This is my fourth Mask Maven bag with Beauteque and I’m starting to see improvements over the subscription program since Mask Maven is a new subscription option that started March 2015. Firstly, their Info Card actually has benefits information for each mask (not just a generic “how-to-use” instructional card). Secondly, from their blog post, the June bag is themed! Prior bags did not have a theme and I felt like masks were just haphazardly thrown togeether. June’s theme is Anti-aging. Thirdly, I feel that the selection of masks improved a bit (no more poopie sheet masks please!).
This month, there was also a Thank You card personally signed by the Mask Maven Coordinator, Anna, acknowledging that they are listening to our comments about the subscription. Let’s go into this month’s “un-masking” to see the improvements and the 10 new masks I got!
If you’re not familiar with what Mask Maven is, read my Mask Maven introduction post.
Lovely product info card with much more detail on EACH mask. For those who read my last reviews, I had to do my own digging and look at the ingredients in depth to figure out what benefits each mask had and if it was effective or not. Most people probably wouldn’t know how to analyze the packaging or the ingredients so including the benefits for each one was a major plus. There isn’t an ingredients analysis so I will do my best to provide that here.
They nixed having an inspirational quote this month and instead inserted a cool fact that Korean women start their skincare routine as early as 13 years old and a description of the June theme, anti-aging. This month’s bag is supposed to “prevent fine links and wrinkles” (the card has a few typos, cough).
#1. Medicos-V G&S Cosmetic Pure Snail Essential Mask
I’ll play favorites and put up my picks first in posts. If you’re a new kbeauty lover – SNAIL! And QUALITY! A collagen Medicos-V mask was in the March bag review and I had nothing but praise about this company and mask. This mask is great for all skin types, has 1,000 ppm of snail extract and has adenosine for wrinkle improvement. Also note that witch hazel extract is 5th on the ingredients list and cabbage rose liquid extract follows after – all good signs that they are higher in concentration than filler ingredients.
This wasn’t found on CosDNA but I found English ingredients on the company website. The sheet itself also uses TENCEL cellulose technology which is supposed to adhere to your face stronger than a regular cotton sheet and deliver the mask essence to your skin more effectively. I’m hoping this is better than hydro-gel masks because these gel-type masks adhere better but they also slide down your face easier if you’re one to kill time watching TV or browse (for more kbeauty) on the computer. Nope, no lying down for me! I want to find effective yet affordable options that will let me get maximum absorption and quality ingredients without breaking the bank and I feel like these Medicos-V masks are it! Like their website description “Quality up, price down!” Hell yeah! Muah <3. Don’t change (unless for the better)! Value: $3.00 on Beauteque.
#2. Tosowoong Pure Propolis Mask (Skin Lifting)
This one got me excited too because this is the first Mask Maven with the brand, Tosowoong in it (FYI, not Tosowang). Tosowoong got some rave reviews on their skincare line and this is my first encounter with anything from them. CosDNA info is listed and I’m pleasantly surprised at how short the ingredients list is! This mask is dual purpose; it claims to both whiten and aid in anti-wrinkling.
The star ingredients are Niacinamide (4th on the list – yay!) and Adenocine (middle-ish on the list). Niacinamide is actually multi-functional as it helps with skin elasticity, evens out skin complexion, brightens as well as improve its texture.
Adenocine is particularly good for reducing the appearance of crow’s feet and frown lines because of its cell-communicating abilities to tell our bodies to produce more collagen and elastin which produces skin-tightening effects. It can increase the blood flow to the outer layers of our skin as well as improves smoothness! I’m not a dermatologist and I’m quoting from this source.
Lastly, the propolis extract is rich with vitamins C and E, amino acids, zinc, copper and iron. Propolis encourages skin cell growth and repairs damage skin. Reading the company’s marketing materials, the sheet mask also boasts that it has upgraded adhesion as well. You already had me at Niacinamide. Heart eyes! This sounds like a GREAT mask already. Value: $1.99 on Beauteque.
#3 & #4. Nature Republic Real Nature Mask Sheet in Avocado and Royal Jelly
Let’s start with Royal Jelly first. The info card says that this ingredient can actually help your bod in naturally producing more collagen and regenerate skin cells. It’s also a natural moisturizer and with more water retained in our skin, the more plump our skin looks. The mask is also pumped full of other citrus extracts like apple, grapefruit, orange, lemon and lime however I laughed when I saw that grapefruit extract is listed as 5th on the ingredients list coming in way earlier than the royal jelly extract which lies in the middle of the list (CosDNA).
