You’ve probably heard that creamy masks are great for dry skin, while oily skin benefits from a mud or clay mask. But did you know that’s not always the case? Even skin with very active sebaceous (oil) glands, your skin can get dehydrated. This is no surprise, since your skin is about 64% water. When the skin becomes unbalanced, it can cause breakouts while feeling tight and uncomfortable at the same time. The truth is, all skin types and conditions can benefit from a hydrating mask, but it’s important that you choose the correct formula.
Creamy: Unlike clays, creamy masks are chock-full of ultra-hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid, jojoba oil, ceramides, lactic acid (to dissolve dead skin cells), glacial proteins, essential oils, extracts, and more. Many are safe to be used near the eyes and lips and can be kept on for a long period of time — even overnight in some cases as they absorb into the skin like a rich moisturizer. This formula is great for someone who is naturally dry and/or has a mature skin type. Those concerned with anti-aging (mid-30s and upward) can also benefit, as long as the formula is not too heavy.
Gel: Clear, gelatinous masks are great for oily/dehydrated skin types, sensitive skin, and those who spent too much time out in the sun (in that case, look for a mask made with skin soothing ingredients like aloe vera gel, chamomile extract, and lavender essential oil). A gel-based mask won’t clog the pores so it’s a safe bet for all skin types.
Sheet: Sheet masks are all the rage and they come in a variety of formulas that cater to all skin types. Because the active ingredients are in a light serum that’s infused in the sheet mask, you don’t run the risk of the formula becoming too heavy. At the same time, because the serum is concentrated, it can do also do wonders for an ultra-thirsty complexion in under 20 minutes.
Overnight: Unlike a creamy formula that can be left on, overnight masks aren’t as sticky, they absorb better, and are specifically designed to work their magic while you sleep. These masks are a great option for anyone who’s lacking sleep, is traveling (you can even wear it on the airplane without giving yourself away!), has neglected their skincare routine for too long, or is simply in need of a pick-me-up.