YOU MIGHT HAVE NETFLIX AND E-SHOPPING SORTED, BUT GETTING THE RESULTS OF A PRO FACIAL OR SENSORY SPA EXPERIENCE WITHOUT LEAVING YOUR BED? NOT ALWAYS SO EASY. AILEEN LALOR SINGLES OUT THE LATEST MUST-KNOW SKINCARE – FROM AT-HOME HOT STONES TO DRY MASKS – THAT HELP MAKE THE LATTER A REALITY. JUST DOWNLOAD A TINKLY BELL SOUNDTRACK FOR THE FULL EFFECT.
THE AT-HOME HOT STONE EXPERIENCE
Estee Lauder Re-Nutriv Ultimate Diamond Transformative Massage Mask, $640
What else says “spa” more emphatically than a hot stone massage? It’s supposed to help relax muscles and improve circulation, so that any active ingredients applied to the skin will be absorbed better. To use this, pop the ceramic “stone” in warm water while you apply the black diamond and 24K gold enriched cream to your face, then use the stone to massage it in. The combo is said to boost radiance, reduce inflammation and have anti-ageing effects.
THE DECADENT SPA RITUAL (IT INVOLVES “CHOCOLATE”)
Leahlani Kokoleka Ritual Dessert Purifying Mask, $94, The Naturally Better Company
Part of the joy of the spa is the ritual. This mask comes as a powder, which you mix in a bowl with water till it looks like melted chocolate, then apply with a brush. Not only does it look like dessert, it even smells like it, thanks to organic cacao, coconut milk and citrus oils. The combination is said to detox, soften, soothe, cleanse and hydrate.
THE COVER-ME-IN-ROSE-PETALS TREATMENT
Lancome Absolue Precious Cells Nourishing & Revitalizing Rose Mask, $285
This light, gel-textured mask is the ultimate floral treat: Rose extracts include the nectar to soothe and regenerate, while the petals and fragrance recreate the luxurious sensorial experience. Use twice weekly in place of night cream, and rinse away the residue. If your skin tends to be dry, add a couple of drops of facial oil before application.
THE EASY MULTI-MASKS
Clarins SOS Masks, $62 each
Your facialist will use different masks on different zones of your face based on their respective skin conditions – these allow you to do the same at home. There’s Hydra for dehydrated areas that lack water and feel tight, Comfort for areas that lack oil and feel rough, and Pure for oily patches. Use in the bath after exfoliation, so that skin’s clean and pores are open.
THE ICE-COLD DE-PUFFER
Anne Semonin Express Radiance Ice Cube, $95 for eight, www.net-a-porter.com
One thing that’s often done at salons – but hardly at home – is playing with temperature: hot stones, cold towels etc. These single-use facial treatments come in ice-cube trays to be stored in the freezer for three hours. Each has wild indigo – said to release endorphins – and supposedly gives immediate brightening, hydrating, mattifying and de-puffing effects. Remove one after freezing, wrap in the gauze provided, then rub over cleansed face. Recommended for use postflight.
THE OXY-FACIAL EQUIVALENT
Skin Inc Oxy Recharge Bubble Mask, $76
Oxygen facials in the salon are said to help skin regenerate. Same goes for this, which contains an ingredient that releases oxygen on contact with skin. It also has antioxidants yuzu and green tea, soothing aloe and an exfoliant. When applied to clean, dry skin, it starts to bubble. After 30 seconds, massage over skin to allow the exfoliant to scrub away dead cells, then rinse.
THE GENTLE ACID PEEL
Kat Burki Restorative Dual Acid Peel, $175, Escentials
This five- to 20-minute mask unclogs pores, smooths and brightens with glycolic acid, but sans the biting, stinging, drying effect, thanks to soothing coldprocessed avocado oil and hyaluronic acid.
THE MULTI-MASKING SHEET MASK
Laneige Two Tone Sheet Masks, $5 each, sold in packs of four
Into multi-masking, but prefer sheet masks? These masks come in two halves, with the top targeting a different concern from the bottom, allowing you to mix and match according to your concerns. Available in combinations of Moisturizing/ Lifting, Pore Care/Relaxing, Brightening/Hydrating and Clearing/Nourishing.
THE REVOLUTIONARY DRY MASKS
Nannette De Gaspe The Art Of Masquologie, $482, www.net-a-porter.com
The rationale behind this is that traditional sheet masks are 80 per cent water, and thus have only a small amount of active ingredients. These fabric masks (five in a pack – for the face, hands, mouth, eyes and neck) have zero water, and are said to have 87 per cent active ingredients, activated by skin pH and body temperature, and released deep into skin. A single use supposedly gives long-lasting results for pigmentation and wrinkles (and no dripping since it’s dry). Each can be used three times.
Estetica Est.lab Vitalift A+ Brillage Mask, $98 for six, www.esteticabeauty.com
Nothing can replicate the effect of Botox injections that paralyse wrinkle-causing muscles, but this sheet mask claims to have a muscle relaxing effect, thanks to a hexapeptide ingredient. Made from a nano bio-cellulose material that clings tightly to skin, it also has anti-ageing probiotics, mushroom extract and niacinamide to even skin tone and improve skin’s barrier function.