Beauty battle: Hair masks

LARISSA LAL-PONINI
Last updated 09:17 28/11/2011
hair masks
FACING OFF: Goldwell Dual Senses Rich Repair ($24.50) and Matrix Total Results Colour Care Intensive Mask ($18.95).

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Beauty

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It's coming to that time of year again; people are going to start seeing my hair in the sunshine, and it is not going to be pretty.

Split ends are constant, since I practically use my straightener as a hairbrush.

My hair hasn't properly shone since my days of using baby oil to control my slicked-back college ponytail.

I figure this is the best time to investigate how we can get our hair into the most manageable condition, as we all want effortless, moisturised hair that can withstand the heat of summer.

Just like a face mask, a hair mask is meant to spend intensive minutes pumping the life back into your hair.

Since I don't have a typical brand of hair mask choice, I decided to try two masks to get a feel for which achieves the best result. My aim is for "salon-finished" hair.

I first used Matrix Total Results Colour Care Intensive Mask ($18.95), only because I did a smell test and this one smelled gorgeous, like cherry blossom.

It contains vitamin E and sunflower oil to deliver moisture to the hair.

The mixture seemed thick at the time, but I ended up lathering on more and more, using nearly a quarter of the mask container in one go.

Once on, the product soaked into my hair well, without giving a greasy feeling.

After three minutes I washed, and the product managed to retain softness in my hair.

My end result was near salon quality; my hair felt silky and it was less frizzy after a blow dry, which are the results I was hoping to see.

I then tried Goldwell Dual Senses Rich Repair ($24.50) and the results were far closer to a salon finish.

I did not have to use much, and while the vanilla smell was not apparent to me at the start, it has stuck like fragrant glue.

This mask is thicker than the first, leaves no greasy residue and smells rich when applied. The time factor is also valuable - it actually absorbed in sixty seconds rather than Matrix's three-minute job. After a rinse and dry, my ends felt more reinforced than before. My hair even - dare I say it - shines, and that is before I take to hot hair tools.

The Verdict: It may be a bit more expensive, but the Goldwell mask will give you the best value for your money. You will use less and achieve richer results. If you are an everyday user of hot hair tools, use a hair mask as a conditioner replacement once or twice a week to re-moisturise your hair.

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-Fairfax NZ

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