Skin Rescue Purifying Mask with Red Clay
First Aid Beauty claims Skin Rescue Purifying Mask with Red Clay "detoxifies and deeply purifies the complexion by drawing out skin impurities, regulating excess sebum and eliminating clogged pores." While that sounds great for someone with oily skin and/or congested pores, this peel-off mask has issues, including the misleading notion of regulating oil, something skincare cannot do.
We know this myth persists regardless of the facts but we're all about facts so we will try to bust it one more time: Skin can't be detoxified the way this product claims and, more to the point, toxins aren't the reason your pores are clogged or why your skin is oily. We explain this further in the More Info section.
More concerning, this mask contains a high concentration of skin-aggravating rosemary oil (enough that you can smell its herbal scent). This kind of fragrance spells trouble for skin and can actually make oiliness and breakouts worse (see More Info for the full scoop).
The second ingredient, polyvinyl alcohol, is common for peel-off masks. This type of alcohol can potentially be sensitizing, and because the formula also imparts a cooling sensation (another sign it's aggravating skin), this ends up being a risky mask. The fact that it claims to be "safe for sensitive skin" is truly disappointing.
We're bummed to rate Skin Rescue Purifying Mask with Red Clay so low because it did a good job of absorbing excess oil and the peel-off feature did help remove a superficial layer of gunk from our pores. In the end, its potential to impair skin is a greater concern than those benefits. Try one of these top-rated masks for oily skin instead.
- Absorbs excess oil and to a certain extent can helps unclog pores.
- Can temporarily diminish surface pore clogs.
- Contains skin-aggravating ingredients that pose a risk to skin.
- Claims of being for sensitive skin, detoxifying, and regulating oil are misleading.
Toxins are classified as being produced by the body or introduced into the body, usually through eating or inhaling. They can be produced by plants, animals, insects, reptiles (think snake venom or bee stings), etc. They also can be inorganic, such as heavy metals like lead, arsenic, and others.
When it comes to your skin, toxins cannot leave your body vis-a-vis your skin or sebaceous gland. It is physiologically impossible. Other parts of your body, mainly your kidneys and liver, handle the process of "detoxifying" just fine as long as you have a healthy diet.
It should be pointed out that there are a handful of studies showing sweat can be a carrier of "detoxifying" certain trace heavy metals out of the body. However, the methodology of those studies is considered questionable. Nonetheless, if you choose to sauna, steam, or exercise to increase sweating that is a lifestyle option to discuss with your physician, but that has absolutely nothing to do with skincare.
Skincare products are not going to detox your body or skin. As we always urge, stick to what the research says really works, and ignore the fantasy claims because they aren't helping your skin or your budget.
References for this information:
Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, December 2015, issue 6, pages 675-686
Journal of Environmental and Public Health, 2012, volume 2012, pages 1-10
How Aggravating Ingredients Make Oily, Breakout-Prone Skin Worse: Whether you can see it on the surface of skin or not, using harsh, skin-aggravating ingredients (which includes fragrance) is a serious problem for all skin types but uniquely so for those with oily, combination, and blemish-prone skin.
Research has clearly established that when skin is aggravated the oil gland is stimulated by nerve endings to make more oil creating a perfect environment for blemishes, breakouts, and clogged pores to get worse.
Using a product that's gentle is without question the best approach to taking care of your skin; doing otherwise hurts your skin.
It's also vitally important to use appropriate products that research has shown are beneficial for oily skin and blemishes. The two gold standard ingredients are salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide.
References for this information:
Journal of Clinical Aesthetic Dermatology, January 2016, pages 25-30
Journal of European Dermatology and Venerology, May 2014, pages 527-532
Journal of Dermatology, May 2012, pages 433-438
Dermato-Endocrinology, January-March 2011, pages 41–49.
Experimental Dermatology, October 2009, pages 821-832
Journal of the American Medical Association, August 2004, page 764
Dermatology, January 2003, pages 17-23
European Journal of Dermatology, September-October 2002, pages 422-427
Skin Rescue Purifying Mask with Red Clay is a peel off mask that delivers immediately visible results akin to a professional treatment. In just 20 minutes, the mask, with its potent concentration of Red Clay, detoxifies and deeply purifies the complexion by drawing out skin impurities, regulating excess sebum and eliminating clogged pores. In addition, mineral rich Red Clay reduces congestive pigmentation in problem areas where pimples previously formed and improves the skins texture. As the mask is peeled away, the skin emerges smoother and softer while pores appear visibly reduced. The result is a complexion that looks like you have just received a two-hour facial.
First Aid Beauty At-A-Glance
Strengths: Several fragrance-free products; relatively reasonable pricing; sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection; wonderful fragrance-free body wash.
Weaknesses: AHA pads contain a low amount of glycolic and lactic acids; some products contain fragrant plant extracts; every product contains feverfew extract, which has benefits, but also can be an irritant; jar packaging; for a line meant for sensitive skin, their use of common irritants is disappointing.
With a name like First Aid Beauty (FAB for short), it's obvious this line is meant to rescue your skin from distress, and, indeed, these products are targeted toward those who have sensitive, easily irritated skin, but who still want an elegant, department-store flair. Ironically, FAB falls short on both ends of the spectrum.
Despite the company's claims of providing "therapeutic action" for "tough skin conditions," some of the products contain irritating ingredients that are extremely problematic for any skin type, especially for those with sensitive or compromised skin. It was disappointing to see known irritants like sulfur, balsam resin, and witch hazel in products claiming to calm your skin and reduce redness. "What were they thinking?" was a question that came up more than once while reviewing this line!
On the bright side, First Aid Beauty does have a very good fragrance-free body wash. There are also a few products that omit the fragrance, which is a definite must for sensitive skin, although, in fact, all skin types do best with fragrance-free products. Unfortunately, the fragrance-free formulas in this line come up short on important ingredients, like antioxidants and skin-repairing ingredients.
It is best to avoid their Ultra Repair Cream, the SPF 30 sunscreen, Detox Eye Roller, Blemish Eraser, and the Anti-Redness Serum because they all contain enough irritating ingredients to make conditions like acne, redness, and sensitivity worse.
For more information about First Aid Beauty, visit your local Sephora or Ulta or call (800) 322-3619 or visit www.firstaidbeauty.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.