Hair Masques with Dr. Bronner’s

Hair Masques

Sometimes I feel I’m the last to know about certain beauty hacks! I can tell you a lot about ingredient safety and chemical interactions and how to read a label, but sometimes I miss the memo about beauty tips and tricks. This is why I’ve gone most of my life without knowing what a hair masque was, though the idea is far from new. I learned about the concept a few years back and it’s been a game changer for me and my hair.

Hair masques bring deep moisture to hair. In general, I do a masque every two to three weeks, though occasionally as often as once a week when it gets super dry here in SoCal. A masque also restores moisture after I have my hair highlighted. Lastly, a masque helps hair during the transition from conventional shampoo to Dr. Bronner’s soaps.

What products I use for hair masques

I like to use the Dr. Bronner’s Organic Hair Crème. The official use for the Hair Crème is as a leave-in conditioner—and I use it for that too. I scrunch 1 ½ pumps through my long, thick hair after I wash it. Scale back on the amount you use based on your hair’s length and thickness. But for the purpose of a hair masque, it gets rinsed out. The Regenerative Organic Certified® Virgin Coconut Oil also works well for this task. Both products are safe for color treated hair.

Hair masques are most effective when done between washing and conditioning hair. This has to do with the structure of our hair strands. Hair strands are coated with keratin scales, which get lifted during shampooing. This gives access to the inner cortex, where the masque can penetrate deeply and do the most good. Then, the follow up with your regular conditioning regimen, which for me is an acidic rinse, to close up the scales.

The hardest part is that the masque works best if it sits on the hair for ten minutes right in between washing and conditioning hair, which means right in the middle of the shower. Once I’ve taken care of washing the rest of me, I pass the time by turning the water off and doing an exfoliating GIY Body Scrub or even washing the shower, since I use the same Castile Soap on my body as I use to wash my bathroom. (Perhaps you’ve heard the Castile soap is versatile?) If this mid-shower masque really doesn’t work for you, you can do a pre-shower masque or even an overnight masque, though I would take care to protect your pillow from the product.

How I do a hair masque

  1. Wash hair with Dr. Bronner’s Castile, Organic Sugar, or Organic Shaving Soap.
  2. Rinse.
  3. Apply Dr. Bronner’s Organic Hair Crème or Virgin Coconut Oil to hair, concentrating most on the lower half and ends of hair. The amount is hugely dependent on hair type and length. For my long, medium to fine hair, I use about 1 Tbsp. of the Hair Crème or about a ½ tsp. of the Virgin Coconut Oil, but not more than this. Use your fingers to work this through your hair.  Your hair does not need to feel greasy.
  4. Let the masque sit on the hair for about ten minutes. Twist long hair into a clip to keep the masque from dripping out.
  5. After ten minutes, rinse thoroughly with warm water.
  6. Rinse with an acidic rinse such as lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, or Dr. Bronner’s Citrus Organic Hair Rinse.

After a hair masque, I do not use any more Hair Crème on my hair that day. It doesn’t need it. However, you do what works best for you. If you do not use Dr. Bronner’s soaps to wash your hair, you can still use this masque technique. Use the hair wash and conditioner that works best for you.

Further reading:

This recipe and many more are in my book, Soap & Soul: A Practical Guide to Minding Your Home, Your Body, and Your Spirit with Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps, available now in hardback on or at your favorite bookseller, and as an eBook and audiobook (read by me!) from wherever you download or listen.  

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Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jean- We have many positive comments from customers who tell us the Castile Soap keeps grey and white hair from yellowing. Because grey and white hair tend to be dry, I recommend the Organic Sugar Soap for the added moisture it brings. Remember to follow-up with an acidic rinse of either our Citrus Hair Rinse or a 50/50 dilution of apple cider vinegar and water. Read more about washing hair with soap in my article,

Janine Mary says:

At the present time l wash my hair with Bronner’s Castile Soap. Afterwards l use the Organic hair crème.

William says:

I started using a variety of oils on my head, to clear specific types of skin irritation. The thing where I settled was a seed oil mixture with hemp stems placed in the vessel to continually infuse. I added activated coconut charcoal because I wanted to speed diffusion. For the acid-wash, I make a vinegar infusion of black walnut, then store it over cardamom pods. I use both together as a vinaigrette, dispersed with a small metallic comb, whenever I get a scalp issue.
The Hair Crème sounds good. I would try it!

Jean says:

Thanks Lisa for the info on the hair masque.
Right now I will probably use the Virgin coconut oil.
How much lemon juice or apple cider vinegar should I use after I rinse out the virgin coconut oil?

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jean – The rinse amount depends on your hair length and thickness. For my hair which is half way down my back and somewhat thick, I use 1/2 a cup of ACV or lemon juice mixed with 1/2 a cup of warm water. If your hair is shorter, try just a couple tablespoons.

About Lisa Bronner

My grandfather was Dr. Bronner, my family makes soap, and I share ways to use it plus tips on greener living.

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