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In my quest to find a suitable face mask I have once again turned to Ebay and on this occasion purchased Villa Libra's Amazing Clay Face Mask. This round rub with approximately 225g of moist clay cost me all of £1.99. Excellent value compared to leading brand equivalents.
The circular tub is made of a transparent plastic, with a white plastic screw lid. There is an information sticker around one side promising "visibly better skin in 10 minutes" and explaining that the clay soaks up excess oil and grease and draws out dirt and impurities.
The clay itself is a mixture of Natural Kaolin Clay, Watercress and Lettuce, the rest of the ingredients are also listed on the label.
Kaolin Clay has a high mineral content and is present in most cosmetics for its absorbent properties, promoting hygiene. As a result it is often found in deodorants, scrubs and face powders.
The clay itself has a strong clean scent, on opening the lid it is quite apparent, and I initially thought it was Aloe Vera. However having looked at the ingredients I believe that the clean scent is combination of the Lettuce and Watercress. The scent remains when the clay is actively in use on the skin, smelling fresh and cool, but for me it smells old fashioned and reminded me of my nans makeup products from decades back
The clay has a creamy colour with a hint of green, thought not enough to class it as a peppermint colour. The product had the effect of a pumice stone created by air bubbles throughout.
To touch the air bubbles create a bubbly feeling, the product is cool and smooth. There is no gritty, scrub element to this mask, instead an easy to apply, consistent product which sits on the skins smoothly. There is the occasional lumpy bit in this mask, but this doesn't detract from its ease of use. If you rub the mask between fore finger and thumb you can feel the clay, it feels dry yet moist at the same time.
Very little of this product is needed to cover the entire face. I have used it four times so far and believe that I could get approximately 20 more uses out of it judging by how little I have needed to use.
Directions of use for this product are the same as most facial masks. Cleanse and wash the skin, apply evenly, rinse well and pat dry whilst avoiding the eyes.
Once on the face this product is very cool, almost cold. I could feel it tingling and tightening around my features. I tend to cover my whole face excluding lips, eyes and eyebrows. Initially I thought the cooling effect was burning, however it wasn't painful or irritable and the coolness was very relaxing. This mask should only be left on for 10minutes. In this time it will dry. Like most masks which dry, if you talk or move your face the mask will crack, however unlike most masks, this one dries like a hard power, which means that brushing a cheek on this has dried is like rubbing a stick of chalk.
Rinse with warm water to find tighter, brighter skin. This mask most certainly had this effect on my skin. I also found it passed my test of drawing out impurities and any would be pimples were drawn to the surface after each use. It is recommended that this clay mask is used twice a week as required. I think that once your face becomes used to the effect it has it is unlikely to repeatedly break out in spots. Once the PH balance has settled down and the skin adjusts to repeated use of this mask it should maintain its healthiness.
Overall I am very pleased with this mask. It is by far the best of the clay masks I have used and definitely wins in terms of value for money.
Who are Villa Libra? Well I am struggling to find out. The label on this tub says that it was made specifically for Villa Libra Therapies, Torquay. However having found the Villa Libra website, it is limited in information, makes no mention of therapies and links to their Ebay page, which is where I purchased the product. Having had another look on Ebay, they currently have no current items for sale.
I would rate 5 stars but availability appears to be very limited so I have dropped a star!
Update: I have now had this product for almost a year, as I have changed my facial routine due to a skin complaint, I only use this product once every 3 weeks (after a period of not being able to use anything on my face). The pot is still about 1/4 full and the product itself has not deteriotated at all. Its still smells fresh and clean and still has the same impact it had the day I bought it. Some products do deteriorate over time, but I believe the natural ingredients in this product have prevented it from doing so and in turn has saved me buying more. Just goes to show a little goes a long way.