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I especially look forward to my weekly use of a face mask in hot weather. I try to use non oily suncare products, after sun and moisturisers but my skin still seems to feel so much cleaner and clearer after I use a mask. I have a stash of sachets that I have bought when various masks have been on a multi buy offer, and the one that I have used most recently is the Montagne Jeunesse Face Food Dead Sea Mineral Mud Cleansing Mask, to give it it's full name! The Face Food masks are an great buy as even at full price they are around 69p for a twin pack (6ml each), which makes them cheaper than the single "masques" in the main Montagne Jeunesse collection. I bought mine on a 3 for 2 offer in Wilkinsons, so I paid a little less. THE MASK The mask is Kaolin based and is intended to provide deep cleansing, draw out impurities, and to hydrate the skin. My skin is combination with an oily t zone. Kaolin products in general seem to really suit me and deal effectively with my open pores around my nose, which is why this particular mask appealed to me. The mud element and the fact the mask also contains Dead sea salt and Seaweed extract was less appealing as I couldn't help but wonder how it would smell. The twin pack of sachets was a little hard to separate as the perforations were not straight, a problem I have had a few times now with Face Food products. You can always get in easily enough with the aid of scissors though. This isn't a drippy mask so you can be a bit rough with the sachet without ending covered in the product. Once inside there is ample to coat your face thickly, and in fact each portion left me with enough spare to use just on my t zone for a second time. Being cheap definitely doesn't mean they have been stingy when it comes to filling the packs. THE SMELL AND THE GREEN STICKY MASS The mask is thick like a clay mask which makes it easy to spread out and it doesn't move messily down your face if you aren't quite ready to lie back and let it do it's magic. It is fairly sticky though, so I didn't enjoy applying it as much as others. I couldn't wait to wash my hands afterwards but once on my face it didn't end up feeling as heavy as I thought it would. I still couldn't really forget it was there, so for me this makes the experience of using it a fraction less relaxing than it could be but I am probably being too fussy. You can't feel the salt which I thought might be in crystals as the mask is completely smooth and probably feels nicer because of that. You apply it much the same as any other- onto cleansed skin, then you wait 10-15 minutes before rinsing it away so it is all very straightforward and no peeling off is involved. The sachet says that the natural ingredients used in the mask can lead to the mask varying in colour. I expected it to be some kind of grey, but it is actually a pale mint green. The colour looks even brighter once it is thickly applied on your face but it dries lighter. I don't really care what it looks like but if you want a facemask to make small children think you are a witch, this could be the one for you! More importantly for me, the mask didn't smell as iffy as I thought it would. I can't detect that typical earthy kaolin smell, nor mercifully can I pick out the seaweed. My first thought was it smelt of avocado, which the mask doesn't actually contain, evening primrose oil, which it does, and aloe vera, which is also listed as an ingredient. None of those scents are my absolute favourites and the smell from a combination of them is quite strong. I didn't hate it but this isn't a mask I would use to enjoy it's aroma as I would some others. Unusually, I noticed that the scent as still almost as strong when I came to wash the mask off as it had been when I applied it. WASH AWAY By the time the 15 minutes was up, the mask had mostly dried out and looked like a pale powdery coating on my skin, with cracks running across it. The fact it has dried makes the rinsing away much easier and quick to boot. I do like peeling away the other kind of masks but I agree that the wash off kind means you are less likely to lave a stray bit behind somewhere in your eyebrows or hair line, providing you remember to avoid those areas a little in the first place. RESULTS My skin has felt really clean after I have used this and lovely an cool and fresh which is a bonus in this weather. My cheeks did tingle slightly the first time I used it but this was brief and didn't really cause any serious discomfort or redness. Once my skin had settled, it looked lovely and smooth and felt very very soft. I don't tend to find masks drying as some people do, but I also would not say that my skin felt or looked more hydrated than using any other product that doesn't claim to hydrate. The deep cleansing effect is more obvious and the mask did a great job of making my pores less obvious and really clear. Many masks struggle with that after a single use so I was impressed by the results. I think it also helped the shine stay away from my forehead for longer which was a nice surprise. My skin still looked obviously better the next day although the mattifying was effect was gone by then. I wouldn't say tis was a mask that I could use once a week and notice the results for all the days in between but for a couple of days, the added radiance and softness is there. WOULD I RECOMMEND THIS MASK? I would, as although it is not my favourite mask to apply due to the fact it feels a little stickier than others and doesn't have a scent that appeals hugely, it does a good job at clearing my pores. It is also good at making my skin look and feel smoother and softer. For the price it is excellent, and it's performance has encouraged me to continue to use others in the range. You can buy the masks in Wilkinsons, Savers and chemists, among other places and Amazon sometimes offer multi packs which are a good deal if you can get them for free delivery. I may well use my next Amazon voucher to do just that!
Not so long ago I wrote a review of the Face Food Walnut and Avocado mask and gushed about how brilliant I thought it was. I was therefore really looking forward to try this dead sea minerals mask from the same range. You may or may not be aware of the Montagne Jeunesse range of face masks which are sold in individual sachets. Face Food is Montagne Jeunesse's budget range, which was formerly named Chantelle. Two masks cost just 70p which is an amazing bargain - I don't know anywhere else that you can buy face masks for the equivalent of just 35p each! Of course at that price you may not particularly expect anything wonderful from them, but having already tried (and loved) the walnut and avocado version, I had high hopes for this. The masks come in sachets and the two sachets are joined together (note: they come as a duo, you can't purchase individually). There is a perforation separating the two masks and instructions are printed onto both sachets. The sachets also have a notch on each side making them easy to open without the need for scissors. These particular masks contain seaweed and aloe vera. They say that the sea salts and natural clay will help to draw out impurities and hydrate the skin. They are approved by the vegetarian society as well as BAUV approved. To use, you simply apply the mask to cleansed skin, leave for 10-15 minutes and then rinse. The mask is a turquoise colour and quite thick in consistency. It smoothes onto the skin very easily and feels very cooling to the touch. Despite the sachet only containing 6ml of product I find that this is more than enough to cover my entire face - eyes and mouth excluded obviously! The smell of the mask is quite pleasant - it has a fresh scent which reminds me of products which have names like 'sea' or 'ocean'. I like to leave the mask on for the full fifteen minutes and I find that during this time it does begin to harden and feel a little tight on my face, but not to the point it is uncomfortable. The mask also changed colour from bright turquoise to a rather chalky looking pale blue. When rinsing the mask off I tend to find the least messy solution is using a damp face cloth or flannel to gently rub the product away. The difference to my skin after rinsing is immediate. My skin feels so much better to the touch - smoother, silkier and moisturised. In terms of appearance, I feel my skin looks brighter and healthier and just a bit more 'perky' than normal! I think this would be excellent to use before a night out or special occasion and there is no redness with this mask as there often is with other brands I have used. These face masks can be purchased from Amazon or directly from Montagne Jeunesse at http://www.montagnejeunesse.com. Overall I am very pleased with these masks and would buy them again. For just 35p each they are absolutely excellent and perform just as well as masks costing ten times the price! If you are looking for a pick-me-up for tired skin but don't want to spend a fortune, then I would strongly recommend this range.