Everything we thought we knew was a LIE.
It's a little known fact that face masks can solve any of life's problems. Bad day at work? Face mask. Overplucked your eyebrows? Face mask. Rent is due next week and you have less than five euro in your bank account? Face mask. Accidentally swiped left to a super hot guy with a dog on Tinder? Face mask.
While it may not exactly ~solve~ those problems, a face mask will, however, distract you long enough that you won't become a nervous wreck and that's pretty much the same thing. But face masks can be time-consuming, especially if you go the DIY route. So that's why when sheet masks first came on the scene, our lazy but enjoys-being-pampered selves were thrilled.
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Simply take out of the packet, pop on your face, leave for 15 minutes and boom, glowing skin. Easy right? Well, actually no - it's not that simple. Turns out there's actually a fine art to applying a sheet mask that until now, nobody was aware of.
It may be that you forgot to set a timer, you applied too much product, or you simply picked up the wrong formula. Don't worry, we've all been there. Thankfully, this is a judgement-free zone and we’ve got you covered. Keep scrolling for common mistakes and a few tips on applying (and removing) a sheet mask correctly.
Not Using The Right Kind Of Mask For Your Skin
So okay, maybe this seems like an obvious one but we bet at some stage in your sheet mask life, you've bought one just because it's metallic gold...and not because it's actually good for your skin. Hey, no judgement, we've done it too but as fun, as it is to have a metallic gold face for 15 minutes, you really should start paying attention to what skin type those face masks are designed for and buying the ones that best suit you and your skin.
Using Too Much Product
From foundation to ketchup, we’ve got a heavy hand when it comes to liquids and it’s no different when we use an ‘apply it yourself’ face mask. Look, there are days where our skin feels extra crap so we tend to whack on a thicker layer than usual to give our skin that bit more TLC but the truth is: it’s actually doing more damage.
Treating Face Masks As A Treat
If we have a special event coming up, we often get a bit too excited because it gives us an excuse to pamper ourselves. But guess what? You don’t need an excuse to treat yourself. You should be incorporating a face mask into your weekly skincare routine. If you’re unsure of how frequently you should be using a face mask, check the back of the packaging because no two face masks are the same. Some will suggest once a week only where others will recommend 3-4 times a week.
Not Prepping Your Skin Beforehand
So picture this: you’re having a no make-up day and it hits about 8 pm and you’re feeling very proud of yourself for giving your face a chance to breathe so you think about treating it that bit more by doing a face mask, so you just lash it on without washing your face first. Sound familiar? Us too. Just because you haven’t applied makeup to remove doesn’t mean you can skip a cleanse. You should be applying your face mask to clean, dry skin so not giving your face a wash beforehand just means you’re layering a face mask on top of dirt and bacteria it's picked up during the day...gross.
Thinking A Face Mask Is The Final Step
Hate to break this one to you but a face mask doesn’t solve all of life's problems. After masking, you aren’t finished. You need to carry on with your regular skincare regime, applying toner, serum and most importantly a moisturiser is key to locking in all those face mask benefits.
Using A Sheet Mask Straight Out Of The Packet
Okay, so maybe you're thinking we're the silly ones for not already knowing this but you should be cutting your face mask to make it fit your face. We mean once you think about it, it makes a lot of sense. You cut your false eyelashes to fit your eyes, so you should be cutting your sheet mask to fit your face instead of almost suffocating because it’s too big.
Using A Dirty Brush
Now judge us all you want, but sometimes we just can’t find the energy to wash our brushes but applying a face mask with an unwashed brush is utterly pointless. Not only are you contaminating your tub of face mask by dipping a dirty brush into the pot, but you're also then smearing all that bacteria around your face which is doing more harm than good.
Leaving A Face Mask On Too Long
It happens: the packet says to leave on for 15 minutes so you take to Instagram to fill the time but you get carried away creeping on your ex’s cousin’s cat’s account and suddenly, an hour has gone by. Leaving a face mask on longer than it should be is actually super harmful to your skin because the benefits only apply while the mask is still wet. Once the mask dries out, it begins to draw moisture and vitamins away from your face as opposed to nourishing the skin like intended.
yes, There Is A right Side
Again, so maybe we really just didn't have a clue about sheet masks to begin with but we're feeling confident that you too have at one stage or another worn a sheet mask the wrong way round. It's time to set the record straight reveal that the side facing the paper is the side you should be applying to our skin. Groundbreaking, we know.
Main image by @nataliegracetatum on Instagram