WHAT IF I TOLD YOU you could enjoy a spa treatment that comes from South Korea, the current reigning skincare capital of the world, right from the comfort of your own home? ^^ Anyone getting excited reading those words? I know I was when I first heard about this treatment.
So what the hail am I talking about? I'm referring to modeling masks, sometimes referred to as rubber masks. And it's a type of facial that's lavished upon Seoulites, and Busan-ites... and Daegu-ites... who frequent the spa or esthetician.
PICTURE LYING FACE UP on a facialist's table, blissed out like no other...
A thick, goopy mask infused with antioxidants and other star ingredients is whipped up for you tableside
You're asked to close your eyes and slowly...
The delightfully cooling mask is spooned onto your face lovingly (assuming you tipped the last time you were there)
And your facialist retires to the next room to let you bliss out even further for the next 15-20 minutes.
You reach peak zen, and juuust before you start to get fidget-y or bored
You notice the mask texture has completely transformed on your face, it's firmed into rubber
And like clockwork, the facialist returns (she's a pro, dontcha know)
And like a magician whipping the tablecloth out from underneath a full table setting,
She removes the mask that now looks, not unlike Jim Carey's in The Mask, in one fell swoop.
You touch your face, it's soft and babylike... and looking into the mirror that's offered up to you, you notice your skin looks smooth, translucent, and your pores have slinked off to Lord knows where for the time being.
Sounds divine, right? And maybe hecka expensive? I had those thoughts too... until I found a multi-pack of 8 modeling masks on sale at Memebox for $26. Math told me that was $3.25 per mask, and I pulled the trigger on the order.
So can you achieve spa-level results with a $3.25 mask you can whip up in the kitchen? And what are some of the do's and don'ts of rubber masking? Read on to find out!
I just had to include a shot of the box the litto things came in because it was too cute! It looks like a cake box from the bakery.
OK, SO WHAT ARE THESE THINGS and why do they look like ramen noodle cups? These are the at-home versions of the spa rubber modeling mask I described above. You'll notice they come in powder form. When you add water to these masks, the consistency takes on the same goopy texture as the spa mask. This Ettang set contains 8 different mask flavors:
Chlorella - an antioxidant, also moisturizes
Calendula - an antioxidant, calms and soothes skin, moisturizes skin, anti-acne
Propolis - calms and soothes skin, anti-acne
Collagen - moisturizes skin
Yogurt - brightens skin
Paper Mulberry - an antioxidant, brightens skin
Charcoal - controls oil and sebum
Acerola - an antioxidant, brightens skin
WHAT ARE THEY cont.
Each mask contains different ingredients (obvious blogger is obvious), but there are a few commonalities.
Every mask contains algin or alginate. It's the substance in the packs that will transform the powder into the goopy oatmeal-like texture you want when you add water.
Every mask also contains diatomaceous earth, the tiny specks you'll see when you add water to the mask.
Each mask has calcium sulfate, which is a desiccant. This is what eventually helps the mask to solidify and turn into rubber.
For the full list of ingredients, go here.
HOW TO USE
|Each mask looks pretty colorless when in powder form, but they change colors when the water is added. Fun!|
HOW TO USE cont.
I like to use these masks 1-3 times a week, similar to a standard wash-off mask. It goes on after double-cleansing, and prescription topicals like my retin-A.
In case you didn't quite get the instructions down from the instructions drawn up by Ettang above, (I know I didn't) here's the rundown...
1. Open up your modeling pack, and take out the spatula inside.
2. Add room temperature water to the pack. For me I noticed that I preferred the consistency I got when I used just a little less water than what would be a 1:1 ratio. Think of how much water it would take to get that 1:1 ratio, and just remove 1-2 tablespoon's worth of water.
3. Mix it until you see it take on an oatmeal or cake batter-like consistency. You'll notice it smells a bit like rubber.
4. Use the spatula to apply the mask to your face. I like to add the mask using the spatula and spread it out with my fingers.
5. Wait it out! 15 minutes and the mask will turn into rubber.
6. Peel the mask off when it gets to this stage. Try to get it all in one piece!
|On the left: before On the right: after 15 minutes.|
Notice any similarities? ;)
You'll notice how thick and occlusive the mask is. This is actually the main benefit of the mask. The impermeable barrier formed by the mask aids the skin in receiving the nutrients in each mask more fully.
|Get ready to go from The Mask to a Disney movie. These give you Disney princess skin!|
SO, WAS IT WORTH IT?
So it's definitely not a spa-like experience when you're the one doing all of the work, but I do think that the results are spa-like.
The masks aren't particularly moisturizing, but each mask left my skin feeling purified, and my pores degunked. My skin looked smooth and maybe the right word to use in this here situation would be "supple".
I would say that the masks were most definitely worth it, depending on your personality. If you enjoy DIY, or wash-off masks, then most definitely yes! You will probably enjoy these masks.
YOU MENTIONED SOME DO'S AND DON'TS?
DO use these masks, even if you're a guy! I know there are a few of you that pass through here... I made sure to test these masks on the area where I have some arm hair (or wisps, sounds nicer) to see if they rip out the hairs at all, and there was no issue there whatsoever.
DO use the entire mask contents in one sitting. I know there's always the temptation to stretch your dollar and try to use things more than once, but I've tried this method a few times and it doesn't work with these rubber modeling masks. If you use only half of the product, the mechanics are the same, BUT the layer you build up on your skin will be paper-thin. Paper-thin rubber is EXTREMELY difficult to remove in one piece, and the more you have to pick away at the mask to get it off come removal time, the more likely you are to irritate your skin. You may also end up aggravating any blemishes you're trying to treat. Counterproductive, no? The effects are also greater when you use the entire thing.
DON'T sit with the mask for too long. 15 to 20 minutes is all it takes for the mask to set. These masks aren't like sheet masks which continue to add moisture and nutrients to your face as long as they are in contact with it. Once the mask desiccates, there's really no reason to sit around in it anymore. You'll notice that it starts to naturally separate from the face a bit. No contact, no benefits.
DONT forget to lie down! Or to place a towel below your face. The mask drips at first.
WANT TO TRY THEM FOR YOURSELF?
You can get the set of 8 masks I featured in the post at Memebox for $26 here. Use code WELCOME20 for 20% off your first purchase!
Another bestselling modeling mask by the brand Lindsay is carried over at GlowRecipe.com here. They sell 3 / $15 or 2 / $11. Each mask is also sold separately for $6. These are a great option for those with sensitive skin who want to make sure there are no adverse reactions before investing in a multi-pack.
Use this link to save $5 off your first purchase at GlowRecipe.
Get $10 off your first order with them through this link.
Have you tried these yet? Are you addicted? Or do you think they're overhyped?
Disclosure: Bought it, some affiliate links. If you're curious about my policy on press samples, affiliate links, and sponsors, see my disclaimer and policies.