Brighten Pineapple & Gemstone Glow Mask
Herbivore’s Brighten Pineapple & Glow Gemstone Glow Mask is supposed to enhance skin’s radiance and texture, but a combination of not-so-effective ingredients and iffy packaging make this one to skip.
This fluid gel mask comes in a glass jar (we’ll share more on that in a bit) and is lightweight enough that it sinks into skin in seconds without a greasy or tacky feel, making it appropriate for all skin types. You’re supposed to leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes, then rinse off--pretty standard operating procedure for this type of mask.
Analyzing the ingredient list, there’s soothing aloe and antioxidant pineapple, but that’s about it as far as beneficial ingredients. Herbivore claims on its website that the pineapple and papaya extracts serve as a natural alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) exfoliants.
In short, that’s simply not the case. In high concentrations, pineapple and papaya may have some exfoliation benefits due to their enzymatic components (bromelain in pineapple and papain in papaya), but the research on these being able to help skin is scant currently. Even if they were able to function in this way, the fact that this is packaged in a jar means that the benefits of both extracts will be lost not long after opening (see More Info below for details).
One more note: research has not yet shown there is any skin care benefit to tourmaline, though since it is a gemstone its powder can add some cosmetic radiance to skin.
In the end, this simply cannot work as it says, and is not preferred to the superior options you’ll find on our list of best AHA exfoliants.
- Contains soothing aloe and antioxidant pineapple extracts.
- Fragrance free.
- Pineapple and papaya fruit extracts do not have the same exfoliating benefits as AHAs.
- Jar packaging means some of its ingredients will break down in the presence of light and air.
Jar Packaging & Beneficial Ingredients: Many beneficial 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 also is 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, 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:
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
A truly natural radiance mask featuring Rice Powder and Pineapple Enzymes to smooth and brighten skin, plus micronized Brazilian Tourmaline Gemstone to give a glowing complexion. Natural forms of alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) that gently exfoliate the skin, leaving it smoother and brighter.
Herbivore Botanicals got its start when Julia Wills and her husband Alex Kummerow started making soap in their kitchen in Seattle in 2011. The couple began selling those soaps at local farmer’s markets, then opened up a shop on arts & crafts site Etsy. As the story goes, national retailers Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters reached out to the pair to sell their products in their stores. That led to beauty giant Sephora taking notice and a couple of years later, Herbivore proper was born.
Herbivore’s core philosophy is on natural skin care, a constantly growing market with a lot of interest. The brand’s site states that its products are chemical-free and non-toxic, though those terms aren’t meaningful (or, in the case of chemicals, accurate) descriptions. Nature is full of chemicals – water, after all, is a chemical! – so none of these products is chemical-free, and no skin care product sold in the U.S. is toxic when used as directed. In short, people aren’t dropping dead from skin care and makeup, despite the occasional dire reports alleging such likelihood.
Specific to Herbivore’s products, they offer moisturizers, toners and face mists, masks, exfoliants, facial oils, and scrubs. In line with many natural-themed brands, a daily sun protection product isn’t part of the mix (yet) even though it’s the most important skin care product you can use.
While most of the products have some positive antioxidant ingredients, all of them have fragrant components known to put skin at risk for irritation. Yes, these fragrances are naturally-derived (often from essential oils or flower extracts), but fragrance, regardless of its origin, is not good for skin.
Another issue is that clear packaging and jars are used for many Herbivore products, yet this type of packaging exposes the beneficial ingredients inside to light and air, reducing their effectiveness with each use.
While we appreciate Herbivore’s desire to bring naturally-derived skin care to the masses, it would be better if the brand skipped the fragrance and focused on the non-fragrant natural ingredients (and there are many of them!) that truly have benefit for skin. Ironically, many of the natural ingredient this brand uses do have some benefit for skin; it’s just that they also present risks. There are plenty of natural ingredients that only offer the good stuff, so our recommendation is not to compromise.
You can find out more about Herbivore at https://www.herbivorebotanicals.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.