How often should you use a face mask: 3 key deciding factors

How often to use  a face mask?

‘How often should I use a facemask ?’ OR ‘What is the best time to use a facemask?’ OR ‘How to properly apply a face mask? OR ‘Do face mask work?’ OR ‘What is the best face mask for my skin type?’

If you are having a lot of these sorts of questions about face masks then you are not alone. There are many like you because a lot of women while actually love facemasks but the majority of them don’t actually know how to best use them diminishing the returns from their efforts.

Do you know why? Because they have never tried to seek answers for the above-mentioned questions about face masks that allow them to gain maximum out of their skincare efforts.

Particularly, most of the people struggle with the best timing and frequency of using face masks; either they end up using a lot of them for a lot of times in a week/month, or they underuse a facemask which never serves the intended purpose.

So, if you want to know how often should you use a facemask and get answers for all of those burning questions about face masks then keep reading till the end before you are completely satisfied.

Do face masks work? Benefits of face mask
.Before we find out the answers to all the above questions, first you need to be reminded of what exactly can a face mask does your skin for a wide range of your skin concerns.

There are a wide variety of face masks for a wide variety of skin concerns. Depending on the formula and skin type, facemasks offer these amazing benefits for your skin.

  • Improve your dull skin texture to improve the elasticity of your skin
  • Unclogs pores to make your skin smooth
  • Removes any dead skin cells to allow regenerate new, younger-looking skin underneath
  • Keeps your skin moisturized/hydrated to make your face look always refreshing.
  • Cleans up any dirt, oil, and impurities to restore the radiance of your skin
  • Minimizes/treats the appearance of fine lines, dark spots, and wrinkles
  • Fights acne/pimples to restore the beauty and glow of your skin.

How often should you use a face mask?

DIY face mask routine

Well, a very simple answer is; too much of anything is always bad which is true for face masks as well. A face mask works best when its benefits and purpose are aligned with your skin concerns.

Precisely, how often should you use a face mask depends on the following factors.

  • Your skin type (dry, oily or sensitive skin)
  • The type of face mask ( Charcoal, clay, gelatin, etc)
  • The purpose of the mask( exfoliation, moisturization, etc)

Let’s go through each of the factors in detail and find out what is the optimal frequency and timing of each type of these face masks.

Face mask routine by face mask type

face mask routine by mask type

Let’s find out often should you choose a face mask depending on the type of face mask like charcoal, clay or gelatin, etc.

1. Clay face mask

DIY clay face mask

Benefits & usage

A clay mask offers the following benefits for the skin.

  • Clay face masks suit almost all skin types and are non-irritating.
  • They are the excellent remover of excess oil, dirt and dead skin cells from your skin surface and restore glow.
  • By virtue of nature, they are full of natural minerals and nutrients which when observed by your kin make it look soft, smooth, younger and even brighter!
  • Clay masks can be helpful against acne/pimples due to their natural cleansing properties

Bottom line: A clay mask can be used at most 1-2 times a week for optimal, side-effect-free results for your face.

2. Charcoal face mask

DIY charcoal face mask

Benefits & usage

A charcoal mask offers the following benefits for skin

  • An activated charcoal mask is one of the best skin clearing agents for treating blackheads & whiteheads 
  • Its powerful cleansing properties can draw bacteria, impurities, and toxins from deep from your skin pores to restore your glow and radiance

How often should you use an activated charcoal mask?

While there is no denying in the excellent cleansing properties of a charcoal mask, however, this has drawbacks too.

That is, being a peel-off face mask, along with dirt and impurities, activated charcoal can also strip the natural oils of your skin which makes them too harsh for your skin. So, it makes sense to use them minimally.

Bottom line: An activated charcoal can be used at most 1 time a month. More than that, you risk doing more harm than good to your skin.

3. Gelatin face mask

DIY Geleatin face mask

Benefits & usage

A gelatin face mask offers the following benefits for your skin

  • A gelatin face mask is primarily used for boosting collagen production which restores your skin’s elasticity, strength, and youth.
  • It works by removing the dirt, oil, dead cells, and toxins that are on the surface of your skin by binding them with it. So, when you peel off your gelatin mask, all of these things are stripped away with it

How often to use this Gelatin face mask?

Since a gelatin face mask is essentially a peel of face mask, while removing the impurities from your skin surface, it strips away a tiny layer of your skin as it dries up which makes your skin dry and irritated. So, it makes sense to avoid over-exfoliation and keeps its usage to minimal.

Bottom line:

A Gelatin exfoliating face mask should be used at most 1-2 times a month to avoid irritation and over-exfoliation.

4. Korean sheet face mask

Benefits & usage

A Korean sheet face mask offers the following benefits for your skin.

