Peel-Off Beauty Products: Fad or Fact?

The YS Beauty Lab

I can’t remember how peel-off beauty products became popular. Was it because of My Scheming’s blackhead mask, or Berrisom’s lip tint? Next thing I knew, peel-off skincare and makeup products were already flooding the market. While some remove impurities and help firm skin, others stain with lasting colors. Some even form a protective layer so you can easily paint or remove your nail colors!

To clarify, I’m not talking about products for skin peeling, or patches that need to be taken off. I’m referring to viscous gels that dry and form a firm coating on your skin, which then require some effort to take off but no rinsing needed. Though it may sound disgusting to some, others often find it irresistibly satisfying and fun. But is it worth a try? Does it hurt? Let’s find out!

Face Masks and Nose Packs


Image: Women’s Best

Nowadays, peel-off face masks and nose packs can be loosely classified into 3 types: charcoal, clay and clear gel. Charcoal and clay masks usually cleanse pores by pulling out blackheads and whiteheads and absorbing the excess sebum. Meanwhile, the clear gel types focus on nourishing and firming skin. They’re often enriched with ingredients like honey, tea tree extract or traditional oriental herbs. It takes around 30 minutes for all types to dry completely. You only need to use them 1 to 2 times a week so don’t overdo!

Pros and Cons: The charcoal and clay masks thoroughly remove blackheads, and you can actually see the little white and black spots attached to the peeled-off masks. They also help remove facial hair and firm skin slightly. However, these masks are strong physical exfoliators that may hurt your skin, and therefore not recommended for sensitive skin types.

Many peel-off masks contain alcohol in order to achieve that peeling effect. This may dry out your skin so do follow with a moisturizer. And of course, these masks take time to dry and peel. There may be some residue so you may need extra time rinsing it off. Good thing is not all peel-off masks are the same. The clear gel types normally come off easily and leave skin more hydrated.


Lip Tints


Image: Berrisom

Peel-off lip tints work by staining your lips with a lasting pigment so you can eat, drink and kiss freely without ruining the color or staining your cups, glasses or clothes. There’s little need to reapply lipstick for the rest of the day. Simply apply the thick goop to your pout and leave on for 15 minutes before peeling it off carefully. The longer it stays on, the longer it lasts.

Pros and Cons: Peel-off lip tints are for experts, really. The formula is thick and sticky so it isn’t easy to apply (a brush may help). You also have to keep puckering your lips to avoid getting it on your teeth. The color can turn out rather awkward if the application is uneven. But once you’ve mastered it, you’ll love how the color stays on your lips instead of elsewhere!

Tattoo Brow Liners


Image: RiRe

Tattoo brow liners came out shortly after the peel-off lip tints. They work in a similar way by coloring the brow hairs and the skin beneath with a temporary color. It requires that you leave it on for 2 hours before peeling it off. The longer you wait, the longer it lasts.

Pros and Cons: Tattoo brow liners are actually easier to work with than lip tints since they’re less sticky. However they still require precise application. They may also strip off a few brow hairs when you peel them off. The effort pays off when you see clearly defined brows that do not smudge. Apply before you sleep and wake up to on-fleek brows!

Base Coats, Cuticle Peels and Nail Varnishes


Image: Tony Moly

Peel-off base coats allow you to remove your nail varnish (especially glittery nail polish and gel nails) easily by peeling off the base coat once you’ve grown tired of your current color. Peel-off nail varnishes work the same way. However, cuticle peels are a bit different. Similar to painter’s tape, these quickly form a barrier around your nails so your manicure will be perfectly shaped. Simply apply the cuticle peel before doing nail art and remove it afterwards.

Pros and Cons: These nail products seem the easiest to handle and the least risky. Alcoholic nail varnish removers can dry your skin and the process is time-consuming so why not just peel off the color? Cuticle peels allow makeup beginners to paint their nails effortlessly, so now I’m actually thinking of using them before applying lip tint and tattoo brow liners! Just be careful not to let the cuticle peel get on your nails or it might end up removing the nail polish in the process.