Although the main ingredients in this peel-off sheet mask are helpful for normal to dry skin, this ends up being a pricey product given that Tatcha provides only four disposable masks (each containing 20 mL/0.67 ounce of product), so you get only four applications.
From a formulary perspective, this mask is quite similar to some of Tatcha's facial moisturizers, all of which cost more, but at least you're getting more than four uses with those! It contains some good moisture-binding ingredients, but we're concerned that the amount of alcohol. Alcohol causes free-radical damage, hurts skin's ability to heal, and breaks down collagen, YIKES! Tatcha's video for this product says to "enjoy the cooling and gentle tingling sensation" once this mask is secured to your face. A cooling and tingling sensation isn't your skin telling you it's being pampered; rather, it's your skin telling you it's being damaged!
Perhaps most disappointing is that this mask, allegedly a special treat for skin, contains more alcohol and fragrance than state-of-the-art ingredients like antioxidants. Also, despite the name, this mask cannot lift skin. At best, it will make skin feel smoother, softer, and plumped with moisture, just like many other masks for dry skin.
This mask combines a proprietary red algae blend with our HADASEI-3™ Bioactive Complex. The silken serum infuses skin with powerful moisture-enriching actives resulting in smoother, more luminous skin in minutes.
Water, Glycerin, Propanediol, Methyl Gluceth-20, Alcohol, PPG-6-Decyltetradeceth-20, Inositol (Rice Extract), Ethylhexylglycerin, Polyglyceryl-10 Eicosanedioate/Tetradecanedioate, Polyglyceryl-10 Isostearate, Chondrus Crispus (Red Algae) Extract, Fragrance (Natural), Sericin (Silk Extract), Xanthan Gum, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Algae Extract, Royal Jelly Extract, Thymus Serpillum Extract, Phenoxyethanol.
The allure of ancient beauty treatments coupled with modern science is tempting for many people—and the Japan-inspired brand Tatcha plays that combination up to the max. As the story goes, Harvard graduate and businesswoman Victoria Tsai, had a chance encounter with a “modern-day geisha” on a trip to Kyoto, Japan. What followed was an introduction to a fabled book on the beauty secrets of the geisha, which led to Tsai’s desire to translate these secrets and tips into a modern-day skincare line.
The hallmark ingredients Tsai and her team seem most interested in are of Japan-inspired such as green tea, red algae, and rice bran which are supposedly mentioned often in the ancient geisha beauty book. Although all three of these ingredients have merit for skin, research hasn’t shown them to purify or do some of the other things for skin that Tatcha claims. What you really need to know is none of these are the solution for any skin concern or for any skin type.
One more point, the entire premise of Tatcha is built around Japanese geishas’ beauty routines, but this assumes that under all of their decorative makeup, geishas have (or had) beautiful, flawless skin. In all likelihood, some do and some don’t, but it’s quite likely that when unadorned and viewed close up, these women have the same types of skin issues as women the world over—save for perhaps fewer signs of sun damage, as most east Asian cultures are careful about avoiding sun exposure.
Enough about the marketing story because what really matters is the quality of the products and whether or not they are beneficial for skin. The short answer is this line has more problematic formulations than beneficial ones.
Chief among the concerns that keep us from getting behind this line are an abundance of fragrance (natural or not, fragrance can irritate skin) and several products housed in jars that expose their delicate ingredients to light and air.
Admittedly, it’s easy to get swept up in “what the ancients knew” and kept to themselves for centuries, only to have these seemingly amazing secrets finally divulged. We wish that were a wise way to find the best products for your skin, but despite Tatcha’s promises, your skin will be left wanting more.
For more information about Tatcha visit www.tatcha.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
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