Master The Mask: 4 Expert Tips From Our Beauty Director

October 25, 2017

Beauty masks are nothing new. Long before Chrissy Teigen posted a late-night #maskie, skincare enthusiast Marie Antoinette was said to apply a mixture of egg whites, milk, lemon juice, and Cognac to keep her complexion glowing. Which may sound fussy, but it’s nothing compared to Yang Guifei, the noted beauty of ancient China’s Tang Dynasty. Her high-maintenance regimen included a concoction of powdered pearls, jade, lotus root, and ginger.

These days, thankfully, you don’t have to be royalty—or even an Instagram celebrity—to mask with the best of them. Whether you have dry skin or extra shine, stuffy pores or sleepy eyes, we have everything you need right here (including, yes, a brightening pearl mask—Yang was onto something).

Ready to try one on? Before you do, check out these pro tips from Catherine Moellering, our beauty director and resident mask evangelist.

Bare is Best
Before you begin, a little prep work is in order. “To maximize the benefits of the mask, always apply to freshly cleansed, bare skin,” says Catherine. Meaning no makeup, no moisturizers, no SPF, no nothing.

Keep it Cool
Using a sheet mask? For best results, pop it in the fridge. “For a cooling effect and to reduce any puffiness, refrigerate your mask for 30 minutes prior to using,” Catherine advises.

Smooth Things Over
Again, this one is for the sheet maskers. “When placing the mask on your skin, make sure to lightly tap out any air bubbles to ensure that it’s in contact with your entire face,” says Catherine. Also of note: most sheet masks don’t cover the skin directly under your eyes, a notoriously delicate area. If you want to troubleshoot dark circles or puffiness, look for a specialized eye mask.

Watch the Clock
You don’t get bonus points for leaving your mask on an extra 10 minutes. In fact, you can actually undo the results. “Longer isn’t better!” says Catherine. “Only leave masks on for the time directed. In some cases, leaving a mask on longer can dry our your face.”

Which mask is right for you? Pay a visit to The Mask Shop and meet your match.