I remember going on an Aesop shopping spree back when I visited Melbourne with the pals a year or so ago, but never got around to trying this one until recently. Boy do I wish I’d opened this earlier.
Aesop Primrose Facial Cleansing Masque
The Packaging: A heavy glass bottle with a plastic cap. It’s pretty minimal, but I do wish they’d given a spatula or something – I’ve got plenty of extra spatulas lying around, but other (non-beauty maniacs) may not have any, and it’s definitely more hygienic than using your fingers.
The Scent: An aromatic herbal scent (can’t quite identify what it is, but it’s very… aromatherapy-style with natural ingredients such as sage, mint etc).
The Texture: It seems relatively thick when you scoop it up (it’s able to keep a “structure” if you mold it, and isn’t watery/runny), but it is surprisingly smooth and spreads across the skin extremely easily (it’s said to be fine Kaolin clay, so there aren’t any fine bits either). I’m usually a
little rather heavy-handed when it comes to application of skincare, but in this case, be sure to follow the instructions and apply a thin layer, cos when it dries, you can feel a distinct tightening sensation on the skin; you don’t want the mask to be cracking up and flaking all over. In addition, too thick a layer of this can result in too much moisture being absorbed, leaving your skin too taut/dry/tight.
Ingredients: (as taken from its website): Water (Aqua), Kaolin, Bentonite, Alcohol Denat., Glycerin, Pelargonium Graveolens Extract, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Oil, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Citronellol, Geraniol, Linalool.
Let’s get the white elephant out of the way – yes, it does contain alcohol and fragrances, and it also does contain plant oils, which means it may not be suitable for those with sensitive skin. Now I’m no scientist, but based on my (somewhat limited) knowledge of ingredients, it also does have a contrasting combination of ingredients – kaolin clay (which absorbs sebum and is better for oily skintypes) versus emollient plant oils (to help hydrate the skin and therefore suitable for drier skintypes).
The Verdict: Despite the question marks raised regarding the ingredients, I find that this actually works for me, the one with the oily skintype. After leaving a thin layer on for just 10-15 mins and rinsing it off with cool water, I find my skin significantly smoother, cleaner (which probably means the pores were decongested), and more radiant. It can be a bit drying (and this is coming from the owner of oily skin), so you should only use it 1-2x a week, lesser for those with dry skin types. Alternatively, you can use this on just the oily portions of your face (T-zone, chin), or even as a spot treatment for when you’ve got those angry little red mountains threatening your next-day date. Be sure to also layer on some hydrating lotions after this mask. Overall, a mask that does an extremely good job of deep cleansing the face 😀 Me likey! A slightly more affordable alternative would be Origins Out Of Trouble Mask, while those with drier skin types can try out some gentler clay masks such as Kiehl’s Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque or Belif’s Peat Miracle Revital Mask.