Many women have likely heard about the 10-step beauty routine. One of its steps is the usage of sheet masks on a daily basis. This step alone has gained a lot of fans.
Hi, my name is Lena. Like many others, I thought that a sheet mask should be used no more than 1 to 2 times a week. Specifically for Enlighten, I decided to conduct an experiment and figure out what would happen if I used one every day. I’m not a dermatologist or a beautician, and my conclusions are based only on my personal experience, so you shouldn’t consider it as a call to action.
How a sheet mask works
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It’s commonly believed that sheet masks were invented by geishas. They dampened a piece of kimono silk with distilled flower water and placed it on the face. Modern sheet masks are just single-use masks that are typically made of microfiber or hydrogel packed with a variety of deeply concentrated essences and serums that work to brighten and deeply hydrate the skin. The material of the mask will lock in the moisture to allow it to penetrate the skin as effectively as possible. But be careful not to wear a mask for any longer than the time stated on the package (usually it’s about 15 to 20 minutes). Otherwise, the effect will be the opposite.
The method of wearing daily sheet masks has been adopted by both ordinary people and celebrities. For example, Chinese actress Fan Bingbing is known for the fact that she uses more than 700 masks a year, meaning she wears approximately 2 a day, one in the morning and at night. Reddit has a special community that was created by fans of Korean beauty products. Those who have already tried to mask every day described positive changes.
By the way, this wasn’t the first time this experiment has been conducted. Some bloggers have also tried to use sheet masks twice a day, just like Fan did.
Due to the heightened interest in sheet masks, beauty stores like Soko Glam began to sell special sets with a sheet mask for each day of the week. Manufacturers promise that after 7 days, you’ll be amazed by the look and quality of your skin.
What dermatologists say
Some dermatologists confirm that you can use a sheet mask every day. Elizabeth Tanzi, an associate clinical professor for the department of dermatology at the George Washington University Medical Center, says that it’s fine to use a sheet mask every day as long as it’s not a glycolic acid-containing sheet mask. Glycolic acid is too strong for regular usage. The professor thinks that if you have sensitive skin, sheet masks are a good option because they don’t have as many preservatives and are less likely to cause irritation.
Debra Jaliman, a New York City-based dermatologist, agrees. However, her caveat is those who are acne-prone. “It can sometimes aggravate acne because it’s occlusive and can block pores,” she explains. This can cause bacteria to grow on the skin. Instead, she recommends using a sheet mask only once a week if you have or are susceptible to breakouts.
Beverly Hills-based dermatologist Ava Shamban compares daily sheet masking to “using a super-powered moisturizer every day rather than a regular moisturizer.”
My experiment, day 1
At the beginning of the experiment, my skin looked like this. To make the experiment perfect, I didn’t use any additional cosmetic products, like a peel, for example.
Just a short aside about my skin: It has early signs of aging and an oily T-zone, other areas are dry, and it’s also acne-prone. Great combination! My regular skincare products consist of a cleansing gel, moisturizing serum, eye cream, and moisturizer. I use the same products in the evening, but I replace the moisturizer with squalane oil. In winter, my skin is very dry and flaky.
For the experiment, I used sheet masks with a moisturizing and lifting effect.
There were no immediate results but I expected that. However, after using a mask, my skin became nourished, pleasant to touch, and the flaking stopped. It was a lasting effect because I used sheet masks every day unlike my previous experience when I used masks randomly. The biggest changes became visible after approximately 1 week. I noticed that my acne calmed down and my chin wasn’t that bad anymore.
Day 28, results
I’m glad that I decided to conduct this experiment. My skin changed for the better. First, it’s really moisturized — I can see it, and I can feel it. I touch my face all the time, and now it’s smooth and soft, and my pores aren’t clogged despite the fact that I’m prone to acne. Second, I have less inflammation on my face. I’m not sure if it’s connected to the sheet masks but I didn’t use anything else. Of course, there is no visible lifting, so if it weren’t for my acne, the changes wouldn’t have been so visible from the outside. But I want to repeat that I’m not a dermatologist, so I can’t recommend anything. If you want to conduct your own experiment, consult a specialist first.
Conclusion: I will definitely continue to use sheet masks and even try to vary them by using stronger masks containing acids 1 to 2 times a week. I will also try this Korean 10-step beauty routine. Maybe my skin will become even better with it.
What does your beauty routine look like? What products do you use? Tell us in the comments below.