Hair masking with Cry Baby from The Mane Club NYC

Recently I received a package of items from the Mane Club to try out and review.  The first item I tried out was the One Hit Wonder 10-in-1 leave in spray and it was a fantastic product (and super affordable). As soon as I tried it I could not wait to try the other products. I also really like the brand in general. They only do hair products and all their products are not only vegan and cruelty free but they are affordably priced. The One Hit Wonder for example is only $8 and the bottle will last quite some time.

But this is not about the fabulous product I’ve already tried. This is about The Cry Baby Repairing Hair mask.

In the box Mane Club sent there were three hair masks (I later ended up with another two in a Glossy Box Mystery box).  So there was quite the selection to choose from when I went to do my weekly hair mask.

Before I get into the first of the masks let me tell you a little bit about my hair.  My hair (at the moment) is long enough to reach my bra strap.  While I was having it trimmed regularly at my salon, at this point I let it grow until it annoys me or looks really bad on the ends then I follow the Brad Mundo basic hair trimming method (using the rubber bands) to take off the ends so it is more reasonable in length.  I did have layers in my hair in 2019. There are no layers now.  I miss the layers.

I do not trust my hair cutting skills enough to try putting in the layers myself and so until I find a new salon, no layers. My salon closed last January and my stylist moved far far away. (They upped the rental price on the building for the salon before the world went haywire and the salon owner decided to retire instead of renewing. The building has since sat empty.)

My hair is currently dyed.  Currently I have a very faded box dye in my hair, which means I have really long roots and a strange poof ball of straggling grays on the top of my head.  Luckily, the box dye was close enough to my natural color that the roots aren’t that dramatic in real life.  They are quite apparent when the back of my head is photographed and the camera light bounces off of them. I have a kit coming from e-salon that contains custom dye so I will soon be rid of both.


But then my hair will again be color treated.

The one thing that having to do things like trim my own hair has done (besides giving me a lot more respect for my stylist – don’t get me wrong, I respected her before because I knew I could not do what she did, now I just think there should be a holiday: National Stylists day) is force me to pay attention to the condition of my hair even more. 

My hair is slightly on the thicker side and while I wear it tied up for exercise, when down I tend to use a variety of heat tools on it and let’s face it, generally abuse it in the name of styling. This year, like everyone  else in the world, I went out a lot less. And so I styled my hair a lot less.  The reason that I have no more layers is that I also started trimming off more and more of the damaged ends.

I figured I might want to take the extended break from styling and use the time to get everything healthy. Then when I find a new stylist I can present them with a healthy head of hair to work with even if there is no actual identifiable cut and style left. It will be a blank slate of healthy hair. I still have some issues, and some of them will remain because even though i style less, I still love my heat tools, but I am getting my hair in shape.

One of the ways I am doing this is through hair masks. At the moment, I am doing one mask a week, generally on Saturdays. Once a week feels like I am doing a good thing for my hair and not like I am over doing it.

Because I still have some damaged ends, I decided to start with the Cry Baby Repairing Mask (retail $3). According to the Mane Club’s product page…

Hey babe, turn that frown upside down. Wash your worries away and treat yourself to this repairing hair mask

MANE PAYOFF:  Repairs, Reduces Breakage,  Deeply Conditions

SCENT: Citrus

DIRECTIONS: Apply this goop to clean, wet hair, leave on for up to 5 minutes and rinse. Each package contains 2-3 uses.

I know this is going to sound strange to say, but I really like the fact that they let me know right on the package that I can get 2-3 uses out of the packet instead of it being a one use mask.   I like knowing how much I should expect to apply. I also like knowing that I shouldn’t just take the packet into the shower and attempt to use all of it in one sitting. That is a really nice thing to know.

The wide tab at the top makes it easy to grip and tear with no heartache, even with wet hands

Now I will say that tear open packets, the shower and me are not a trifecta of happiness.  However, since I know this is not a one use packet (because they told me in advance) I employed a little trick.

I opened the packet prior to my shower, took an empty jar that once held face cream and squeezed the mask into the jar.  (The jar I used once housed Volition’s Celery Green Cream. It is a fantastic moisturizer, especially in the warmer months. It also has a really tightly sealable lid and is excellent repurposed for this. A tight lid is key to this trick working).

This way it is easy to use and I have an airtight container to keep the extra mask safe from either drying out or contaminants. I find this really helps as I really only use hair masks once a week.  A week in an open foil packet can seriously compromise a product. Plus, there is no wasted products since I am not tempted to use too much when opening it in the shower.

