Glitter Guide contributor, PJ Feinstein, is back with more tried-and-true skincare tips. Looking for the perfect face mask? Try one (or all) of these peel-off masks to instantly brighten dull skin and improve your pores.
If you covered your hands in Elmer’s glue during elementary school art class simply to pick it off later, you’re going to love the latest trend in skincare: peel-off masks. Pulling them off your face offers a similar satisfaction to picking glue off your fingers. Plus, there’s the added bonus of sometimes being able to see the gunk that came out of your pores stuck to the masks.
Unlike super popular sheet masks, peel-off masks take a bit of effort to apply—too thin and it’s hard to peel, too thick and it’ll take forever to dry—and even more effort to take off. While some masks still look like an untouched mold of your face when you peel them away, others we tried required a bit of patience (and time) to remove bit by bit. Plus, certain peel-off masks can actually be a smidge painful to lift from the skin. Remember that YouTube video of a girl screaming obscenities as she tries to peel off a face mask? Ouch.
So, why start swapping sheet masks for peel-away ones? “Peel-off masks are great for unclogging pores and removing blackheads and oil buildup because of the mechanical action of peeling them off,” says dermatologist Natasha Sandy, M.D. Celebrity esthetician Gina Mari adds that peel-off masks can also “reduce pore size and remove peach fuzz that can create the look of dull skin.” She recommends choosing masks that contain vitamins C or E to reduce inflammation and soothe the skin.
If your pores are craving some relief, here are five peel-off masks you’ll want to tear into (pun intended):
- Embrace your inner chemist while mixing together the gel and the powder included in the Miss Spa Charcoal Detox Modeling Mask ($14.99) single-use kit. A clarifying skin treatment, the dark gray mask absorbs excess oil to deep clean pores, forming a rubberized texture as it dries that makes it easy to peel away. This super-popular item has already flown off the digital shelves at most of our favorite beauty websites, but keep an eye out for a restock soon.
- Yes, you’ll look orange-tinged for the 20 or so minutes it takes for First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Purifying Mask with Red Clay ($30) to dry, but once you peel it away, your skin will be left looking refreshed. Any lingering red spots from previous pimples may even appear lighter thanks to the anti-inflammatory properties of rosemary leaf oil.
- Formula 10.0.6 Be Berry Awake Energizing Peel Mask ($6.99) goes on clear, but has a deliciously light fruity fragrance. Part of the brand’s new Berry Line of skincare, the peel-off mask is packed with antioxidants to boost circulation and help awaken your complexion—even when the rest of you is totally exhausted.
- GlamGlow GRAVITYMUD Firming Treatment ($69) comes with a little brush that makes the experience of applying the product seem a little extra luxe. After 20 to 30 minutes, the peel-off mud treatment dries into a selfie-worthy metallic mask that leaves skin feeling taut and toned.
- Hardworking, yet gentle on the skin, Boscia Luminizing Black Mask ($34) minimizes pores, absorbs excess oil, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, and brightens the complexion. The multi-purpose peel-off, a favorite of many estheticians, gets its hue from activated black charcoal, which, along with mineral-rich clay, gently purifies and exfoliates.