When it comes to our long-term skin health, at-home treatments and skincare regimen make up 60% of it.
In clinic treatments and other important factors including personal lifestyle and diet make up the other 40%. At GMA, we call this the 60/40 rule. Not only is our at-home skincare routine the foundation for healthy skin, but it also maximizes and prolongs the results from in-clinic treatments such as advanced facials and lasers.
An essential part to our regular skincare routine that many of us tend to neglect is face masks. At-home mask treatments can serve many different purposes and work synergistically with our skincare and in-clinic treatments to target and improve various skin concerns. The question is: what mask(s) should you use? And, when and how often should you use facial masks? As always, GMA is here to help you answer these questions!
What are the Different Types of Face Masks?
1. Sheet Masks
Suitable for all skin types, sheet masks are usually infused with a cocktail of ingredients that calm, hydrate and plump the skin. The primary ingredient in sheet masks is water as many of the ingredients used are hydrophilic and pair best with water. These masks work as an occlusive to create a physical barrier to seal and allow for better absorption of the mixture of hydrating, soothing and/or anti-aging ingredients.
2. Cream Masks
Depending on the formulation, cream masks help target various skin concerns and needs including dehydrated skin, uneven skin tone, acne and wrinkles and aging skin. These facial masks are usually beneficial for restoring moisture and nutrients in the skin. Patients who are seeking skin brightening benefits may look for cream masks that contain ingredients such as vitamin C, kojic acid and arbutin. For patients with mature skin and fine lines, we recommend masks with ingredients such as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and peptides. As for acne-prone skin, consider masks with AHAs and BHAs (Beta Hydroxy Acids) to help unclog pores and reduce breakouts.
3. Charcoal & Clay Masks
Charcoal and clay masks are excellent choices for patients with oily, acne-prone skin and large pores. Charcoal and clay both have specialized absorbent properties which helps to draw out and remove excess oil, dead skin and debris from congested pores. For those who have a shiny T-Zone (forehead, nose and chin), these masks may be extremely beneficial in helping to reduce the shine and control acne.
Properly formulated charcoal and clay masks should help clean and detoxify the skin without irritating and stripping the skin of its natural moisture. While the masks are in use, the skin may feel temporarily tight so we typically recommend our patients to look for charcoal and clay masks that employ emollients and calming ingredients.
4. Gel Masks
Gel masks have a lightweight texture and are suitable for normal to oily and sensitive skin types. These masks come in many forms, some gel masks help reduce excess oil and minimizes pores, while others contain soothing and hydrating ingredients that reduce inflammation and replenish hydration levels in the skin. It is important to choose a mask that best addresses your skin concerns.
5. Exfoliating Masks
Exfoliating masks are formulated to remove dead skin cells and support the skin’s natural cellular turnover process which tends to slow with age. It helps with the appearance of aging, dull and dehydrated skin. Exfoliating masks usually employ AHAs, BHAs or fruit enzymes (such as papaya and pumpkin). In addition to offering gentle exfoliation to the skin, these masks typically have skin-brightening properties and help promote a healthier, more radiant complexion.
How Often Should We Use Masks?
Depending on the type of mask you are using, it can range from daily use to no less than weekly use. At GMA, we recommend at least twice a week for regular masking, you can do it right after you exfoliate for better penetration.
GMA Multi-Masking System
We never categorize and treat skin according to a type. Every skin is unique and we should be flexible in order to accommodate the skin’s needs. That is why we created the multi-masking system which allows one to customize their at-home treatment by integrating multiple masks to target different concerns on different areas of the face. The skin also changes from time to time, and thus we always recommend our patients to adapt their skincare and mask treatments accordingly.
Example: This patient uses multiple PCA face masks to treat different skin concerns on the face
- Forehead: PCA Skin Revitalizing Mask – Targets fine lines with papaya enzyme, vitamin E and honey
- Nose: PCA Skin Detoxifying Mask – A clay mask to clear pores and balance your oily t-zone with Japanese white charcoal
- Cheeks: PCA Skin Retexturize Mask – Brighten skins surface and removes dirt and debris for a smoother and clearer skin.
GMA’s Favourite Masks
At GMA, we offer a host of facial mask options to accommodate various skin concerns and needs. The following are amongst our favourite face masks:
- Environ Tri Biobotanical Revival Masque aka the “Facelift in a Jar”: The masque is formulated with three powerful alpha hydroxy acids – Asiatic, Lactic and Mandelic acids – to rejuvenate and revive the skin. The mask leaves the skin feeling smoother and firmer and looking younger with a healthy radiance.
- Environ Sebu-Clear Masque: This low pH acid cream mask contains a combination of exfoliating acids to regulate cellular turnover and rejuvenation and help unclog pores and improve the overall appearance of oily and breakout-prone skin.
- PCA Skin Revitalizing Mask: This mask is infused with a specialized combination of papaya puree and additional fruit extracts to exfoliate the skin and brighten dull complexions. It also contains moisturizing antioxidants including green tea, vitamin E and honey that help keep the skin soft and hydrated.
- PCA Skin Therapeutic Oat Milk Mask: Strategically formulated with a powerful blend of oat milk, calming ingredients and advanced botanicals, this mask works to soothe and hydrate skin conditions of all kinds.
If you would like to seek expert advice on at-home face masks and skincare regimen that work best for your unique skin, please contact us to book a complementary consultation!