Face masks tend to be considered indulgent (which is why I love them!), but they are actually a necessary part of a good skin care regimen. While cleansing, toning, and moisturizing are a must for clean, glowing skin, it is important to take some time to "rest" and nurture your skin through various and appropriate masks. Aim to apply a face mask at least once a week. After cleansing and exfoliating, the skin on your face has warmed, the pores opened, and it will respond better to a mask. The type of mask you choose is up to you. Oily skins tend to prefer masks that tighten; dry skins are more suitable to thick, goopy concoctions; normal skin is lucky enough to choose between the two.
To get even more out of your weekly mask, make a pampering experience out of it! Run a hot bath, light some candles, and play your favorite music. After applying the mask, soak in the bathtub for at least 10-15 minutes. The heat and steam will not only work wonders on your stress levels, but they will also encourage your skin to respond positively to the treatment by opening the pores and relaxing away any stress and frown lines. Always apply a good moisturizer after cleansing off your mask with lukewarm water.
Tightening Mask (best for normal skin)
This egg and lemon combined make an excellent purifying and skin-tightening mask. The lemon in particular will help with any problem spots or dry areas.
1 tbs whiskey (reserve a shot for yourself to enjoy while your mask sets if you like!)
1/4 cup dry milk powder
juice of 1 lemon
Combine all the ingredients. Spread the mask over entire face and neck, avoiding the eye area. Allow to dry before removing with a wet wash cloth.
Refreshing Watermelon Mask (best for oily skin)
Watermelon is extremely refreshing and hydrating for the skin. This mask is great for oily skin. If you have dry skin, add a banana instead of yogurt.
1 cup watermelon, chopped
3 tbs yogurt
Mash the watermelon in a small bowl until smooth. Add the yogurt and blend. Apply to the face and neck, then cover your face with a moist cloth. Leave on for 10 minutes, then rinse with lukewarm water.
Firming Vitality Mask (suitable for all skin types)
Strawberries help to restore elasticity and vitality to your skin. This recipe is ideal for tired-looking skin.
1 1/4 cups strawberries, very ripe
3/4 cup cornstarch
Mix strawberries and corn starch together to make a paste and apply to the face and neck, avoiding the eye area. Leave on for 30 minutes and rinse off with lukewarm water.
Brighten Up Mask (suitable for all skin types)
This face mask will help restore tone and vitality to your skin. Strawberries add color to your skin, as their antioxidants help to fight free radicals, which can rob your skin of it's luster. Cucumber is extremely cooling, while honey is an excellent healer. You can apply honey directly to spots or scars to help speed up the healing process.
1 tbs ground almonds
1 tsp organic honey
1 tbs yogurt
Blend the ingredients together until smooth. Apply the mixture to cleansed, damp skin. Leave for 15 minutes or until dry, then gently wipe off with a damp wash cloth.
Antiaging Banana Mask (suitable for all skin types, terrific for dry skin)
Bananas contain large quantities of magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, iodine, and vitamins A, B, E and F. This is an ideal antiaging treatment for skin of all ages, and my personal favorite!
1 small banana
2 tbs fresh heavy cream
1 tbs organic honey
1 tbs oat flour
Mash the banana, and then add cream, honey, and flower. Mix well. You may need to add more cream or flour to obtain the right consistency. Apply mask to clean face, making sure to include the area around your eyes and neck. Leave on for 30 minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water.