Gold in skincare? Now you’ve heard it all. Before you jump at the chance to brush this off as just another decadent Instagram beauty fad, give us a minute to elaborate on why we think the gold face mask and gold eye mask deserves a fair investigation. Believe it or not, there is a method to this madness, and it dates back roughly 5000 years…
In this article we discuss the following:
- What is a Gold Face Mask?
- What is a Gold Eye Mask?
- Benefits of Gold Face Mask and Eye Masks
- How to Use Gold Face Masks and Eye Masks
- Best Gold Face and Eye Masks
What is a Gold Face Mask?
The healing properties of gold have long been known to mankind; you may even remember during the early 2000s when 24 karat gold serums hit the skincare market and became all the rage amongst suburban housewives.
If we move further back in history, gold has frequently been dug up in the tombs housing Ancient Egyptians in the form of implants in their gums and jaws. The healing properties of both gold and copper were common knowledge to these people, and they adorned their bodies with both.
The fad of the 2000s has made a bit of a comeback with a rebrand. Instead of gold infused serums, people are now getting gold into their pores through what are known as gold face mask.
These are regular face masks, only instead of potent oils and serums the inner layer is coated in a layer of pure gold shavings that bind to the face upon application. 24 karat gold has a plethora of healing benefits that are applicable to both the inside and outside of the human body.
Some refer to it as the gold facial, and there is an old husband’s tale that tells of how Queen Cleopatra herself used golden face masks as her main form of skincare. This is supposedly how she was able to retain her perfect complexion and youthful glow.
There may be some truth to this tale, but historians aren’t able to prove or disprove it. Facts aside, modern skin specialists are happy to vouch for the potential benefits that humans can experience as a result of applying gold directly onto their skin.
“It’s believed that gold face masks can remove wrinkles and deep lines by activating basal cells. As a result, they slow down the process of aging — gold masks are a great way to moisturize that significantly reduces the dryness of your facial skin,” says Nikolina Jeric, co-founder of 2Date4Love.
The proof is in the pudding, because this is one Instagram trend that didn’t die off as quickly as the rest. And despite the somewhat exorbitant cost of these gold masks, there seems to be a never-ending demand for brands to meet the supply. Many of the brands who jumped onto the gold infused serum train at the beginning of this century have shifted their focus to instead making gold infused masks.
Can gold in skincare be likened to copper in skincare? This wouldn’t be a far reach, especially considering both are technically metals and minerals simultaneously. Interestingly, the benefits that gold brings to the skin are very similar to the benefits of copper. We’ll get into the specifics of these in a bit — stay tuned!
What is a Gold Eye Mask?
Gold face masks and gold eye masks go somewhat hand in hand. Eye masks are the more condensed versions, and offer the healing properties of the gold to a smaller region of the face: namely, directly underneath the eyes.
These eye masks come in boomerang shaped strips that generally have one side that peels away, revealing the layer of gold to be applied directly onto the skin.
The up side to these eye masks is that they are always going to be more affordable than their full sized counterparts. A lot of people want to reap the rewards of gold on their skin, but don’t necessarily feel that they need the full face experience.
Most people experience their most severe signs of aging around the eyes; either directly below or as “crows feet” on the sides. The gold eye masks give the user the opportunity for an affordable treatment that can target these problem areas.
Some brands have taken these ‘downscaled’ masks to the next level, and have begun offering gold infused strips that even fit over the nose, and around the mouth. They are essentially deconstructed face masks that allow the user to target more specific zones on the face, instead of splurging on the full package.
For the most part, gold eye and face masks are usually a DIY at home activity. They tend to be purchased online and are self-applicable, as are regular face masks. There are, however, some estheticians and spas that offer gold masks as a treatment on their menus. It is not uncommon for these treatments to retail at seemingly obscene prices, often on par with their more invasive counterparts such as microneedling, or the notorious “vampire facial”.
Trust us when we say that it takes little to no superior skills to properly apply a face mask infused with gold. If you’ve applied a regular sheet mask in the past, you’ll be just fine doing a gold face or eye mask at home.
Benefits of Gold Face Masks and Eye Masks
Both gold face masks and eye masks need to be made from a minimum of 24 karat gold in order to have any actual impact on the skin. This is where things get interesting, as 24 karat gold generally trades at a very specific price in the world.
There are many, many brands who jumped onto the gold mask trend early on, manufacturing less than genuine products and selling them off for far more than what they are worth. These brands get a lot of traction, because their prices are both far below the regular retail price of gold face masks, yet also far above what it actually cost them to produce their knockoff products.
