Self-care is more important than ever. And what says self-care more than putting on a fluffy robe, switching on your favorite show, and indulging in a face and hair mask? Many of us have used a surplus of free time to focus on our skincare routine. This might include doing masks more often, maybe even daily. But is increasing your mask usage doing more harm than good?
They leave your face feeling fresh. Let's be honest - seeing your face temporarily painted in an unusual color garners a bit of a laugh. It feels special and relaxing, like having an at-home spa. The promised benefits are the cherry on top. It's no wonder face masks are so popular. But there's a reason they're meant to be a special treat, not another step in your daily routine.
The whole point of a face mask is to deliver big results in a relatively short amount of time. Face masks tend to have a higher concentration of active ingredients that work best in small doses, especially if you have sensitive skin. Using them too often can irritate skin and result in breakouts, dryness, itchiness, or redness - probably the total opposite of what you're trying to achieve.
So, what's the right amount? It depends on your skin type. Those with sensitive skin should limit themselves to one face mask per week. Others can get away with using face masks twice a week, but be sure to space out your pampering sessions. Also, be mindful of the type of face mask you're using. Hydrating masks tend to be gentler on the skin, whereas exfoliating or brightening masks should be used more sparingly.
When just shampoo and conditioner aren't cutting it, it's natural to turn to a hair mask. But it's important to know how often to use one to reap all the benefits. Overusing hair masks may result in greasy or even dry hair. The key is knowing your hair's needs. If your hair is broken and/or stringy or damaged as a result of coloring, you're probably in need of a protein mask. If your hair is dry, weak, and tangles easily (often due to using of heat products), go for a moisturizing mask.
How often you should use a hair mask depends on the texture of your hair. Those with curly hair can get away with daily moisture masks, whereas those with straight hair shouldn't do more than two hair masks a week to avoid greasiness. This means those with wavy hair can figure out their magic number in the middle.
- Apply your hair mask after shampooing. Shampoo opens up hair cuticles, allowing the mask's moisture to be better absorbed.
- Only apply the mask to your hair tips. Roots are fresh, new, and don't require as much care as the tips.
- If you're doing a protein mask, don't overdo it. Once a week for 30 minutes is perfect. Too much protein can actually result in dry hair.