Creating a solid skincare routine is forever and always going to be the baseline for healthy skin, but the best face masks are the tried and true go-to for adding a little extra something-something to your regimen. As someone whose skin type ranges from acne- and rosacea-prone in the summer to dry as sandpaper in the winter, I’ve taken my fair share of face masks for a test run. And trust me: there’s truly a sheet mask, overnight mask, or acne-fighting mask out there for everyone.
“Oily or acne-prone skin should reach for a charcoal or clay mask, as both have detoxifying aspects to draw dirt and oil from the pores,” explains Dr. Michele Anzilotti, board-certified dermatologist and medical director of SkinCeuticals SkinLab. “Those with dry skin should reach for a cream or gel mask packed with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid.” Of course, there are also masks that are focused on giving glow, soothing the skin, fading dark spots, and more.
That in mind, you don’t have to commit to just one face mask for the rest of eternity. You can switch it up weekly depending on what your skin’s craving—or even apply multiple at one. “I love utilizing multiple types of masks to address different skin concerns on the face,” says medical aesthetician Candace Marino. “For example, if there’s dryness on the cheeks, I’ll grab something moisturizing, while at the same time treating the nose and chin with something that will deep clean and minimize pores.”
To get the debrief on the best face masks for every skin type and concern, keep scrolling. From under-eye patches that’ll make you look like you got that extra hour of sleep to peel-off masks that are like Botox in a bottle, I’ve pulled together my personal favorites—along with some industry must-haves—ahead.
The Best Face Mask for Oily Skin
Whether you’re trying to clean out blackheads on your nose or need to absorb a bit of excess oil, you can’t go wrong with this Tatcha mask. The clay-based formula goes on sage green, but as you massage it in, it transitions into a dusty rose shade. And don’t panic when you start to feel it heating up—that’s the Japanese volcanic ash working its magic. Because this is an exfoliating treatment, make sure you wash it off after five minutes to avoid irritation.
The Best Face Mask for Acne-Prone Skin
Salicylic acid is one of the best ingredients for fighting acne, so it’s no surprise that this mask has become a fan favorite. In just a few minutes, it sucks out all the gunk and grossness from pores—you’ll feel like a new person. While a run-of-the-mill clay mask tends to leave the skin feeling tight and stiff, Rihanna’s formula doesn’t strip the skin; even those with sensitive skin can keep this in their rotation.
The Best Face Mask for Dry Skin
While this is *technically* a mask, it’s really more like a heavy duty nighttime moisturizer. It has a super rich texture that instantly plumps up the skin thanks to hyaluronic acid and squalane. But the benefits aren’t one and done. This formula, which has the “clean at Sephora” stamp of approval, is also packed with vitamin C to make your skin look brighter—just in time for summer.
The Best Face Mask for Sensitive Skin
As someone with *very* sensitive skin that’s always looking a little red (thank you, rosacea), I promise you this creamy leave-on formula, which is packed with calming aloe vera and purslane, is a life changer. Just brush a thin to medium layer on your face and go about your day. It absorbs into the skin within 20 minutes so you can be out and about while still reaping all the hydrating and calming benefits—no one will be the wiser.
The Best Face Mask for Brightening
With a mix of gentle acids and soothing ingredients, it’s no surprise that this has become a new go-to for all skin types. It brightens, it exfoliates, and it can be used as a spot treatment for acne. Since launch, it’s garnered a fair share of reviews, with an average 4.6 rating on NudeSkin's website. “It's lightweight and easy to apply. It does not dry hard on my skin and leaves my skin radiating when I wash it off,” one subscriber said.
The Best Face Mask for Fine Lines and Wrinkles
This antioxidant-packed sheet mask is a godsend for anyone looking to target fine lines and wrinkles or amp up firmness. Personally, I like to save these masks for a little at-home facial session. Once I apply the mask, I’ll reach for a facial tool (the Magic Glow Wand doesn’t disappoint) and work it over top of the sheet. When all is said and done, I’ll lather my chest, neck, décolletage, and even my body in all the extra serum.
The Best Face Mask for Under-Eyes
These patches are life savers—they make you look like a well rested human who gets eight hours of sleep. They work like magic, but the mind-boggling benefits (read: smoothing and plumping up fine lines) are actually the result of their stellar formula. For extra de-puffing, try stowing these away in your fridge or freezer for a cooling sensation upon application.
