Updated: May 7, 2020
The face mask industry is booming and much bigger in size compared to way back when all we had was £1 Montagne Jeunesse masks to choose from the Boots shelf.
But now, face masks come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. Texture is everything. Skincare junkies are not only obsessed with the ingredients and how much a face mask “works” before deciding whether a product is basket-worthy, but now application design and formula consistency is at the top of their checklist.
As a consequence of the Korean beauty takeover and the saccharine influence it has had over Western skincare, face masks have got funky. Amongst the classic peel-off and clay masks, we now have a million other masks to choose from, including sheet and exfoliating masks, LED masks, glitter masks, masks for the under eye and for spot treating (link to sticker article), cream masks, gel, bubbling and sleeping masks. And now, we have the jelly mask.
However, texture does not mean results. So does this mean that the jelly mask is just another fad, ‘fun as hell’ to use, but offers no real improvement to our skin? This article investigates the latest mask trend, how it works and if it is worth trying.
What is a jelly mask?
These jiggly masks have been associated with K Beauty because of their easy-to-use, fun concept and the prime goal is to simply hydrate and nourish the skin.
The monster-moisture-ingredient glycerin is commonly used in these masks, which gives them a light and bouncy texture.
Jelly masks don’t always appear as a pot of jelly, Lush provide hardened formulations that you have to rub between your palms to get the jelly texture. Other brands may require the mask user to whip up two ingredients together to activate the jelly before applying it to your skin.
Lancome’s Hydra Zen Jelly Mask via lancome
What are the benefits of using a jelly mask?
They are gentle on the skin
One great thing about the jelly mask is that it can be used on all skin types. They rarely involve any harsh ingredients, often have a cooling sensation when applied, and are also easy to rinse off in comparison to other masks such as mud and peel-off, so are a great home treatment for even sensitive skins.
Jelly mask ingredients vary from brand to brand however there does seem a noticeable trend in using gentler, more hydrating ingredients like Aloe Vera, hyaluronic acid and fruit extracts.
Jelly masks can ‘lock-in’ ingredients better
Similar to a sheet mask, the jelly texture provides a barrier to the skin when it sets which prevents any product evaporating from the surface. This allows a better chance of ingredients to sink into the skin and the reason why jelly masks are often favoured to use at the end of a facial treatment so that it can lock-in all that glowy goodness.
Do you see results?
It is always good to question the efficiency of any product you consider to use and when I was searching for the answer to this question, I came across a great discussion in a Bustle article. Dr Neal Schultz, NYC dermatologist and creator of BeautyRx points out:
“The most important principle is that a mask is just another ‘vehicle,’ like a lotion, serum, cream, ointment, that delivers ‘actives’ to the skin to improve the appearance or quality of the skin.”
Translated, face masks are just another way of going about giving your skin a boost, and the jelly mask is just a new way of doing it.
There are more important things to question about the product before texture, including the active ingredients, stability and ability to penetrate into the skin. In case you haven’t noticed it is enormously difficult to understand whether our beauty products makes the cut. The phrases ‘skin penetration’ and ‘active ingredients’ are thrown about a great deal, but how do we know if these claims are true? Companies don’t have to back up these claims, whilst consumers can only rely on potentially-affiliated testimonials and online reviews to know if a product is going to ‘work.’
Using a jelly product when masking definitely makes it an easier process in comparison to messy mud masks and peel-off applications. They are gentle on the skin, a safer option for sensitive skins and are mainly packed full of hydrating and soothing ingredients. From what I have read, these masks do not offer WOW results, but can give the skin a little boost and therefore are definitely worth a try.
Why not give these jelly products a go?
LUSH 1000 Millihelens Jelly face mask
£8.00 for 65g via Lush.com
Great for: Smoothing & brightening
Lush have a range of jelly masks to choose from and the 1000 Millihelens mask is a great one with start with as it tackles a few skin concerns. This natural product uses fresh apple juice, orange oils and Sicilian lemon to help brighten and smooth the skin, whilst witch hazel acts as an astringent to help clean out pores and tone the surface.
This is a hard formula, so break a piece off and rub between the fingers to turn it into a paste, before applying it to the skin. After 5-10 minutes, rinse off.
HERBIVORE Blue Tansy Resurfacing Clarity mask
£38.32 for 60g via Herbivore.com
Great for: Soothing skin & acne
This cruelty-free mask uses white willow bark (a natural BHA) and papaya and pineapple enzymes to gently exfoliate the skin’s surface whilst blue tansy oil works by soothing the skin and reducing the appearance of redness.
Apply after cleansing in the evening and leave on the skin for 15-20 minutes. A tingling sensation is expected and sensitive skins should only wear this jelly mask for 5 minutes. Herbivore suggest to use this mask every day for the first 7 days for optimum results, and then reduce the use of it to every 2-3 days.
GLOW RECIPE Watermelon glow sleeping mask
£19.50 for 30ml via Cultbeauty.co.uk
Great for: Hydration & glow
This K-beauty inspired sleeping mask hosts a range of impressive ingredients from pumpkin and liquorice extract to help brighten and smooth the skin’s surface and hyaluronic acid to hydrate.
This bouncy, jelly mask can be applied to the skin in the evening and left on overnight or in the morning, and rinsed off after 10 minutes. Check out the ton of positive reviews online, try it out, and you will NOT be disappointed.
Have you ever tried a zit sticker before? Find out if they really work and how to use them here.