I had the same little eye roll with the “3W Clinic” brand when they would market say, a “milk” mask but grapefruit extract is listed as the most concentrated ingredient and any milk proteins were listed dead last right before “fragrance”. Is the world oversaturated with grapefruits or something? Why do I always see this ingredient dominating the top portion of the list?! Back to a point I want to make, although these benefits may seem true from studies done with royal jelly, the ingredient needs to be in high concentrations in order for a user to see positive effects. I did some reading here about royal jelly and this site recommends using RAW and FRESH royal jelly. Still, this isn’t a bad mask. If anything it will be great to plump the skin while I have an aromatherapy session with the honey scent.
Also from the info card, avocado is high in vitamin E and C. Avocados can prevent skin from signs of aging and protect you from harmful UVA and UVB rays while providing moisture. Wait, it can protect my skin from UVA/UVB rays? Are you saying that this acts like SPF if my skin absorbs enough of this mask juice? I naturally dug deeper into these claims as I suspect that sometimes the star ingredients in these sheet mask essences are so low that it doesn’t really have any benefit.
It’s true that a RAW avocado is a superfood, good for both internal and external to your body. Avocado OIL can penetrate deep into the skin and hair, replenishing moisture and adding smoothness. In a google search, I found that avocado oil naturally protects your skin from environmental damage and acts as a natural sun protectant however it only has a SPF of 15 (other sites claim a SPF from 4-10). Since avocado oil is highly concentrated with all the good stuff from a raw avocado, this sheet mask would NOT be suitable for sun protection. That sounded outlandish to begin with.
Oh, and in my CosDNA listing, grapefruit extract is listed again as the 5th ingredient LOL. Both of these masks should be be called Grapefruit masks. Oy! Again, it doesn’t mean these masks are ineffective – stretching the truth maybe – but the mask also lists a bunch of flower and root extracts that probably makes this an average cocktail of an essence. Just like with royal jelly, it’s most effective to use the RAW ingredient and make an avocado mask mixed with olive oil and some some aloe vera gel! Value: $1.99 each on Beauteque.
#5. It’s Skin Vitality & Moisture in Blueberry
Haven’t tried this sheet mask from It’s Skin either. From glancing at the list, blueberry extract is listed quite high as the 5th on the list (yay!) followed by strawberry, raspberry and morus alba root extracts. Morus alba root is as known as the white mulberry tree, originating and grown in China for its medicinal benefits. Blueberries are known anti-oxidants.
While the ingredients seem fine to me at first, I had to run it through CosDNA. I would not recommend this mask for anyone who is sensitive to alcohol or silicones/dimethicone. The ingredient, Laureth-4, is also a known irritant for your eyes/skin and will block your pores, causing blackheads. Laureth-23 also ranks in the middle for these negative effects too. Well, thanks for pooping on the party guys. Value: $1.99 each on Beauteque.
#6. The Face Shop Sparkling Wine Mask
Mask Maven will include other types of masks other than the typical sheet mask in your bag like wash-off packs or “point masks” meant for specific areas of your body. This month, I thought The Face Shop mask in this purple drink mix powder tube was a modeling mask! The packaging is shaped like the powder packet for mixing drinks. It’s a sparkling wine mask so I naturally thought this was going to a mix-in mask where you add water… but no. It’s just a regular sheet mask repackaged differently. Oh. This month, it’s all sheet masks. Don’t talk to me, I’ll be in my room.
This mask is called Sparkling Wine because it actually uses carbonated water, wine extracts and grape extracts that sit high on the list. Not sure what good carbonated water does in a sheet mask since all the gas would’ve escaped the essence? There is also jojoba seed oil, ginko biloba leaf extract, licorice root extract, aloe leaf extract, camellia sinensis leaf extract and allantoin to boot. Not currently in CosDNA so I will have to try to manually type to baby out but it looks pretty solid to me. Strangely, this is not listed on the Beauteque shop but my guess for its value is also $1.99.
