Face Masks that will make your Face feel like a Cloud

OMG, this Week. 

I know it's awful to start a professional editorial with that kind of rhetoric but, wow. Can we get an RT if you've felt numb, furious, speechless and terrified all at once for the past seven days? I feel like I've melted into a smoothie of emotion made in the most intimidating of Vitamix blenders. The silver lining? I know I'm not alone. The force of this sobering wake-up call has stirred the beast in many of us, and it's about time that it did. My only advice to you guys? Keep doing the things. (this is absolutely a memo to self, too). 

Before we get to the beauty, let's work up a sweat. Visit www.womensmarch.com for *actual things* you can do to help for the first 100 days of the Trump Presidency (see sign-up sheet below). Other organizations for non-twitter related action? 2 Hours a Week and Action Now are awesome for digestible morsels of activism you can steadily incorporate into your routine. 

Regularly check up with websites like Vox, Teen Vogue, Clover Letter or any others offering diverse and well-researched opinions. An amazing podcast right now is called Pod Save America, which is run by three of Obama's former White House Speechwriters, Press Aids, and National Security Spokesmen. They even interviewed him (for his final discussion as president) on the podcast, last week, and I deeply respect the approach they're taking in discussing the ups and downs of our political climate. It's funny, sobering, and as equitable as you'd want to get.  

Another thing - We have to take care of each other. It can be so easy to want to scream, march and call senators until we burn out completely, but slow and steady action will ultimately win this race. On days where your brain hurts and your eyes cross, rest. Try a face mask. Go outside. Call a friend (you have SO many that need you, also - don't write this one off by assuming you're a burden), watch Saturday Night Live, or an old movie, or pick up a book you know will make you smile. Life is for living, and we still have a lot of that to do! So let's make sure we take care of each other. Good? Good. 

Okay, Face Masks.

Over the past five Months, I've had the arduous task of trying just about every hyped-up plant-based/organic/trendy face situation there is - some have left me confused and poor, others, hydrated and happy. And clearly, we all know which outcome we'd like to achieve. During this period, I've become an even *Bigger* fan of Glossier (their moisturizing Moon Mask is a must-try, whereas the mega greens partner left me relatively indifferent), a new fan of Fresh, and a relatively aggressive advocate for the Whole Foods Beauty aisle. Seriously - whomever is responsible for stalking that place with good snacks and amazing beauty products can marry me. You are wonderful. 

I've recently re-acquainted myself with Fresh Beauty; a brand that, in my opinion, is only getting better and better. In the realm of the face mask, Fresh has won my heart with honest formulations, plant-based ingredients and - fine, I'll admit it - beautiful packaging. Here's what I'm using: 

Sugar Face Polish
I use this one as much as 2-3 times a week; it's gentle, thanks to ingredients like brown sugar, plum, and grape seed oils. A generous helping of sweet strawberry seeds also ensure its exfoliant properties are top notch, delivering perfect (and needed) results come winter. The biggest factor when it comes to the efficacy of my serums, oils, and creams generally lies in the congestion of my skin; when I begin with a scrub/mask hybrid such as this one, I don't have to worry about products soaking in afterwards. They just will, and my face will smell like a sugar cookie to boot.

Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask 
This one has a beautiful texture, and upon removal, you'll have a face with the texture of satin (an homage to late nights spent darning my pointe shoes, so trust that I know the feeling). This is a great mask to try if you want something gentle with a regulatory effect; though I didn't find it detoxifying, it certainly left me with a hydrated, happy face. Thanks to black tea ferment, Lychee seed and Polysaccharides (a water-binding agent found in skin which can help in smoothing overall texture), you'll see this, too. 

Rose Face Mask
Formulated with cucumber extract, aloe vera and rose water, this gorgeously fragrant mask is also made with what Fresh deems as a "smart" algae, delivering moisture to the surface of the skin. Though research does show that components of red algae contain the omega-3 fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid, the omega-6 fatty acid arachidonic acid and other skin-friendly ingredients, whether or not the entire red algae extract provides benefit when applied topically on skin is not known 100%. Regardless, I find this one to be gently resurfacing and brightening, and my friend Vita says the same. PLUS, tiny baby rose petals strewn all over your face?! Do. It. Up. 

Umbrian Clay Purifying Mask 
This one gets the bad stuff OUT. Clay is, of course, considered a vacuum when it comes to all things skincare, and in this formulation, such a fact rings true. I particularly like the student-friendly price-point (as I buy this on my own, btw!) and ultra-hygienic packaging. Amazing and travel-friendly, it will leave you with matte, clean, soft skin. It can also be used as a spot treatment for trickier spots, and as a daily deep cleanser. Get you a mask that can do both, ya dig? 

The Cult Favourites

Shea Moistura Peace Rose Oil Complex Sensitive Skin Mud Mask
My absolute, hands-down favourite mask to use right now. It's equal parts clarifying and moisturizing, and this alone creates an enticingly compelling case to try. it. now. Other reasons to love - It's made by a family-owned company that founded a side business dedicated to charity, is organic and fair trade, and 10% of the profits go to causes supporting women-led businesses, who also happen to supply the ingredients for Shea Moistura, when possible. Oh, one more thing; a six-ounce jar only costs $14.99. Run.

 Nip & Fab Glycolic Instant Fix Mask
I use this one sparingly (usually once a week), and before bed to eliminate any damage due to increased photosensitivity. Ingredients like Glycolic acid (a whopping 5%), glycerin and amino acids work to sweep away dead skin and reveal a tighter, toned and even complexion; this is a go-to product when physical exfoliants just won't cut it. 

Glossier Moisturizing Moon Mask
I've never used a more gentle mask that actually does what it says it can. Even if you don't pop this one in the fridge (which many of my friends love doing, especially after a hot run), there is still a cooling effect; it's like putting freshly whipped egg whites on your face if they were made of angelic beauty dust. I'm in love with it - every time I slap this on, my face reiterates that declaration. Sweet almond oil, plant-based squalane and hyaluronic acid go beneath the skin for some serious recon work, while licorice root and lemon fruit extract do the brightening, chilling and calming. There's honey and aloe in there too, but I feel like if I say any more I'll need to announce myself as a Glossier employee. 

Now go, be amazing! Your face looks great already, by the way. 

Madison