The right facial mask – when used in accordance with your skin woes – can do wonders for the complexion. Giving your skin some TLC not only relieves it of problems, but also lets you indulge in some me-time, reducing stress. Ahead, you’ll find masks that soothe, hydrate and brighten for glowing skin.
Is Masking A Waste of Time?
Skincare serums go to work immediately to tackle specific skin concerns while moisturisers are designed to maintain hydration levels in the skin right away. Facial masks, on the other hand, require a little bit more time. And time is what makes face masks remarkable. Allowing masks to sit on the face for 10 to 15 minutes help active ingredients penetrate into the skin to work their magic. Leaving a layer of mask on your skin (with the exception of clay masks) envelops it with moisture and further protects from trans-epidermal water loss. Results: Skin stays more radiant and feels more supple for longer periods.
The Case for Multi-Masking
Unless you are blessed with great genes and live in a controlled setting, it’s unlikely that all parts of your skin are uniform in hydration levels, texture, firmness and dullness. This is why multi-masking is vital. Applying a mask specific to the skin concern you have can help rectify it. For example, you can use a clarifying clay mask to aid congested pores and regulate excess sebum on the T-zone, while hydrating masks can help plump up nasolabial lines and quench parched areas of your face.
Which Mask Should You Use?
There are a myriad of face mask types available for various skin concerns. The three most common and essential ones that everyone would benefit from are the ones that hydrate, brighten and clarify. Using a combination of these three, whether at once or separately, can help quell most skin concerns.
Most skin issues stem from a lack of hydration – even the oiliest skin would benefit from a boost in moisture levels. It’s recommended that you use a hydration mask at least once a week to replenish skin moisture levels and strengthen the skin barrier. If you find yours particularly dehydrated due to a change in climate or stress at work, there’s no real danger in using a hydration mask more than twice a week – remember to listen to your skin.
The Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask, $47.96 (75 ml), simultaneously cleanses, hydrates and infuses skin with antioxidants to help it defend against free radical damage. The antibacterial properties of Manuka honey reportedly helps to clear out pimples while keeping skin moisturised.
The KORA Organics Noni Sleeping Mask, $68 (100 ml), hydrates with certified organic silver ear mushroom extract, and coconut milk. Its gel texture helps to soothe any irritation, and skin is renewed with fruit acids and then protected with antioxidant-rich kakadu plum extract for plumper skin the next morning.
Kiehl’s Avocado Nourishing Hydrating Mask, $69 (100 ml), is one yummy treat for the skin. Antioxidant-rich avocado fruit extract, avocado seed oil and evening primrose oil leave skin firmer and smoother.
See Clearly Now
Think of clarifying masks as a weekly detox for your skin. While using it on the entire face might be drying, especially for those with dry skin, leaving it on for five minutes on areas like the nose, chin and forehead can help to decongest pores and absorb excess sebum.
Perfect for use on warm days as well as days where the skin is red, itchy and/or hot, the Hera Blue Clay Cooling Mask, $38 (50 ml), cools the skin upon contact using a menthol derivative. Kaolin wicks away excess sebum while juglans regia walnut scrub powder helps to gently exfoliate dead skin cells as you wash away the mask.
Containing activated charcoal which is lauded for its ability to purify pores and absorb excess sebum, the SW1 Absolute Charcoal Cleansing Mask, $68 (50 ml), deeply cleanses pores without drying out skin.
The latest addition to its iconic Tea Tree line is The Body Shop Anti-Imperfection Peel-Off Mask, $9 (10 g). Featuring tea tree oil from Kenya, known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, the mask is great for weekly use, especially if you’re sporting a few blemishes.
The Future Is Bright
If you’re guilty of neglecting sun protection when you were younger, you would start to see pigmentation and dullness creeping in over your cheeks as early as your 30s. Other factors such as hormone or stress levels may also rob skin of its radiance. Use a brightening mask to help break down existing melanin and inhibit the formation of new ones for a luminous, even-looking complexion.
Containing glycolic acid, the Caudalie Glycolic Peel Mask, $43 (75 ml), gently removes dull surface-skin for a brighter complexion. It also has proprietary ingredient viniferine, which is clinically proven to be 62 times more effective at brightening skin compared to vitamin C.
Suitable even for sensitive skin, the Skin Inc Get Glowin’ Brightening Mask, $178 (50 ml), contains ingredients vitamin C, licorice extract, scutellaria baicalensis extract and panax ginseng to help skin regain its radiance as it evens out skin tone with every use.
Packed with a cocktail of gentle alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), the Tatcha Violet-C Radiance Mask, $95 (50 ml), improves skin cell turnover rate to get skin glowing. Two types of vitamin C derivatives protect skin from free radical damage, as well as improve collagen synthesis for healthier-looking skin.
TEXT: ARISSA HA / PHOTOS: 123RF.COM