I love nothing more than a good face mask! I constantly try out new masks- over the counter and professional brands. As an esthetician, I truly believe regularly using masks is necessary in your beauty routine. Masks do all sorts of magical things from hydrating, removing oil and impurities, minimizing pores, controlling breakouts, brightening, anti-aging, and overall nourishment for your skin! So here are some reviews for masks I have recently tried!
1. Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay
Detoxifying and cleansing
I found this mask through several beauty review lists of "Amazons best beauty products" or "Amazon beauty products you should know" blah blah. I've seen this product recommend for clogged pores for a while, and with its 2,760 reviews on Amazon, I decided to give it a try. It is advertised as a "Deep pore cleansing facial & body mask made with 100% natural calcium bentonite clay". Firstly, what is Calcium Bentonite Clay? Calcium bentonite clay is an absorbent kind of clay that typically forms after volcanic ash ages. It absorbs & removes toxins, heavy metals, impurities, and chemicals- hence the pore cleansing claim.
First off, I did not notice that this is a powder that you mix with water or Apple Cider Vinegar. I was imagining a premixed mask that I could scoop out and smear straight on my face. Wrong. So I follow the directions and mixed with equal parts water- because you couldn't even pay me to put apple cider vinegar on my face. I recommend mixing with a whisk, I used my facial mask fan brush and it did not go well. I did have to add a little more water to get it to a mask-like texture. I applied it to my face and waited. While it was drying, like a dummy, I rinsed out the remaining mask down the drain of my bathroom sink because I made way too much. Don't do this!!! It ended up clogging the drain and my husband had to take it apart- Sorry babe!
After about 10-15 minutes, I rinsed off the mask. To my surprise there was a noticeable difference in the size my pores! I am usually a skeptic when it comes to pore minimizing products, because minimizing pores is not as easy as some products advertise; it usually must involve some sort of exfoliation and dedication to minimize the pores and correct the problem that caused them in the first place. I was pleased with the results, and I can imagine with a routine of using this mask that minimizing of pores could be achieved in conjunction with a proper skincare routine.
Final thought: Noticeable difference in pore size, albeit not astronomical. Kind of a pain to mix. Recommended for most skin types with concerns of large/clogged pores, acne, & oiliness.
2. NÜGG Hydrating and Moisturizing Face Mask
Face Mask for Dry, Dehydrated and Sensitive Skin; Boosts Skin's Moisture Level and Erases Dry Spots and Flakiness; 94 Percent Natural
I love this mask! It is one of my favorite winter masks! I found this one night while going down the Amazon rabbit hole. This deeply hydrating mask is great for dry skin that needs some love. You can use it as a treatment or an overnight mask. It uses camellia seed oil and spirulina extract for their nourishing and antioxidant benefits. It is formulated without: mineral oil, parabens, phtalates, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, and synthetic colors. It's also cruelty free!
This mask is thick, creamy, and smells nice. It recommended to avoid eye and lip areas, but I usually put it on my lips anyways because they are usually so dry in the winter! As someone with slightly sensitive skin, it can tingle a little bit when you first put it on, but that usually fades quickly. I have never had an adverse reaction to it.
I like that it comes in little single use pods. I use the whole pod if I am wearing it for 15 minutes, but only use a half if I am going to sleep in it. I just use some tape to seal it back up for next use.
Final thought: Amazing for dry skin! 100% worth it!
3. Advanced Clinicals Rosewater Mask
Fine Lines, Dry Skin, Puffiness. 2-in-1 overnight sleep mask with Bulgarian Rose, Coconut Oil, and Natural Fruit Extracts.
Through another Amazon slideshow of skincare products i must try, I discovered Advanced Clinicals products. As I am a lover of all things rose scented, my interest was peaked when I came a crossed this mask. I just had to try it! This anti-aging mask contains Aloe Vera, and natural extracts, like Bamboo and Blueberry, to help promote a more even skin tone while also fighting off free radicals. The coconut oil leaves skin hydrated but not greasy. Its gel-like texture is refreshing, and I especially love to keep it in the fridge for a bit before I put it on. I used this the night before my wedding to help reduce puffiness and prevent any flaky skin under my makeup. I wouldn't say that it made a huge difference as far as fine lines, but its anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties were excellent. Think this would be a great pre-makeup mask if you don't want to sleep with it. I think its light enough that it wouldn't cause any issues for oily skin individuals.