It goes without saying that if you want to reap the benefits of a gold face mask, you’re going to have to foot the bill. If a mask’s retail price seems to be too good to be true, it probably is. Fake gold is easy to replicate by using shaved pyrite stone, also known as “fool’s gold”. These products will give you the dusty, golden look and feel when applied, but there won’t be any of the natural benefits to accompany them.
So what are the benefits of gold face and eye masks? The most sought after benefit is the anti-aging properties of the mineral.
Gold is both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory in nature, and it delivers both of these benefits to the skin once it is applied. This can be particularly useful to anyone suffering from skin based infections such as acne. The gold actually works to boost the cell renewal within the compromised skin, making it less likely that your acne will scar come healing time.
Inflammation can also lead to hyperpigmentation later on in life, and so the gold is able to counteract the inflamed cells before they have the chance to suffer permanent damage.
The nanoparticles in a 24k gold mask have a stabilizing effect on most active ingredients used in skincare products. What this means is that anything that you apply to your skin post-face mask will become much more potent, and deliver more tangible results that aren’t always available to the user during the regular day to day.
Come age 25, almost every human being starts to experience a depletion in their collagen levels. Collagen is what keeps our skin plump and elasticated, and when it starts to decrease we see the slow arrival of fine lines and wrinkles.
Users of the gold facial mask have reported tangible improvement in the appearance of lines and wrinkles following regular usage. Elastin is restored to the skin of the face, and one’s appearance seems to be brighter and fuller.
Perhaps those who have benefited most from the use of a gold eye mask are individuals with notoriously sensitive skin. Some people battle to find a skincare regime that works for them, because their skin is so sensitive to oils, acids, bleaches and even fragrances (especially in non-natural skincare).
These individuals are likely to have a physical reaction to any product that is too harsh, leaving them at a bit of a loss as to how to move forward. The golden masks provide some solace; there is something incredibly gentle about this mineral, even aside from its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. The gold is naturally soothing, and keeps the skin from reacting long enough for the accompanying product to sink in.
How to Use Gold Face Masks and Eye Masks
Gold face masks and gold eye masks are used differently, as they are designed differently. A 24k gold face mask usually comes in liquid form, while a gold eye mask is a solid patch or strip.
Prior to applying either of these versions, it is important that you thoroughly cleanse and dry your face. The mineral works better when it is one on one with the skin, and any makeup or leftover product will create a barrier, rendering the mask less effective.
How to Use Gold Face Masks
Once your face is cleansed and dry, pull your hair back as tightly as possible. You want as few stray hairs dangling over your forehead as possible; use a headband if necessary.
As mentioned, your gold face mask will generally come in liquid form, housed in a small pot or jar. You’re going to apply this liquid to the surface area of your face, and for this we recommend you use a mask applicator brush. If you don’t own one of these, that’s alright! A flat wooden stick, or the back of a teaspoon, will do the trick.
Depending on your expectations of the product, it may be necessary for you to apply the mask over your neck and décolleté as well. Gold facial masks are perfectly safe and suitable for use below the chin. In fact, a lot of people have seen tremendous changes in the quality of the skin on their chests, especially the more obvious signs of aging such as vertical lines leading down to the cleavage area.
Once the mask is evenly applied and you’re satisfied that everything is adequately coated, you wait. How long will depend on the brand in question. Examine the packaging and determine the appropriate waiting period; this is usually somewhere between 15 to 30 minutes.
During this time, you’ll notice a drastic change in the consistency of the face mask. It transforms from liquid to solid very quickly, and it’s normal to feel a sense of pulling at the skin as it does so.
The mask will become one, solid unit, and when it is time to remove it you’ll do so by peeling the entire thing off of the face. Depending on the quality of the mask, the entire sheet should peel off without any issue. There may be some fine gold residue left behind, which is normal.
For best results, steam your face prior to your mask application. This way you’re guaranteed that the pores are wide open and ready to receive all of the benefits harbored within the gold.
Upon removal, your skin should feel soothed and soft to the touch. This is prime time to apply any serums or oils that you would usually use in your daily care routine. As we know, the gold has a stabilizing effect on anything that comes after it, so expect your regular products to hit a little differently now.
How to Use Gold Eye Masks
You don’t need an applicator brush or the back of a spoon to get the miniature masks under your eyes. These are pre-packaged, individual units that are usually sold in pairs — ideal for one application.
The under eye strips are usually sealed in a transparent sachet that appears to be filled with product. After cleansing your under eye area, peel open the sachet and gently remove one of the eye masks.
