I was thinking long and hard about what to write for you to start my blog with and that's what I came up with. I know that people say you can't go wrong with choosing a mask and I totally disagree with that statement. Everyone's skin is different and you should try masks that are suitable for your skin type and not everything that is available in the store for grabs. This post will come in handy for those who are finding themselves in the beginning of the yellow brick road leading to the wonderful city of masking.
1. Learn what your skin is like
First of all if you don't know what your skin type is, do some research or go to a cosmetologist for a consultation, they will be most helpful to you in identifying your skin type. Just a hint, there are 4 types to chose from: oily, dry, combination and normal skin. For example if your skin is very oily, choose for kaolin(clay) based masks as it will draw the excess sebum out of your pores.
2. Medical conditions, anyone?
Take into consideration the complexion of your skin as well as any existing medical conditions such as acne prone skin, sensitive skin, hyper-pigmentation, eczema, rosacea e.t.c. Any type of these are going to need a special care.
3. Buy things suitable for your skin type for the better effect
Look for products that meet the goals you want to achieve based on what your skin needs for the time being. If you want to reduce oiliness of the skin, look for masks that are made specifically for this situation. For example if your skin is oily and you want to reduce/control the oil, applying mask that claims that it will make your face shine like a disco-ball won't do you any good.
4. "This mask will transform you into a queen" ?!?!?!?
Read the claims on the package and don't expect miracles. If mask tells you it reduces the texture, you shouldn't be expecting the effects of a chemical peel. If it was possible, lots of people would not undergo the ridiculously painful procedures.
5. "Let's see what you're made of..."
Take a careful look at the ingredient list of the product you intend to buy. You don't have to be a chemist to understand what you see. Use existing websites that analyze cosmetics and provide you with detailed information on what certain ingredient is and for what skin type/condition it is meant to be in the product. My favorite two websites for the in depth analysis are:
6. Prep and prime:
Always clean your face before you apply any of the masks. Debris from polluted air, sebum, bacteria and so on are sealed under the mask and pushed into your pores leading to some bad-ass breakouts. Always moisturise your face before you apply a sheet mask, your skin will absorb the essence better.
7. "Eew, did it go bad?"
Do not forget to use clean tools to ensure that all potted masks you own remain as fresh as they can. Also look at the "use by" dates and don't neglect these as many of the ingredients tend to deteriorate overtime causing changing mask's consistency and more.
8. Follow the instructions on the packaging
Do not exceed the application time. With clay masks you may over-dry your face so your skin may get some damage from the mask pulling and tugging on it. Same with the sheet masks. Up to a point they are hydrating. If you keep it on till it's completely dry (maybe you fell asleep?), the effects of hydration would be minimal if not the opposite. One of the coming day's I'll show you what I mean in vivo, sacrificing my face to the blog-science. Also do not rinse out sheet masks unless it is specified on the package.
9. "Higher price automatically equals best quality?"
In a lot of the cases the price tag is not representing the actual quality of the product itself and quality of the ingredients used. I've tried expensive, I've tried cheap, I've tried middle-class prices. To be honest, some of my most favorite masks come from the cheap range. No price tag is indicative of quality, when it comes to face masks.
10. "This mask ruined my life and my sheets!!!"
Sleeping packs(masks) are not going to ruin your bed sheets. Most of there are just an extra hydrating/calming version of a cream. I personally see sleeping packs as a booster for the night and I do them when I need to look well rested before any important occasions. I also reach for those in case my skin is destroyed by aircraft airconditioning. Seriously though, every time after a flight my skin feels and looks lie a prune...
I thing that is it for now. If I remember something else I wish I would have known before buying face masks (and other skin products) I will add it here later. For now thank you for reading and may the Mask be with you 🙂
Yours truly, Kati 🙂