Final thought: Great for de-puffing and hydration. Plus it smells soooo good! Totally worth the price.
4. E.L.F. Bubble Cleansing Mask
Cleanse and moisturize your skin with this Hydrating Bubble Mask.
When I saw this mask I immediately was curious because it seems similar to another bubbling mask that I love and its half the price. I was intrigued with the idea of E.L.F. coming out with a skincare line, so this was my first buy.
Well not to burst your bubble.... its just ok. My skin did feel cleansed after using, but definitely not hydrated. Maybe someone with oily skin could appreciate this mask more, but I certainly didn't see or feel much difference. For blogging sake, I remained committed because I know that results may not be immediate. I used it as recommended 1-3 times a week for a month. Meh. No change in pore size or tone. Maybe I'm just used to more powerful products but I was underwhelmed. After checking out the ingredients my suspicions were confirmed- this mask needs some more power to really make a difference.
Final thought: Underwhelming. Might be good for a preteen just getting into the swing of skincare.
5. Bliss What A Melon
Reviving & De-stressing Overnight Mask
I have been a long time fan of Bliss since I first learned of the brand in 2012 while working for a beauty retailer. Then, it was salon exclusive product, and I believe more expensive then too. Now you can get it online and at Target! I have been a long time fan of their Bump Attendant Pads and their Triple Oxygenating Mask. So when I saw this mask on a friends bathroom sink, I knew I had to try it. It smells so amazing, just like candy. It has some sort of shimmer in it, which they call: Timiron Halo™. "Cosmetic-grade radiant strobing powder designed to capture a natural-looking glow and shimmering finish to refine facial features ." I'm fairly sure this just rinses off when you wash your face in the morning but maybe it does more than you think.
This mask does exactly what it promises. Its not an overhaul treatment to make drastic changes, but it does leave your skin feeling refreshed and vibrant with a kiss of hydration. Fruit extracts, like watermelon and cucumber, nourish and replenish and electrolytes that help balance and protect against free radicals. It is perfect when you what to go the all natural route and not wear foundation, just apply this the night before for fresh looking skin in the morning. The jar lasts a while too. I apply a thick layer and have gotten at least 15 masks out of it with some left!
Final thought: A great buy! Nice for reviving skin with a fabulous scent!
6. Dermalogica Charcoal Rescue Masque
All-in-one, detoxifying treatment
Whenever I feel like my pores are getting clogged or I'm starting to have some breakouts, I bust out this lift saver. Dermalogica has always been my number one recommendation for a professional skincare line. I trust the science and quality behind their products 100%. This mask is no exception. "Charcoal adsorbs impurities while sulfur promotes skin cell turnover for brighter skin. Volcanic Ash, Sea Silt, Bamboo Extract and alpha hydroxy acids further accelerate skin brightening with dual-action exfoliation. Niacinamide helps reduce congestion and calm the skin while Chilean Wild Mint helps refine pores."
I've used this product as a complete mask or even as a spot treatment for breakouts overnight. It is not difficult to remove, like other charcoal masks, nor does it smell funky. I see immediate results with my pores and clarity of my skin. My skin is very fair, and the smallest breakout will leave a glaring red mark on my face for weeks. This mask really helps with that post zit redness. Its a bit of a sticker shock if you aren't used to professional skincare pricing, but this is concentrated stuff. A little will go a long way. Its also one of Dermalogica's strongest masks, so it may not be ideal for sensitive skin- but it doesn't bother mine one bit. If you want to try a smaller size first, purchase this kit that's only $12! You can find Dermalogica products on Amazon, but be cautious of the seller. You do not want to purchase a copycat product that has mystery or expired ingredients.
Final thought: #1 charcoal mask. Perfect for normal to oily skin types for detoxifying, brightening, and clearing that wont leave your skin feeling sensitized.