#7. Holika Holika Found in Nature Water Ampoule Hyaluronic Acid + Bamboo Sheet Mask
The Holika Holika mask is the free mask I get for signing up early before Mask Maven had launched. There was no info on the card for this one as not everyone got this mask in their bags. The Hyaluronic Acid + Bamboo masks has alcohol as the 4th ingredient and Grapefruit extract as 6th. Another Grapefruit mask disguised as something else! Other than the alcohol being a problem for those of you who are sensitive or have dry skin, the CosDNA analysis doesn’t look alarming at all.
Other good-for-you ingredients include Sodium Hyaluronate (another name for Hyaluronic Acid), Aloe Leaf Extract, Bamboo Water and Sea Water. I looked up an old press release and found that these “sheets have porous air balls made of natural pulp that stick to the skin, allowing the skin to absorb all the nutrients and moisture in the mask. […] The bamboo and hyaluronic acid help retain moisture and is a skin lubricant that goes deep into the skin to create a moist and soft complexion”. My skin will happily accept! Value: Not currently on the Beauteque website but I’ll estimate $1.99
#8, #9. 3W Clinic in Fresh Pomegranate & Red Ginseng
Poopie masks, so we meet again. Not you, My Beauty Diary, you’re fine and solid. I’m looking at you 3W Clinic. This brand has appeared in other Mask Maven bags before and it’s not that they’ve broken me out or given me any negative effects, I just think these are “okay” because if I’m going to subscribe to a service that curates “the best” or “fun” masks to use, I just don’t think fit the bill.
Also, they’re insanely cheap to buy elsewhere! On RoseRoseShop, they’re 10 sheets for $1.76 + shipping = $9.44 delivered from South Korea. Since I know they’re so cheap to acquire wholesale, I feel like these were “curated” in my bag so Beauteque can earn a profit. While I understand that businesses need to earn a profit, my solution is to offer me more quality while still staying within your budget. Instead of two of these poopie masks, I’m sure I could’ve received one solid mask from another brand. I call these poops because they’re masks I DON’T want to find in my bag.
Anyway, the CosDNA ingredients analysis doesn’t have anything alarming for both the Pomegranate and Red Ginseng. They both follow the same formula with alcohol as 4th and sodium hyaluronate as 5th which isn’t too horrible since hyaluronic acid will help your skin retain its moisture. Allantoin is anti-inflammatory and as noted in my earlier posts, the star ingredients – in this case, pomegranate and red ginseng – are so low on the list that I doubt it actually does much for your skin. Value: $1.80 each on Beauteque.
#10. My Beauty Diary sheet mask in Caviar
My Beauty Diary is the first brand I had a sheet mask relationship with and although I’ve flirted with other brands, I come back to MBD! They always have a solid ingredients list with tons for floral, citrus or herbal extracts listed in the top to middle. The CosDNA does not list anything alarming. Brownie points for also not using alcohol. On the info card, Caviar acts as a catalyst in the skin regenerating process and increases elasticity. Value: $1.99 on Beauteque.
I felt like Beauteque corrected most of the problems I saw with the first couple of Mask Maven bags so if you were on the fence with getting a subscription, getting your next bag seems to be right time now. Of course you can always get one bag at a time and not commit to subscribing.
The info card was super handy to have and lots of kbeauty beginners would appreciate reading how these ingredients are beneficial to your skincare goals. I’m just a lot more suspicious about marketing claims and aim to give my readers a quick analysis and conclusion on whether or not I think a mask is actually worth trying (as Medicos-V coined, “quality up, price down”)! YES!
There was an improved selection of masks and I felt like it was a teeny weeny bit better than past bags. I would say that I’m looking forward to using 7 out of the 10 total masks. I’ll still use the poopie masks but again, not going to expect anything stellar from 3W Clinic. The It’s Skin Blueberry one also kinda scares me because it will block pores…
I really appreciate how there is an anti-aging theme as well. I actually feel that these masks are curated better because of the common goal to reduce wrinkles, smooth out skin or even out skin complexion. Plus it just makes it more fun to discover new masks that way. For July, possible themes can be tropical fruits, beat the heat, brightening (from darkening in the sun), etc. It annoyed me when I got a mask that was more suitable for the winter time because I couldn’t dive in and use the entire stash immediately. Am I right? Themes matter.
Total Beauteque Value: $24.51
Total Actually Paid: $14 subscription + $3.95 shipping = $17.95
I have two more months of the subscription left. The July bag should be arriving soon!