Best Curly Hair Masks for 3A/3B Curls


Being a curly hair product junkie, I have tried many and varied masks for my type 3A/3B curls over the last few years.

Having had quite a few hit and misses, I bring you the best curly hair masks for 3A/3B curls that work for my frizz-prone mane.

My number one problem is frizz and I tend to have very dry and brittle hair, with no uniformity at all. Recipe for disaster! I have been following the CG (curly girl) method for around 3 years now.

I do believe my hair has benefitted from removing shampoo, sulphates and silicone in general.

According to the CG method you should steer clear of heated tools such as hair straighteners and yes, they definitely do harm your curls if used excessively. I only ever get mine straightened at the hairdressers and once in a blue moon so I think I am ok.

After straightening my hair for around 15 years I finally decided to embrace my natural curls when my second child was born. I was fed up with the high maintenance so began researching the best way to boost natural curls online.

When I discovered the CG method I was happy to give it a go. There were so many fabulous before and after pics and curly hair bloggers raving about it that I was sold on it. It has been a slow process of trial and error all the way to be honest!

I was not one of the lucky ones who just did the CG method for a month and was transformed. Mine took a whole lot more TLC and to be honest, I am only really seeing my curly hair’s full potential now! This post contains affiliate links to the products mentioned. I only recommend products I love.

Curly hair girl with type 3A/3B CURLS

I feel very confident rocking my curls every day and my routine is not a gruelling one, it is really simple and effective, low maintenance styling. At last! Saying that, it has taken me a couple of years, trying and buying new products monthly. I even had  curly hair subscription box at one stage.

I was forever scouring the internet for my miracle product and was borderline obsessed with buying new curly hair styling products.

My absolute fave product for my curls and one I was addicted to buying all the time was hair masks for the moisture boost. I had so many different ones, I was alternating them to see which ones were best.

My shower floor has a large shelf area on the floor thankfully, like a giant step. Luckily for me I have plenty of room to store and stack my hair masks. After all my trial and error masking, I thought it was only fitting to do a blog post on the best curly hair masks for 3A/3B curls.

So here you go and the very best of luck with these top fave curly hair masks of mine! Ps. none of them are expensive as I am too afraid to spend a fortune in case the products don’t work for me – it happens a lot! 

Here are the best curly hair masks for type 3A/3B hair in no particular order-

Macadamia Garnier fructis hair food mask type 3a/3b curls

Garnier Fructis Hair Food Macadamia/Banana/Papaya/Avocado

I discovered these masks last year and was surprised they are completely CG safe. They are honestly unbeatable if you ask me.

None of these contain protein and they are incredibly moisturising so ideal for frizzy curls. They are probably my holy grail if I’m honest!

I have tried all of the above and my hair loves all of them.

Some curly girls find aloe vera not great for their hair but mine loves it so just try some aloe in your hair as a serum or something to find out before purchasing that one maybe.

 These masks are so versatile because they can be used as a leave-in, a mask and a conditioner! It is great because most products are for one or the other.

These are super cheap to buy and frankly, money well spent. I always finish the product so that shows they are fantastic. 

The Banana mask was the first one I tried. My hair looked amazing and frizz-free after using this as a 3 minute mask in the shower. I still purchase this and have it in my shower.

The second one I tried was the Papaya and again, fab results and smells great. I will buy this one again next.

I have a fave and that is the Macadamia because I use it every day as a hair tamer. I refresh every day, even twice a day sometimes (frizz tamer) LOVE!!!!!

Finally, the avocado as I heard great reports from the curly community about this one. So moisturising and shine enhancing. 

So if I had one desert island product for my curls it would probably be the Macadamia one because it is multi-functional. 

If you are following CG and trying out new masks put one of these on top of your list!

garnier fructis hair food mask for curls

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil

Shea Moisture are one of the most iconic and popular brands on the market. They deserve to be on a pedestal although there are quite a few products of theirs my hair just dislikes.

On the other hand there are some absolute diamond products like this wonderfully moisturising and repairing mask.

I only bought this recently and have been blown away by it! If your hair is chemically coloured or in need of repair this is the bomb!

It does contain protein so you may only want to use this once a week or so if your hair is sensitive to protein.

I put this on damp hair that I spray with a spray bottle before applying liberally. Leave on for around 20mins or so. No longer than 30mins though.

You cannot leave this on overnight or anything as it can cause hygral fatigue from over moisturising so be careful.

