Top 10 | Face Masks For Clearer, Brighter, Smoother Skin

Monday, February 13, 2017

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I'll be the first to admit, I'm a bit of a face mask addict. I have cut down my face mask stash quite a lot recently (not counting sheet masks of course) but there are just a few masks that I know I can't be without. I probably don't even need every single one as some are quite similar to one another but one thing is for sure:

These are my favourite face masks of all the masks I've tried so far and I can see myself repurchasing these again and again...


WHY FACE MASKS?


In theory, face masks are meant to be a weekly or bi-weekly treatment to deal with a specific issue you have with your skin. The results are meant to be near enough instantaneous. And the process should feel like a little pampering treat rather than like a medical treatment. You can of course use them more/less often depending on your skin's needs and, of course the all important factor, how much time you have. 


WHEN?


Although multi-masking is very popular (where you apply a few different masks to different areas of your face at the same time) I have taken more of a liking to multiple masking (where you use a mask, cleanse it off, then use another, then sometimes even another) for a more full-on treatment session.

As a busy mummy who barely gets the time to use masks, you'd think multi-masking would be better for me, but I prefer making the time once a week to really focus on my skin concerns and because I have so many issues, I find it better to apply each mask to the whole of my face rather than only on certain areas. So I'll usually use an exfoliating mask followed by a pore cleansing mask followed by a hydrating mask (good old Triple Masking courtesy of HiddenHarmonyWorld).


WHICH FACE MASKS?


My skin is combination-oily, with some random dry patches, bumpiness in areas, a helping of dehydration and large gaping pores that are easily clogged. So when I use a mask, I need it to deal with one or more of these skin concerns (I don't ask for much do I?).


My favourite masks can be grouped into 3 categories - exfoliating/brightening, decongesting/clarifying & protecting/hydrating.

A lot of them do similar things but for one reason or another, they are all indispensable to me. Whether it's some sensory aspect, like the scent or texture of one or the other, or the ease of wiping off or even the packaging makes me want to keep these on rotation despite some of them being almost the same. I'm sure some of you understand what I mean.


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EXFOLIATING/BRIGHTENING MASKS


Caudalie Glycolic Peel | £22

This was one of the first 'fancy' masks I ever bought and it's been a favourite since. This cream mask contains glycolic acid which helps to break down the bonds that keep dead skin cells attached to the skin's surface. I love using this before I have to attend a special event because it preps my skin so nicely. It exfoliates the skin's surface and reveals fresh skin in only 20 minutes. The cream texture is easily removed and doesn't irritate the skin. This is great for sensitive skin in need of a radiance boost.


Ren Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask | post | £32

This one is very similar in results to the Caudalie except it has a gel texture and smells like orange soda. The fruit acid complex, which includes lactic acid and glycolic acid, work to resurface the skin effectively. This is another great one to prep skin for flawless makeup application. As I find this slightly more active and because it leaves my skin slightly more red than the Caudalie, I tend to use this as part of a Triple Masking Session so I can follow up with more soothing masks. I don't think its necessary to have both of these but I really can't choose between them.


Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme Mask | post | £35 full size

I'm still working my way through this sample but I know it's one I'll be purchasing full-size of soon. This has a slightly gritty texture and contains pumpkin extract and boasts 3 levels of exfoliation - enzyme, chemical and physical exfoliation in one. The sweet pumpkin scent is somehow soothing (while making me feel peckish) and the product tingles slightly when it's on. You can rub this around on your skin before removal for some extra exfoliation or you can wipe it off with a damp cloth to reveal a fresh, radiant complexion. Again, if you have this, you don't actually need the previous two.


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DECONGESTING/CLARIFYING MASKS


Pixi Glow Mud Mask | post | £18

I'm starting with what is quite possibly my favourite mask out of them all - this charcoal and clay based mask leaves my face feeling fabulously clear, looking brighter and is easy to remove (always an important factor)! It contains aloe vera, Dead Sea mud, jojoba, rosemary and ginseng which work together wonderfully to soothe, heal and rejuvenate which extracting all impurities from inside the pores and on the skin's surface. It has a lovely scent and changes colour as it dries most satisfyingly. Not surprisingly I've used a tube of this already and will be buying a back-up of my current tube soon.


