Avocado Superfood Nourishing Mask
Fourth Ray Beauty’s Avocado Superfood Nourishing Mask smells like trouble at first sniff due to its wafting fragrance that puts skin at risk of irritation. Another strike against this mask is its jar packaging that compromises beneficial antioxidants in the formula, while also presenting hygiene issues. (See More Info below for an in-depth discussion on that.)
The mask has an interesting texture that somewhat resembles a gel but has a richer, tackier consistency. It feels slightly cool to the touch and spreads easily over skin, staying put where you place it. You may notice the mask cracks and feels a little tight as it dries down, thanks to its thickeners, absorbents and film-forming ingredients. For this reason, we’d steer clear of it if you have dry skin. We’ll also point out that it took a bit of extra effort to rinse it completely from skin.
Aesthetically, this mask’s green color is meant to allude to the “good for you greens: Avocado, Matcha, and Kale” that Fourth Ray Beauty touts as heroes of the formula. Indeed, these ingredients offer beneficial properties for skin, serving as sources of soothing antioxidants and replenishing fatty acids… although, as mentioned above, the jar packaging hinders their efficacy. (In case you’re wondering, the color actually comes from the mineral pigments, chromium oxide greens and chromium hydroxide green.)
The formula includes some other plant-based ingredients that skin would benefit from… if only they weren’t combined with fragrant extracts as well as synthetic fragrance, known to irritate skin (see More Info for the full scoop).
All things considered, Avocado Superfood Nourishing Mask may end up doing more harm to your skin than good. See our top-rated face masks for better formulated options.
- Contains nourishing forms of avocado, green tea, and kale.
- Additional non-fragrant plant oils and extracts add to antioxidant power.
- Formulated with fragrance ingredients that put skin at risk for irritation.
- Packaged in a jar, meaning its beneficial ingredients are at risk of losing their potency.
- Takes extra effort to rinse from skin.
Jar Packaging: Beneficial anti-aging ingredients, which include all plant extracts, almost all vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients, are unstable, which means they begin to break down in the presence of air. Once a jar is opened and lets air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate, becoming less and less effective. Routine exposure to daylight is also problematic for these ingredients.
Jar packaging is also unsanitary because you dip your fingers into the jar with each use, contaminating the product. This stresses the preservative system, especially in water-based formulas, leading to further deterioration of the beneficial ingredients.
Remember: The ingredients that provide the most benefit in addressing visible signs of aging must be in airtight or air-restrictive packaging to remain effective throughout usage. Buying products in this type of packaging means that the ingredients have the best chance of remaining effective—to the benefit of your skin.
References for this information:
Molecules, July 2018, ePublication
Pharmacology Review, July 2013, pages 97–106
Dermatologic Therapy, May-June 2012, pages 252–259
Current Drug Delivery, November 2011, pages 640–660
Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry, May 2011, pages 4676–4683
Journal of Biophotonics, January 2010, pages 82–88
Guidelines of Stability Testing of Cosmetic Products, Colipa-CTFA, March 2004, pages 1–10
Why Fragrance Is a Problem for Skin: Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes a chronic sensitizing reaction on skin.
This reaction in turn leads to all kinds of problems, including disrupting skin’s barrier, worsening dryness, increasing or triggering redness, depleting vital substances in skin’s surface, and generally preventing skin from looking healthy, smooth, and hydrated. Fragrance free is always the best way to go for all skin types.
A surprising fact: Even though you can’t always see or feel the negative effects of fragrant ingredients on skin, the damage will still be taking place, even if it’s not evident on the surface. Research has demonstrated that you don’t need to see or feel the effects of irritation for your skin to be suffering. Much like the effects from cumulative sun damage, the negative impact and the visible damage from fragrance may not become apparent for a long time.
References for this information:
Toxicology In Vitro, February 2018, pages 237-245
Toxicological Sciences, January 2018, pages 139-148
Biochimica and Biophysica Acta, May 2012, pages 1410–1419
Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175
Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80
Experimental Dermatology, October 2009, pages 821–832
Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 2008, pages 191–202
International Journal of Toxicology, Volume 27, 2008, Supplement, pages 1–43
Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475
American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798
Nourishing Mask is uniquely designed to give your skin a healthy boost. Power-packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for an overall healthy-looking complexion. Infused with good for you greens: Avocado, Matcha, and Kale - all known to nourish, soften, and replenish skin.
With as much focus on the metaphysical as on the scientific, Fourth Ray Beauty is the brainchild of Seed Beauty, the creator of social-media savvy lines like Kylie Cosmetics and ColourPop. The brand says its focus is on wellness-inspired skin care, and that the name Fourth Ray is derived from the fourth ray of the rainbow, which represents “beauty, harmony, purity, wholeness, and integration.”
Its lineup consists of mainly the basics when it comes to a skin care routine: cleanser, toner, moisturizer, and acne treatment. The formulas are largely unremarkable, with a lack of impressive ingredients, and most of its products contain fragrance. The standout is their cleansing oil which bypasses most of the pitfalls of its competition.
When it comes to its approach to acne and oily skin though, this brand with a New Age philosophy has a decidedly old-school approach by including witch hazel, alcohol, and other irritants that can make acne and oily skin worse.
Fourth Ray infuses each of its products with crystals to, as stated on its website, “cleanse not just your skin but your energy.” This is just marketing, though; there’s no scientific research proving that crystals can do anything for skin.
You can learn more about Fourth Ray Beauty on its website, fourthraybeauty.com.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.