From moisturisers and cleansers to serums and face masks, we all have a daily beauty regimen. You’ve probably tried many products in your quest to find something that leaves your skin fresh and glowing, and charcoal peel-off masks are the latest skincare trend everyone has been raving about.

But should you listen to the masses or avoid it all together? Here’s what you need to know.

What is a charcoal peel-off mask?
A charcoal mask is made from natural ingredients. Depending on the brand, the mask could contain plant extracts and other oils, but charcoal is the core ingredient, hence the black shiny appearance of the mask.

How do you apply one?
Before applying any facial mask, make sure your skin is clean and makeup-free. You could also steam your face beforehand, to open up your pores.

Apply the mask to your t-zone and let it set. Make sure you read the instructions on the product – the amount of time you wear the mask may vary depending on the brand. When it’s time, gently peel off the mask and wash off any leftover charcoal with warm water.

Follow up with a natural moisturiser for silky-soft skin.

What are the benefits of using a charcoal peel-off mask?
Some masks claim to work miracles and leave you with dewy, soft skin but we all know that different products have different effects, depending on your skin type.

Charcoal masks are becoming popular because when they’re peeled off they should pull the dirt out of your pores, helping to unclog them. Clogged pores can lead to spots, breakouts and even acne. If your skin is oily then using a charcoal=based mask could also help to get rid of that excess oil.

It’s best to use the mask only once or twice a week, as using it too frequently could dry out your skin. Pulling off the mask should also remove the blackheads from your face and prevent them from coming back full-force.

Because of the dark colour of the mask, when it’s peeled off, you should be able to see parts of the dead skin and blackheads which have been removed.

Why should some people avoid charcoal masks?
Charcoal peel-off masks should be avoided if you have naturally dry skin, since using the mask could dry out your skin even more.

When pulling off the mask, some people have experienced a burning or stinging sensation. The feeling does go away but if you really want to avoid any possibility of pain or stinging, then it’s best to avoid using the mask.

Removing the mask could cause redness and blotchiness, and may leave your skin feeling raw because you’re essentially peeling off the skin’s protective layer.

Since not all charcoal masks are hypoallergenic, they could give you an allergic reaction causing a rash or redness. If you’re unsure, it’s best to patch test it first.

Many different brands are creating charcoal-based masks right now. It’s become an in-demand product, with everyone from celebrities to bloggers and YouTube stars trying out the skincare trend.

Before buying your mask, shop around and do your research on different brands to see which one could work best for your skin type. If it’s your first time using a charcoal mask, then try talking to an advisor in-store instead of jumping the gun and buying a mask online.

Sarah Wilkinson – Skin Matrix

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