  • Much popular nowadays, Korean beauty sheet masks, are deep moisturizing agents that help your skin heal and recover.
  • They are very good at exfoliating your skin by gently removing dead skin cells, dirt and impurities from the surface which restores your skin glow and radiance.

How often to use a Korean sheet face mask?

Given the popularity of this face mask, it is very tempting to use it every day. However, it has drawbacks too. 

  • The benefits of this face mask last only when it is wet on the surface; as soon it dries up, it peels away the minerals and vitamins from your skin surface which does more harm than good.
  • Also, some Korean sheet masks also sometimes contain harmful chemicals that can clog your pores if used frequently.

Bottom line:

Given the cons associated with a Korean sheet face mask, it should be used at most once a week.

5. Tea face mask

Benefits & usage

The tea face mask has the following benefits for your skin

  • By nature, tea face masks are very good against free radical damage to your skin which protects your skin from premature aging.
  • Loaded with antioxidants and quality vitamins/minerals they also help against fighting acne and pimples.

There are different types of tea face masks that vary in their benefits for your skin

1. Green tea face mask – Green face tea mask is known for fighting premature aging and improving skin complexion.

2. Black tea face mask – While black tea face masks are rich in natural antioxidants, they are especially good at exfoliating your skin and improve your skin cells regeneration rates.

3. Rooibos tea masks – Rooibos tea masks are known for their powerful anti-acne/pimples benefits are.

How often should a tea mask be used?: While tea masks have very good benefits for your skin but they should not be used more than once per week.

Bottom line:

Tea masks should be used at most once per week

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Face mask routine with skin concern type

skin care routine by skin concern

Let’s find out how often you should choose a face mask depending on the type of skin concern like dry, oily or sensitive skin type. These masks are often DIY, natural, homemade, called DIY face masks.

Ingredients of DIY face masks

ingredients of DIY face masks

Common ingredients of DIY face masks are direct from your pantry or fridge are.

  • Avocado
  • Coconut oil
  • Yogurt
  • Aloe vera
  • Turmeric
  • Rosewater etc

 

Important note about citric acid!

You have to be cautious with the use of citric acid for your DIY masks. That’s because: While the light amount of citric acid from sources like oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes can definitely help you in exfoliating your skin to reveal a brighter complexion.

However, if left on your skin for a long time, it can lead to bleaching/discoloration of your skin surface and in extreme cases, lead to the burning of the skin. In these cases, it is better to completely avoid any mask that contains citric acid in it.

1) Face mask for dry skin

For dry skin, deep hydrating masks that deeply hydrate your dry skin are your best friend. Since they are primarily made of water content, they are generally soothing and nor irritating and have no side effects. That’s why they can be used frequently without any worry.

Bottom line: Face mask for dry skin that deeply hydrates their dry skin can be used as much as 3-4 times a week without any side effects.

2) Face mask for dull/dark skin

Since dullness or darkness of skin is a serious concern, unlike a dry skin which can be easy with a hydrating/moisturizing face mask, the ingredients used for a dull skin face mask, if used frequently, can irritate and harm your skin.

Precisely, some face masks for this type of skin concern have hydroxy acids/ retinol in them which is best if used with caution and lease frequently i.e once per week is ideal and safe for your overall skin health.

Bottom line: Face masks for dull/dark skin should be limited to only once per week, given the side effects these can have if used more than this.

3) Face mask for oily skin

For oily skin people, their major concern is too much oil that leads to acne and pimples. For this kind of problem, a clarifying face mask like charcoal or clay mask can help to help absorb and extract away excess oil from your skin surface is generally used.

However, some of these oil skin face mask types can contain irritating ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, etc which are not something you want to use too frequently.

Bottom line: Face masks for oily skin should not be used too frequently and should be kept at most 1-2 times per week.

4) Face mask for sensitive skin

For sensitive skin people, their major concern is the loss of moisture which makes their skin dry and sensitive. So, for these types of people, a deep hydrating/moisturizing mask is a perfect choice.

Now, since a hydrating mask that primarily contains water does not lead to any serious skin concern which allows them to use frequently. However, you should avoid any face mask that contains artificial fragrances that can irritate your skin by making it further dry.

How often you should use this face mask?

A face mask for sensitive skin can be used frequently from daily to 2-3 times a week.

5) Face mask for mature skin

For mature skin, loss of skin elasticity and appearance of premature aging signs and wrinkles is the primary concern. So, for this type of concern, a face mask that deeply hydrates and exfoliates your skin to remove dead skin to restore the youthfulness of the skin is the best choice.

Generally, face masks for this type of skin concern have niacinamides(anti-aging benefits) and AHAs in them which, if used to frequently can prove to be harsh on your skin. So, it makes sense to use them minimally.

