Did you ever question how long face masks have sprung up? Centuries ago, Ancient Egyptians applied concoctions to nourish and moisturize skin. Cleopatra, one of the most well-known women in history, is famed for her unusual beauty routines with natural treasures. She immersed herself in Dead Sea Mud with essential oils to rejuvenate her skin.
Aside from that, during the Vedic Age in India, Ubtan was one of the earliest face mask, jam-packed with plant extracts. Aired with Harper’s Bazaar, titled “Little Black Book,” Priyanka Chopra swears by this face fixer, containing turmeric, whole wheat flour, lime juice, yogurt and rose water. It helps to peel off dull, dead skin cells.
People no longer live under the rock. The in-depth knowledge of botanicals with advanced technology has sparked the revolution of face masks. They are neither elusive nor beyond our reach, no matter what the form. In this post, I’m about to share my review on one of the modern treatments, Erno Laszlo Firm & Lift Firmarine Lift Face Mask.
1. Formulated with a Great Deal of Nourishing, Moisturizing and Formula Stabilizing Ingredients
A soothing blue face mask with a dual-phase formula repairs skin firmness and moisture reservoir. Rooted in the time-tested secrets of Korean spas, it comprises powder and liquid that are mixed to vigorously revitalize the complexion for an intact, youthful look. Recommended for either the night application or whenever the tired skin craves it most.
The first step is Liquid. Formulated with water, Glycerin, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Caprylyl Glycol, Propylene Glycol, Panthenol and Spirulina Maxima (Blue-green Algae) Extract as emollients and humectants. Together, these ingredients tend to bind water in skin, smooth out skin texture, ward off flaking and restore the suppleness.
Specifically, PPG-26-Buteth-26 can be also used as a fragrance, an emulsifier and a surfactant to maintain the formula stability and integrate other ingredients of the formula. Caprylyl Glycol can be a preservative booster with antimicrobial activities to fortify the efficacy of preservatives. Propylene Glycol helps keep the product from either melting or freezing as well as allow other ingredients to penetrate into skin.
Aside from being moisturizers, Panthenol and Spirulina Maxima Extract are very potent ingredients. Panthenol, a provitamin of B5, is rich in soothing and anti-irritating agents. Spirulina Maxima (Blue-green Algae) Extract is an antioxidant and a natural antimicrobial. It rejuvenates, purifies and soothes the skin.
In addition, there are some other compounds. Peg-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil works as an emulsifier and surfactant similar to PPG-26-Buteth-26. Triethanolamine is primarily a pH adjuster or a buffer that balances the pH level of the product to make its formula stable and less irritating towards skin. Phenoxyethanol and Chlorphenesin are main preservatives. Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil can function as a skin conditioning agent and a fragrance. Algin is a polysaccharide, categorised a marine plant extract from brown algae, moisturizing skin and improving its elasticity.
The second Step is Powder. Infused with Glucose, a skin replenishing agent to provide water-binding properties. Formulated with numerous multitaskers, like abrasives, absorbents, bulking, opacifying and anti-caking agents. There are Diatomaceous Earth, Calcium Sulfate Hydrate, Silica, Magnesium Oxide, Aluminum Hydroxide, Tetrasodium Pyrophosphate, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour and Distarch Phosphate.
They tend to deliver a silky texture with opaque coverage, prevent clumping, soak up the liquid, dilute solids in the formula to increase the volume of the product for high spreadability.
Distarch Phosphate also results in binding effects to keep other ingredients from separating. Tetrasodium Pyrophosphate can be a buffer (pH adjuster) and a chelator as well. It reduces the change of the pH of the solution, when conflated with others and foils the contamination by isolating metal ions and metallic compounds from adhering to other ingredients and skin. Besides, Magnesium Oxide also works as a pH adjuster.
Moreover, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour creates fine grinding powder for the smoothness, but also boasts rejuvenating, moisturizing, soothing and skin protective activities. It helps to restore skin health after exposure to environmental perils. Similarly, the formula contains Allantoin, a naturally occurring compound in the roots and leaves of the comfrey plant. It’s a powerhouse of anti-aging, hydrating and healing properties.
There are some other ingredients. Pullulan and Algin are emulsifiers (thickeners), water-binding agents and film formers for consistent, soft and emollient feels to the touch. Furthermore, Methyl Diisopropyl Propionamide, Algin and Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil do their jobs as fragrances and masking agents to minimize the unpleasant smells of other ingredients. Finally, there are mineral-derived colorants, such as Ci 77007 (Ultramarines), Ci 42090 (Blue 1) and Ci 19140 (Yellow 5) for blue and yellow pigments.
