A mask for every faceJacob-Lund/Shutterstock
Masks are back in a big, bold way. Some promise to brighten and lighten skin, while others claim to hydrate dry skin, returning it to its dewy splendor, fill in wrinkles and folds or unclog pores for a blemish-free complexion. Some even work their magic while you sleep. They come at just about every price point and even go beyond the face. “Both sheet masks and regular masks are a vehicle to deliver active cosmeceutical ingredients for anti-aging and skin brightening purposes,” explains New York City dermatologist Melissa K. Levin, MD. The mask theoretically increases penetration of the actives, but she adds: “Not all masks are created equal.” The only way to find the best face mask for you is by looking at ingredients and matching it to your skin conditions.
If you need to hydrate dry, flaky skinrodial.co.uk
“Masks are faster than facials, you can do it yourself, there’s no downtime, and you can instantly hydrate skin,” says Samantha Murrell, a make-up artist at Barneys New York, who regularly recommends masks to her clients. Hydrating ingredients include hyaluronic acid, aloe, glycerin, and urea, to name a few. Some top-sellers include Skinceuticals Hydrating B5 Gel, SK-II Facial Treatment Mask, 111 Skin’s Bio Cellulose Facial Treatment Mask, Rodial’s Dragon’s Blood Hyaluronic Mask, and Karuna Hydrating Mask, which is clinically proven to increase hydration by 40 percent. A relative newcomer is the rubber mask, which temporarily seals in the active ingredients so they can work harder on your skin. We like Dr.Jart+ Rubber Mask Hydration Lover, which comes with a hydrating ampoule to apply first. “The effects can be dramatic,” Murrell says. “These are great to use before a big night out.”