Masks are our saviour when our neglected skin is giving us signals that it needs some TLC. Our complexions feel tight when dehydrated, have a slightly sandpapery texture when needing exfoliation, and look dull when hinting to be perked up. Here, some favourite masks that will reset your skin. —Catherine Dunwoody
Sometimes you just don’t have the time to lie back with a mask and cucumber slices on your eyes for 30 minutes all spa-like. If 60 seconds is more your speed some days, this brand-new Dior Capture Totale Dreamskin 1 Minute Mask ($91 at Hudson’s Bay) is essential. The gel morphs into a cream when applied, the salicylic acid (BHA), glycolic and citric acids (AHA) do their exfoliating, and then, rinsed off—ta da! Radiance.
After just one try from this box of 12 pairs of Retinol serum eye masks, the Shiseido Vital Perfection Uplifting and Firming Express Eye Mask ($98 at Sephora) really did provide a firmer, tighter and dare we say, rested look to our face. Like a sheet mask for the under-eye area, temples, and upper cheeks; we suggest 10 minutes in the morning (pre-makeup). Crowsfeet? Never heard of ’em.
For some, when O magazine says they like something, it’s like the ultimate stamp of approval, and Oprah has given Canadian brand Sahajan just that. Indian brides for centuries have used a ritual facial mask to get their glow on pre-wedding ceremony, and brightening blend of anti-inflammatory oils, fruit acids, and brightening turmeric extract ($64) is the secret recipe.
Single-use masks are still wildly popular, and Burt’s Bees Renewing Biocellulose Gel Mask ($5 at London Drugs), made from coconuts, contains 99 per cent natural ingredients like rose and algae extracts that soothe, soften lines and hydrate beautifully.
We use Juice Beauty’s Prebiotix Instant Flash Facial ($68 at Sephora) in the shower. Soon as we step in, we dampen our face, swirl this exfoliating mask around and then leave it for three minutes while we do other showery things. Rinse, and reveal baby-soft skin due to the tartaric acid and lime caviar.
We find most overnight masks to be sticky; they rub off on our pillowcase. Pleasantly impressed with this Plump Up Sleeping Facial ($82 at Sephora) from Greek beauty brand Korres, as it absorbed shortly after applied and did its plumping, lifting magic while we slept—no mess left behind. Contains antioxidants like black pine extract and black tea.
We still love a good old-fashioned peel-off mask, especially if our skin is troubled with a little “maskne” as of late. This Skin Republic Charcoal Peel-Off Face Mask ($8) pouch contains three applications. Just smooth on a layer, let it dry for 30 minutes and gently peel off, clearing out congestion with charcoal and sloughing off dead skin cells.