Generally, there 2 types of hair masks – Strengthening and Moisturizing. Both are equally important to maintain and create healthy-looking hair.
Strengthening Masks usually contains ingredients such as Hydrolyzed Keratin, Hydroxypropyltrimonium Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Lactic Acid, and Arginine. These masks help strengthen and repair hair from within, boost elasticity and resilience, to prep hair for future chemical services to prevent breakage.
Moisturizing Masks usually promotes hydration, silkiness and brilliance, by coating hair with moisture binding ingredients such as lipids and cuticle smoothening actives such as silk protein. Another important aspect of Moisturizing Masks is that they reduce friction, thus preventing mechanical damage before it even happen.
Purchasing a reputable hair mask is important! A good hair mask such as Goldwell Kerasilk Masks, have “water-proofing” functions, reducing the amount of water entering the hair, to prevent re-drying, and help lock hair colour.
#2 HOW OFTEN SHOULD WE USE A HAIR MASK?
Depending on mask types, for strengthening masks such as Goldwell Kerasilk Reconstruct Mask and Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus Fortifying Mask, you can use it daily as your conditioner, to boost your hair’s elasticity and resilience level, while conditioning it. It will not cause excess build-up.
For moisturizing masks such as Kerastase Nutri-Thermique Mask and Elixir Ultime Mask, use it once a week.
#3 IS THERE A CORRECT WAY OF APPLYING HAIR MASK?
Yes. Applying hair mask the correct way can double the effectiveness while lower the amount of product usage.
After shampoo, use a Tangle Teezer to detangle hair, starting from the ends first, follow through to the crown. This step is critical!
A little goes a long way. For long-length hair, apply 20 to 25ML of hair mask. For mid-length hair, apply 10 – 15ML of hair mask. More mask on your hair does not mean better results. Just make sure your hair is lightly coated – extra blobs will not be absorbed any way.
Divide hair into 4 sections, apply hair mask in downwards massaging motion. This repetitive downward motions will facilitate absorption, and close cuticles to create smoothing and moisture-locking effects. Each section should ideally transform from dull-looking to glossy-looking hair after 30 to 40 downward massaging motions.
After which, use a warm towel to wrap hair up, and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Before rinsing, apply conditioner over mask-treated hair first to lock the benefits into hair and prevent over-stripping. Rinse thoroughly with cold water.
#4 CAN HAIR MASK REALLY REPAIR SPLIT-ENDS?
Let's be honest here. No!
Split-ends "repairing" hair masks act like temporary plasters that smooth and mend split-ends, not curing them. That said, it is important to cement these split-ends together to prevent further erosion and damage, before your next haircut. Preventing damage is more important than cure.
#5 DOES HAIR MASKS MADE OF HENNA WORK?
Yes, the Henna plant produces a natural, temporary ingredient from its leaf called Lawsone, which binds the hair with proteins and helps seal the cuticle and prevent split ends. This plant also has conditioning and thickening properties.
It causes build-up – the worst nightmare for many professional hairdressers. It handicaps many colourists’ judgement and ability to accurately achieve the shades and tones you desire. Removing Henna that are accumulated in hair is one of the most damaging in-salon procedure ever.
Also, some Henna products might contain metallic salts. When stored inside the hair, it reacts adversely with texturizing solutions (used in perm and straightening procedures) and pre-lighteners, causing severe breakage.
Our take? Why risk it?
#6 CAN YOU SUBSTITUTE IN-SALON HAIR TREATMENTS WITH REGULAR HOME TREATMENT MASK USAGE?
In-salon hair treatments tend to be more effective in 4 aspects.
The ingredients’ molecule size is smaller, thus salons are able to pack in more goodness into hair, prolonging the treatment benefits and better repair hair from within.
It’s much more comprehensive and provides 360 care to hair. An honest and good in-salon hair treatment will contain 4 components: (a) moisture for softness and shine; (b) strong bonds for elasticity and resilience; (c) proteins for strength and repair; (d) protected cuticles for smoothness and manageability – just like the ones in Chez Vous’ Synchronized Advanced Hair Rebuilder treatment and Express Revitalizing Supreme hair therapy.
Many manufacturers and distributors tend to differentiate haircare products between in-salon use and homecare use. In-salon use products tend to contain high-performing concentrates and exclusive ingredients such as Cysteine and Bis-Aminopropyl Diglycol Dimaleate.
Application is key! With correct in-salon tools such as Ultrasonic Iron, the way the products are layered upon each other, the effectiveness of hair treatments can be doubled or tripled.
This article is provided by Associate Salon Directors, Shawn Chia and Readen Chia.