Facial Mask: User Guide

Our love for face masks has grown from a weekly skincare ritual to a true obsession with beauty.

We mask ourselves at least twice a week, and that’s not including our favorite sleep mask. Although this may sound a bit excessive, it has made a huge difference in the quality of our skin .

According to the K-Beauty book (aka the skincare bible), as well as a lot of dermatologists, we should mask ourselves regularly, even daily if you use the right masks.

But knowing how to apply the mask is just as important ; doing it the wrong way can even exacerbate your problems, so be sure to follow these key tips:

Are they all valid for any type of skin?

No. Whenever you buy a mask, the most important thing to look at is whether it is compatible with your skin type. You need to find one that works for your complexion and contains efficient active ingredients to meet the needs of your complexion  that you want to address.

If it has the wrong ingredients, it could make your problem worse. For example, using a rich cream mask on acne-prone skin could make your skin even oilier and trigger a breakout. Or, if your complexion is dry and the product contains powerful enzymes or clay, it could further dry out your skin.

Here are some mask recommendations according to your skin type:

  • Dry : Sleep masks are perfect as they generally have a creamy consistency and lock in moisture throughout the night.
  • Normal : You can opt for a multi-action, which purifies, detoxifies, clarifies, hydrates and softens.
  • Grease : Clay and sulfur are best for absorbing oil and fighting acne-causing bacteria.
  • Acne : You need detoxifying ingredients like bentonite clay, salicylic acid, or glycolic acid.
  • Sensitive : Choose a product that doesn’t have overly potent ingredients, and that includes soothing oatmeal and botanical antioxidants to protect and nourish the complexion.

Is it necessary to wash your face before applying it?

Yes. This is important because if you apply the mask to uncleaned complexion, you are sealing makeup, dirt and other impurities under the mask, which can cause them to penetrate deeper into the pores, occluding them. This encourages blackheads and breakouts.

In addition, this layer of dirt between the skin and the product makes it much more difficult for the active ingredients to be absorbed into the dermis and do their job well.

As always, make sure your hands or the application tool are also very clean.

Will the mask work better if my skin is wet or dry?

It’s always best to follow the brand’s directions, but if the packaging simply says to apply it to your complexion, a little moisture will help.

Many masks are more evenly distributed and some ingredients can penetrate better when the face is moist and warm. So just before applying it, splash your skin with some warm water.

The more product you apply, the better?

This is a very common myth in skin care: the more product you apply to the complexion, the more effective it will be. But in reality, applying a thick layer of product will not make it more effective; you will simply waste the product and it could saturate your complexion and clog your pores.

Always read the instructions, as they usually give a rough idea of ​​how much you need to apply. Generally, a thin layer that covers the entire skin area is sufficient.

Do you get better results if you leave it longer than recommended?

It depends on the type. Clay, peel-off, rubber, and formulas that contain retinol or anti-acne ingredients can cause dryness, flaking, and inflammation if left on for too long.

The rest, the longer you have them on and the active ingredients are in contact with the complexion, the more effective it will be. To ensure that your skin can tolerate it, it is better that you follow the instructions the first time you try the product, and then you can extend the action time up to 15 more minutes.

Here is the guide to all the types of masks out there . And if they weren’t enough, you can always resort to the homemade option. How about starting with these 16 ?

Can they be applied to the neck and décolleté?

Yeah, so go ahead and spread it out, unless you have sensitive skin. The outer layer of the neck and décolleté is thinner and has fewer sebaceous glands, so it is more likely to react negatively to certain active ingredients. And if you experience redness or irritation, these areas will take longer to heal.

When applying a face mask, should eyebrows be avoided?

Depends. Most masks are harmless. However, if you use a clay or peel-off one, you run the risk of pulling out some hairs during extraction. Keep it up, and the loss could be permanent.

What products should be applied before the mask? And then?

To take full advantage of the benefits of a mask, you must prepare the complexion before, and nourish it afterwards with the appropriate products. Here are some things to keep in mind:


As I have already mentioned, it should only be applied on clean skin. You can exfoliate your skin before using a clay or moisturizing mask, but you shouldn’t exfoliate before applying a scrub or peel-off.

If you have put on makeup, I also recommend using a mild toner after cleansing, which will remove any remaining makeup on your face and around your hairline.


Depending on the active ingredients in the mask, you will have to apply different aftercare products. For example, if it’s detoxifying and contains clay, it could leave your complexion dry, so be sure to follow up with a hydrating serum and moisturizer.

If the mask contains exfoliating ingredients like fruit enzymes or chemical scrubs, you should avoid using strong ingredients like retinol or AHAs, as this could over-exfoliate or dry out the skin.

And if it is a sheet mask, finish by applying the remaining serum on your face, as if it were a normal serum. Your skin will not need anything else.

How to do a multimasking?

What if you are dealing with multiple complexion issues: dryness, blemishes, blackheads? You can try multimasking, the Instagram trend that consists of applying different face masks in several areas simultaneously.

For example, apply a purifying mask on the oilier T-zone, a tea tree oil mask on the cheeks to combat breakouts, and a moisturizer on the rest to keep the skin hydrated. These are some of the best options on the market .

  • Acne : Sulfur relieves inflammation, clays cleanse excess oil, and salicylic and alpha hydroxy acids unclog congested pores.
  • Discoloration : Licorice extract helps to brighten the complexion, while calendula heals and strengthens it.
  • Opacity : Try fruit enzymes like papaya or pumpkin, or alpha hydroxy acids that remove dead cells from the face.
  • Dryness : Choose moisturizing heavy weights like glycerin or hyaluronic acid. Just make sure they are among the first ingredients on the list to make sure they are in high concentrations.

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Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.

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