At some point, while perusing your Instagram feed, youâ€™ve probably come across posts of people with different-colored stripes on their faces. The effect is eye-catching, but itâ€™s not just for show: The stripes are actually various beauty masks being used at once, as part of a growing beauty trend known as â€œmulti-masking.â€
The concept of multi-masking is simple: The different areas of your face have different needs, so you use a variety of masks at once to meet targeted skin issues. Thereâ€™s no one way to multi-mask â€” Instagram is filled with images of people with severalÂ masks on their chin and nose, or one mask around their T-zone, with another on their cheeks â€” but it all seems a little time-consuming.
Still, is it worth the hype?
â€œI think itâ€™s a good idea,â€ New York City dermatologistÂ Doris Day, MD, author ofÂ Forget the Facelift, tellsÂ Yahoo Beauty. â€œThe different parts of your face are different, so it makes sense to mix up your masks.â€ Gary Goldenberg, MD, a medical and cosmetic dermatologist in New York City, and assistant clinical professor at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, agrees. â€œI like this concept because it allows [people] to address specific complaints of their skin in different areas,â€ he tells Yahoo Beauty, adding that itâ€™s especially useful for people with combination skin.
Of course, there are a lot of masks on the market, and it can be tough to figure out what should go where. Joshua Zeichner, MD, a New York City-based board-certified dermatologist and director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center, tells Yahoo Beauty that itâ€™s a good idea to opt for a clay or salicylic acid mask around your T-zone. Then, use a calming, brightening, or hydrating mask around your cheeks.
If you have fine lines or wrinkles, Goldenberg says a hydrating mask with natural oils can help. Cheeks and the area under your eyes tend to be drier, Day says, which is why she recommends using a hydrating mask in both of those areas. She likens multi-masking to getting a treatment done at your dermatologist, since many will tailor services to target specific areas of your skin.
But multi-masking takes effort and is a serious step up from using one mask, which many people canâ€™t even be bothered to do. However, Zeichner says theyâ€™re a good idea to use when you can handle it. â€œMasks offer concentrated treatments that may give improvements even after a single use,â€ he says, noting that you donâ€™t need to use them on a daily basis.
If you donâ€™t multi-mask or mask at all, Day says you shouldnâ€™t stress â€” youâ€™re not headed to skin purgatory. â€œMasks are a luxury and a treat; theyâ€™re not a necessity,â€ she says. Instead, she recommends focusing on cleansing, exfoliating, hydrating, and using sun protection on a regular basis, adding, â€œEverything else outside of that is icing on the cake.â€