SuperFacialist Salicylic Acid Anti-Blemish Pore Purifying Face Mask | post | £9.99

This is my go-to product when I suffer from any breakouts or when my skin seems too oily and imbalanced. Although the scent is ridiculously strong, it is such an effective mask that it's one of the few products I'm willing to overlook the smell on. This mask will literally draw out any impurities and excess sebum with ease and leave your skin feeling rejuvenated and unburdened. I add a couple of drops of a rich facial oil to the mask before applying to make it easier to remove otherwise it can be a bit of an ordeal to scrub it off. 


Sanctuary Spa 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask | post | £10

Aside from the few seconds of adjusting to the strange warming sensation, this gel-like mask only takes a few minutes to transform the skin. It contains oil absorbing kaolin clay and a mix of essential oils and is great for clearing the skin while being soothing. This is the mask I use when I have very little time but my skin needs some remedial attention. I also rely on this for a mid-week skin detox. This clears up any congestion in my pores and leaves my skin looking brighter and feeling softer. If you have little to no time to deep cleanse your skin, then this is the perfect choice for you.


Elizavecca Hell Pore Clean-Up Mask | post | £14.50

I call this the peel-off pore gunk extractor and mini facial wax in one! I kid you not, this will pull out any build-up in your pores be it sebum or black-heads and get rid of any peach fuzz along with it all. You have to be very careful to avoid your brows when you apply it for just such a reason. While this is effective and can be used all over the face, I prefer to use this as a last resort only on my t-zone when things are in a really dire state. It peels off satisfyingly but be warned, it can be fairly painful the first couple of times. The results are undeniable.



Peter Thomas Roth Irish Moor Mud Mask | post | £35 full size

This reminds me a lot of the Pixi mask in that it doesn't strip the skin and effectively clears out the pores without being a mean feat to remove. Activated charcoal and volcanic ash work alongside black hijiki seaweed for an incredible detoxifying facial at home. It draws out impurities, balances oils, cleanses, and leaves skin looking radiant while fine lines and pores appear smaller. This is great for acne prone skins to use regularly to ensure that pores remain clear and breakouts are minimised.


PROTECTING/HYDRATING MASKS


I have a number of hydrating masks but I could think of only one to be in my Top 10. This is mainly due to the fact that nowadays I will just use a sheet mask to end my triple masking session. It's also because I haven't found many that wow me so much that I couldn't be without them. Maybe I just haven't found the right ones...


Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask | post | £19.75

I fell in love with this mask straight away and it wasn't just because of the scent that mysteriously takes me back to my childhood. This active mask will instantly hydrate and soothe your skin and is made with Manuka honey which has great antibacterial properties making this mask perfect for keeping skin clear or helping breakouts along as a spot treatment. I love that it leaves my skin super clean and nourished and it is really a treat to relax with this mask on. This mask would be great for anyone and everyone if you ask me, but if you're blemish-prone then you need this in your skincare stash.


THE DO IT ALL MASK


Good Things 5 Minute Facial | post | £5.99

I had to include this mask because it's actually the one I've used the longest out of all of these. It does everything and only needs a few minutes to work (oh and just so happens to be the most affordable too!). Green clay and kaolin help to clear out any impurities, willow bark to make the skin appear more radiant and avocado oil to soothe and moisturise the skin. This has a very strong fruity scent though, so if you're not a fan of strong scented masks, beware!



I hope you enjoyed reading about my Top 10 Face Masks - let me know if any of these are in your favourites too or if there's any here you'd love to try. What kind of masks do you steer towards the most? Are there any I need to try out?





Sal xxx


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58 comments

  1. Everytime I go into TKmaxx they store hundreds of sheet masks and I always want to pick one up because you love them so much haha! I love how you've split them into sections! I've been eyeing up that pixi one for ages now. I really want to get it as my skin can get quite bad on the odd occasion. That good things mask just sounds like a lifesaver and a steal for £5.99!
    Charlotte / Charlotte's Picks

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    1. Aww you should buy a couple! :) Yes, the Good Things one is amazing xxx

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  2. Peter Thomas Roth is my fave! I am so happy his Irish Moor Mud Mask fell into your picks. Haven't tried that pumpkin mask, but I'm going to pick it up next time I'm at the shop.

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    1. I've wanted to try them for so long...I'm glad I wasn't disappointed xxx

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  3. We are Skin Twins I have combo skin and its quite the battle. I find hydrating products throw my skin out of whack the most. This was a good read and I look forward to trying some of these products.