7. Glamglow Thirsty Mud Hydrating Treatment Mask
Hydrating & glowing
I first tried this mask when I received it as a sample from Sephora. I had only experienced their YouthMud exfoliant, which made my face feel like it was melting off. So I was nervous to try it, but hopeful that a hydrating mask wouldn't be so harsh. I was happy I did it. It smells a-ma-zing!!! Its a pretty tropical scent.
This mask is really hydrating. It uses hyaluronic acid, coconut, ginger, and honey. You can wear it for 10-20 minutes or sleep in it. Directions say you can wipe off or massage in the remainder left- not something I would recommend from my experience. Wash you face after or you will feel oily later. Otherwise perfection. I would recommend this for all skin types- even oily. I would typically sleep with it on when I used the mask. It never broke me out! I've heard of frequent travelers using this mask while flying to protect their face from feeling dry and dehydrated- which you totally could wear this in public and it not be noticeable.
Final thought: Really does hydrate skin and smell fantastic, but on the more expensive side because the jar is tiny.
8. Glamglow SuperMud Clearing Treatment Mask
Clearing & exfoliating
This was another mask that I received a sample of from Sephora. I will occasionally have some large pore and T-zone oiliness due to monthly hormones. It tingles from its six different acids; they loosen dead skin cells to exfoliate. The activated charcoal & K-17 clay really helps to detoxify and are great for oily skin. However, this can pull oil & impurities from your skin causing some breakouts (this purge can be necessary for people). My skin did feel smoother and it did help dry up my breakouts. I started just using it in my T-zone, which was better for my dry skin. You leave the mask on for 5-20 minutes, pretty much until it dries. It wasn't too difficult to get off, but I recommend using a damp cloth to remove it. Suggested use is 1-3 times per week, but I would only recommend that if you have oily or acne prone skin. If you have normal or combination, I would try just once a week first. You will want to make sure you moisturize your skin fairly well after using this mask, even if you have oily skin. I would try some samples first before buying it to make sure it will not dry you out.
Final thought: Good for oily, acne prone, or combination skin types. Jar is tiny for the cost.
9. TONYMOLY I'm Real Sheet Mask Collection
I had a phase where I jumped on the Korean skincare train. It was so differently marketed and packaged, I was excited for something more playful. I did some reviews and came a crossed the TonyMoly brand. I tried all sorts of products because they were so affordable! I purchased their sheet mask collection. I wouldn't say that you will see a drastic change from these masks, but they are great to pamper yourself with! Some I liked a lot and felt that it softened or hydrated. The Brightening Lemon, Moisturizing Aloe, Elasticity Pomegranate, & Hydrating Coconut were my favorites. All of the sheets were very saturated, to the point they almost were dripping. The sheet itself was of decent quality and did not tear when I tried to unfold it. Their scents were pleasant and not overpowering.
Final thought: Good for self care/pampering days. No huge or significant results. Affordable.
10. Peter Thomas Roth 24K Gold Mask
Anti-aging & firming
This is the most indulgent mask on my list. 24K gold is known for its anti-aging benefits like brightening, firming, & lifting. It also has caffeine and colloidal gold that helps tone and firm. This mask feels great with a rich gel-like cream. Directions suggest to apply a thick layer and allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes. My skin did look brighter and had a glow. I do not really have any aging concerns, besides preventing, so I can't quite speak to its firming and lifting. My face did seem more replenished and youthful. However, hyaluronic acid and glycerin should provide hydration but my skin did feel drier the follow days after the mask. I actually ended up using a hydration mask the next day because my skin was so tight.
My experience with PTR products has taught me that they use very strong ingredients. Their anti-aging products are no joke, and this is a prime example. The jar will produce several masks, so for the quality I would say the $80 is a fair price.
Final thought: Excellent for aging concerns and some high end pampering for your skin.
Please keep in mind my skin type: Normal to Dry with occasional breakouts and slight sensitivity. So my experience may be different than yours!
I have not been paid or offered any incentive or discount for these products or brands. This is my opinion as an esthetician, skincare junkie, and consumer.