One of my biggest pet peeves is when a product doesn’t work—especially when it comes to hair products for growth. I’ve learned to embrace my curly hair, and my journey has involved testing a barrage of the best curly hair products and adopting protective styles to help my curls grow. But if I’ve learned anything through this process, it’s that sometimes we need a little help. Whether it’s tapping celebrity hairstylists for tips or talking to friends about the products they swear by, our hair journeys and hair problems don’t have to be something we solve alone. So ahead, we spoke with five hairstylists to have them share the best masks for hair growth for every hair texture. Before you get the deets on which hair masks they abide by, get to know the stylists.
Meet the Hairstylists
Photo:Courtesy of Kristen Shaw, Matthew Collins, Nai'vasha, Patrick Wilson, Timothy Aylward
Matthew Collins is a celebrity hairstylist and a L’Oréal Professionnel USA and global ambassador.
Nai’vasha is a celebrity hairdresser. Some of her clientele includes household names such as Storm Reid and Tracee Ellis Ross.
Patrick Wilson is a session stylist at The Wall Group who’s styled for various fashion publications including Vogue and Glamour.
Timothy Aylward is a hairstylist and groomer at The Wall Group. In addition to styling for publications, he’s worked on campaigns for brands such as Phuong My and Proenza Schouler.
If you have 4a–4c curls…
Wilson's reasoning behind this recommendation? As he explained to us, “This hair mask is rich and deeply conditioning. This treatment will hydrate, protect, and improve elasticity and shine, leaving your hair in the best condition possible. I recommend this product to all models after fashion week to restore their hair once the season is over.”
As Aylward told us, “I love the whole concept around this brand, and it doesn’t hurt that its founder is the effervescent Tracee Ellis Ross, whose endorsement of skincare line Retrouvé recently persuaded me to indulge in the $450 skin salve. Pattern prides itself on generous portions of texture-specific formulas that are rich and thick, perfect for hair that loves a little extra weight to keep it together, and promote healthy hair growth.”
Collins shared, “Humidity and frizz are the biggest nightmares for kinky hair texture. This hair mask won’t weigh down your hair or remove the curl. It will only hydrate and give max control so your coils hug each other for voluptuous coil glory.”
If you have 3a–3c curls…
In addition to having a series of go-to wash-and-go products for your curly hair, it’s essential to have hair masks that promote healthy growth. Keep scrolling for the hair masks stylists swear by for curly hair textures.
Aylward told us, “This one is the ‘Charlotte’ of the group, with chic gilded black packaging. This Parisian brand is known for utilizing unique, rare ingredients in service of a softer mane. Its trademark mask is thick as butter but washes out clean, leaving hair feeling light and bouncy.”
Collins swears by this product for curly hair because “with curly hair, it is often hard to maintain moisture, so you need a mask that will help your hair stay moisturized—this does just that. For finer curly hair, there's another version of this mask: Intensely Moisturizing. This lighter version will give your thinner curls the hydration without a decrease in volume. Your hair will be glossy.”
If you have wavy hair…
Anyone with wavy hair can attest to how crafting the perfect waves is no easy feat. But in addition to styling, unlike coily textures that typically require hyper-moisturizing products to promote hair growth, wavy hair requires the Goldilocks of products—not too oily but still moisturizing enough to promote growth. The stylists we spoke with recommend the below products.
Johnson’s rationale behind this product pick? She explained, “I think the formulation of this mask is the perfect answer for wavy hair and looser curls because though it is rich, it’s lightweight enough to not make the hair heavy or oily yet provides the hair all of the necessary nutrients to rid frizz and promote growth.”
Wilson proclaimed, “I love recommending this to my clients, as it’s cruelty-free, and that’s something more and more people are conscious of now, which is brilliant. This luxurious treatment can be applied as a 20-minute mask or be left in overnight for extra rejuvenation. Either way, it’ll repair split ends and help mend styling damage for super-smooth results. As an added bonus, its UV filters help bring out the vibrant colours of your hair.”
“This Scandinavian haircare line is a hidden gem,” Aylward said. “All the products have minimal, tonal packaging and a light, sweet, slightly medicinal scent. Hair Repair is the definition of a cult product, complete with an ultra-loyal following. It’s especially ideal for color-treated hair that feels dry and broken.”
Collins told us, “With gold quinoa and protein, this is the perfect mask for wavy hair. I recommend you apply this everywhere well, and focus on a very, very good rinse-out. You’ll most likely wash your hair far less and let it go natural, so you want to give it tons of moisture and a smooth and glossy cuticle, so this is my personal all-time fave.”
If you have straight hair…
This hair mask is perfect for straight hair because, in Collins’s words, “often, straight hair tends to be washed more frequently, so it would also be styled with hot tools more frequently. It also won’t be able to hold a curl as often, so restyling happens frequently. It’s important to be using a strengthening mask at least once a week with B6 and biotin. I suggest avoiding the root area when applying the masque to maintain volume.”
Overwhelmed with what product hair mask to choose? At the end of the day, Shaw’s approach can be a great starting point for introducing a hair mask into your haircare routine. She told us, “My take on hair masks for growth is less about your hair texture and more about your scalp health and how much product is building up on your hair. I love detoxing the hair with a shampoo. No matter what your hair health is like or your hair texture, this essential so that you create a fresh base for your moisturizing hair mask to get into the hair strand and do its job.”
Shaw’s final tip? No matter what hair mask you use, she emphasizes the importance of how applying the hair mask to promote growth. She told us, “If your hair is typically straighter and limper, you can leave the mask for a smaller amount of time, as compared to a more porous, kinky hair strand where you want to leave the product on longer to promote more smoothing for shiny, healthy hair.”
This hair mask is a personal favorite. I used it when I was transitioning my heat-damaged hair, and it helped grow and restore my curls.