By: Briana Lawimore
Everyone with natural hair knows the huge time commitment and energy it takes to complete a whole wash day. The task can become so demanding at times that many naturals fall into the cycle of putting off washing their hair for days–myself included. In my case, my last wash day was long overdue, as I could see serious product build-up lying on my hair strands. I needed some real TLC to revive my hair, and I figured it was time for a good detox hair treatment. Since using shampoo has not been enough to deep cleanse my hair, I decided to give the Aztec Secret bentonite clay mask that has been sitting in my product drawer for a year another try.
Bentonite clay is a multipurpose beauty product composed of aged volcanic ashes, known for its intense healing and cleansing properties. For hair, the clay can be used with apple cider vinegar or water to make a hair mask that replaces shampoo. This mask works to remove excess oil, product, and other toxins on the hair, leaving your hair feeling refreshed and softer. However, this mask should not be used for every wash day–only when your hair needs a deep cleanse.
Initially, I was skeptical about trying this mask again because the first time I tried it, I did not see a drastic change to my hair. However, this go-round, I actually experienced some amazing results that detoxed my hair and redefined my curls. I saw parts of my hair that have been frizzy and prone to product build-up for years finally form coils and curls as I washed the clay mask out of my hair. My jaw dropped seeing the definition I was able to get from simply using this mask. I could definitely tell that the technique I used this time worked well to wash all the impurities in my hair down the drain. If you are also experiencing constant frizz and product build-up, I highly recommend giving the bentonite clay mask a try. Below I’ve provided some tips and tricks that will help you achieve the best results.
Detangle and Pre-Shampoo: Before applying the mask to your hair, make sure to detangle your hair for a smooth application. Use a pre-shampoo treatment to help detangle your hair and to add a protective conditioning layer to the hair before applying the mask. Once the mask is on your hair, it will harden, so it will be very difficult to take out knots and tangles once it is already applied.
Use The Right Ingredients: While making the mask, mix the dry clay with apple cider vinegar instead of water. Apple cider vinegar is a stronger clarifying agent than water and works extremely well with bentonite clay to absorb and remove toxins. Also, make sure to use plastic utensils and not metal utensils to mix the mask.
Work Fast: As mentioned before, the mask hardens fast, so it is important to spread the product quickly throughout your hair. Work in sections to ensure a quick and even application. Leave the mask on for 10-15 minutes.
Rinse! Rinse! Rinse!: You will be standing underneath the showerhead for a while rinsing this product out because this mask is quite stubborn. But don’t worry; we’re going to speed up the process. Make sure to rinse out your hair in sections and gently finger detangle each section to loosen up the product. Also, separate your hair strands to expose product that is still clumped together.
Condition! Condition! Condition!: This mask can leave your hair feeling very dry if you do not condition properly. After rinsing the mask out, use a deep conditioning treatment to maintain moisture and shine. Also, use a leave-in conditioner on your hair to seal in extra moisture and style as usual.
By following these simple steps, your curls are sure to pop, and your hair will definitely thank you for this special treatment.