5 Best Natural DIY Hair Masks For Every Hair Type

Hair solutions you can slather on from your kitchen.

October 12, 2017
woman applying hair mask
Adam_Lazar/ Getty

Everyone has a hair complaint. It’s too dry. It’s too limp. It’s lost its luster. Stop complaining and start repairing with these DIY masks. Each contains only three power-packed ingredients—think yogurt, eggs, and apple cider vinegar—so they’re easy to whip up and way cheaper than the store-bought stuff. And they’re totally chemical-free!

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detox hair mask
Allison Young
Detox hair mask

Buildup is a b*tch. This mask sucks up the stockpile of oil and hair products that can weigh hair down. The star of the show here is apple cider vinegar, an astringent that removes residue and washes away any excess oil. “ACV is a favorite for restoring pH balance in unhappy biospheres—scalp and hair included,” says Lily Diamond, author of Kale & Caramel: Recipes for Body, Heart, and Table. Super absorbent bentonite clay sponges up impurities and icky smells, while anti-microbial tea tree oil has even been shown to ward off dandruff.

+ 1 tbsp bentonite clay
+ 1 ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
+ 2-3 drops tea tree essential oil

Massage mixture into hair and work down to the roots until hair is coated (this one can get messy, so you might want to do it in the shower). Leave on 10 minutes and rinse in the shower followed by shampoo and conditioner.

Check out this invigorating lemon and olive oil sugar scrub that smoothes dull, dry skin.

hair growth mask
Allison Young
Hair growth mask

Give your hair a Rapunzel growth boost with this triple threat. “Aloe vera is a true panacea, easing sluggish tissue back into balance and nurturing the restoration of skin health so new hair can grow freely,” says Diamond. No wonder research says it can regenerate hair follicles and promote hair growth. Nettle is an age-old remedy for combating hair loss and peppermint gets scientific props for promoting hair growth—plus it smells oh-so good. (While you're at it, check out these 8 natural ways to help your hair grow faster.)

+ ¼ cup nettle tea (brew tea and let cool)
+ 2 tbsp aloe vera gel
+ 2-3 drops peppermint essential oil

While holding your head over the sink, slowly pour ingredients over hair and massage into your scalp for 5 minutes (massage can also boost circulation to promote hair growth). Wrap hair in a warm towel and let it sit 10 minutes before rinsing. 

volume hair mask
Allison Young
Volumizing hair mask

Want big, bouncy Bridget Bardot locks? Slather on this hair booster. The protein and B vitamins in eggs and yogurt can improve the strength of the strands to bolster hair, while rosemary oil stimulates circulation to the scalp and encourages hair growth. “The rosemary plant has been used for centuries to restore vitality to dull and lackluster tissue,” says Diamond. 

+ ¼ cup plain yogurt
+ 1 egg
+ 2-3 drops rosemary essential oil

Apply all over your hair in sections from root to ends. Tie up hair and let sit at least 10 minutes before washing it out. 

hydration hair mask
Allison Young
Hydration hair mask

All that heat styling can strip strands of their natural oils. Undo the damage with this moisturizing mask. Coconut oil penetrates inside the hair shaft to infuse hair with moisture and smooth split ends, plus coconut milk adds extra hydration and protein. Honey, a natural humectant (moisture retainer) and emollient, softens and hydrates hair. “Honey is naturally clarifying and soothing, a perfect primer to counterbalance the dense coconut lipids,” adds Diamond. (Learn more about why honey is so good for your hair and skin.)

+ 1/3 cup coconut milk
+ 1 Tbsp honey
+ 2 tsp coconut oil 

Rub onto your scalp and through your ends. Leaving on 1 hour or overnight before washing it out.

shine boosting anti aging hair mask
Allison Young
Shine-boosting hair mask

Sun and pollution cause oxidative stress that can age hair. The antidote: Antioxidants. One study found that applying the free-radical fighters can protect hair and add shine. Strawberries and lemons are packed with antioxidant vitamin C to give strands a glossy boost, and avocado oil adds vitamin E, a nourishing antioxidant that also combats dryness for added luster. Bonus: "The acid of pure lemon cuts through greasy buildup, resulting in shiny locks for days,” says Diamond. 

+ 4 medium strawberries (mash into a puree)
+ 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
+ ½ Tbsp avocado oil

Standing over a sink, work the mixture into your hair from root to tip (avoid your eyes; lemon can sting). Cover your head with a shower cap or towel for 10 minutes, and then rinse with cool water for an extra shine boost.