Facial masks are underrated; like a hair conditioner, they are left on the skin longer, giving the active ingredients a chance to absorb into the skin and (hopefully) work their magic.
Which is why it's important that those ingredients be natural (and better yet) organic. The three masks below are all especially moisturizing, which many of us find we need in the winter, even if we don't at other times of the year — or find ourselves on the oily side in the warmer months. If you are wary of using a moisturizers or oils because of acne and blemishes, keep in mind that dry skin can also cause breakouts, which come from an skin imbalance, too; excess oil isn't the only culprit. In fact, skin care professionals today are realizing that you can really fight oil with oil more effectively than drying skin out and stripping it of its natural oils.
Lush is a British skin care store than has taken the world by storm in the last decade, and it is in stores in all major cities in the U.S. now. The line is famous for its fun and funky bath "bombs" and scrubby shower stuff (not all of which is 100 percent natural, but much of it is). My favorite products are the freshly made masks, which are only available in-store (not online) since they are made weekly with fresh fruits and veggies, honey, yogurt, oatmeal and other grocery ingredients. My favorite moisturizing mask is The Sacred Truth, which is made from fresh papaya, gingko, eggs, kaolin, honey and more. (Yes, it smells amazing, thanks to the natural ingredients, plus essential oils).
Weleda's Wild Rose Smoothing Mask smells as amazing as you'd expect, and is great for aging skin, as it smooths and plumps the skin a bit, helping to diminish wrinkles. This totally vegan mask relies on wild rose seed oil and peach kernel oil to moisturize, and mallow extract smooths and brightens skin. This mask has won a number of awards from conventional and natural-health publications alike.
The Purity Facial Cleanser and Mask from 100% Pure is gentle enough to use most days and ideal for blemish-prone skin, but it doesn't overdry and knock the skin out of balance. It doubles as a cleanser so you can put it on at the beginning of a shower, leave it on while you scrub down or shave your legs, then rinse off at the end of your routine. With spirulina, hemp seed extract, sea buckthorn, green tea, burdock, echinacea and more, this is a gentle-but-powerful totally natural (as the company name suggests) face mask that goes on green but leaves skin looking rosy and refreshed.