    Alexis// https://lidsandtricks.com/

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    1. Yay! Love knowing I'm not the only one that struggles...Thanks for reading, I'm glad you enjoyed it xxx

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  4. These all sound brilliant, it sounds like we have quite similar skin so I'll definitely have to check a few of them out! I've been wanting to try the SuperFacialist one for ages :)

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    1. Aww yay! It is super effective despite having a strong scent. xxx

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  5. Hallelujah for this post!! I needed this! I get terrible spots so I cannot wait to get some of these. Thank you x

    Beckie xo // The Pale Tails

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    1. Aww I'm glad you find it helpful. Yes definitely a couple of must-haves here to keep breakouts under control xxx

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  6. So many of my favourites here! I actually need to rebuy the REN one. But I might go with the Caudalie one instead. I need to use the Pixi one more. I also need to check the good things one xx

    LPage Beauty

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    1. They're very similar except for the texture. I think you will enjoy the Caudalie as its more gentle. Arrgh! I can't believe you don't use the Pixi one more...its my fave! xxx

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  7. LOVE this post! You know I love a good mask too! I need to buy the Antipodes & Pixi masks! xx

    Beautylymin| LuxuryFragranceGiveaway

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    1. Aww thanks hun! You need the Antipodes and Pixi in your life...trust me ;) xxx

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  8. I love face masks. Ive never tried any of these ones but the Pixi and Antipodes ones sound amazing!

    www.beautylifebecca.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Face masks are such a nice way to pamper yourself aren't they. Yes, those 2 are my faves of the lot ;) xxx

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  9. I have a sample of the REN mask, I need to get it out again! Origins mask are my all time favourite especially clear improvement and out of trouble!

    Danielle's Beauty Blog

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    1. Oh gosh..you know I have never tried a mask from Origins. Not even a sample! Seems so silly to do a mask post without having tried at least one from them lol! xxx

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  10. Love how you've broken down this post and I was scrolling through it like 'yaaaaas, yaaaasss!' I tend to do the same as you and separately use a couple of masks in one session a couple of times a week, depending on what my skin is saying. The Superfacialist, REN and Antipodes masks definitely rank amongst my holy grail skincare products and I've wanted to try Peter Thomas Roth for ages! :)

    Jasmine xx

    Jasmine Talks Beauty

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    1. Yes, I've seen your stash and we have pretty similar products and preferences. It takes a little longer but is well worth it at the end of the day. I think you will really enjoy the PTR masks...especially these 2 xxx

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  11. Wowwww!! What an amazing round up and I can see myself using all these masks. I have only tried two- Una Brenaan Super Facialist and the REN one. They are both amazing and give instant results. I am really curious about the Peter Thomas Roth brand and I heard their masks are gorgeous as well. Thank you for providing me a new bookmark which I can always refer to!!...xx Gorgeous photos as always...xx

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    1. Aww thanks love. I'm well chuffed you think the post is that good. I've bookmarked so many of your posts ;) You will love the PTR masks, I know it xxx

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  12. Thanks for sharing!! I'm obsessed with face masks to be honest, but the one that always works with my skin is the one from Clinique :)

    Kisses,
    Live. Laugh. Love. & Make Up

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    1. They are such a great way to help your skin and pamper yourself. I haven't tried much from Clinique...there are so many things on my list xxx

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  13. Peter Thomas Roth masks have been on my wishlist but i always take a back foot due to its price. I shall treat myself some day and get these fab products. I am going to buy Antipodes Aura next. Its been on wishlist forever! I love Ren and Good things one from this lineup. Thanks for sharing this great post Sal. Happy Valentines Day.

    Ash | www.mstantrum.com
    Latest Post: Valentines Day | Skin, Hair & Makeup http://www.mstantrum.com/valentines-day-essentials/

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    1. You need to try Aura, its amazing. Yes, I will be waiting for a good sale or discount code before purchasing full size PTR too xxx

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  14. I've honestly never tried any of these face masks, the pixi one looks really cute though!

    Lauren x Huggled

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  15. Such a great post. Very useful post. Thanks for sharing.
    http://tipsoye.com/

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    1. Aww thanks love. I'm so glad you found it useful xxx

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  16. I am also a mask addict and glad you mentioned the Pixi one - I've had my eye on it but was afraid it wouldn't be worth my $.... but that ingredient list sounds wonderful! I also just tried a few samples of this pricey (yet incredible) clarifying mask by Natura Bisse - Stabilizing Cleansing Mask. TOTALLY worth the price... probably the best clay-based mask I've ever used. The only mask to come close to eradicating my stubborn blackheads without irritation.