I would like to point out that I am not complaining about the mask being in a foil packet. Why?  Because it is a three dollar mask.  Hair masks can get really pricy. Mane Club is an Indie brand that is committed to making their products affordable.  I’m sure packaging like this helps.  And I am okay with that. 

Also the mask packet even though it is a foil packet has a large enough pull tab that even with wet hands it is super easy to grab and open. It’s the shampoo and conditioner ones that get me (but I will leave my rant out of this for now.

the hair mask in the jar

Plus, I have a lot of empty glass moisturizer containers and I love reusing them.  Most of them will be used to start seeds in my greenhouse this spring, but I am perfectly happy repurchasing a pretty face cream jar for a nice hair mask.  And it is glass so it can be cleaned out and reused repeatedly with no problems.  I just use masking tape to mark the product that is currently in it so there is no confusion.

And because I am taking pictures, I decided to do this hair mask at my desk instead of in the shower. I wet my hair down with a spray bottle of water, applied it in my bathroom, pinned my hair up and then watched a You Tube video for the five minutes I needed to let it sit.  Then I went to take a shower to wash it off.

my set up with mask spray with water and a hair clip

I personally love the claw style clips for when I am doing something like this with my hair.  They hold everything up and because they are almost entirely plastic you can take them directly into the shower with you, rinse product off of them and then leave them to dry and be ready for another use.  They are at almost every drug store I’ve ever been to and are relatively inexpensive.  They also last a really long time.  I think I’ve had this one about five years and it is still going strong. The spray bottle was in the travel section of target and cost about a dollar. It is good for this kind of masking application, but sometimes I wake up and my bangs are crazy so it is good for taming them in the morning too.

But back to the mask.  The mask is thick and creamy.  It claims to be citrus scented and I do smell some orange and lime in there. There is also a bit of coconut mixed in and so it smells vaguely Pina Colada –esque. As you can see from the product remaining in the jar (Picture Below), I probably have about two more uses worth of product left, so I would say two to three uses is bang on and makes it more or less a dollar per use. 

wet hair

When applying the Cry Baby Mask (or any hair mask really), I like to start off with a heavy dose of mask on the roots of my hair, then turn my head upside down and add a heavy dose to my ends.  Then I go in and add product to the rest of the hair and massage it into the roots before twisting my hair into a mass at the top of my head. I find it gets the most product in the places it needs to be.  Just lay a towel on the floor to catch water drips and possible product. You don’t want your floor tiles super slick and turning into a falling hazard.

There lies danger.

I concentrate on the ends and roots first

The mask washed out pretty easily after five minutes. No real scrubbing or rubbing needed.  I just turned on the shower spray and ran my fingers through to make certain the water washed it all out.  As I still have not replaced my hairdryer, I combed through with my detangling brush and then let it dry naturally.  I specifically did not use a detangling spray even though this is not a detangling mask, I wanted to know how my hair felt with just this mask.

mask in

The brush went through my hair well, and while there was some hair left behind on the brush. When I looked at the hairs, most of them showed some sign of damage so I am guessing that the more damaged hairs just sort of evacuated my head in the face of the mask.  And to be honest there weren’t that many hairs in the detangling brush, I just found it interesting that they were the more damaged ones.

So was there improvement in the condition of my hair?  I would say that my hair does feel healthier.  I think though that like skin care, hair care needs repeated uses in order to see a real effect.  However, my hair is nice and healthy looking with a nice shine. There is no heavy residue left and my hair does not feel weighted down.  It also smells more like lime as my hair dried and less like Pina Coladas.

easy comb through after washing and still wet

The scent is very subtle in dried hair so it isn’t overpowering, which I appreciate .  This turned out to be a really good hair mask for me and I will certainly use up the other two applications left in the jar. 

mask left over after one application

I would certainly advise that you get a container to hold the extra portions of the mask, just for convenience sake and because when you squeeze it out of the packet with clean dry hands you can make certain to get every drop of product out of the foil packet and this doesn’t seem like a mask that should go to waste.  Just make certain you have a jar with a tight fitting lid so it doesn’t dry out and that you label the jar.

It may only be $3, but quite frankly it performed as well, if not better than some of the more expensive masks I’ve tried. It is one I will definitely put on my list for repeat use and ordering.   I can tell you I am so looking forward to trying out the remaining masks.  I’m also happy I have a second Cry Baby mask from a subscription box just waiting to be used. This is a mask I don’t mind keeping multiples of around.

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