I tried a color depositing mask for my quarantine hair journey—here's my review
I’m no stranger to a spontaneous hair change. One time, I went into the salon for highlights and walked out a platinum blonde. Another time, I went to the store, picked up some Manic Panic in Ultra Violet, and dyed my hair purple in the bathroom of my college dorm (it was the night of the 2016 election, and I needed something to distract myself from the progressively terrifying results on the news). Most of my hair decisions have lined up with life circumstances in that way, arising from my need for some semblance of control or just a change from monotony.
So, it’s no surprise that, during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, I decided to dye my hair pink. Like so many others right now, I’ve been spending the majority of my time indoors, and the days have become nearly indistinguishable. Dying my hair was exactly the kind of change-up I needed and, considering I don’t have to go in public for the foreseeable future, it was a low-risk experiment as well.
I decided to test out Moroccanoil's Color Depositing Hair Masks. Per the name, the product is a temporary hair dye that deposits the color only on the outermost layer of the hair rather than changing its underlying color. The formula also has the dual benefit of a deep conditioning treatment, which was perfect for me because even though I was acting somewhat on impulse, I didn’t want to risk damaging my hair. Since I have curls with a naturally dry texture, I wanted something that would be nourishing and wouldn’t strip the natural oils from my hair, like some dyes do. And while I did cheat on my Curly Girl Method routine slightly to try the mask, because it contains silicones, it also has hydrating and repairing benefits from ingredients like apricot kernel oil, argan oil, and an amino acid blend.
Five of the seven depositing mask colors, including the hibiscus color I tried, are formulated to work best on light to medium blonde hair, so I wasn’t sure how much the color would show on my dark blonde/light brown hair. Still, it was worth a shot. My sister (who is doubling as my quarantine hairdresser) applied the hibiscus mask to my hair, combing the pigment through my strands from roots to ends. Instead of leaving the product in for five to seven minutes as instructed, though, I left it in for about 20 minutes before rinsing it out in order to achieve more vibrant results.
The final product? My hair turned a Lady Bird-inspired shade of pink that immediately made me feel nostalgic for my teen years and gave me the urge to do something rebellious, like steal a tub of Communion wafers.
Since I couldn’t do that, due to social distancing and all, I instead swapped roles with my sister and dyed her hair. For her, we used Moroccanoil’s lighter-toned rose gold mask since her hair has lighter highlights. I avoided the roots and combed the dye through only the bottom three quarters of her hair to create an ombre effect. We also left the mask in her hair for an extended period of time since her hair has never been dyed before, making it less receptive to color. Her results were more subtle, but still rose-kissed in the sun and plenty Instagram-worthy.
My sister and I are both loving the results of our at-home DIY salon, and with our matching pink hair, our sisterhood is arguably stronger than ever. About a week in, we haven’t experienced any fading of the color yet, though Moroccanoil notes that the longevity of results depend on factors like your hair’s porosity, whether or not your hair has been colored before, and how often your hair is washed. Luckily, with our quarantine lifestyle, we can easily control the last factor to get longer-lasting results.
And who knows? Once social distancing is over, our sister salon may even look to expand our clientele. For now, though, you can simply shop the colors we used below.