Pushing the Limits of FaceApp
We tested 13 of the best face masks to see which work (and which don't)
They say:"Protective skin care that calms and soothes the driest skin. An ultra-rich balm in a nourishing mask that softens and comforts the skin in just 10 minutes for deeply nourished skin that is soft, supple, radiant and feels great."
Claire Hodgson, Digital Editor:"This face mask has been a lifesaver over winter. I was dubious about trying the "creamy, buttery texture”, as I have combination skin that breaks out easily, but I loved it. I always struggle with dry patches over the colder months that make makeup application almost impossible, but a 10-minute application of this mask before application totally smoothed the texture of my skin. It felt like it plumped me up and gave a shot of moisture, without leaving me oily or greasy."
They say:"This 4-in-1 treatment detoxifies and brightens in only 10 minutes. It tightens pores, boosts radiance and protects against damage caused by pollution."
Dusty Baxter-Wright, Digital Writer:"This mask promises to cleanse and detoxify the skin, while refining pores and brightening the complexion. Big asks. The mask smelt non offensive and came with a small brush so application was mess-free and easy, especially because you apply it to dry skin so don’t have to worry about it running. It dries hard after 10 minutes so your get that satisfying my-face-is-about-to-crack feeling, and then you rinse it off with warm water. My skin definitely felt cleansed and soft and looked brighter, but I wasn’t convinced my blackheads had been de-clogged or notice that my pores looked reduced. My skin felt smooth and tighter after multiple uses, but for £39.99, I’d have liked to notice less pores and more glow."
They say:"NIOD Flavanone Mud is a three-phase treatment that purifies, protects and responds. Which means it deeply cleanses and purifies the skin, decongests any environmental toxins, and helps skin build up defences against future damage."
Laura Capon, Digital Fashion & Beauty Writer:"One of the things I want most in life (apart from the same genes as Jennifer Lopez) is glowing skin. Normally I can only achieve the glow I like from makeup but after using this decongesting face mask, my skin literally glows through my foundation. Packed with three different types of clay, it does have quite a tingling effect but it’s well worth it for the end result and I recommend it to everyone who shares my life of beaming skin."
They say:"The Burt's Bees Intense Hydration treatment mask is infused with Clary Sage and is scientifically proven to provide intense hydration while helping to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles."
Charlotte Temple, Snapchat Animator:"My skin can be pretty dry in the winter, so I was keen to try this out. There was little-to-no scent, which is good if you're sensitive to fragrance. After 10mins the mask felt tingly, but still comfortable, it had gone from bright white (SPF50 sun cream white for reference) to pretty clear, but it felt like there was a lot of residue on my skin. The instructions on the tube say to wipe off the excess with tissue, but I used a soft dry flannel (because, tissues = mess). My skin feltsomoisturised afterwards, not bad for £12."
They say:"Nature's complexion clean-up crew clears the way for skin to act its best. Bamboo Charcoal acts like a magnet to draw out deep-dwelling pore-cloggers, White China Clay absorbs environmental toxins, Lecithin dissolves impurities. Skin looks clearer, feels perfectly pure."
Paisley Gilmour, Digital Sex & Relationships Writer: "Applying the Origins charcoal mask is kind of like slathering warm clay on your face - it smooths really nicely over the skin. It’s super thick, we’re talking Rolo Yoghurt here, and gloopy in a good way. The smell is exactly what you’d imagine, charcoal-y (technical beauty term right there). It takes a lot of effort to wash off because after 10 minutes or so (the packet says to leave it on ‘until it dries’ so I tend to take it off when smiling makes me feel like I’ve just had Botox) it’s really bloody stuck to your skin. It’s worth the effort though. Afterwards my skin, which is normally pretty oily and grim, feels way softer. With other charcoal masks I’ve broken out overnight or the next day, but I’ve used this four times and haven’t had even a hint of a pimple. It certainly does unclog my deep old greasy pores."
Rating:8/10 (because it could be a little easier to take off)
They say:"This ultra-gentle gel helps soothe, hydrate and detoxify the look of dry, irritated skin with botanical extracts of Cucumber, Papaya, Chamomile, Pineapple, Sugar Maple, Sugarcane, Orange, Lemon, Bilberry and Aloe Vera. Excellent for helping to calm and soothe the skin's appearance after sun exposure, peels, waxing, facials and extractions."
Laura Capon, Digital Fashion & Beauty Writer:"When I say this face mask literally saved my skin, I’m only being slightly dramatic. After leaving a different (and very potent) face mask on my skin for too long, I was left with skin so red that I genuinely thought I might have to take a trip to the doctors. In my panic I found this in my skincare stash and after applying a thick layer of this cooling gel and leaving it on for 10 minutes, my burning, beetroot-red skin had returned back to normal. If you suffer from sensitive, or easily irritated skin this is a must-have."
They say:"The Goddess Skin Clay Mask features ingredients to tighten pores, moisturise your skin and clear imperfections. Now everyone can have flawless, glowing Goddess Skin."
Victoria Jowett, Digital Beauty Editor:"Charlotte Tilbury's skincare doesn't get anywhere near as much hype as it deserves. This clay mask is perfect for combination skin types (like mine), it draws all that gunky stuff out of the pores, whilst also moisturising the skin - yep, really. This is one of the only clay masks I'veeverused that doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or tight afterwards. How? The formula is loaded with sweet almond and rosehip oil to deeply nourish skin.
