How to find the best face mask
Are you ready for your new favorite step in your self-care and beauty routines? Face masks are the perfect way to provide your skin with nutrients, vitamins and goodies to look nourished and feel great. In just 10 or 15 minutes, masks can help leave skin with a glowing appearance. As any skin care junkie knows, hydrated skin is healthy-looking skin, and face masks can help transfer that moisture onto your skin complexion. Face masks can be used for all different kinds of noticeable skin concerns, from dry to dull skin to blemishes and more. Regardless of your skin type or skin concern, we have a feeling there is a face mask out there for you to fall in love with. Aside from all their glowing skin benefits, face masks are also a great way to take time for yourself. With a small self-care addition like a bath, magazine, and a candle, you can turn your mask time into a DIY spa day or simply a moment to breathe. Ahead, learn more about why you should be using a face mask in your skin care routine, how to find the best face mask for you, and how to use a face mask.
What Do Face Masks Do?
Face masks are designed to deliver intense skin hydration and high levels of moisture to your skin in a short period of time. Some face masks can help give skin a boost in just 15 minutes. Whether you use a sheet mask or face mask cream, the best face masks help to make skin look refreshed and reveal a gorgeous skin complexion.
Face masks can be one step in your skin care routine, or you can save a mask for those moments when you want to give your skin some extra TLC. Regardless of when you use them, face masks are a great way to help brighten both your day and the look of your skin.
Types of Face Masks
There are many different types of face masks which generally fall into two broad categories. The first is a cream mask, which typically comes in a jar and requires rinse off after use. The alternative is a sheet mask, the increasingly popular serum-soaked cotton, silk, or paper-soaked mask that conforms to the shape of your face. Choose your favorite or incorporate both for the ultimate facemask routine.
Face Mask Creams
Cream masks are named after their creamy texture. There are many options within the world of cream masks, from clay to antioxidant to hydrating masks. Cream masks let you apply product to specific areas of the face. You may want to choose one type of face mask for your T-Zone and another for your cheeks and chin. One benefit of cream masks is that you can “multi-mask” or target different areas of the face with multiple masks, all at the same time. (Pro tip: Multi-masking makes for a great, colorful skin care selfie.) Shani Darden, Garnier consulting esthetician, “prefer[s] a cream mask to target a specific problem.” If you like to get hands-on with your skin care routine, give cream masks a try.
Clay masks, one version of cream masks, are beneficial for oily skin types. Since clay masks can help to draw out skin impurities and minimize the appearance of pores, they are useful to help turn troubled skin into glowing skin. Garnier Clean+ Pore Purifying 2-in-1 Clay Cleanser/Mask is a great product option for oily skin types looking to try a cream mask. It is formulated with charcoal and works as a magnet to draw dirt and oil away from the skin. On days when you are in a special rush, it can even be used as a facial cleanser.
Sheet masks are the second broader category of face mask. Made from paper-like sheets, sheet masks fit right over your face and can deliver intense hydration to your skin in just 10 or 15 minutes. Just pop one on your face and relax (or do chores, or do some online shopping…) for a few minutes, then peel your mask off to reveal glowing skin. Sheet masks are single-use, and you don’t have to rinse off any extra product that is left on your skin. Simply gently massage the remaining product into your skin for that extra boost of moisture.
Sheet masks like The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Hydrating are perfect to bring with you on a plane or in your luggage for your next trip. Since they barely take up space and help to deeply hydrate skin, sheet masks are an ideal product to keep skin plump with moisture while you are on the road. (But don’t worry, they work just as well to upgrade your skin care routine when you are at home.) Darden says she uses a sheet mask “when [she’s] focused on hydration or for ease when traveling.” Sheet masks are often formulated for specific skin types. Look for a sheet mask that meets your skin’s needs.
The Best Face Mask for Your Skin Type
Whether your skin is dry, oily, normal or sensitive, you can find a face mask that is formulated to fit your skin’s specific concerns. The first step is to understand your skin type. Once you better understand your skin’s needs, you can alter your skin care routine to fit them. Sheet masks are designed for various skin concerns and can benefit all different skin types, which means you will probably find a favorite sheet mask for your skin.
For dry skin types, opt for a moisturizing face mask formulated with nourishing ingredients like hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid helps skin retain moisture. Don’t be thrown off by the word “acid” in the name. Hyaluronic acid (or HA, as it’s often known) is one of the most popular ingredients in skin care products. Look for this ingredient in products that help to increase the appearance of plump, healthy-looking skin. When choosing a face mask, look for HA or “sodium hyaluronate,” as it’s written on some labels, on your product packaging.
