Over the last six or so months, I’ve made it a priority to start focusing on a natural approach to skin care and cosmetics. I’ve been prioritizing skin care, because when your skin is glowing, you don’t feel like you need to cover it up with makeup (but if you wanna rock a full face, you do you boo). I’ve already shared my daily skin care routine, but what about the extras? I’m a sucker for a good face mask, especially when it’s full of good-for-your-skin ingredients like this Andalou Naturals Glycolic Mask.
Are you familiar with glycolic acid? Glycolic acid is made from sugarcane, and is a popular AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) used for acne. Glycolic acid treats acne by exfoliating the top layer of skin and removing it, leaving your face with a smoother, fresh layer of skin. (Is there any way to say that without sounding gross? I don’t think so.) For the same reasons, glycolic acid is also great for aging skin.
ANDALOU NATURALS GLYCOLIC MASK
This mask is the first AHA mask I’ve tried. I was lucky enough to have a pretty clear face as a teenager, and my breakouts have been mostly in the past five years. I feel like it’s so much worse getting acne in your mid-twenties than as a teenager, when everyone else is breaking out as badly as you are. I’ve tried various treatments over the past few years, including salyctic acid spot treatments, drying masks, charcoal masks, and overly abrasive scrubs. Since switching to natural products, I’ve had luck with a few different methods to help clear up my acne (that I’ll share in a future post!), but this mask really caught my eye. First off, the ingredients are excellent. Real pumpkin puree, manuka honey, and aloe juice are just a few of the ingredients as well as glycolic acid and vitamin C. The mask claims to leave you with a more “even tone, smooth texture, and a luminous complexion.” Hey, that’s enough to get me interested in giving it a try!
Is my face burning off? I’m definitely positive my face is going to burn off from this mask. After a quick google search, I saw that the burning/tingling feeling is expected with AHAs, but that it can cause problems for sensitive skin. My skin is semi-sensitive, but I really wanted to see how things would turn out, so I left the mask on for 10 minutes and rinsed. Everywhere the mask was covering was now bright red! Are you kidding me? I was a little concerned, hoping I hadn’t pissed my skin off so badly I’d just stay red like a tomato the whole day. At least I didn’t have to go anywhere. Thankfully, after about 20 minutes, the redness subsided, and I saw my skin looking smoother and tighter than usual. It didn’t feel like a bad ‘tight’ the way it does if you use a harsh scrub or wash your face too many times. Afterward, I put on serum and moisturizer, and my face felt pretty normal! It looked pretty clear too, but I didn’t have any major acne going on before the mask.
As for the mask itself, it smells AMAZING. Very pumpkin-y and just slightly sweet smelling. The smell makes you(me) want to eat it, just a little bit, but you(me) definitely don’t want that burning in your mouth. Don’t worry, I didn’t try to eat it.
After the initial burning incident, my skin reacted a lot better to the mask. The second time I used it, I left it on for 15 minutes. When I washed it off my skin was pinker than usual but certainly not bright red, and again my skin felt tight and very smooth. I did, however, feel like I noticed my blackheads more after doing the mask.
After using this mask 1-2 times a week for a month, I’m still not sure how I feel about it. I’ve grown accustomed to the tingling feeling and have even begun to enjoy it, probably because it feels like it’s “doing something”. However, every time I use this mask, it causes whatever acne I have to flare up and makes my blackheads much more noticeable. I’m not sure if this is due to the mask helping my pores ‘purge’ the clogginess, but I don’t really care for it. It still makes my skin feel smooth afterward, but nothing as drastic as the first time I used it. All in all, I think I’ll be seeking out another glycolic acid mask to try, with a higher percentage of glycolic acid (I’ve read this one is only around 1% but didn’t see that on the official website).
I think this mask is a great introductory glycolic acid mask, particularly if you have sensitive skin and want to see how your face reacts to the acid at a lower percentage. With such clean ingredients, you can’t go wrong, I think I just need something a little stronger for my oily, breakout prone skin.
Have you tried any AHA or glycolic acid masks? Any faves to recommend?