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MASKS: A Very Important Part Of An At-Home Beauty Program

By Jean Pierre R.N.
PRIDE Skin Care Columnist

Masks are a much underutilized part of a home care program.  Although a mask is a very important part of every one’s home care program, many clients do not include a mask when caring for their skin at home.

Cleaning, toning and moisturizing are the most common way of maintaining the skin at home.  However, a large number of us skip the toner or astringent which is a very important part of cleansing. During cleansing the pH balance of the skin is disturbed and the application of a toner or an astringent is necessary to return the skin to its natural pH balance prior to the application of a moisturizer or other treatment products.

Masks come in different forms and serves different purposes.   

TYPES OF MASKS Black woman wearing facial mask -- © Can Stock Photo Inc

Deep Cleansing Masks

Deep cleansing masks remove dirt and dead skin cells from the skin and within the pores.  It has a deep penetrating action that draws excess sebum/oil from the pores.  Deep cleansing masks generally have in their formulation a combination of minerals and clay, which effectively lifts out impurities and is gentle enough to soothe the skin, leaving it soft and refreshed.

Dis-encrustation Masks

Dis-encrustation masks perform in the same way as a deep pore cleaning mask.  However, it is more suitable for skin with a large buildup of dead skin cells. These masks first remove excess build- up of dead skin cells, and then further work on cleaning out blocked pores, but need to be repeated at regular intervals.

Stimulating and Revitalizing Masks

Stimulating and revitalizing masks are great for dull, depressed and lack lustre skin.  These masks encourage the skin to breathe, open pores and increase blood flow to the skin.  During the application of these masks the skin is nourished and revitalized.

Peel off Masks

Peel off masks come in a gel form, and sometimes paraffin is used.  Some come in the form of a gel and powder which is custom designed for the client at the time of treatment, and is not designed for home use.  Peel off masks are designed to tone, firm and hydrate the skin.  They stimulate the flow of blood to skin cells, causing a firming action on the skin.  Peel off masks are excellent on mature and dry skin types.  Never apply this mask to skin with excess facial hair. 

Mud Masks 

Mud masks are very therapeutic, and are used for problem skin such as acne, eczema,

psoriasis, sunburn, and other dermatological conditions.  This mask has the ability to work on the lymphatic system releasing toxins from the skin via the lymph nodes.  Mud masks are generally used as a series of treatment, in order to achieve the desired result based on the dermatology of the skin being treated.

Clay Masks

These masks naturally deep cleanse the skin, remove impurities and minimize pore size, leaving the skin clean and refreshed.   Clay masks are excellent on normal, oily and combination skin types.

Thermal Masks

These masks are very soothing.  On application the mask is cold but heats up, slowly maintaining the level of heat for about ten minutes then cool down.  Thermal masks encourage the skin to breathe, open pores and allow good absorption of skin care products, applied after the removal of the mask.

Cream Masks

Cream masks are generally used for mature, dry or dehydrated skin.  They provide much needed moisture and hydration for lack luster skin.  After the application of a cream mask the skin looks hydrated and rejuvenated.


Masks are very therapeutic and can improve the appearance of the skin, by helping skin care products to work more effectively.  Everyone should use a mask because a mask can take your home care to a whole new level. Using a mask on a regular basis will and can ensure that your home care products, and in particular night creams and serums penetrate the skin giving the desired results.

Masks detoxify, tone, firm, softens, exfoliate, rejuvenate, moisturize, unclog pores and minimize pore size.  The drying effect of certain masks cause expansion of the blood vessels which aid in nourishing the skin, and giving the skin a youthful appearance desired by all..

Overall using a mask on a regular basis, will give the skin a radiant glow, a refreshed appearance and maintain the natural contours of the skin.

Jean Pierre, a Registered Nurse (RN), has been a practicing aesthetician for over 26 years. She is the President and CEO of Jean Pierre Aesthetics and Spa, which has developed the Obsidian line of skin care products, specifically geared towards non-White skin. Pierre can be reached at (416) 964-2505 and the company’s website is: www.obsidianskincare.com.

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