After 10 mins on the skin this mask calms redness, minimises pores, and leaves skin soft and clear - no wonder Charlotte smothers it over celebrities' faces before they walk the red carpet. Expect your foundation to apply like a dream afterwards."
They say:"Black Rose Cream Mask offers the skin "instant youth". Rich in active anti-ageing ingredients, it immediately gets to work on signs of fatigue and leaves the skin looking youthful and energised. It brings together three actions to restore a luminous complexion and redensified skin in just 10 to 15 minutes: a smoothing and plumping action, a revitalising action, and a softening and hydrating action."
Jess Edwards, Digital Fashion & Lifestyle Editor:"This mask promises ‘instant youth’ – the Holy Grail - through smoothing, plumping and brightening. And it delivers. The instant hydration boost it gives your skin is clearly visible. I have quite sensitive skin, however, and the first time my skin was presented with this scented product, it did show signs of irritation. Thankfully, the irritation didn’t progress past ‘a little bit itchy’ and the third time I applied it, I didn’t notice it at all.
My favourite thing about this mask is you don’t really have to take it off. It says on the instructions to remove any excess cream after 10-15 minutes with a cotton wool pad, but honestly my skin seems to soak it all up in that time anyway. The results really are instant – expect, glowy, fresh-looking skin in 10 mins.
The main down-side of this product though is the price. I LOVE IT, so much that my camera-roll is now full of ‘no makeup, glowy skin selfies’ but would I pay £100 for it? I don't know."
They say:"Stimulate, clarify, and brighten skin with this revitalising mask. The mineral-rich treatment absorbs oil, draws out impurities, and fights breakouts while giving an energising boost to the complexion. Kaolin & sea salt purify while ginseng & aloe vera balance."
Alex Hering, Multimedia Producer:"I was really impressed with this mask. Straight after using my skin looked plumper and had a definite ‘glow’ to it. The mask applies so smoothly – similar to a soft butter texture (not that I’ve ever put butter on my face, but y'know). I left it on for 15mins and after washing it off and towel drying I noticed my skin looked brighter than usual. The next morning my skin was noticeably plump and clear. It looked like I’d slept for 12 hours (sans the pillow marks on my cheeks, obvs)."
They say: "This mask uses the most advanced hydration active technologies, providing deep instant Hydration. It hydrates, moisturises, restores, replenishes and calms the skin. Designed for men and women."
Laura Capon, Digital Fashion & Beauty Writer:"I love this face mask so much that I’ve used up the entire pot and need to restock. I tend to use it the most in summer and take it on holiday because it feels incredibly cooling on the skin and takes away that horrible tight feeling you get if you’ve been in the sun too long. It’s also one of the first things I reach for when I start to notice more fine lines appearing on my forehead because after a couple of uses it really plumps out my skin."
They say:"Clinically demonstrated to minimise the damaging effects of pollution on skin. The nourishing formula replenishes vital nutrients. Defends and replenishes skin leaving it renewed, radiant and more prepared to protect itself from daily environmental aggressors."
Alex Hering, Multimedia Producer:"This mask is meant to defend against pollutants and impurities plus provide hydration and improve radiance. My skin didn’t feel particularly hydrated afterwards, but I did notice a bit more radiance coming throughout the next day.
To apply the mask, you're meant to smooth a visible layer onto the skin, leave for 5 minutes and then ‘tissue off’, leaving some of the product on the skin to work overnight. This wasn’t great TBH, I tissued off the product but by then it had a dried so it was kind of hard to remove using the tissue, plus it was sticky so I ended up leaving bits of tissue on my face overnight. My skin looked a little more even the next morning, but it wasn’t as moisturised as it usually is when I use night oils and serums. Throughout the day though, I noticed my skin looked brighter, and when I went to cleanse in the evening it looked clearer and fresher than usual. This mask must be a slow burner."
They say:"A potent bio active peel mask designed to renew the complexion, reduce the appearance of fine lines and dramatically improve skin tone. A cocktail of four AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) lift dead skin and resurface to dramatically improve skintone, texture, firmness, and radiance, while minimising the appearance of pores and reducing sun damage, pigmentation, and acne scars."
Charlotte Temple, Snapchat Animator: "On the box it says it will remove dead skin cells and leave skin looking brighter (yaaas - my winter skin is dull AF). So I’m expecting pretty big things. First pump out the bottle and it smells. Strong. It's very fruity, butnot the nicestscent, tbh. It gets less noticeable after I’ve finished applying though.
After 10 mins I washed it off using the handy cloth included in the box, and my skin felt great - super clean but a bit tight. I guess it's an exfoliating mask so should’ve expected that, I’m an over moisturiser as it is, but I needed a fair bit of face cream to get my skin feeling soft and hydrated again."
They say: "A minty, multi-purpose mask with a mixture of gentle yet effective ingredients, including honey and kaolin, to help you maintain your magnificent skin."
Laura Capon, Digital Fashion & Beauty Writer:"If you’re prone to breakouts both on your face and body, you can’t go far wrong with this mask. The peppermint scent is divine and it also makes your skin tingle in a satisfying, non painful way.
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