Apply the mask directly underneath the skin of your eye; you might find looking up at the ceiling helps with the application process. The strips will stick to your face without much effort, and there is no need for you to apply product to assist with this. Try to get them right up against your lower lash line, leaving no gaps. The gold is not toxic and won’t cause irritation should it find its way into the eye itself at any point during the process.
You can expect to feel an almost immediate cooling effect after the strips are placed. This is a property of the product, which is why they are so useful in combating under-eye puffiness and dark circles.
Some brands may deviate from this timeline, but generally gold eye masks need only 20 minutes to work. To remove, simply grip one end of each strip and peel gently; they should remove without much trouble.
It’s not uncommon to see immediate results in the quality of skin around the eyes following a gold eye mask session. There are many a YouTuber who film before and after videos where they actually show the effects of the masks in real time; by the end, the benefits are somewhat undeniable. Some fondly refer to it as an “instant eye lift”.
Of course, the effectiveness of both your gold eye or face mask is entirely dependent on the quality of the product in question. There is also much to be said about the accompanying serums that brands choose to submerge their gold in.
Best Gold Face Masks and Eye Masks
Some refer to these gold facials as “luxury skincare”. We aren’t fond of this term, as we believe natural forms of skincare (especially those derived from the Earth) should be accessible to the masses.
At the moment this remains wishful thinking, and gold face masks are very much a ‘luxury’ item. If you have the money to splurge, we say go for it — and the gold mask pot by Peter Thomas Roth is one of our favorites.
Their clinical skincare range is known for being effective and reliable. Their gold mask contains an impressive 24 karat gold content, as well as colloidal gold! It’s double trouble, and double the benefit upon each application.
Each pot of gold retails at under $100, which is surprisingly affordable compared to similar treatment, and you’ll get a decent amount of masks from one jar. For those who aren’t so convinced, Peter Thomas Roth has introduced a smaller 50ml pot, at an ever so slightly reduced rate, so skeptics can dip their toe into the product before committing to a full sized 150ml jar.
The eye mask that saturated the gold facial market from day one is the crystal collagen eye mask by Beauties Factory.
These come in strips of two per pack. They are single use, so if this is a facial treatment you are interested in incorporating into your skincare routine, be sure to stock up on a whole bunch.
Unfortunately, we can’t say with certainty that these products contain all that they claim to contain. The eye patches are gold in tone, and the packaging would suggest that there is definitely gold in the solution, but the brand itself has not claimed that any level of gold karat is actually present.
These golden strips are soaked in a serum containing Vitamin C, E, B5, hyaluronic acid, collagen from a cactus plant, and purified water. Together, they form a potent collagen boosting solution that may give the illusion of doing what actual gold does when applied to the skin.
Real gold or not, there is no denying these eye masks do some kind of work. The ingredients are so effectively absorbed by the skin under the eyes that they actually shrink in density, changing from around 2mm thickness to 1mm by the end of the 20 minute session.
At Orogold Cosmetics it’s all about deep tissue rejuvenation. They take gold healing technology very seriously, and have formulated the top collagen renewal system using this valuable mineral.
Let’s get the price tag out of the way before we dive into why this is probably the best gold mask set that money can buy. For a few dollars short of $1000 you’ll receive a set of 14 masks made with 24 karat gold, and 12 eye masks featuring the same.
Before you skip to the next product option, know that this gold mask system is designed to only be used once every 4 weeks for best results, which means you have enough product to last you an entire year and a bit before you need to reinvest.
The golden hydrophilic gel is accompanied by lavender and collagen. Orogold does not test on animals, and their masks are 100% paraben free.
These are not liquid masks as we have become accustomed to. Instead they are full sheet masks that fit over your eyes and mouth like a creepy Halloween costume. Each face and eye mask duo are designed as single use products and must be disposed of.
24K Gold Serum
The gold serum trend may have faded out faster than it arrived, but there are still some decent skincare brands offering this technology as an alternative to the masks and eye patches.
Effiny is a Korean skincare brand that has somehow managed to keep their 24 karat gold serum incredibly affordable. A bottle retails at around $6 a pop, which does seem too good to be true when compared to some previously discussed products.
In this case, it’s not a farce, and the serum really does contain 24 karat gold accompanied by ginseng extract, jojoba oil, and outsourced collagen. This is a gentle formula that is suitable for daily use; we’d recommend it by day alongside sunscreen, but an evening routine works, too.
As with regular gold masks, ensure that your skin is properly cleansed before you apply this serum over the pores.
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