How Often Should You *Actually* Be Using Face Masks?

Most people use face masks either as part of a strict skincare routine, or only once in a blue moon for a girls’ night treat. Face masks were actually my gateway to taking skincare more seriously when I was a college freshman. Since then, I’ve learned a lot throughout my long skincare journey, including what I should look out for when it comes to face masks. The real challenge to figure out, especially when you’re just starting with face masks, is how often should you actually even be using them each week?

Most skincare experts will recommend using a specific face mask once a week, or twice at most. You’ll need to read the directions on the package to find out how often you should use that particular product, too—some face masks have ingredients that are harsher, so they should be used less frequently. However, it’s also important to understand your skin type in order to know what your skin needs and, obviously, what to avoid.

Not all face masks serve the same purpose for your skin. You should take time to experiment with masks, and not integrate too many new products at once, especially since there are so many masks to try. So looking at sheets, creams, clay, peel-offs, and overnights (oh my!), let's dive in to all the masks and when to use them.

What you should be using more often

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Masks that you can use frequently, even daily, contain ingredients that are gentle on the skin. Natural masks are usually good to use almost daily, as they use simple and, obviously, natural formulas. This can include a honey face mask (which is so moisturizing), like the Bliss In the Honey Mask ($15). Whether you try something new from your fave natural brand or whip up a DIY creation, your skin will love the gentle ingredients and the benefits they have.

It’s also possible to use face masks more often during the week if you’re multi-masking, or using a variety of masks that target different purposes. One mask could be to hydrate your skin while another helps heal acne or redness. “I love throwing in a face mask or two throughout the week. It depends on which type I use to get a certain result, but anything hydrating is a treat for me!” Says Iesha Ismail, University of Florida '19. “I have a lot of acne scars, so I try to go for brightening masks on certain spots of my face.”

Not only do face masks help you take care of your skin, but they also create an easy opportunity to chill a few times a week. Just remember that it can be of greater benefit to your skin to use a product two or three times a week, and a consistent routine can give you better results.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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If you already have dry skin, certain ingredients and products can dry you out even more. Clay, charcoal, and mud masks (that are meant to exfoliate) can be great for detoxing oily and acne-prone skin. A great option is the Origins Clear Improvement Mask ($26). The problem with these masks, though, is they can quickly irritate if used too often, since they’re generally more intense. This is because they can literally pull out and absorb excess oils—and if left on for too long, they will dry out and disrupt your skin.

It’s best to understand your skin and what you’re putting on it in order to make the best call. Even though a face mask can be a great way to relax and treat yourself, it’s important to watch how often you use them.