Stories From a Curator is a column by Charlotte Cho, the curator and cofounder of Soko Glam. As a licensed esthetician and the author of The Little Book of Skin Care, Cho gives a glimpse into her discovery process and what brands and products make the cut for the curated site.
If you had the opportunity to create your dream sheet mask, what would you want it to do? I’m asking because I had the amazing opportunity to make one with Manefit called Natural Gift: Green Tea Pore Care Sheet Mask.
Surprised? Well, just between you and me, I curated this mask to Soko Glam a few months ago without revealing that I helped create it. “Why?” you ask: Because I simply wanted to hear unbiased reviews from real people. It was my first chance to play with product formulation and collaborate with a brand I trust, so what good would it be if I didn’t get real feedback? So I slipped it into the curation a few months ago, without a peep.
During the months that followed I would read the reviews that trickled in with my heart-a-thumping. Here are some of my favorites:
A definite keeper
Very soothing and hydrating! I love how the masks are infused with green tea leaves so you know that you are getting the real deal with these masks. My face also looks brighter and glowing after use. Will definitely keep as part of my biweekly sheet mask routine.
Hillary R. on 09/07/16
I agree with fellow sheetmask users, the gel sheet is such a different experience. The gel adheres to the face well and no dripping. The remaining essence in the package I used the following morning. Very pleased with this purchase. I have tried a dozen different masks and this one is top notch.
Rebecca on 08/10/16
Wow, did my pores shrink!
I just tried this mask for the first time and it had kind of an odd jellyish feel, but when I took it off, I could not believe how much smaller my pores look. Mask has a pleasant scent and felt non-irritating. I don’t know how long the smaller-looking pores will last, but I plan to start using this mask regularly.
As a natural skincare enthusiast, I was obsessed with the idea of infusing real, whole ingredients into my skincare products. About a year ago, I predicted that there would be more K-beauty products doubling down on real whole ingredients, and so I decided to incorporate this concept into a sheet mask. There’s nothing better than knowing you’re getting skin benefitting ingredients straight from the source!
Living in a city with high levels pollution and growing up without much care or concern for sunscreen, I’m more prone to premature aging and fine lines. Call me basic, but this is my main skincare concern and I knew that green tea would be the star ingredient for my dream sheet mask.
While green tea may not be a buzzy ingredient in the world of K-beauty, I wanted to incorporate a powerful antioxidant that has enough studies that show it can prevent premature fine lines and wrinkles, plus have anti-inflammatory benefits that are beneficial for acne-prone skin.
After dealing with hormonal acne for the first time in my life last year, I have experienced the side effects of regular breakouts: large, angry pores and redness along my jaw-line and cheeks. While I have treatment products incorporated in my routine that help me specifically treat and prevent acne, I am always eyeing ingredients that will calm and soothe my fragile skin. While green tea provides that benefit ten-fold, evening primrose extract is also a great anti-inflammatory ingredient, so I made sure to include that in the formulation too. The combination of the green tea and evening primrose really helped my skin feel more elastic and my pores not as visible!
If you asked me what makes or break a high quality sheet mask, I would say it’s the texture and fit of the sheet mask. Hydrogel is always a better fit for me compared to microfiber masks, since it stays. Plus, hydrogel sheet masks are not only amazingly hydrating and cooling for the skin, but 100% made of the skin benefitting ingredients (rather than it drenching a cotton-based one). Let’s just say testing the hydrogel for just the right thickness and texture meant lots of daily sheet mask sessions!
Out of the hundreds of sheet masks I’ve tried, many have way too much essence—that ends up dripping onto my PJ’s and all down my neck. Also, when I remove it after 20 minutes, I don’t want too much residue sitting on the surface of the skin. I should never feel like I have to wash my face after a sheet masking session, because that essence is good for you! Getting just the right amount of essence was crucial and I must confess, there were several phases where I had to request less essence, until it was just right.
So there you have it, the sheet mask that I helped create is hopefully your skin savior too. And I had so much fun, I can’t say that’s my last project creating a beauty product either. More fun news to come!
Now I want to know, what would be your dream sheet mask?