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First Impression: Biore Self Heating One Minute Mask

I showed this in my April Haul.


This product claims to "give you purified pores in just 1 minute. This unique formula heats on contact with water to open pores & draw out pore-clogging dirt and oil, then cools leaving skin tingly smooth & refreshed. With Natural Charcoal, known for its ability to draw out impurities and trap them". 

The box contains four single use packettes which hold seven grams of product each.


"HOW TO USE

Before using, please read cautions and usage instructions. For best results, use on clean face.

WET FACE. Leave face wet – the Bioré® Self Heating One Minute Mask is activated by water.
APPLY MASK. Dry hands, open single-use packette, dispense contents into hand and apply mask to face. You may add a little water to your fingers to help spread the mask and activate warming.
MASSAGE for about 1 minute. As you massage, the mask will heat up. For more heating action or for your preferred consistency, massage in a little water. The mask does not dry/harden.
RINSE. After one minute has passed, thoroughly rinse with water to remove the mask".

I was intrigued that the mask doesn't "dry/harden" and more surprised that it's a product that you have to rub for a whole minute. Upon opening the packette the product immediately felt very warm. When I put it on my face I had a real, "wha gine on hey?" moment. When I swatched it on my dry hand for the photos below it also felt warm right away; therefore it isn't any "unique formula that heats on contact with water".


Hopefully the photo above adequately shows that they're some small white particles in the solution that act as physical exfoliators while you're rubbing your face. Along with the warmth of the product another thing that instantly hits you is the scent; it's very minty. This lead me to look at the ingredients.


"BUTYLENE GLYCOL, ZEOLITE, KAOLIN, PEG-8, METHYL GLUCETH-20, CELLULOSE, TALC, FRAGRANCE, LAURYL METHACRYLATE/GLYCOL DIMETHACRYLATE CROSSPOLYMER, CHARCOAL POWDER, DIMETHICONE, HYDROXYPROPYLCELLULOSE, MENTHOL, DISODIUM EDTA, BHT"


While the menthol is fairly far down on the ingredients list it certainly is the only thing giving this product its "self heating" and later "then cools leaving skin tingly and refreshed" properties. Neither menthol nor fragrance are good components to have in your skincare; especially if you have sensitive skin.

From Paula's Choice Cosmetic Ingredient Dictionary:

"MENTHOL

Rating: POOR

Categories: Antibacterial/Anti-AcnePlant Extracts, Fragrance: Synthetic and Fragrant Plant Extracts, Irritants

Derived from peppermint; menthol can have the same irritating effect as peppermint on skin (Sources: Postgraduate Medicine, July 2013, pages 7-18; Archives of Dermatologic Research, May 1996, pages 245–248; and Somatosensory and Motor Research, Volume 9, Issue 3, 1992, pages 235-244). Despite its documented ability to irritate skin, menthol is used in a surprisingly large number of products, particularly those aimed at helping oily or acne-prone skin. Unfortunately, the cooling, refreshing sensation menthol causes is direct evidence your skin is being irritated, not soothed. See counter-irritant, peppermint
".


So while I'm all for a good exfoliator and I like the properties of charcoal, this is not a product I can recommend. I know that the price is tempting for the amount of product you get. Moreso, the "one minute" concept is great marketing in this fast-paced 'microwave' world. But skincare isn't an area in which I think you should skimp on time or money. Well, you could save some coppers with DIY masks but you'd still need to invest the time to really get to know the properties of ingredients.

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