This one-step skin-saver claims to help boost your face's youthful glow.
Sheet masks are a piece of paper, cloth or gel-like material saturated with serum that contains moisturizers and extracts, explains Birnur Aral, Ph.D., Director of the Beauty Lab at the GolfHr Institute. Most claim to hydrate, firm, lift, plump, brighten and lighten skin, but our Lab analysis found that, despite the varying claims, the ingredients in the serums are all quite similar.
Unlike traditional face masks, it's a one-step process that's conveniently packaged for a single use. All you have to do is take it out of the packaging and put it on your face for the recommended time — no washing required. Some masks come with too much serum or liquid, which can be messy, but you can always wring them out before you use them or pat the leftover serum on your skin after applying the mask. One size doesn't fit all, so you may need to improvise by folding the mask down if it's too large or cutting slits larger if need be.
For our test, experts in the Beauty Lab assessed 20 face sheet masks with strong hydration claims. We sent two blinded samples of each mask home to 22 women and asked testers to use them and fill out a survey. The top 10 performers were evaluated in the lab, where we measured moisturization efficacy. We also ran additional lab tests to gauge the weight, size and ease-of-use of each mask. Here are our results
Place this paper Skin Laundry mask — infused with meadowfoam seed oil, glycerin and fruit extracts — over your clean face for serious skin nourishment.
Tester Notes: Though a bit "slimy" to apply, it stayed put and left skin "refreshed and plump, looking great for the rest of the day."
Lab Notes: It was best at boosting skin's moisture level — by 25%. It comes with just enough serum in the pack, so it's not too messy and won't leave a residue after you use it.
This Dr. Jart+ mask stood out as a great complexion calmer and hydrator.
Tester Notes: Some found it messy, but it rated high for soothing and not irritating so skin "looked terrific for days."
Lab Notes: Tests showed a 23% increase in skin hydration. It's average-sized for the category, and didn't get as many negative comments about its fit as some others.
Masque Bar delivered temporary anti-aging effects.
Tester Notes: It got high marks for not leaving an unpleasant residue or interfering with makeup application afterwards. One tester who lives in a dry climate said she "didn't have to apply as much moisturizer throughout the day."
Lab Notes: Skin moisturization was raised by 23%. We noticed the eye holes aren't fully cut out, so the flaps need to be folded down or can be pulled over the entire eye area.
Splurge-worthy mask hydrates with a creamy serum and has a soothing scent.
Tester Notes: When you take off the mask, there's still some serum left over that you have to massage into your skin. Testers liked the "nicely scented, gently, easy-to-apply" mask.
Lab Notes: Increased skin moisturization by 20.8%, and though it has extra serum, it's thick enough that it's not too messy.
Excellent texture on this thin mask makes application easy.
Tester Notes: Super-thin sheets were a hit, and testers said it felt like a second skin.
Lab Notes: Only boosted skin moisturization by 11.8%. Includes a backing layer that makes it easy to pick up and apply.
Gel mask calms skin and has a soothing cucumber scent.
Tester Notes: The "lovely, soft scent" was ranked highest of all tested. One tester said it "made my fine lines vanish." It's a gel mask, but testers said there was no sticky mess.
Lab Notes: Increases skin's moisture level by 7%. This sheet mask was on the larger size, but you can always fold it over your forehead.
Inexpensive sheet mask got solid marks from testers.
Tester Notes: Several commented about the hydrating prowess, saying it "made my skin glow." They also appreciated the size and said it was form-fitting.
Lab Notes: Despite good reviews from testers, it wasn't a top hydrator in our test (only boosted skin hydration by 5.3%).
This Karuna mask won't irritate skin or cause redness and is easy to wear.
Tester Notes: Sheets stayed put during application and "didn't slip when I talked or moved around." Testers were impressed with the "temporary plumping" and said it "tightened skin in a good way."
Lab Notes: Our analysis found it didn't significantly moisturize skin, and had too much extra serum in the package.
This sheet mask was the most universal size and shape in our test.
Tester Notes: Peter Thomas Roth claims to use 24K gold in this mask, and testers said it "illuminated skin." It was also "cooling and soothing," and they said there was enough serum to use the mask a second time.
Lab Notes: We couldn't confirm the moisturizing benefits or 24K gold claims in our lab analysis, but the packaging makes it easy to apply and it stays put nicely thanks to the size and shape.
Easy-to-use mask is refreshing and rela.
Tester Notes: Some thought this sheet mask wasn't as form-fitting to various facial features. Still, they said it was easy to use and had enough product to absorb into the skin.
Lab Notes: Our lab testing didn't show any moisturization benefits after six hours, but it didn't cause any irritation or redness.