My Sundays are my weekly day of indulgence. I tend to have a lie in, a short day of work, cook a roast for the house if I'm feeling generous, and then indulge in a good long, head-to-toe pamper. Face masks, hair masks, nails... the lot. Face masks are an important part of any skin care routine, you can target them to whatever need your skin has for that little extra oomph, whether it be a deep cleanse, a good dose of exfoliation or that little bit of extra moisture. But where does the unwritten rule that skincare needs to be taken up a notch on the weekend come from?
Granted, most people have more time on the weekends to just relax and set aside a little time for themselves. But your skin needs just as much attention, if not more, when you are stressed. So come mid-week, say Wednesday or Thursday evening, when things are just getting a little bit hectic I like to slap on a quick skin pick-me-up. I opt for ones that take about 5 mins, so they don't eat into your usual evening activities, and that cover all bases, so you get a quick dose of deep cleansing, exfoliation and moisture all in one.
My first mask of choice, coincidentally, is the first face mask I ever owned. I say owned, I mean stole from my mothers bathroom. But the Arbonne Intelligence Exfoliating Masque With Thermal Fusion ($32) remains as firm favourite for the quick skin care pick-me-up. So to get things rolling you massage a generous amount of the mask (or masque, I'm not really sure where they were going with that) onto dry skin. So far so good. Then you are meant to wet your fingertips and further massage the mask in circular motions. This activates enzymes that are supposed to help the ingredients penetrate the skin more thoroughly. At this point the mask starts to heat up, which let me tell you, can feel pretty weird the first time round. After 5 minutes you simply rinse off with a flannel and cool water. Easy. Now this bad boy is full of wonderful skin ingredients: kaolin, to help your skin get a deep cleanse; zinc, to counteract any inflammation, reduce redness and act as an antibacterial agent; and papain and alpha hydroxy acids which help to naturally exfoliate the dead skin cells and gently rejuvenate skin, keeping it plumped and supple. I'm not sure how much the thermal technology actually works, but the ingredients alone are enough to make this one a winner. It's one of those satisfying masks where you can feel the difference straight after use. If nothing else, its something fun to add to your Wednesday skin TLC.
My second mask of choice is the Avène Cleanance Mask (£15). This one is very similar in the effect it has on the skin and ingredients it contains... hence it's use midweek. The major difference being that this one doesn't heat up and it leaves your skin feeling that little bit more moisturised. This also contains kaolin, glycolic acid and zinc, and as it is targeted at blemish prone skin has the added benefit of salicylic acid. So, if a mask that heats up sounds a bit too much for you, this is a wonderful alternative. I like to apply a generous amount to damp skin, avoiding the eye area, and leave on for 5 minutes. There are small exfoliating beads in this offering (nothing too harsh), but before I remove it with a flannel I like to massage the mask in circular motions round my face for a little added exfoliation. So, an excuse for a mini pamper mid-week and all that skin goodness in five minutes... don't mind if i do!