Yesterday I talked about some of my favorites serums (and an amazing two-part eye system) that has really turned my skin around in terms of making it feel firmed and lifted, another category of skin care that I now need thanks to age and time (and another delightful side effect of my teen years of over-tanning with baby oil). Today, four more game changers for my sagging skin, including two masks that you simply have to try to believe.
Ren Keep Young and Beautiful Instant Firming Beauty Shot: I love that this hefty gel serum goes on smooth but as you pat it in, it starts to stiffen up, firming and tightening the skin as it absorbs. It uses a liquid matrix of hyaluronans (a type of potent hyaluronic acid) that are a similar molecular weight to those naturally found in the skin, so it acts as a true cell messenger. The result is an infusion of skin moisture, improved cell cohesion and a boost to elastin synthesis, the stuff that keeps our skin firm and bouncy. Their clinical tests showed that more than 80% of women felt that their skin felt firmer and more lifted even after six hours after use. I like to apply it on my jawline, nasolabials and under-eye bags for an extra boost.
DHC Stretch Vital Mask: Wow, this mask is impressive. It’s made of a stretchy material that doesn’t feel like cotton but not quite like biocellulose either. It’s a much thicker material than your typical paper mask, and the rich, creamy “serum” it comes doused in (it’s more like a rich lotion) reminds me of the truly luxe serum that comes with the SK-II or La Mer mask. (Except compare $11.50 for DHC versus $17 for SK-II and $42 for La Mer.) Apply the top half first, then stretch the bottom half up and over the cheek area towards the temples. As you smooth it out, it conforms to your face, providing a tight, lifted feeling. (If the upper half of the mask starts to drag, pull it up at the hairline and even your eyelids will get an instant lift.)
It’s a much more luxurious experience than your everyday sheet mask, with the rich, creamy serum filled with antioxidant meadowfoam seed oil, hyaluronic acid and powerhouse squalane, known for its antioxidant, cell-supporting and — a particular need of mine now that warmer weather is upon us — oil balancing properties. After about 30 minutes, my skin looks instantly tightened, my jawline lifted and firmed, and my skin just radiant.
Dermovia Shapewear Facial Mask: Co-founder and CEO Anita Sun, a medical aesthetician, created these compression lace masks after being inspired by the cotton gauze she wraps around her clients’ faces to help with the absorption of topicals. Made of antimicrobial cotton lace, this unique compression mask actually provides a temporary lifting and tightening effect of the chin and jawline. (There’s a hole for your ears, and then a bottom piece that you lift over your chin and jawline and hook again through your ears — the mask is literally holding up your chin and jawline for an hour.)
Even better, the biodegradable material allows your skin to absorb the serum and won’t dry out, so you can wear it for longer than your usual mask, even for hours, she says. (Most experts warn not to wear cheaper, paper masks beyond the recommended time, because then the mask actually starts absorbing hydration from your skin.)
Clarins Shaping Facial Lift: This serum is pricey at over $80, but it’s one I’ll re-buy (I just wait for a Sephora sale). Originally created for its Asian customer and her obsession with the V-line shape of the face, this serum is a mini facial-meets-mediation in a pump, forcing you to stop, take a breath and breathe.
You apply using Clarins’ Manual Auto-Lifting Method, pressing your hands on key areas of your face, to stimulate lymphatic drainage of buildup and puffiness caused by a fatty, high-sugar, high-salt diet. My morning regimen includes this lymphatic facial massage, and it not only helps drain my face of puffiness but gives me a moment of calm, of focusing on my breathing, of relishing in my skin care ritual, not just rushing through it. Just make sure you let your husband know what you’re doing — it took a few times of him walking in on me and panicking that I was succumbing to depression before he remembered that I was just massaging my face.
So what’s worked for you? I’m always on the lookout for new skin care that really helps with lifting, firming and sagging, so let me know what you love!