Bottom line: Face masks for mature skin should be used at most 1-2 times a week. More than that, you risk irritating and doing more harm than good to your skin

Other factors that decide how often you should use a face mask

Apart from these factors, you need to consider the weather conditions and the season before applying face masks. For instance, 

  • In winters, since your skin is dry, you need to use moisturizing/hydrating face mask often
  • For summers, when you have to keep your face clean from sweating and excess oil secretion, a clarifying face mask like clay, charcoal should be used often.

How to apply a face mask?

How to apply a face mask?

If you know how often to use a face mask type but don’t know how to use it or for how long should you keep it on your face, you are not going to get much out of your face masking efforts because, for sure, you would be making a mistake.

So, let’s learn how to properly apply a face mask and for how long it should be left on your face.

How to properly use a face mask?

Follow the following steps to properly apply/use a face mask for maximum benefits for your skin concern.

  1. The first step is to properly cleanse your face with a gentle exfoliator/cleanser to remove away any dirt or impurities on your skin to allow for better penetration of facemask ingredients.
  2. Now when your face is ready to absorb your mask, gently apply over your face using your fingers and thoroughly spread over it but don’t apply layers over layers which is useless.
  3. Once it has been properly spread over your face, leave it for at least 25-30 minutes and avoid touching it with your fingers or hands.
  4. Finally, after this time, rinse off your mask with lukewarm water and always follow it with a good moisturizer to help you seal the moisture or skin-healthy ingredients that it has penetrated into your skin.

How long to keep a face mask on your skin?

face mask time on face

Now you know how to properly use/apply a face mask but you might be wondering how long should I leave them on my face for best outcomes for my skin?

The simple answer to this question is, it depends on the type of face mask you are using. Generally, you should follow what the face mask packages instruct to do and keep the following things in mind.

1. Face mask containing active ingredients – OTC face masks

These types of face masks generally have active ingredients in them that should not be left on your face for not more than 10-15 minutes at most. Keeping them on your face longer than this, can irritate your skin and do more harm than good.

For instance, the face mask which contains ‘Sulphur’ in them or ‘Kaolin clay’ in a restorative clay face mask.

2. Face masks containing natural/homemade ingredients – DIY masks

These types of face masks which are made up of purely natural/homemade ingredients like 

  • Aloe vera
  • Coconut oil
  • Avocado
  • Turmeric
  • Yogurt
  • Milk
  • Honey

These are generally free of any serious side effects which allow them to be kept on your face for a longer period of time, like an hour or more. 

However, not all DIY face masks are equal and some can cause damage to your skin if kept on for a longer period of time. 

For example, DIY masks containing citric acid in them, if left for more than 15-20 minutes can lead to bleaching/discoloration of your skin along with their exfoliating benefits.

3. Overnight face masks

However, some face masks are pretty flexible in terms of time and can last for a whole night without any side-effect. By staying overnight on your face/skin they deeply nourish and heal your skin while improving the strength and youthfulness of your skin.

Examples of overnight face mask are anti-aging masks, overnight cream moisturizing masks, and certain vitamin E masks.

What about multi-masking/double masking?

Multi-masking face masks

This the final thing that needs to be clarified that can you apply more than one mask together or in one day called double-masking/multi-masking. If you can, how to do it?

How to multi-mask/double-mask?

Multi masking is one of the best ways to customize your skincare and get some added benefits in quick time for your skin. There are primarily two ways to double mask.

1. Spot-mask double masking:

This type of masking is primarily useful for people with combination skin type. It works by applying different masks to specific areas of skin at the same time.

2. Back-to-back double masking:

As the name indicates, this type of double masking works by applying two different masks after one another. You first apply one mask, rinse and remove it off, then apply the second after immediately after it.

This will allow you to reap the benefits of the two different in a very short time.

Common face mask mistakes that people make

face mask mistakes

For now, I am sure you would not have any doubt about the usefulness of a face mask as a regular part of the skincare routine. But despite all that, many people still make a lot of mistakes while using them as a part of their skincare regimen.

If you want to reap the full benefits of a facemask, then you have to use them in the right way. Read below what you need to stop doing with respect to face masks as an integral part of your skincare regimen. 

Mistake 1. Not picking a face mask suits your skin type

This is a mistake that a lot of people make with regards to face masks due to their ignorance. Just like when you choose an OTC cleanser or moisturizer based on your skin type, you should do the same while choosing the right face mask for your skin. 

For example,

For dry skin, pick a deep hydrating/moisturizing face mask to treat the dryness of your skin. Similarly, if you have oily skin, you need to choose a mattifying/cleansing face mask to absorb extra oil from your skin surface to avoid getting acne/pimples.