Most of those ingredients are considered safe with their low to moderate hazards. They are synthetically made, natural extracts or even, animal-derived. The product is neither cruelty-free nor vegan.
2. Cooling, Soothing and Hydrating
As you can see, this is a dual-phase formula with the powder and the liquid. The first step is the liquid. It’s clear, gel-like consistency with moderately high viscosity and yellowish undertones, which looks like the egg white. The second is seriously fine-milled and air-light loose powder, easily sprinkled into the air. It has a light blue color and a minty scent, which smells quite like toothpaste. You may take 30 to 40 seconds to totally blend them together. They turn into a paste.
Apply the mask following the cleansing step. I had tried mixing the whole bags of these two. It ended up being a dough and puffing up into a big, clumpy mess taking over my entire face. Even difficult to apply. What a waste! Then, I figure out that mixing half of the liquid and half of the powder at a time seems more effective. It tends to give a thinner, more spreadable texture and also, I can save 8 face masks in total.
Despite that, it’s still a little bit hard to spread evenly all over my face. The mixture dries really fast so you better hurry to slap it on right after blending those two parts.
In the first 60 seconds, the mask instantly gives a very hot, tingly sensation, which may get on your nerves. My skin seems to gradually adapt to it and the irritation reduces little by little. About two minutes later, it feels super soothing, cooling and hydrating. Literally perks up my skin.
Let it sit on skin for 15 to 20 minutes and simply peel it off. It will not harshly pull your beloved skin. The mask does not cause any greasy, sticky residues. It leaves genuinely fresh, clean and hydrating sensations. The product does tighten my skin. My complexion looks more awake with a soft, plump feel. Fine lines on my forehead become less noticeable. I gotta admit that its cooling effect is amazing and pretty lingering. This is what I’m fond of.
To finish off my skincare routine, I like to apply a moisturizing cream to ultimately lock skin in moisture and fill in fine lines. Thanks to the mask, my moisturizer goes on more smoothly.
Heading outdoors in the hot, sweaty weather, like summer is more likely to wear my skin out. The mask cools down the heat and imparts skin meditation that mitigates the appearance of fatigue signs, like redness and sagging. It tends to result in the healthy, luminous looking skin.
I’d recommend the product for most of skin types, combination, sensitive, dry and oily skin. The blue-green Algae extract is able to alleviate inflammation and refine pores. However, for those who have very delicate skin, its initial irritation probably makes you find uncomfortable.
To avoid skin allergic reaction, I think you should not apply many skincare products along with the mask at once. In fact, I have not gotten any troubles from the mask yet. I see that some Youtube beauty gurus have had a habit of slathering many skincare products before or/and after using a facemask for deep skin nourishment. But, that may not be the case. It’s not certain, whether the mask’s formula is able to function well together with your current skincare products or not.
Overusing the products can take a toll on your skin. When it comes to skincare, perhaps, less is more. If you are still new to the mask, you can start off using it only two to three times a week, for a few weeks, and slowly work your way to accompany it with your moisturizer in a small amount.
To be frank, after using all of these bags, it seems that the product itself does not make any drastic change to my skin. If you are suffering from discoloration, acne scars and other imperfections, you sure need additional skincare steps to work things out with it.
Speaking of the scent, it becomes fairly strong when the liquid and the powder are mixed. I don’t really like it.
3. Nice Bag Packaging – Quite Pricey
The two steps of the face mask are housed in blue plastic bags. The liquid is 70 ml (2.5 fluid ounces) and the powder is 17g. They are sealed well to protect the product from growing microorganisms. These packs are very lightweight so I can bring them all the time.
They are contained in a cardboard box, including 8 packs for four facemasks. You can find the product description behind the box. Plus, on another side of the “step 2” bag, there is “how to use” description. The whole box is quite pricy, retailing for $88. This may be one of its cons.
4. My Rating (7/10): A Good Mask to Revive Fatigue Skin
I love its soothing and cooling sensation to pamper our skin, despite I just don’t like its texture, shortly hot and stinging sensations and strong smell. But, above all, the mask might be a good option for the tired skin suffering from the external aggressors throughout the day. Anyway, the packaging design is really great. So, I’ll give it 7 out of 10.
I hope the review is informative and helpful enough to you all. I’ll be more than happy if you can share your thoughts with us. And, if you have used the product, this will be my huge pleasure to hear you out. Thank you so much!