Women applying face masks

What type of face mask is best for my skin type?

With so many new masks on the market it can be hard to know which ones are effective and which ones work best for your skin type. We’ve gathered and reviewed the research here to help guide you.

Clay and charcoal masks

Clay masks and charcoal masks are suitable for oily skin to combination skin or shiny T-zones. This is because both clay and charcoal absorb excess oil from the skin’s surface. Charcoal also has the unique ability to gently draw out dirt from congested pores. A well formulated mask will leave the skin shine-free, but not dry or tight. Our Skin Balancing Mask is a classic clay mask that helps to absorb excess oil and decongest pores and our Pore Clarifying Charcoal Mask is a premium charcoal-gel mask that balances the skin and works like a magnet to attract dirt from pores.

Sleep masks

A sleep mask is usually a hydrating mask that you leave on overnight to provide your skin with extra nourishment. Leaving the mask on for a longer time gives the ingredients more time to work. Sleep masks often have a lighter texture so they won’t make your pillowcase greasy. Use them as the last step in your evening routine and, depending on how dry your skin is, they could be used instead of a night moisturiser. Our Skin Recovery Mask has a soft-cream texture formulated with nourishing oils and is suitable for rosacea-prone skin. The Super Hydrate Overnight Mask, is our latest (leave-on) mask developed in collaboration with Skincity.com. All two masks can be left on overnight for ultimate hydration or can be rinsed off as a quick pampering treatment.

Brightening masks

Brightening masks are ideal for those with dull and dry skin or anyone suffering from discolouration and uneven skin tone. A good mask in this category should contain powerful brightening ingredients like arbutin, vitamin C, bearberry extract and niacinamide. These ingredients improve uneven skin tone and leave your skin glowing. The Radiance Renewal Mask is a sleep mask that contains a blend of brightening ingredients that will leave your skin plump, radiant and smooth.

Sheet masks

Sheet masks are usually made from some kind of paper or cotton that is saturated with effective ingredients. There are lots of different sheet masks to suit different skin types depending on the ingredients they contain. You leave the mask on your face for a while so that the ingredients can sink into your skin. A sheet mask is fun to use but they don't necessarily provide an increased benefit compared to a traditional mask.

Peel off masks

A good peel off mask gently removes a thin layer of dead skin cells and surface dirt from the pores, which leaves the skin feeling smooth. Peel off masks don’t have the ability to penetrate pores and ‘pull’ blackheads and dirt out of them. To lessen blackheads and unclog pores it’s best to use a BHA exfoliant. Home-made peel off masks have also become popular but some of them are actually harmful for the skin, calling for glue and even superglue to be used as a base. Unsurprisingly this is damaging for the skin and causes irritation. If you want to use a peel-off mask choose a gentle one that doesn’t contain high concentrations of polyvinyl alcohol, which can have a drying and irritating effect on the skin.

A good rule of thumb for any mask you choose is to avoid ones that contain irritating ingredients like alcohol, mint, menthol, eucalyptus, camphor and fragrances (natural and synthetic).


Do you want more skincare advice, tips and exclusive offers?

Sign up for our newsletter and become a Paula's Choice Member. Your benefits:
+ Welcome gift*
+ Exclusive deals*
+ Skincare advice
+ Birthday gift

Email Address*:

* Only valid for new registrations. Valid on orders from € 25.

Related products

Combination skin, Oily skin
All skin types
Normal skin, Dry skin
Combination skin, Oily skin

Customer Service

Need help with finding the right product for your skin? Our customer care team are skincare and product experts and can guide you to the best skin of your life.


Sign up for our newsletter to receive exclusive offers and expert skincare advice