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No matter how much you enjoy the ritual of self-care, few things are as satisfying as a product that works its magic while you sleep. Take, for example, overnight hair masks, which can be used occasionally to repair damage and restore hydration without any effort on your part required. If you're ready to test one out, the best overnight hair masks contain nourishing ingredients like shea butter and plant-derived oils (such as avocado, coconut, and argan) to moisturize, protect, and repair your hair while simultaneously enhancing smoothness and shine. Usually, you’ll want to rinse out your overnight mask in the morning, but some brands make leave-in versions, too.
As with most things in life, you can have too much of a good thing. With overnight masks that contain proteins derived from hydrolyzed wheat, hydrolyzed soy, or silk, you'll want to be conscious of overdoing it, as too much protein absorbed by your hair can actually lead to breakage and brittleness. If you notice that your hair is starting to feel straw-like or is breaking off, put the protein mask down and talk to your stylist about which products you should be using instead.
Every overnight mask will come with its own guidelines, but one overarching rule is that it’s helpful to wear a processing cap or shower cap after applying your mask to prevent any residue from getting on your pillowcase.
The next time you want to give your hair some extra nourishment, try one of these deeply nourishing masks from the list ahead.
1. Best Overnight Mask For Curly Hair
For curly hair textures that are naturally prone to dryness, an overnight mask that’s loaded with moisturizing ingredients is a must. With over 2,000 five-star ratings on Amazon, Mielle’s Moisture RX overnight conditioner combines multiple heavy-hitting moisturizers like shea butter, avocado oil, olive oil, and coconut oil. The overnight mask, which should be concentrated at the ends of your hair before working the product up to your roots, also includes ingredients like grapeseed oil, bilberry fruit extract, chamomile extract, and ginger root oil to help calm scalp inflammation and repair breakage.
2. Best Overnight Mask For Fine Hair
Heavy moisturizing masks can cause fine hair to feel weighed down and greasy, so in addition to using less product and applying it to the ends of your hair only, you can also use a lighter formula like Living Proof’s Perfect Hair Day Night Cap Overnight Perfector. So lightweight you don't even have to wash it out in the morning, this silicone-free mask uses the brand's patented Healthy Hair Molecule to seal your hair's cuticle for a smoother surface and more shine (it also makes for a great treatment after dyeing or highlighting your hair). Even if you do wash it out in the morning, the brand says you’ll still reap this mask’s benefits for up to five shampoos.
3. Best Overnight Mask For Heat-Damaged Hair
All of the overnight masks on this list help to repair damaged hair, but if you're someone who regularly uses hot styling tools like a blow dryer or flat iron, you may need a more targeted treatment like the Paul Mitchell Neuro Care Restore HeatCTRL Overnight Repair. With a blend of silicones and hydrolyzed proteins aimed at tackling heat damage, the treatment works to both repair and prevent signs of damage like dryness, dullness, and breakage. The lightweight mask was designed to work on all hair types, and can be rinsed out (ideal if your hair is on the finer side) or left in in the morning and styled as usual.
4. Best Hair Mask Spray
Getting hair that instantly looks healthier doesn't get much easier than this Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair leave-in mask. Completely mess-free, this unique treatment can be misted through your hair while it's still damp and styled as usual (or air-dried and left in until your next shampoo). Safe to be used by all hair types, Briogeo's clever spray formula uses microencapsulated argan oil to immediately improve the appearance of split ends and dry hair. Meanwhile, ingredients like algae extract, vitamin B5, and biotin work to enhance moisture retention, elasticity, and shine, as well as provide protection from future damage in the long run.
5. Best French Overnight Hair Mask
No one does drugstore beauty better than the French — and this cult-favorite hair mask from Klorane is a perfect example of that. It can be used as a traditional in-shower mask that you rinse right out, or as a more intense overnight treatment that can be used on hair when it's damp or dry to combat signs of dehydration and damage. Mango seed butter, sunflower seed oil, and vitamin E all work to deeply nourish dry hair and leave it noticeably smoother and shinier by the time you rinse out the treatment in the morning. Klorane's two-in-one mask is also formulated without protein ingredients for anyone concerned about protein overload. As a bonus, it smells amazing, too — one Amazon reviewer compared it to mango pudding.