A face mask is an indulgent weekly ritual to help treat a number of skin concerns. Masks come in a variety of textures, from clays to gels and even creams. Choose a mask according to your skin type and skin concern – here is our guide to the different types of face masks.

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Cream masks

Skin type: Normal to dry skins

Cream-based masks are formulated with moisturising oils and are perfect for normal to dry skin types. The oils will help nourish the skin, creating a hydrated, plump surface. These types of masks don’t usually need to be washed off because it absorbed by the skin, but you can rinse or wipe it off if you choose.

Try: Clarins HydraQuench Cream Mas, 75ml – R445

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Clay masks

Skin type: Oily or acne-prone

Clay masks generally have a tightening effect due to their oil-absorbing properties. It’s a great weekly treat for oily or acne prone skin as the clay helps clean out pores and remove impurities. Don’t leave a clay mask on until it’s so dry it cracks, because that only sucks moisture from your skin – rinse it off just as it starts to dry but still feels a bit sticky.

Try: Dermalogica Skin Refining Masque, 75ml – R560

Sheet masks

Skin condition: Dehydrated skin

Sheet masks have grown in popularity and are generally made from a cotton or paper sheet, pre-cut into the shape of a face with holes for the mouth, eyes and nose and soaked in a liquid formula with ingredients to hydrate your skin. The hydrating formula is usually water-based so it’s perfect to combat dehydrated skin. Some also contain anti-ageing properties.

Try: Skin Republic Platinum Lift Silk Cellulose Mask Sheet, 25ml – R45

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Thermal Masks

Skin condition: Congested skin

Thermal masks gradually heat up when applied to the face. It is designed to warm surface tissue to encourage the skin to breathe and pores to enlarge, performing a cleansing action. As the mask cools, it sets, closing the pores slightly and is perfect to clear congested skin.

Try: The Body Shop Warming Mineral Mask, 100ml – R155

Gel masks

Skin type: Combination, oily or acne-prone

Gel masks are formulated to be completely oil-free, and like sheet masks, are water based. This type of mask is great if you have combination, oily or acne-prone skin. For the cold months, it is also reduces redness on sensitive skin types, and in the hot months it can soothe sunburn.

Try: Estee Lauder Hyrda Complete Multi-Level Moisture Gel Mask, 75ml – R450

Peel-Off Masks 

Skin type: Dry, mature and blackhead prone skin

Peel-off masks usually come in a gel, plastic of paraffin wax type. They are not as absorbent as clay masks but are designed to tighten the skin temporarily to stimulate blood circulation. They are great for removing blackheads as well as rehydrating dry skin, and work especially well for mature skin.

Try: Ren Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask, 50ml – R540 

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