What’s the one key step you might be missing in your skincare routing? A tale of facial masks

The celebrity in the photo below is Bingbing Fan, a 34-year-old female actress in China who is renowned for her flawless skin. In Asia, having flawless skin means you need to have fair, super soft and wrinkle-free skin (I know it’s so unfair to women!). What’s her secret? Well she is known as a facial mask maniac. It is said that she easily uses up hundreds of high-end facial masks in a year (probably an annual $10K+ expense just for facial masks). Well this is definitely not her only secret weapon as she is a celebrity and all celebs use botox and other cosmetic surgeries. However, facial masks can indeed make a difference as it’s an intensive care session for your face as long as you know how to choose the products.

"X-Men: Days Of Future Past" World Premiere

I’ve tried quite a few facial masks by now and here are some simple tips I wanted to share from my experience testing out different masks.

  • No DIY masks. While making a DIY mask can be a fun experience, our skin will not be able to absorb most of the raw ingredients. Even professional products can only make the skin absorb a small amount and that’s why skin improvement takes time. In addition, common ingredients used in these DIY masks such as egg white could easily transfer bacteria onto your face, which can cause breakout or irritation.
  • Save money with cleansing masks but invest in high-end hydrating masks. I’ve tried masks in different price ranges and from my experience, cleansing masks especially the mud or clay ones are very similar and they also stay on your face for a very short while (you have to wash it off within 10 minutes usually). My three favorites are: Ahava Purifying Mud Mask, Wei beauty golden root purifying mud mask and Eve Lom rescue mask. On the other hand when it comes to hydrating masks or masks that claim to tackle your skin tone, acne and pore issues, cheaper brands do NOT work at all (i.e. masks from brands like Origins) while high-end products can create noticeable differences just after 1-2 times of use. For instance, I was shocked (in a nice way) how my skin gets an instant brightening effect from the Sisley black rose creamy mask and the SK-II facial treatment mask.
  • Our skin reacts to masks very differently so no one knows which masks work the best for you until you try it out yourself. I usually test samples or travel-size masks, and read reviews before I indulge in an expensive product and it has worked wonder for me. If you wanted to know more about beauty samples, you can find my experience in this post here.

Lastly, I wanted to share a few nice masks I’ve been using recently and mini reviews. They are priced between drugstore and high-end so if you are in the facial mask discovery phase, these would be good to start with.

Glamglow Thirstymud Hydrating Treatment (deeply moisturizing, strong coconut smell, creamy texture, better for summer time as it has a cooling effect)

Sulwhasoo Overnight Vitalizing Mask (rich creamy texture, strong herb smell, very hydrating and helps with make up the next morning as your face becomes more supple)

Algenist Firming & Lifting Intensive Mask (rich gel texture, no consistent firming results yet but it’s highly hydrating)

Do you use facial masks and what are your favorites? Please share in comments 🙂


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