I was having a bad skin day. My face felt dry and dehydrated, the bags under my eyes looked extra sunken, and a recent breakout had left a series of unfortunate dark marks along my cheeks and chin. To make matters worse, I had a party to attend later — and, to make matters worse again, the party was at a venue I knew had particularly unflattering lighting. So, as one does, I rummaged around my cabinet looking for something that might pump some much needed hydrating and brightening ingredients into my skin.
While poking around, I discovered a sheet mask, called the “23 Years Old Cocoon Willow Silky Mask,” that I’d impulse-bought months before, after Fiddy Snails sang its praises on Instagram. The packaging promised that the mask would brighten, hydrate, and rejuvenate the skin with it’s highly concentrated protein and mineral-rich formula. And while lots of sheet masks claim to perform magic on the skin, this particular ingredient list intrigued me: silk cocoon extract (a natural source of collagen and moisture), lactobacillus (a probiotic that promotes clear, even skin), licorice extract (which soothes inflamed, red skin), and niacinamide (for brightening). I decided to give it a try.
I started the process by washing my face with my Dr. Loretta Gentle Cleanser, exfoliated with Biologique P50, and put the mask on. Right off the bat, I noticed a few things that were different about this mask: first, the fabric of the mask was much thicker than most, which allowed for it to easily stick to my face so it would absorb all the mask’s thick, concentrated essence. Second, the mask extended down my neck, so that the often-neglected décolletage could get some love as well. But the weirdest thing about the mask was that there was no slot for the mouth — this is intentional: it’s so the product can penetrate into your lips as well. This was slightly, but not intensely uncomfortable. If I’d been at all congested, it would have been a different story.
After 30 minutes (a bit longer than the recommended 10–20), I removed the mask and looked in the mirror. And, my God, my previously dull skin looked so superbright and dewy and, above all, plump! I was pleased. Concealer and blush glided on like a dream afterwards, and I felt much less self-conscious as I walked into the harsh fluorescent lighting of the event.
In the span of 45 minutes, no less than five different people came up to me and complimented my skin. “Your skin looks like glass,” one person said. “You’re poreless,” said another. “Your skin looks radiant,” said a third. I couldn’t believe it. And even better, when I woke up the next morning, the dark marks on my cheeks and chin looked a little less intense, and my skin still felt supple. While this mask is a tad more expensive than most sheet masks, it’s simply more effective at healing my acne and dark marks than my beloved Benton Snail Bee, and better at giving my skin that supple, dewy, plump look than my also-beloved Leaders Insolution Collagen Mask. In other words: it’s become my holy grail for bad skin days or big events.
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