TRESS TREATS

TRANS­FORM PARCHED OR DAM­AGED HAIR WITH THESE MASKS

Townsville Bulletin - Townsville Eye - - Beauty - WORDS: AM­BER MAC P HER SON

Mask­ing your prob­lems is only ad­vised if it’s your hair that’s the is­sue. Just like face masks, hair masks are pastes packed with nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ents to nour­ish your hair and scalp.

Used in ad­di­tion to your reg­u­lar sham­poo and con­di­tioner, a mask can boost strength, shine, soft­ness and hy­dra­tion, as well as soothe an ir­ri­tated or oily scalp.

Noughty Hair­care beauty botanist Jen­nifer Hirsch says the treat­ment feeds nu­tri­ents back in af­ter we’ve stripped them out by styling, colour­ing and just be­ing out in the el­e­ments.

“A hair mask is a tar­geted treat­ment for the hair — a prod­uct that su­per­charges your con­di­tion­ing rou­tine,” Jen­nifer says.

“In gen­eral, masks put back what we take out of our hair through air­con­di­tion­ing, heat­ing, sit­ting in the sun, flat iron­ing … you get the pic­ture. Hair masks are about un­do­ing, as much as is pos­si­ble, this da­m­age. So ex­pect them to hy­drate, mois­turise, deeply con­di­tion, strengthen, add gloss, flex­i­bil­ity and shine, and gen­er­ally nour­ish and boost the over­all ap­pear­ance of the hair.

“In cul­tures across the globe, we’ve been us­ing plant in­gre­di­ents and even clays to spread on our manes as masks for their con­di­tion­ing ben­e­fits for mil­len­nia. This is old-school hair care with her­itage.”

Masks are usu­ally de­signed to be ap­plied in be­tween sham­poo­ing and con­di­tion­ing. Jen­nifer says to gen­tly squeeze hair first. “Too much wa­ter in the hair will di­lute the mask and make it less ef­fec­tive,” she says.

“Add a gen­er­ous dol­lop of mask to the hair. If you have dry hair, you can work it through from root to tip.

“If your hair tends to be oilier, work it through the mid-lengths and ends. Your fin­gers are the per­fect tools for this, al­though a comb, work­ing through from tip to root, will help en­sure the mask is spread evenly.”

Be­fore pick­ing up a mask pot, it’s important to work out what you’re try­ing to treat. Jen­nifer says you can eas­ily com­bine masks for dif­fer­ent ar­eas, sep­a­rated on to dif­fer­ent parts of the head and hair.

“From hy­dra­tion to UV pro­tec­tion to fade re­duc­tion to strength­en­ing, from oily hair to heads with curls, there is a mask — or two — for you,” Jen­nifer says. “Start with a scalp mask de­signed for your skin type — there are good op­tions out there for dry and flaky, oily and even con­gested scalps.

“Then pick a mask that addresses the concerns of your mane. Dry only at the ends? Con­sider a heav­ier mask fo­cused on in­ten­sive con­di­tion­ing (and ap­ply to the ends).

“And pick a nice hy­drat­ing mask for the hair in be­tween.

“A word to the wise: masks for scalps are de­signed for skin, so un­less it says it works on both skin and hair, keep scalp masks on skin and mul­ti­mask with a treat­ment de­signed specif­i­cally for hair.”

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