DIY Spa Facial in 6 Simple Steps: Step 5, Mask

This is the fifth part in a six part series on doing a spa quality facial at home.  Most of steps only take a minute or two, with a bit of additional prep time, but the mask is definitely the longest step of the facial.  A mask is usually left on the face for about 10 to 15 minutes, and the most common type of mask is a clay or mud mask.  Clays and muds are particularly useful for pulling toxins from the skin.  But there are many different types of masks for different purposes and different skin types.  There are masks designed to:

  • Hydrate and moisturize;

  • Calm and soothe;

  • Heal blemishes;

  • Tone and tighten;

  • Nourish and rejuvenate;

  • Draw out impurities.

Let’s look at how you can use some simple ingredients such as fresh fruit, veggies, and other things from your kitchen to make masks that can help some of your skin issues.

  • Avocado – for dry and/or mature skin; avocado softens, conditions, and helps prevent moisture loss; mash a ripe avocado and apply to the face, leave on for 5-10 minutes;

  • Cucumber – for irritated or inflamed skin, cucumber is cooling and refreshing; blend ½ a cucumber in a food processor or blender with ½ a teaspoon of raw honey and apply to the face, leaving on for 5 to 10 minutes;

  • Chamomile Tea – for all skin types; soothes and calms irritated or inflamed skin; make a poultice with small cloth bags, filled with dried chamomile; soak in warm water for a few minutes to hydrate the chamomile, then place the bag or bags on the irritated areas; leave on for 10 to 15 minutes;

  • Honey – for all skin types; honey is hydrating, soothing, helps tighten skin, and even helps heal blemishes; apply raw honey to the face with the fingertips and lightly coat the skin; leave on for 10 to 15 minutes;

  • Egg Whites – for all skin types; tightens and tones; leave on for 5 to 10 minutes

  • Papaya – for normal to oily skin types; gently exfoliates with natural alpha hydroxyl acid, also hydrates and nourishes skin with vitamins A and C; take a ½ cup of fresh, raw papaya chunks and blend or mash with a fork, with a teaspoon of raw honey; apply to the face and leave on for 10 to 15 minutes;

  • Strawberry – for normal to oily skin; similar to papaya with vitamin C and hydroxyl acid for gentle exfoliating and nourishing; mash or blend 4 or 5 strawberries with 2 teaspoons of plain yogurt and apply to face; leave on 5 to 10 minutes;

  • Clay or Mud – for all skin types, depending on the type of clay; for pulling impurities from the skin; white kaolin clay for dry or mature skin, pink kaolin or bentonite clay for normal skin, and sea clay, green clay, and yellow clay for oily skin; prepare clay by mixing with enough distilled water to make a smooth paste and let it set for a few minutes before applying.  Take note that bentonite clay should not be mixed in metal containers.  Leave on for 10 to 15 minutes.  Important!  Clay or mud should never be left on the skin until completely dry, contrary to commonly held belief.  When clay is completely dry it will begin to pull moisture from your skin, which is not good for your skin.  Remove a clay mask when it is mostly dry to get the most benefits of clay’s drawing action.

Exfoliating or detox masks should not be done more frequently than once a week; hydrating or soothing masks can be enjoyed daily.  We have now covered five steps of the DIY spa facial – one more step to go, to be posted tomorrow.  I hope you plan to treat yourself to a facial this weekend – it’s the perfect time to relax and pamper yourself.