When we say skincare face masks, what do you think of?
You likely have surgical or cloth masks in mind but do not worry, we will not be talking about those. Instead, we will be diving into the kind you wear when you are indoors- whether you are having a sleepover with your besties, or in the mood for a little self-care session.
What is a Face Mask?
Compared to a moisturiser, a face mask is generally only meant to be applied to your skin for a relatively short time. Formulated to give your skin a much-needed boost in 10 to 20 minutes, masks have a high concentration of active ingredients compared to other skincare products – not including ampoules and concentrates.
Different types of face masks
There are countless forms of masks to choose from, each developed to target various skin issues. Whether you need major hydration, a collagen-rich formula, calming concoction, or a brightening boost, you can be sure to find a face mask for the job. To help to determine which is best for you, here’s our guide on the types of face masks and what they can do for your skin.
Single-use sheets enriched with active ingredients, sheet masks are probably the best known and most readily available face masks out there. Loved for their fun designs and ease of use, single-use sheet face masks come in a variety of fabrics—like paper, cellulose, fibre, and gel. Plus, any excess serum in the mask packet can be patted into the skin after the mask is peeled off.
Credits: Polina Kovaleva
Quick Porcelain Skin tip on masking:
Leaving your mask on for longer than is recommended could cause irritation and dehydrate your skin.
Another popular form of mask, Peel-Off face masks are widely known for their peeling appeal. The most common peel-off face mask being a charcoal black mask that promises to pull out blackheads and other gunk from your pores, leaving your skin soft and you feeling oddly satisfied. Apart from this, other peel-off masks provide various benefits, but a commonality amongst them is that the peeling acts as a form of exfoliation, removing dead skin cells that sit on the surface. Though it can be satisfying to use peel-off face masks often, we would caution against overusing them – especially for sensitive or acne-prone skin- as it can lead to further sensitivity and irritation.
Credit: Miriam Alonso
Designed for deep cleaning, clay masks tend to have a paste-like consistency and are thicker than other masks. Similar to peel-off face masks, clay masks act as a magnet to draw out excess oil, dirt, and other impurities from deep within pores for a clearer and more balanced complexion. As a result, they are more suitable for oily skin and combination skin, especially those with shiny t-zones. However, similar to peel-off face masks, clay masks can sometimes be overly drying, so be sure to avoid overusing and pick a well-formulated mask that will leave your skin shine-free, but not dry or tight.
Unlike the above mentioned masks, sleeping masks are face masks that you leave on overnight to provide your skin with extra nourishment. Wondering how are they different from a typical moisturiser? Well, these types of face masks are jam-packed with active ingredients, more so than your standard creams, and typically focus on hydration and moisturising. A great face mask option especially if you spend your nights in an air-conditioned environment!
Hydrating Facial Masks
Seemingly basic, a good, hydrating face mask is a cornerstone in every well-balanced skincare routine. Despite only focusing on hydration, these masks are essential as they help to counteract any hydration lost throughout the day via transepidermal water loss – a process where hydration from within the skin is lost to the surrounding environment, particularly prevalent in air-conditioned or drier environments. Thus, treating your skin to a hydrating face mask every now and then can help the skin retain moisture, maintain natural barrier and give it that extra glow.
What about homemade masks?
While experimenting with ingredients on your own sounds fun, you may actually be doing your skin more harm than good. DIY face masks are often not formulated at the right concentrations and are not created in sanitary spaces. This can allow bacteria to develop easily, leading to breakouts. Besides this reason, ingredients used to create these homemade face masks were never developed or intended for use on the skin, which can lead to a whole host of issues like irritation, rashes and more.
While some celebrities in Korea swear by using a face mask every single day, we recommend starting slow and finding a rhythm that works for you — a hydrating face mask about twice a week is enough to give you the benefits. Now go relax and give your skin a little TLC!