So, you don’t have to pick a face mask just because it has some of your favorite ingredients in it or your friends like it. Choose what addresses your concern.

Mistake 2: Not properly cleansing your face before application

This is another common face mistake people make when they don’t properly clean up their faces before putting on a face mask. By doing this, they are just layering a face mask on top of all sorts of dirt and bacteria which does more harm than good.

For cleaning up your face, you can use a gentle, no-rinse cleansing option like micellar water to help remove dirt, oil, and traces of makeup.

Mistake 3: Applying face mask with dirty hands

The type of people who don’t clean up their faces before applying a face mask is generally the people who end up applying a face mask with their dirty, unhygienic hands too. By doing this type of ignorance, they transfer oils or bacteria from your hands to your face which negates the very purpose of a face mask.

So, if you really want your favorite mask to work for a skin concern, you have no choice but to give your hands a thorough cleansing or if you can’t do this, then, at least use a flat foundation brush to apply the mixture of a face mask without needing to wash your hands.

Mistake 4: Applying too much of a face mask than needed

Do you remember the rule mentioned at the very start about using face masks? If not, let me remind you: Less is always more and more is not always useful. This perfectly fits for face masks.

Always remember one thing that a super-thick layer won’t result in a more effective masking session. Just a layer of your face mask over your clean, dry skin is enough.

Mistake 5: Face mask only work in the day

This is another common misunderstanding people have that face masks work only in broad daylight. Applying them overnight would yield no benefits. In fact, there are face masks that work best only when they are left for the whole night. 

For example, masks that have anti-aging benefits are more effective while kept on for the whole night. So, if you really don’t want to miss out on some of the amazing benefits that night face mask can offer, you have to stop believing this myth and not limit your face masks only during the day.

Mistake 6: Leaving it on for a longer-than-needed time

This is another mistake that a lot of people make when they forget to rinse off their face mask when it has surpassed its due time. After its normal time, a face mask starts showing its side effects or causes irritation/reaction.

So, it is always in your best interest to wash off your face mask on once it is due and strictly follow the instructions given on your face mask label. You can use a timer for this purpose.

Mistake 7: You don’t use them regularly

Just like in our normal life you have to be disciplined and regular to achieve something, the same rule applies for face masks as well. You don’t have to treat them as occasional treats, rather they should be used regularly, be it weekly, monthly or daily.

Once you have promised yourself to be regular with your face mask usage, the only thing left to decide is how often should you use a face mask which is something that has already been explained at the start.

For this, either check out the directions on the packaging of the face mask or check by your skin type, face mask type and the skin concern you are dealing with to receive the best results for facial skin.

FAQs

Q: Is it bad to do face masks every day?

Answer: Generally, “Yes”. It is bad to do face masks every day as it can lead to certain side effects for your facial skin. However, not all masks types are equal. For instance, A hydrating/moisturizing face mask which is mainly used for moisturizing/hydrating a dry/sensitive skin can be applied daily without any considerable side effects for your facial skin.

Q: Are face masks good for your skin?

Ans: Yes, a face mask can, depending on the formula and skin type, offer these amazing benefits for your skin.
1. It can improve your dull skin texture to improve the elasticity of your skin
2. It can unclog pores to make your skin smooth
3. It removes any dead skin cells to allow regenerate new, younger-looking skin underneath
4. It can keep your skin moisturized/hydrated to make your face look always refreshing.
5. It cleans up any dirt, oil, and impurities to restore the radiance of your skin
6. It minimizes/treats the appearance of fine lines, dark spots, and wrinkles
7. It fights acne/pimples to restore the beauty and glow of your skin.

Q: How often should you use a Korean face mask?

Ans: Once per week. 
This is because of the fact that while Korean face masks are quite popular, however, they dry up very quickly and their effects last only when they are wet on your skin surface.
So, when it dries up, it can peel away the minerals and vitamins from your skin surface which does more harm than good. Also, some Korean sheet masks also sometimes contain harmful chemicals that can clog your pores if used frequently.

Q: Are face masks actually good for your skin?

Ans: Absolutely, a face mask, depending on the formula and skin type, offer these amazing benefits for your skin.
1. It can improve your dull skin texture to improve the elasticity of your skin
2. It can unclog pores to make your skin smooth
3. It removes any dead skin cells to allow regenerate new, younger-looking skin underneath
4. It can keep your skin moisturized/hydrated to make your face look always refreshing.
5. It cleans up any dirt, oil, and impurities to restore the radiance of your skin
6. It minimizes/treats the appearance of fine lines, dark spots, and wrinkles
7. It fights acne/pimples to restore the beauty and glow of your skin.

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