The mask slips

05 Jan 2017
POSTED BY Y Magazine

The Korean face mask has revealed itself as a versatile visage aid. Christine Karan reports.

I’m an avid watcher of Korean dramas. They have a different take on soaps, and due to their interesting yet relatable storylines they have become a huge hit worldwide. Following the success of Korean dramas, genres such as K-fashion, K-pop and K-beauty have also become immensely popular with international audiences.

In my K-drama marathons, one of the most popular scenes I come across is when the leading lady invites her friends over for a slumber party. As part of the party ritual, they apply a white face mask that makes them look like something out of a horror movie.

  • What is a Korean face mask?

This got me wondering what this peculiar ritual was all about, something that these ladies appeared to love so much.

It turns out that it is nothing but a face-shaped mask made out of pure cotton soaked in serums and other active ingredients (in correct measures) that give the face a “fresh look” for a good part of the day.

  • How do these face masks help?

Heidi Waldorf, Director of Laser and Dermatology at The Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, believes that facemasks work because the ingredients are directly delivered to the skin. Also the hyaluronic acids in hydrating-type facemasks give an instant lift to the face. Since they also come in small flat packs they are easy to carry around and can be used anytime, anywhere.

  • What is the routine?

Many beauty experts recommend just washing your face and applying the mask. Then just lie down and relax for about 15 to 20 minutes and let the Korean magic work. Remove the mask after about 20 minutes and DO NOT wash your face but gently tap the residue left on your skin. It is common that most Korean women use at least one mask a day while some even go for two. It’s all about choice, and how hydrated you want your skin to be. 

  • Variety?

Korean facemasks come in countless varieties; from green tea facemasks to seaweed. You are spoilt for choice.

Although we do not recommend you throw away your moisturisers and other skin care products, these face masks act as a quick fix and some much-needed therapy after a day out in the sun.

Face masks from Western cosmetic brands have been around for a while but Korean masks seem to have become popular and much sought-after. International stars such as Lady Gaga and James Franco have shown their liking for the product after putting up “masked face” selfies on their Instagram accounts.

You can shop for your Korean face masks from beauty stores in Muscat; The Face Shop in Oman Avenues Mall, Skin Fruit in Muscat Grand Mall or from Secret Key at Panorama Mall.

Note: Face masks may be sensitive to certain types of skin. It is always advisable to check their suitability for your skin before you start using them.

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