There’s been much talk of the hour-long, 12-step skincare routine that Korean women reportedly indulge in twice a day to keep their complexion looking its best but seriously, who has time for that?
Sheet masks, on the other hand, are a Korean invention we can totally get behind.
Unlike traditional masks that you spread on then wash off, with a sheet mask all the skin-soothing goodness is saturated in a face-shaped sheet that you place on cleansed skin, then peel off when it’s done.
They do look slightly scary, like some kind of a post-cosmetic surgery bandage, but the effects are well worth 15 minutes of weirdness — plus they make for a good Instagram post.
Here are our top sheet mask marvels...
“I’ve always been impressed by how good Korean women are at listening to their skin,” says Katalin Berenyi, co-founder of Erborian.
“This inspired me to create ‘shots’ of serum for the skin — travel-friendly, take-anywhere masks that promise instant beauty results for all women.”
The Erborian Bamboo Shot Mask,€7 each, enriched with Bamboo Waterlock complex, is designed to create the ‘tchok tchok’ plumping effect that Korean women covet.
The daddy of all sheet masks, Givenchy Le Soir Noir Face Mask,€309 for four, is a black lace beauty inspired by the Riccardo Tisci’s catwalk designs.
Pressing a reservoir on the packet releases vital black algae sap concentrate, a powerful serum that works with the lace to lift and resculpt where you need it most.
A world first, the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Powerfoil Mask, €20 each at Brown Thomas, is a foil- backed sheet that allows the hyaluronic acid-rich serum to penetrate deeply and deliver maximum moisture in just 10 minutes.
(Brown Thomas or The Loop, Dublin Airport)
Nannette de Gaspe’s Restorative Techstile masks are unique because they’re dry — the lifting properties of the Neck Masque, €170, are woven into the fabric and are activated by massaging. Plus, they can be reused about five times.
Combining antioxidant-rich raspberry, soothing rosehip and collagen-boosting tamanu oil, Origins Plantscription Youth- Renewing Sheet Mask,€39 for six, soaks skin with a trio of anti-ageing actives.
Made from cellulose extracted from fermented coconut water, the high-tech DHC Bio Cellulose Mask, €8.83 each, Escentual, is permeated with botanicals and amino acids to sooth irritated or blemish-prone skin.
Starskin Detoxing Sea Kelp Leaf Face Mask, €17.61 each, ASOS, is a two-part mask that’s cut from sustainably sourced Korean sea kelp and with a whole bottle’s worth of organic serum added, bringing 72 hours of hydration and wrinkle-smoothing marine goodness.
Specifically designed to replicate a week’s worth of moisturiser, Garnier’s new SkinActive Moisture Bomb Tissue Mask,€1.39 each (reduced from €2.09), Boots, is loaded with hyaluronic acid and pomegranate extract, and it’s a major bargain too www.boots.ie