As someone who's used the same no-frills shampoo and conditioner for the better part of her life, I used to be of the (hilarious) belief that hair products were one-size-fits-all. But as soon as I started experimenting with hair masks — most of which weren't aimed at my thin-but-wavy hair — I quickly learned the importance of pairing the right formula with my hair texture. Comb a creamy, hydrating mask through fine hair and you're left with a greasy, flat texture; smooth a heavy-duty formula over your fresh and your color can turn dull fast.
Ask any hairstylist or colorist and they'll agree that hair masks can do a lot of good — but only if you're using the right one. "I think it's really important to first establish why you need a hair mask," says Matt Fugate, a hairstylist at Serge Normant at John Frieda. "Before you buy anything, you need to identify the issues you're trying to solve: Is your hair heat damaged, over-processed, dry? Knowing the why — not just the what — is really important when it comes to hair masks."
Once you've determined your hair type, then comes the fun part: shopping the formulas your texture will love. Ahead, Fugate and three other hair experts share their favorite masks for fine, curly, color-treated and damaged hair — including drugstore favorites, natural alternatives and luxe-as-hell splurges.