Staff tested: Treatment masks
We put the world on pause and took a little time out to try these nine face masks. Here’s our take on each
Yves Rocher Cure Solutions Anti-Aggressions Anti-Asphyxiation Flash Mask
The claim is that moringa peptides rid skin of environmental pollution. Organic aloe vera gel and sesame oil soothe.
"This mask was easy to apply, thanks to its thick gel texture. The pleasantly scented gel instantly cooled my skin. I did this in the morning and rinsed it off with water to energize my tired skin. It claims to an "anti-aggression" mask-but to be honest, I didn't think it made me feel less crabby than normal! :)" -Lisa Hannam, Associate Editor
Yves Rocher Cure Solutions Anti-Aggressions Anti-Asphyxiation Flash Mask ($38, 50 mL). Available at yvesrocher.ca.
The Body Shop Aloe Protective Restoring Mask
Fair-trade aloe is the star of this soothing mask, which aims to strengthen sensitive skin's natural barrier to lock in moisture.
"My skin is very sensitive, so if I'm going to use a facial mask, it has to be for sensitive skin. This left my face feeling soft and moisturized. I liked the way the thick texture felt cool and soothing, and remained creamy, not stiff. I also enjoyed the fresh aloe scent and the fact that it was easy to apply and wash off." -Jennifer Goldberg, Web Editor
The Body Shop Aloe Protective Restoring Mask ($19, 100 mL). Available at thebodyshop.ca.
Olay Professional ProX Intensive Firming Treatment
This two-step, five-day regimen claims to hydrate, firm and lessen fine lines and wrinkles, and promises younger, healthier-looking skin.
"For five evenings, I carefully placed a serum-soaked sheet mask (with cutouts for eyes, nose and mouth-I looked like a hockey goalie) on my face, tucking a flap under my chin. Then I closed my eyes and relaxed for the 10-minute treatment. Each morning, I used the accompanying skin-tightening serum. At the end of the regimen, my skin felt softer and fine lines really were less visible." -Margaret Nearing, Senior Editor
Olay Professional ProX Intensive Firming Treatment ($60, five 35-mL pre-soaked sheet masks plus a 15-mL serum). Available at select drugstores across Canada.
G.M. Collin Oxygen Puractive+ Mask
White kaolin clay and an "oxygen complex" work to purify and detoxify skin. Antiseptic properties control bacteria and balance excess sebum (oil).
"G.M. Collin is a line of skincare products found in spas. While I love getting facials, I often don't have the time; this is a great alternative (and more economical-you get 10 treatments in this tube). I liked the vaguely medicinal yet pleasant fragrance and how the mask dried on my skin after 15-minutes-a classic, hard-working clay mask. And, interestingly, it managed to "mattify" my T-zone, while leaving the rest of my face (prone to dryness) fresh and hydrated." -Rhonda Rovan, Beauty Editor
G.M. Collin Oxygen Puractive+ Mask ($37, 50 mL). Available at www.gmcollin.com.
Sephora Instant Moisture Mask
Sephora says mixing its powder right before applying maximizes the efficacy of the hydrating active ingredient.
"The texture and coolness of this mask made it feel like a smoothie-facial! The pink shaker is really cute and it didn't take long for the packet of powder to mix with water. There's also plenty of mask left over from a single use, but since the bottle says not to store the excess, I used it on my hands to leave them extra soft and hydrated." -Melissa Greer, Associate Web Editor
Sephora Instant Moisture Mask ($18, shaker plus four 10-g packets). Available at sephora.ca.
Nuxe Paris Refreshing and Relaxing Cream Mask
This mask, applied to face and eye contours, contains water lily, iris, sweet almond and licorice extracts to soften and calm dry, irritated skin.
"I'm always looking for products that will soothe and moisturize the dry skin on my face. This white, creamy mask has no scent-even though it contains lily, iris and sweet almond extract-and it's so gentle, my skin didn't react with any redness. I left it on for the required 10 minutes, then easily washed it off with just warm water and my hands. Afterwards, my face felt soft and looked soothed." -Jennifer Walker, Senior Content Editor
Nuxe Paris Refreshing and Relaxing Cream Mask ($29, 50 mL).
Neutrogena Deep Clean Long-Lasting Shine Control Cleanser/Mask
This two-in-one with oil-absorbing rice protein can be used as a daily cleanser or intensive three-minute mask to control shine.
"I have combination/oily skin and the "hours of shine-free skin" promised on the tube sold me. And it delivered on its promise. ?After leaving it on for a few minutes, my skin felt clearer and brighter, although I felt a tingly sensation when I applied it. I also like that I can use it as a cleanser." -Stephanie Han, Art Director
Neutrogena Deep Clean Long-Lasting Shine Control Cleanser/Mask ($10, 175 mL). Available at select drugstores across Canada.
Etival Laboratoire Clarifying Remedy Mask
Targeted for adult acne, this has kaolin, bentonite and witch hazel to absorb oil and minimize pores. Shea butter and aloe hydrate to soothe redness.
"After washing with my usual cleanser, I smoothed on a layer of this thick, freshly scented cream, and left it for 15 minutes before bedtime. I was pleasantly surprised that though the product itself dried out slightly while on my face, it left my combination skin feeling oil-free yet hydrated, and super-soft. The next morning, I noticed my pores seemed less visible. I'll be using this again." -Jennifer Masseau, Associate Editor
Etival Laboratoire Clarifying Remedy Mask ($20, 110 g). Available at shoppersdrugmart.ca.
St. Ives Timeless Skin Mineral Clay Firming Mask
A treament that promises anti-aging effects, this mask uses rosemary, ginkgo biloba and caffeine to firm and tighten skin. Kaolin clay deep-cleans.
"'Firming' is right: This goes on really smoothly, yet when it dried (after 10 minutes or so), my skin felt almost tight. Then I rinsed it off with warm water, and I don't know if my skin has ever felt so clean and smooth. Perhaps it's the clay soaking up the excess oil in my T-zone. And you only need to apply a thin layer, so this tube will last me a good long time." -Bonnie Munday, Editor-in-Chief
St. Ives Timeless Skin Mineral Clay Firming Mask ($6, 170 mL). Available at select drugstores across Canada.