mask leaves my hair feeling super soft and smelling amazing.’ – AliceW
Best hair mask for damaged hair
Made with organic plant extracts including hemp oil, this hair treatment is designed to be used weekly to deep condition and nourish normal or dry hair.
With regular use, this conditioner can help to deeply condition and strengthen hair, enhancing volume and boosting body, leaving the hair more resistant to breakage.
Customer rating: 4 stars
Free from: Parabens, SLS and animal testing.
Directions: Use once a week as an intensive nourishing treatment. After shampooing, apply a generous amount of conditioning hair mask to hair and roots.
Gently massage scalp then run a wide tooth comb through hair from the roots to tips to ensure even distribution. Leave on hair for up to 10 minutes, rinse thoroughly and towel dry.
‘My hair is very thankful every time I use this. I have very fine, medium-porous, straight hair with a tendency to mattify and divide into strands. This gives my hair a very good nutrition boost without weighing it down. It leaves it very smooth and glossy.’ – MartaMarta
Shinier, healthier hair
‘My hair feels a lot stronger than it did, it's also much shinier too. I not only got the intense conditioner, but the shampoo and conditioner as well. Makes such a difference. I would recommend this to anyone looking for better hair.’ - Zenstar
Formulated with natural and organic plant and seed oils and extracts, Naturtint's Strengthening Hair Mask is specifically designed for weak, thinning and delicate hair.
Carefully selected ingredients strengthen the hair root and increase hair density - for thicker looking hair.
Customer rating: 5 stars
Free from: Suitable for vegans and vegetarians
Directions: After shampooing, gently squeeze excess moisture from your hair. Apply a small amount from the roots to the tips. Leave for 4 minutes and rinse thoroughly
‘I've been using this once a week and my hair feels lush. My bleached hair feels so much healthier already!’ – Jadeywoot
‘I’ve been using this for a couple of weeks. It’s left my bleach/sun damaged hair feeling really smooth, stronger and shinier. Love it!' – Amy T
Best hair mask for frizzy hair
Customer rating: 4.7 stars
This oil contains eight essential fatty acids and high levels of vitamin E.
Along with carotenoids, saponins and polyphones, it contains rare plant sterols (schottenol and spinasterol).
Argan seeds are selected and cold pressed to produce organically-certified virgin oil.
Easily absorbed, the oil is non-greasy and can be used to condition hair while adding shine and reducing frizziness.
Free from: Parabens, SLS and animal testing.
Directions: For dry and damaged hair or to reduce frizziness and improve natural shine, simply rub a small amount on to either wet or dry hair, starting at the roots and massaging to the ends. Leave on for about 30 minutes and then shampoo out.
For damaged or very dry hair, leave on overnight.
Absolutely fantastic miracle oil
‘This product is amazing! I’ve been using it on my face and also my hair and I can see such a massive difference. My hair feels so much less dry and brittle and my face is lovely and rejuvenated.’ – KellyC
Love this for my hair
‘This has helped my hair a dream! It’s so easy to use and my dry ends are definitely improving! Love that it has multi uses too!’ – Amylouh
Deep conditioning hair mask
Naturtint Anti-Aging CC Cream is formulated with natural and organic plant and seed oils and extracts to combat the main signs of hair ageing and protect your hair from damage, heat, UV and pollution.
Your hair's natural keratin is restored, leaving it strong and full of shine and your colour lasts longer.
Customer rating: 4.7 stars
Directions: Towel dry your hair. Massage a small amount of cream from roots to tips. Comb through, then dry and style as normal. No need to rinse.
Perfect for my hair
‘Fantastic product. I apply a small amount to my damp hair directly after washing my hair. It is very easy to apply. It makes my hair soft, helps it maintain a natural shine and isn’t sticky. My hair looks very healthy.’ – Dafs
‘I used this in sachet form in the Naturtint hair colour box and it has made my hair incredibly soft without it feeling greasy or heavy. I have very curly hair and now I use the CC cream regularly, I don't have to use mousse to control or stop it from frizzing. It's possibly the best product I have ever used on my hair.’ – Anonymous
You also asked...
Hair masks are one step up from conditioners – think the power of your usual conditioner multiplied by 3 or maybe more depending on the formulation of your hair mask.
Conditioning masks are designed to give your hair a serious dose of intense conditioning and contain richer conditioning ingredients, such as oils and lipids.
Just like conditioners, you can buy hair masks targeted at specific hair issues.
For instance, a hair mask for damaged hair, a hair mask for dry hair, a hair mask for growth, moisturising hair masks, overnight hair masks.
The great thing is, anybody and everybody can benefit from using a hair mask from time to time!
Well, it depends on the overall condition of your hair and how you apply your hair mask. You may also find that you have to use your hair mask once, twice or more until you start to see results.
Everybody’s hair and hair goals are different, so it’s only inevitable the results you see aren’t going to be the same as what other people see.
It all depends on how you apply them too. Ideally, you should follow the instructions on the label; there are also many other ‘tips’ you can follow for optimum results, some of which we’ve mentioned below.
Over time, yes, especially if your hair mask has been specially formulated with strength-boosting properties.
Unfortunately, damaged hair isn’t necessarily healthy hair, which means it can be prone to breaking and easily come out each time you do something as simple as brush your hair.
Look out for hair masks that are strengthening; many of which contain natural ingredients, such as milk thistle and shea butter that provide natural fatty acids that help restore hair's natural shine, and maca extract, that’s capable of stimulating hair growth.
Meanwhile, argan oil is a precious natural vegetable oil that’s ideal for damaged or overworked hair, and coco-caprylate is a natural derivation lipid from coconut that contains emollient properties.
If you aren’t already using hair masks, then you ought to be, as they really are formulated to be your hair’s best friend.
As is the case with all hair care products, it’s essential you choose a mask that suits your hair type and addresses your specific hair issue, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions, for optimum results.
Good luck with using hair masks, we hope you find them as wonderful as many of our customers do!
Want to perfect your haircare routine? Have a read of this article, ‘How to not wash your hair.
The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.
Last updated: 10 March 2022