Expect fuller, shinier, more defined and healthier looking hair. 

Very budget conscious and I highly recommend it!

Jamaica black castor oil hair mask for type 3a/3b curls

Shea Moisture Manuka Honey

This mask is definitely one of my top faves as it is so moisturising. It helps my curls clump, smells amazing and I use it in the shower twice a week.

It smells gorgeous and is a lovely consistency, is easy to apply and has plenty of slip.

It is very reasonably priced and the packaging is nice. It does contain protein so if your hair is in need of less protein use this one only as needed.

Shea moisture manuka honey and matura oil mask

Olaplex No. 3

I have to say my hair has really improved in texture since using the Olaplex No. 3.

It is a patented technology which repairs the hair cuticle from the inside. It is the only product from the range that is CG safe. I use this once a week.

It is on the expensive side but I just love it and can’t resist it. It gives hair vitality and helps reconstruct damage. 

I wish I had discovered it sooner!

Olaplex no.3 for type 3a/3b curls

Giovanni Nutrafix Hair Reconstructor

Giovanni are a well known and loved brand in the curly hair industry. I was recommended this as a cheaper alternative to Olaplex.

I have to say this is a very impressive product indeed. It deep conditions and repairs hair that has been damaged by heat, chemical processing, dyes etc.

It infuses protein into the hair shaft and is also pattered technology. Massage into wet hair and leave for 10mins. Rinse. Et voila!

The best part is it is USDA certified organic, made from organic botanicals. Amazingly, this only costs around 11 euro!!! Bargain.


Mystic Black Novex Deep Hair Mask

This is a real fab find for type 3A/3B curls in my opinion. I read a lot of great reviews about this mask before buying.

I was intrigued by how good it is, it really helps form clumps and moisturise my dry curls.

This is one of my go-to masks for frizz. Definitely worth checking out and it is very cost friendly. Yay!

Mystic black novel hair mask type 3a/3b curls

Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie

So this product is actually intended as a leave-in styling cream. My curls found it a bit too heavy for that.

I did notice after washing the product out with conditioner that my curls were more bouncy and ringlets were appearing.

I decided to use this as a mask rather than a leave-in and found it to be really defining. I use this if I think my curls are flat or lacking bounce.

It does have coconut oil so if your hair dislikes coconut then maybe not for you. It also has an odd smell but as a mask who cares, right?

shea moisture curl enhancing smoothie mask

Homemade Masks –

Gram Flour & Olive Oil

I stumbled across a photo on Facebook of a girl with the shiniest hair ever one day. It looked like it was gleaming. 

I noticed there were literally hundreds of comments on the pic asking about it and complimenting her. 

Turns out she tried an at-home hair mask made with gram flour and olive oil. So I immediately go and buy gram flour to try it out myself.

My hair loves olive oil but you do need to shampoo/low poo/clarify the hair to remove it, like most oils.

My advice is to wait until you need to clarify or remove build-up and then try this mask. 

Wash it out thoroughly with a sulphate-free CG safe shampoo or clarifying shampoo/cleanser.

This is a great DIY mask for shine and nourishment. Very low cost too 🙂

Just make a paste with a couple of tablespoons of gram flour and olive oil. Apply liberally and leave on for 30mins.

Coconut Oil

(Your curls either love it or hate it – only one way to find out)

Personally my hair loves coconut oil (cold-pressed is best) but not every day.

I like to do this mask maybe once a month or so.

I find if using coconut oil in leave-in products it builds up quickly in my hair and actually creates frizz.

However, using it as a mask has great results. It gives my hair great shine and definition.

I heat up a couple of tablespoons full in the microwave until just warm (30 seconds or so) and apply evenly.

I generally leave it in for around an hour before shampooing with a CG safe shampoo/ cleanser.

You can do this as often as you like but ideally you will only be shampooing maybe once a week or less.


Type 3a/3b curl masks pin

Check out this post for lots more homemade hair masks if you’re into that!

So my curly friends, I hope I have given you the best product advice of your life. It has taken me years to find the best masks for my 3A/3B hair but I have found my holy grail ones.

Please let me know how you get on and if you want to subscribe go ahead below. If not, stay tuned as I will be doing a blog post on the best conditioners for type 3A/3B curls very soon.

I will be doing various posts on techniques I use and all the things that help me tame the frizz daily and keep my curls shiny and defined!

Thanks for reading, if you like this you may also be interested in this

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