Is It Possible To Overdo Sheet Masks?
We tell you why it is very much a possibility to overdo sheet masks and how you might unknowingly be doing it as well.
Since bursting into the beauty scene a few years back, sheet masks have become a staple in our skincare regimes. They promise to breathe new life into our skin and make it more radiant and smoother within a matter of minutes. And in this quest for better skin we hopelessly rely on them and and in the process overdo sheet masks.
Whether it is using a dry sheet mask everyday after work, or multi-masking each weekend, we are certainly obsessed with masking. Add to that all the love they get regularly from beauty vloggers and Instagram gurus.
But experts suggest that by using a sheet mask every day of the week, you are doing more harm than good to your skin. And it is a trend that needs to stop, pronto.
Can You Overdo Sheet Masks?
Dr Dhaval Bhanusali, a dermatologist and laser surgeon based out of New York City and Miami told Skincare.com that you must stick to not more than four to five masks per week.
"Masks that are calming and hydrating can be done as needed, up to 4-5 times a week," he explains, adding, “Those that may have alpha or beta hydroxy acids—think: glycolic or salicylic acids—should be used at most 2-3 times a week.”
The first reason behind experts advocating reduced use of sheet masks is the ingredients used to make a sheet mask.
#1 Skin irritating ingredients
There are many ingredients that do not work well with each other but are still in a single sheet mask. For instance, the following.
- Vitamin C and Alpha-Hydroxy Acids (AHAs): These are both acids and can irritate the skin.
- Vitamin C and Copper peptides: Both have opposite properties and therefore, cancel each other out.
- Retinol and Benzoyl peroxide: Both are great to diminish acne and even prevent new blemishes, but they also cancel each other out.
- Retinol and AHAS: If you have sensitive skin, you must use a sheet mask that has only one of these ingredients.
While you can use sheet masks that have these ingredients, but avoid those with the given combination because they are damage your skin.
#2 Overuse of same ingredient
Apart from these skin irritating combinations, if you use the same sheet mask each day, chances are it will irritate your skin and cause a host of additional skin issues. These could include acne, excessive dryness and even an increase in sebum.
So depending on your skin and its condition each day, you can try newer sheet masks. Alternatively, you can give a break to your skin by using one every alternative day.
#3 How you use a sheet mask matters too
The final reason for your skin getting more worse than good even though you use sheet masks is the way you use it.
Generally, the instructions at the back of your sheet mask would tell you how long you need to put it on. You might have to massage the oils and serums in the mask into your skin right before you take it off.
If you are a regular sheeter you already know this. But you may not really follow the timing instructions as such, leaving it on for hours at an end. In theory it might sound like the right thing to do, but it's not.
Sheet masks are occlusive. This means they act as bandages and while they trap serums and essence, they also trap the bacteria and gunk on your face.
As celebrity facialist Sarah Chapman told Harper's Bazaar, “Adhering to the time recommendations of any type of sheet mask is very important, because the benefits only apply while the mask is still wet. When the mask dries out it will actually begin to draw moisture and vitamins away from the skin, rather than to nourish or hydrate it as intended."
So be careful about sticking to time limits. Especially, if your mask includes strong compounds like charcoal, tea tree oil, acids or plant extracts as they tend to leave your skin itchy and dry.
Bottom line: If you think you often overdo sheet masks, talk to your dermatologist about masks that are safe for you to use and at their frequency.
Sources: Harper's Bazaar