The Best Face Mask for Exfoliation
Any time dry, flaking skin starts popping up, it’s Tata Harper to the rescue. In just 15 minutes, your complexion will look renewed, refreshed, and majorly glowy thanks to the enzyme and acid-based product. It has a jelly and bouncy texture that tightens up pretty quickly—and you won’t really be able to make facial expressions once it’s dried down. Once you wash it off though, your skin feels balanced and calm.
The Best Face Mask for Overnight Use
Ideal for anyone looking to target dullness, uneven texture, or large pores, this leave-on formula will soon be a staple in your skincare regimen. While it might look thicker in the jar, it actually has a very bouncy and water-like formula that feels lightweight and breathable on the skin. It is a powerful product thanks to 10 percent niacinamide, so start off using it just one night a week.
The Best Sheet Mask
This is what I like to call the special occasion mask. Wedding weekend? Date night? Vacation prep? Whip out this treatment to get a refresh. Formulated with 24K gold (yes, you read that right) and damask rose, your skin will be left looking bright and feeling soothed. And, thanks to the biocellulose material, this isn’t going to slip and slide down your face like other sheet masks.
The Best Face Mask for Glow
While I’m all for a good self-care Sunday situation complete with steaming, exfoliation, and a 10-step routine, sometimes my skin needs a little TLC in the here and now. Enter Alo’s new face mask. The 60-second treatment gives my skin a near-instant pick-me-up. The green clay formula pulls out impurities, while moisturizing botanicals leave my skin soft and balanced.
The Best Face Mask for Firming
This product is liquid gold—literally. Thanks to the glow-giving powers of 24K gold, the firming and lifting properties of colloidal gold, and the tightening benefits of caffeine, this 5-minute mask is a must-have for mature skin types. It’s best used two to three times a week. Just wash your face before application, layer it on, let it sit, and rinse off with warm water or a wash cloth.
The Best Drugstore Face Mask
Anyone with easily irritated or angry skin needs to have this soothing drugstore mask on their radar. Not only is it going to help calm flares, but it’s also going to strengthen your skin barrier to decrease sensitivity over time. “This mask is a life saver during summer and winter when your skin needs some extra care! Gentle and effective,” one reviewer wrote on Dermstore.
The Best Luxe Face Mask
Trust me, you’ll literally sparkle after using this face mask. As you rub the formula onto the skin, it transitions from a shimmery white shade into a gold hue that not only looks luxe, but works wonders in 15 minutes flat. With hydrating ingredients, brightening agents like vitamin C, and calming properties, it’s great for all skin types. Just a note: it doesn’t dry down, so make sure you pull your hair back if you don’t plan on showering directly after.
The Best Face Mask for Traveling
Flying dries out skin like no other—and that’s where this insanely hydrating mask comes in. With hyaluronic acid and niacinamide among the star ingredients, the creamy formula gives an added boost of moisture. While you can wear a thin layer for 10 minutes, I’m a big fan of using this as my morning moisturizer. It blends in like a dream (no pilling!) and doubles as the perfect primer for makeup.
The Best Natural Face Mask
For both chemical and physical exfoliation, Alpyn Beauty is the way to go. The pretty pink mask, which is formulated with all naturally derived ingredients, has a blend of eight acids that smooth the skin’s surface. And once you start rubbing the product in, you'll feel the gritty bamboo extracts polishing your skin's surface.
The Best Face Mask for Redness
“I always recommend the SkinCeuticals Phyto Corrective Masque to my patients who are experiencing redness after an intense workout, sun exposure, or post-procedure such as laser treatments or peels due to its highly-concentrated botanical extracts,” says Dr. Anzilotti.
The Best Face Mask for Dull Skin
“It's both hydrating and brightening. I'm obsessed with the whipped texture and I love to use it to pick me up any time I’m feeling dry or dull,” says Marino.
The Best LED Face Mask
While you can get red light and blue light treatments with an aesthetician or dermatologist, there are also plenty of at-home options that provide the same effect. This FDA-approved LED light therapy mask is programmed with three-minute treatments that can help calm redness and acne, as well as provide anti-aging benefits.
Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar, Makeup.com, Skincare.com, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.
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