So, we all know the most constructive form of procrastination is sheet masking. Why? Mostly because of its supernatural ability to nourish your face, shield you from social responsibility, and, as vain as it might be, aid your beauty selfie, all at the one time! So, maybe not constructive in the traditional sense, but I do know that once I’ve tied my hair back and positioned the gelatinous sheet on my face as neatly as it will allow, there isn’t much else I want to do in the fifteen minutes that follow but curl up with my laptop and get shit done. Which is exactly what I’m doing while writing this! Constructive, no? As far as I’m concerned, sheet masking should be a national workplace necessity.

I’ve pretty much trialled every sheet mask worth knowing about (while traumatising my boyfriend in the process — special shout out to Dr. Jart’s charcoal mask), so please, honour me by throwing one on, pencilling in some time on the couch, and working through your trusty to-do list.

Words, Betsy Greaves.

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery PowerFoil Mask


I’m very into the idea of masks for different times of the day, mainly because I need more excuses for the sheer amount of product in my bathroom. This PowerFoil mask is exactly that – a nightly sheet mask backed with foil to create a protective barrier, allowing the formula to properly penetrate the surface of my skin. This mask was so effective in moisturising my skin, despite me only leaving it on for the recommended ten minutes. The double dosage of hyaluronic acid didn’t hurt, either.


Dr. Jart Pore Minimalist Black Charcoal Sheet Mask


When I opened this mask, I actually felt obliged to wake my sleeping boyfriend to brief him on what would be walking out of our bathroom in the minutes to follow. The main ingredient in this mask is charcoal, which would explain why it’s completely black in colour, and nothing but terrifying to the untrained eye. It’s soothing when applied – so much so that I got distracted and left it on for forty minutes instead of the recommended twenty. No harm done. The opposite, in fact! My face glowed from the minute the last of the gel had absorbed, and felt tight, smooth, and plump. Full marks.


Dr. Dennis Gross Hyaluronic Marine Hydrating Modeling Mask


This two-step, once-a-week mask involves mixing a sachet of Hyaluronic Cushion Gel and Activating Powder in a bowl before applying the solution to the face with the supplied spatula – a surprisingly rewarding process. I started at my chin and worked my way to my forehead with upward strokes, peeling off the mask after the advised fifteen minutes. I was rewarded for my punctuality with rich, even skin, which is all you can really ask for from a mask.


Charlotte Tilbury Instant Magic Dry Sheet Mask


I must say, I’m impressed by this one. Although it’s hard to tell if it’s had any immediate effect on my fine lines, the dry-touch formula of the mask means I’m left with bright, firm, and strangely hydrated skin when I lift it off my face. With no drying time, I had that post-facial beam without the stickiness of most sheet masks, which also happened to last a few hours longer than I initially expected. A great option for the time-poor.


Dr. Jart Clear Lover Rubber Mask


I like to think I made the most appropriate choice when choosing between the Moist Lover, Bright Lover, Firming Lover, and Clear Lover rubber masks by Dr. Jart. The Clear Lover comes as a dry, rubber, two-part mask, complete with a small ampoule filled with the creamy gel most sheet masks come soaked in. The idea is to cover your face in the gel before placing the rubber sheet on top, so as to lock the moisture into your face. I left this one on for just under forty minutes, feeling the rubber tighten as my face absorbed the gel. My skin was left tight, moisturised, and clear, and proved an excellent base for makeup the following day.


Endota Spa High Performance Lifting Mask


If, like me, a weekly spa treatment just isn’t a plausible option for you, this High Performance Lifting Mask by Endota Spa is your guy. It did a brilliant job of replenishing and plumping my skin to new heights, without the need for me to leave my apartment. A spa in a sachet, for the modern woman.


Mecca Cosmetica Lit From Within


Just when I thought my Vitamin C intake was adequate, this mask by Mecca Cosmetica proved me wrong. Lit From Within is the cherry on top of my Vitamin C supplements, serums, and oils, taking my glow just that little bit further with every use. The end result is radiant, moisturised skin, and I can safely say I’m never disappointed. 


Erno Laszlo Exfoliate & Detox Detoxifying Hydrogel Mask


I’m a sucker for a multitasker, and find it especially hard to reject an exfoliant/cleanser combo. Charcoal masks must be all the rage, because this too is black in colour, formulated with charcoal, kiwi extract, and an AHA fruit blend. While the fruit blend scrapes dead cells from the surface of my skin, the kiwi extract helps to produce collagen, meaning I’m left with baby-soft cheeks and a glow like nothing else.