Each of Garnier’s sheet masks are super hydrating, so start with all five and then find your favorite. If you are looking for a burst of skin hydration, start with The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Hydrating which provides deep moisture. After using this sheet mask, skin can feel softer and look more radiant. If you have normal to combination skin, you may want to try a mattifying sheet mask. Opt for the The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Mattifying, formulated to help balance skin and visibly reduce the appearance of pores. For dry and sensitive skin types, try a face mask developed to soothe skin like The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Soothing. For tired-looking skin that could use a hydration boost — perhaps you’re traveling and looking for the right face mask to bring on the plane — we like The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Anti Fatigue. Finally, if you are prepping for a big night out or want your skin to have a healthy-looking radiance, a glow boosting face mask such as The Super Hydrating Sheet Mask – Glow Boosting can help.
Choose the Garnier face mask that works best for your skin at the moment or stock up on all five and prepare for the days ahead. Regardless of the face mask you choose, don’t forget to apply moisturizer after using to continue hydrating your skin. Just like finding the best sheet mask for you, you should look for a moisturizer that is formulated for your skin type. Dry skin types should choose a non-comedogenic moisturizer with ingredients that help provide moisture. Try Moisture Bomb The Antioxidant Super Moisturizer, which has a water-light gel-cream formula with Hyaluronic Acid and delivers an instant burst of long-lasting hydration. For sensitive skin, choose a moisturizer that provides your skin with gentle nourishment. A sensitive skin moisturizer is often fragrance-free to help minimize potential reactions. We like Moisture Rescue Actively Hydrating Daily Lotion Fragrance Free SPF 15, since it’s gentle on skin and also provides broad spectrum SPF 15 sun protection. Even for oily skin types, moisturizer should be part of your daily skin care regimen. If your skin often feels slick or greasy, look for moisturizers with labels like “mattifying” or “oil control” that are formulated to help reduce excess oil and visible face shine.
How to Use a Face Mask
One of the reasons why sheet masks have exploded in popularity so quickly is that they’re portable, disposable, and very simple to use. Need ideas for how to pass the time while you mask? Mask while you meditate, while you get ready for a night out, or even better, while you pencil in some me-time and cozy up with a book. Since sheet masks only take 15 minutes, they’re easy to use while you’re multi-tasking. Next time you need to power through email and get down to Inbox Zero, treat yourself to a sheet mask to make the task more fun. Is Thursday night your designated evening to spend at home with TV and popcorn? Add a spa element with a sheet mask. Need an affordable treat to go in your bridesmaids’ thank you gifts? Buy a round of sheet masks, customized for each pal’s skin type. For travelers, a sheet mask is an essential element of a road trip beauty routine and even better, it’s travel-friendly. Fitness lovers have also been known to pop a sheet mask into a gym bag to help with that transition from gym time to glow time. Bonus: Sheet masks make wonderful props for selfies, so be sure to share how you mask with the world. (If you need ideas to find your perfect zen and skin time, check out some of our favorite maskers showing off #HowIMask.)
Before you mask, the first step is to cleanse your face to remove excess dirt, oil, and impurities from the surface of your skin. (You don’t want your mask sitting on top of all that gunk!) For fast, gentle cleansing and makeup removal, try rinse-free Micellar Cleansing Water. In just a few swipes with a cotton pad, your face can transform into the ideal surface for a face mask. Once you’ve cleansed, open up your mask packet and locate the eye and mask cut-outs for proper positioning. Fit the eye and mouth cut-outs to your face and smooth out the face mask onto your skin. The solution keeps the mask in place while the serum goes to work on your skin. After about 15 minutes, remove your face mask and throw it out, as masks are a one-use only product. You may be left with some excess serum on skin’s surface. No need to rinse it off – just massage the leftover product into your skin. After the serum has dried, follow up with your favorite Garnier moisturizer.
How Often Should You Use a Face Mask?
If you have normal skin that isn’t too dry or oily, you should incorporate a sheet mask once a week. Skin that’s on the dry side can benefit from using sheet masks more frequently, so try masking twice a week. We recommend leaving your sheet mask on for about 15 minutes, which means it only takes an extra half hour per week to set you on your way to hydrated skin.
For oily skin types, it’s important to keep skin cleansed and moisturized to help avoid further oil build-up — that’s where hydrating yet mattifying sheet masks come in. Often, people with oily skin think it’s better to dry skin out. In fact, drying out your skin may have the opposite result than intended. The use of a hydrating sheet mask can actually help to keep your skin balanced. However, oily skin types don’t need to mask quite as often; Dr. Madfes, Garnier’s consulting dermatologist, recommends that those with oily skin incorporate a sheet mask once a week. Regardless of how often you decide to mask, Dr. Madfes says “taking time out of your day and hydrating the skin is a good thing.”
As you’re working cream or sheet masks into your skin care routine, try out different options and see what works best for your skin. The more face masks you try, the more you’ll start to understand what works for you. Plus, you’ll get all the extra relaxing benefits of taking time out for yourself and your skin. Armed with a background on masking, it only takes one sheet to get hooked on this nourishing skin care step. Get ready for glowing skin!