Installment #5 of Know Your Face, live from the nation’s capital! Today we discuss perhaps my most favorite of skincare products: the mask.
This is my version of heaven.
Those who know me know that my very favorite way to unwind involves a mask. I’ve been called out more than once for Facebook statuses that follow this formula: [delicious food my gentleman friend prepared] + [TV show I’m currently binge-watching] + [specific mask I’m raving about right now]. But it works, people, and I’m not giving up my twice-weekly detox. A girl must decompress.
If I could, I’d use a mask every night of the week, but even my super-resilient, non-sensitive skin can’t manage that. Masks are very concentrated, intense versions of the stuff we use daily. You need to save them for special occasions. For me, those occasions are “Sunday” and “Thursday.” I choose the potion based on my in-the-moment needs. Here are some of my favorites.
Therapeutic Sulfur Masque | Peter Thomas Roth
This stuff does some serious hard work. Sulfur, assuming you aren’t allergic, is an incredible ingredient for getting those blemishes out of your face. This mask blends sulfur with a number of oil-absorbing clays and zinc oxide to suck the impurities straight out of your pores. There’s also a healthy dose of aloe, which both soothes irritations and provides additional acne treatment. If I feel a blemish coming on, I reach for this guy immediately.
Energizing Cleansing Masque | Renee Rouleau
I’ve actually not used THIS SPECIFIC mask, but it looks to be the updated version of the amazing Vitamin C mask Renee Rouleau has sold for years. The ingredients and promises are the same, so I’m going to assume all that’s changed is the name and the packaging. This is my go-to when my skin is dull and discolored. (Hung over? This is your mask.) Vitamin C and licorice extracts provide a much needed glow after a long week, and while most brightening masks are packed with oils, this one actually contains bentonite clay to pull the oil out!
For My Eyes
BrightMud Eye Treatment | GlamGlow
I only recently discovered the eye mask, and boy, is my life better for the knowledge! I’ve yet to be disappointed by one of GlamGlow’s products. This treatment is packed with brightening, de-puffing, and soothing ingredients to calm down your eyes. I don’t know about you, but by the end of the week, my eyes look about 15 years older than the rest of my face, so I’m grateful for a treatment just for them.
YouthMud Tinglexfoliate Treatment | GlamGlow
I HATE PORTMANTEAUX BUT I LOVE GLAMGLOW, so I’m willing to forgive the abomination that is the non-word “tinglexfoliate.” This stuff is amazing, guys. Amazing. Amazing! It is packed with a few different kinds of clay to pull all those impurities from your pores, various plant extracts (green tea, lavender, cucumbers) to sooth your exhausted skin, and volcanic rock (seriously) to exfoliate like crazy.
It’s an interesting experience, the first time you apply it, but you quickly appreciate all the eccentricities. It feels…like you’re putting the ground on your face. It’s rocky, and leafy, and I’m pretty sure there are twigs in there as well. Then, it tingles SO HARD that you think it’s going to be too much to handle for 20 minutes, but it never quite is. And when it dries, it dries incredibly tight. Good luck having a conversation with this around your mouth. When you remove it, rather than just washing it off, you apply water bit by bit and gently move the material around your face, which gives it a wicked exfoliation. And at the end of it all, hand to God, you’re actually glowing.
It’s pricey as hell, but goes on thin, so it lasts quite a while. This stuff is heaven-sent, people.
How to use: Directions for applying and removing masks vary, so always read the directions. I love to use a mask at night, so my freshly cleaned and exfoliated face can breathe deeply while I sleep. Prior to application, I’ll deep clean my face, usually with my Clarisonic. Then I’ll use the mask and follow with the rest of my nighttime routine (toner, serum, eye cream, moisturizer). If you want to add some extra kick to your mask, layer a serum beneath it while it works! The mask will help the serum penetrate further into your skin. That said, be sure you’re using compatible products – the last thing you want to do is over-irritate your skin.
Next week on Know Your Face: the world of BB creams.