Pore-purging and sebum-mopping, clay masks are ideal for congested skin. Problem is, if your skin is also dry or dehydrated, they can often make the situation worse. Not with this one, though, as our beauty director Shannon Peter finds out…
My skin is the textbook definition of combination. My forehead is oily, my cheeks are forever that irritating mix of dry and dehydrated, and my nose? Somehow, it manages to be both thoroughly congested and flaky at the same time. And it’s for that exact reason that I’ve never gotten on with clay masks.
A skin ‘detoxer’, clay has this innate ability to hoover out dirt, pollution, sebum and grime from your pores, making it a brilliant ingredient for oily, congested skin. But the problem is, clay can also suck the moisture from the skin. That’s fine if your skin is naturally oily, as the clay mops up the residual oiliness. But if your skin is dry, its oil reserves are running low as it is. Using clay on top? Well, that can lead to a complete depletion of oil, which is when skin starts to flake and feel tight. Trust me, I’ve been there.
So until now, I’d written off clay masks completely. That was, however, until I came across Alya Skin’s Pink Clay Mask.
Hailing from Australia, It’s one of the most hyped products on Instagram right now. There hasn’t been a single day in the last two weeks where a face coated in this candy pink mask hasn’t popped up on my Explore page, with so many newfound fans claiming its worked wonders on their skin. I have to admit, I’m usually pretty dubious when it comes to Insta-hype, so I did my homework and checked out the ingredients.
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What does Alya Skin Pink Clay Mask do?
There’s no denying that clay is the hero ingredient. The mask contains a mixture of red and white kaolin clays, hence the pink hue. This mops up excess oil on the skin’s surface, as well as drawing out impurities like dirt and pollution from inside the pores. That’s why so many people have found it to be beneficial for acne, as it soaks up sebum and dirt which can lead to the formation of spots.
But there’s more to it. The mask also contains calming aloe vera, conditioning vitamin E, strengthening antioxidants and brightening vitamin C, which means in theory, it has enough in there to mitigate the drying effect of the clay. But does it work? Well, I decided to take this investigation to the next level, and try it out myself.
How do you use Alya Skin Pink Clay Mask?
You can use the mask over the entire T-zone, but given it’s just my nose I want to focus on, I applied a 20p sized blob and blended it out onto the centre of the cheeks where the congestion continues. Then, I left it to do its thing and quickly, it started to dry out and crack. After ten minutes, I used warm water and a muslin cloth to rinse it away.
Does Alya Skin Pink Clay Mask actually work?
Normally, this is the moment I’d notice I’ve made a huge mistake as my skin starts to feel tight and dry. But this time? Not even slightly. In fact, my skin felt as hydrated as it does after using a serum-drenched sheet mask. Usually, clay would leave my skin matte, but this time around it was gleaming. As for the congestion? No, my blackheads hadn’t miraculously disappeared but after a few more uses, they are considerably fewer and further between, which means my skin looks generally brighter and clearer.
How often should you use Alya Skin Pink Clay Mask?
The brand advocates using the mask around three times a week, but if you have skin that leans towards the dry side like mine, I’d recommend using it once a week max, just in case.
Fancy giving it a go yourself? The mask costs £30 and is available via Beauty Bay.
Images: Shannon Peter/courtesy of brand.
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