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    1. That's the only downside to the Pixi one as its a tiny amount of product. Otherwise its the winner for me by a long shot and worth every penny. Oooh I'd love to try anything by Natura Bisse but will definitely look out for that mask now xxx

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  17. Can't beat a good face mask, they make all the difference!

    Parie x
    Class and Glitter

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    1. I appreciate having a few on hand to use alongside my daily treatments xxx

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  18. I love that we have the same skin type because it means anything you recommend will most likely work for me. I love the Pixi Glow Mud Mask and really want to try some of the Peter Thomas Roth ones, thank you for sharing and Happy Valentine's Day, hope you are having a fab day Sal xxx

    ALittleKiran | Bloglovin

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    1. Awww yay! Yes, I'm the same...I keep my fellow skin twins closer to me than anyone else hahaha! The Pixi is really amazing...thanks love, you too xxx

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  19. I've never tried a thermal mask, but I really want to try that Sanctuary Spa one!
    Aleeha xXx
    http://www.halesaaw.com/

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  20. Great piece. Please check out my Anti-LOVE-Valentines post!

    Kisses xo | From Aliona With Love

    Instagram @alionawithlove

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  21. Great post. I really should start talking a better car of my skin.
    Would you like to follow each other on bloglovin' or Gfc? Follow me and I'll follow you back.
    http://societyfix.blogspot.com.eg/

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    1. Thanks love. Yes, I've become a little bit obsessed with skincare lately xxx

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  22. I really want to get more into masks and all but I fear I won't be able to get through all of them bcs I can be lazy at times. Either way, this post is so helpful since I have similar skin problems, currently have my eyes on antipodes and caudalie!

    Selene Addicted

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    1. Awww I totally understand....I don't get to use masks as often as I'd like because I just don't get the time. So once a week has to work for now to get through all of these too ;) xxx

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  23. I see so many of my favourites here :) I've been doing the triple masking for couple of years now, it seemed to make sense to follow exfoliating mask with decongesting and then hydrating :)
    I need to get the Antipodes mask as I'm lacking hydrating face masks. x

    Mummy's Beauty Corner

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    1. You NEED the Antipodes hun. You will love it. I really wish I had thought to use more than one mask long before too xxx

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  24. I am pretty new to facemasks, but this super post has really got me interested. I think I like the sound of brightening and hydrating masks the best xxx

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    1. Aww I am glad you find it useful hun. Thanks for reading xxx

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  25. cool post!

    http://cheremimi.blogspot.com.es/

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  26. My skin sounds so similar to yours yet I've only tried the Aura mask out of all the one's you've listed- definitely going to have to give some of the others a go! I've been meaning to try the Pumpkin Enzyme Mask for a while so that'll have to be top of the list and the Elizavecca sounds so satisfying I need to give it a try too!

    http://taradaniella.com/

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    1. Aura is such a great mask. It really is...one time I used it all over my face and managed to peel it all off in one piece. I was rather chuffed with myself xxx

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  27. I love face masks, thanks for sharing this!

    http://www.myclusterofthoughts.com/

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  28. I love a good quick fix mask! I really like the sound of the Caudalie masks xx

    Gemma ♡ Miss Makeup Magpie

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    1. The Caudalie is so effective yet so gentle xxx

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  29. Aaaah this post is hurting my wallet XD I honestly never thought anything of the good things products before but have been seeing them all over instagram lately! It's nice to hear that they're good since they're so affordable and can be found at Tj maxx :D I've heard very polarizing reviews on the piggy mask (not even gonna try to spell the brand name correctly) but tbh it kinda makes me want it more :D It's so satisfying to see all the gunk and even tiny hairs pulled out of my nose :D I've been loving the REN and PTR pumpkin masks this winter which of course means I need to try the caudalie one since obviously our tastes line up ;) Thanks for all the awesome mask recs, Sal!

    Mili | Sharmtoaster

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    1. Awww thanks love. I am so glad you enjoyed the post. Yes!!! OMG I love using nose pore strips just for that kind of gross satisfaction hahahaha! This mask does it so well. Good Things are surprisingly awesome...you have to try the Manuka Cleanser xxx

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Thank you so much for reading my post and taking the time to leave a comment. I read every single one :)

If you would like to reach me for a more direct response, please feel free to contact me on: ummbabybeauty@gmail.com

Thank you,

Sal xxx