8 best sheet masks to hydrate, exfoliate your face

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The once novel, throw away (literally), sheet mask trend has evolved into something much more inviting over the past year. Brands haven’t entirely vetoed the skintertainment factor but there’s now much more variety on the market than simply looking like you’ve smothered yourself in Angel Delight for a laugh.

Hydrating masks ruled the roost previously but now we have juicy primers, excellent exfoliators and glow getters to add to the list. And besides, sheet masks are great fun and a good excuse to give yourself some well deserved downtime in the midst of any mayhem.

Do ensure you cleanse thoroughly beforehand; doubly if you desire for maximum impact and fellas – make sure you shave, otherwise you’ll find the bottom half won’t stick and will flop around disastrously.

Also make sure to always squeeze the packet and syphon the rest of the serum out. More times than not there’s a hefty amount of treasure sitting at the bottom so smear that over the top of your mask once you’re sitting pretty for extra kicks.

Whether you’re looking to tackle a skin concern or just fancy a fun addition to your routine that will give you a boost, treat yourself to one of these hard-working sheet masks.

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Medik8 ultimate recovery bio-cellulose mask: £60 for six, Medik8

Medik8 is home to some of our favourite products. The brand’s hyaluronic acid is a dream for starters and this is gushing with the stuff. There’s also nothing to aggravate even the most sensitive of skin types in here which makes it a massive win for anyone looking to for a moisture boost.

This is a reassuring sheet mask, it’s calming and comforting in all the right ways. We loved using one after our more intensive acid treatments as it soothes and hydrates perfectly while the large amount of zinc works to heal and repair. Results are deliciously supple and restored skin for all. Massive thumbs up.

Estee Lauder advanced night repair concentrated recovery powerfoil mask: £64 for four, Estee Lauder

Arguably Victoria Beckham put this on the map when she was snapped lolling decoratively in her dressing gown resembling something like Robocop. Upon further inspection, she was of course sporting this silver spectacle from Estee Lauder.

Part of the night repair line, this is infused with the brand’s coveted serum alongside two molecular weights of hyaluronic acid; looking after the skin’s surface as well as what’s underneath. The mask’s innovative foil backing is the star of the show as it acts as a protective barrier; helping to lock in all that goodness. There’s a comforting warmth as it settles so you can lie down and do your best Posh Spice impression in peace.

Massage any remaining serum from the two piece into the skin for a mega dewy and hydrated finish. It’s the perfect night in and a showstopper among sheet mask aficionados.

Shiseido benefiance pure retinol intensive revitalising face mask: £64 for four, John Lewis & Partners

The Japanese empire that is Shiseido has been around long enough to know a thing or two about refreshing faces far and wide. The benefiance full face mask is a step up from its infamous eye version with a similar formula. The retinol-focused treatment has a milky, emulsifying consistency which feels unexpectedly comfortable and nourishing for something of this ilk.

Retinol – a hero anti-ageing ingredient that comes in varying strengths – is nicely balanced with other ingredients here, so you can relax and enjoy without watching the clock too much. We noticed a subtle improvement to our skin’s texture after leaving the mask on for the recommended 15 minutes. A weekly treat, get a pack of four to use over a month for maximum impact.

Charlotte Tilbury instant magic facial dry sheet mask: £18 each, Charlotte Tilbury

If you are wanting to have your make-up sit a thousand times better than it usually does, this is what you need in your life. Charlotte Tilbury’s dry sheet mask is an unassuming Hannibal Lecter-esque number, which quite frankly makes you look terrifying. The nifty hooks perch neatly behind the ears, ensuring a tight fit so you can go about your daily business while it works its magic. Press the ingredients into the skin and leave on for 20 minutes or so.

The shea butter, olive, mango and avocado seed oils impart a decadently dewy finish to the skin, primed perfectly for make-up application. Even if you’re not planning to whack on the warpaint, you’ll be left with that just-left-the-gym glow. The blood pumped and jolly one, not the sweaty falling about one. As it’s dry, it can be popped back in its pouch and used up to three times as it won’t harbour bacteria. So technically, this gives three of your best faces for £6 a pop. Not too shabby.

DHC Q10 antioxidant-powered sheet mask: £5 each, DHC

We love the Q10 range at DHC. The lotion has a texture to die for so we were pleased to stumble across this one-hit-wonder with the same ethos. It’s a doozie for beating free-radical damage so is perfect for city dwellers and works hard to give lacklustre complexions a bit of a pick-me-up via the plumping department. It’s full of lush humectants and a decent amount of calming aloe leaf juice to calm stressed faces at the end of the day. It has a nifty customisable Japanese design so allows you to adjust the fit, which is a nice touch. This is a good option if you want an affordable, perky offering.

Joanna Vargas dawn face mask: £60 for five, Net-a-Porter

Joanna Vargas has had her hands on the likes of Julianne Moore and Naomi Watts, so we’re in safe territory. She has a range of sheet masks that span every concern but this might be our favourite. Steeped in mandelic acid, this provides a gentle but very effective exfoliation, clearing congestion and balancing moisture levels. It also gives those pores a bit of a tighten by tidying them up from the inside.

We loved the results as it gave us just the right amount of all the things we needed – freshened up via the acid and brighter via the vitamin C. There’s a clever “glow to go” set which gives you one of each in the range if you fancy switching it up throughout the week.

Sarah Chapman skinesis 3D moisture infusion mask: £46 for four, Space NK

Sarah Chapman’s line is full of tricks and treats to get skin behaving quickly. The 3D moisture mask is one of them, housing a distinct texture that sits on the skin wonderfully and a clever formula that skin loves to drink up. Low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid moisturises while copper, zinc, magnesium and other minerals work to beat redness and maximise the rest of the ingredients.

Super glowy skin is on the cards with this one and the mask even has optional flaps to pop over your eyelids to give those some love too. You look a bit wild but we appreciate the attention to detail. We love this as a part of our morning routine as it gives a bouncy and effortlessly fresh appeal to the skin.

Femmue dream glow revitalise & radiance sheet mask: £48 for six, Feel Unique

This roundup wouldn’t be complete without something from Korea; arguably where the sheet mask mania originated. This playful brightening mask from Femmue is a niacinamide-infused treat, which helps shrink pores and tighten weakened skin. These masks are also made from dry bio-cellulose which can hold up to 200 times its dry weight in serum so you know this puppy is packing.

The milky essence also helps calm and work towards giving blemish-prone skin a break. It’s a terrific choice for those worried about overwhelming the skin with too many ingredients. This should give you just the right amount of defence in your skincare arsenal.

The verdict: Sheet masks

Medik8 comes first place as a great all-rounder. Joanna Vargas treats everyone whatever your worry while Charlotte Tilbury lets you put your best face forward.

IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.

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