Let’s be clear – sleeping masks are not a lazy girl’s quick fix to good skin; they just happen to be convenient and time-saving. What they do is work in sync with your skin’s regenerating properties as the cell-renewal rate speeds up at night. Moisture loss is also heightened when you sleep, so if you’re not one to wake up every couple of hours for a water break, waking up to drier skin will be the norm.
Comparing sheet masks to sleeping masks is like racing a tortoise against a hare – while sheet masks work their magic in 15 to 20 minutes (note: leaving them on for longer can do your skin more harm than good), sleeping masks are designed to sit on skin to hydrate and lock in moisture for an extended duration without irritating it. They tend to be lightweight and form a protective film on the skin surface to help the active ingredients work, so you wake up to dewy and bouncy skin. Here are four you should try, plus one that’s designed just for the eyes:
TO PLUMP UP SKIN: Biotherm Aquasource Everplump Night, $75
Microalgae fermented in the dark stimulates cell recovery while deep-sea water boosts moisture levels and reinforces the skin’s natural barrier to strengthen it against external stressors. The transparent black gel gets its colour from natural extracts in the formula and feels like a firm jelly that smooths out over skin for a lasting cooling sensation. A glow-in-the-dark brush comes with the mask, so you can apply it in total darkness, which is the best condition for the darkness-activated microalgae to work.
TO BRIGHTEN SKIN: Garnier Light Complete White Speed Yoghurt Sleeping Mask, $19.90
Brighten and revive skin damaged by environmental aggressors like UV rays and pollutants. Active ingredients include soya yogurt probiotic extract, vitamin C and lemon essence to hydrate skin, exfoliate the dead cells, brighten and even out skin tone. Its cream-like texture melts into skin and has a light floral scent.
TO FIRM SKIN: Orbis Night Time Pack Koubijin, $48
Perfect for sensitive skin (check if your skin is truly sensitive), this oil- and fragrance-free mask has fermented soya milk to brighten skin, amino acid-rich sake to boost its moisture retention ability, and hydrolysed yeast extract to promote collagen production. Hyaluronic acid also helps hydrate and improve skin elasticity.
TO RECHARGE SKIN RADIANCE: Ioma Paris Vitality Sleeping Mask, $80
It contains a blend of ingredients like glycoproteins, vitamins E, B3 and C, a carbohydrate complex and plant extracts helps boost skin cell regeneration and strengthen the skin’s defence against oxidation and pollutants. Besides a hydrated and glowing complexion, this makes fine lines look less obvious.
TO NIX PUFFINESS AROUND THE EYES: Laneige Eye Sleeping Mask, $46
The delicate skin around our eye area can reap the goodness of an overnight mask too, with this gentle formula that promotes circulation and locks in moisture. Use the cooling ceramic ball applicator to dot the mask around the eyes before massaging it into the skin. We also got you covered with more nifty tricks to alleviate puffy eyes here.
This story first appeared in the July 2017 issue of Her World magazine.