Chapter 3: A Guide to Sheet Masks

Beauty Book

Whether your skin needs a boost of hydration or you simply want some pampering, sheet masks have got your back. They’re trendy, fun and perfect whenever your skin needs a quick pick-me-up. Want to learn more about what sheet masks are, the benefits of sheet masks, and the best type of mask for each skin type? Here’s your Sheet Mask 101.

What’s a Sheet Mask?

A sheet mask is a face-shaped mask soaked with concentrated serum infused with hydrating ingredients. Most sheet masks are made from fabrics like cotton that are gentle on the skin. There are also masks made with hydro-gel, bio-cellulose or pulp.

How Do I Use a Sheet Mask?

Sheet masks are easy to use and can fit into anyone’s skin care regimen. You apply sheet masks after your serum or ampoule. If you’re following the 10-step Korean skin care routine, sheet masks fall under step 7.

Using a sheet mask is almost effortless! First, apply the sheet to your face and line up the holes to fit your eyes, nose and mouth. For an added cooling effect, place the mask in the fridge before using it. After you’ve applied the mask, leave it on for around 10-20 minutes, or as indicated in the instructions. During this time, you can read a book, watch TV or just sit back and relax.

One of the best things about sheet masks is that you don’t have to wash anything off afterwards. Gently pat the remaining serum until your skin fully absorbs it. The final step is to apply a moisturizer as it helps to seal in the benefits of your sheet mask.

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One major mistake that you need to avoid is to leave the mask on longer than you’re supposed to, like overnight. Yes, there’s such a thing as using a sheet mask for too long. The main goal of a sheet mask is to hydrate your skin. Keeping it on your face until it’s completely dry will actually take moisture away from your skin, leaving it dehydrated and damaging your skin’s natural moisture barrier.

Sheet masks can be used multiple times throughout the week, according to your preference and skin type. Those with normal to dry skin can use it once a day, every day of the week. If you have oily skin, it’s better to stick to once a week.

What Does a Sheet Mask Do?

Sheet masks are an easy and effective way to provide your skin with extra hydration as well as brighten skin and keep it firm. They’re packed with plenty of ingredients, vitamins and botanical extracts that are beneficial for the skin. Take a glance at a sheet mask’s ingredient list and you’ll notice that, a majority of the time, the primary ingredient is actually water. That’s because water is a complementary component that helps to boost the effectiveness of the other ingredients in a sheet mask.

Brands don’t offer just one type of sheet mask but a variety that you can choose from, depending on your skin type and what you want to achieve. Here are some recommendations to target certain skin concerns:

For Dry Skin

Dry or dehydrated skin needs more moisture than other skin types so look for sheet masks with ingredients like hyaluronic acid or honey. Dry skin types have thinner skin and are more prone to showing fine lines earlier than oily skin types so keeping the skin hydrated is key in preventing that from happening. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that helps maintain the skin’s moisture levels as well as prevent dryness. Incorporate a sheet mask at least once a day to quench your skin’s thirst!

For Troubled Skin

If you suffer from blemishes and enlarged pores, you most likely have oily skin. Those with this skin type should limit sheet mask use to once a week as your skin has sufficient moisture already. Look for masks infused with Centella Asiatica, tea tree or green tea extracts – all of which soothe irritation, regulate sebum production and calm the skin.

Troubled skin needs time to recover and using sheet masks with snail extracts helps to boost collagen, heal and repair skin, and soothe any breakouts.  Snail secretion filtrate, also known as snail slime or mucin, is packed with nutrients that improve the skin’s overall condition and minimize the appearance of pores for a more refined and firmer complexion.

For Sensitive Skin

Similar to troubled skin, sensitive skin types should also opt for sheet masks with soothing ingredients that don’t irritate the skin. This can be a bit tricky as sensitive skin tends to react to products and it can be quite difficult to do a patch test with a sheet mask.

If you’re unsure and worried about your skin reacting, we suggest trying the Rich Moist Soothing Tencel Sheet Mask from Dear, Klairs. This sheet mask soothes sensitive and inflamed skin, and contains moisturizing nutrients such as aloe vera, panthenol, hyaluronic acid, aloe leaf juice and Centella extract.   The mask also features a soft gauze sheet made from 100% cotton and Tencel fabric which doesn’t irritate sensitive skin.


For Dull Skin

The opposite of dull is bright – and that’s exactly what this skin type needs! Look for sheet masks with Vitamin C, lemon extracts and niacinamide as these are the common ingredients used for brightening dull or tired skin and evening out skin tone.

For Aging Skin

Having youthful skin is everyone’s wish and although nothing lasts forever, there are still ways to keep skin youthful a little bit longer. While most anti-aging treatments require going to a spa, luckily you can recreate a spa-like experience at home with the use of a sheet mask. Aging skin lacks collagen, which is what you need to keep skin firm, to prevent skin from sagging, and to reduce the appearance of wrinkles. With regular use of sheet masks, you can strengthen your skin’s barrier, especially if it includes anti-aging ingredients like ginseng, snail essence or grape seed extracts.

Do I Need a Sheet Mask?

Sheet masks provide plenty of nutrients and benefits, and with consistent use, they can improve your skin’s condition. If you’re looking to give your skin an extra boost of hydration and luminosity, then yes, you absolutely need one! Adding it to your daily routine is the simplest way to achieve glowing skin!