Beauty trends come and go so quickly sometimes it’s hard to know which ones are worth it. Beeswax facial for example? No thank you. One beauty and self care trend that is relatively affordable, accessible, and has stuck around for the last few years is face masks. No, not Pandemic Cover Your Mouth and Nose Face Masks, but Soak in the Bathtub, Drink a Glass of Wine and Moisturize kind of face mask. 

Facial masks can be found at nearly every drug store, grocery store, or Target. They usually range from about $5 to $10, depending on the size and intent of the product. There are sheet masks which contain the product on a thin sheet made of paper or cloth, shaped like your face with little cut outs for your nose and mouth. Sheet face masks oftentimes have a lot of product on them and are very wet when you apply them. These masks often have you rub in the excess product afterwards rather than rinsing it off. Because sheet masks are so wet with product and can be rubbed right into the skin, these oftentimes contain vitamin C, rose water, or other ingredients that will brighten or moisturize your face. They are generally fairly gentle on your skin since they don’t need to be rinsed off.

There are also clay face masks. These usually come in a little pouch or a jar with a lid. These masks are spread onto the face with your fingers or a little brush. You’ll feel this type of mask tighten and harden on your face over the period of time you have it on, and it will need to be rinsed off when you’re done. Clay face masks often times contain charcoal, focus on acne prone skin and refining pores, and are usually a little more heavy duty on your face. There are some moisturizing clay masks though, so not all of them are heavy. 

Although these quick at home facial treatments are widely available and easy to do, are they really that good for our skin? The short answer is yes!

Facemasks certainly aren’t bad for your skin, and unless you have an allergic reaction to an ingredient, they won’t make your skin worse. Since face masks are left on for such a short period of time, usually no more than 10 or 15 minutes, the effects of the face mask are likely short lived. I’ve certainly used a face mask and had a little extra glow the next day, but my charcoal mask isn’t going to keep my pores clean for a week or anything like that. Masks that have product that can be rubbed into the skin likely have a more lasting effect because your skin is soaking the product up even after the mask has been removed. Harsher masks that need to be rinsed off don’t really keep working their magic long after the mask has been removed because it’s only on your face for a short period of time. 

Face masks are a quick and inexpensive way to give yourself a little TLC and spend some time on self care. They smell good, make you feel good, and help your skin glow even if it’s only for a little while. If you’re wanting to use a face mask and have very dry skin, I recommend a cream based mask. If you want to unclog your pores, a charcoal or clay mask might be nice. Vitamin C masks are great for brightening, but can also irritate super sensitive skin. Before you purchase a mask, read the fine print and see what the mask is intended to do, then consider how your skin might react to it. The ingredients in face masks are quite mild, so a severe reaction isn’t likely, but it isn’t impossible. Read before you buy!

Now stop by Target on your way home and pick up some ice cream and a few masks and relax tonight!