Welcome to the second edition of the lockdown skincare series.

Staying at home can be daunting but it also opens a whole new world of opportunities to develop some new good habits. Taking care of your skin is one of them!

My last post was covering non-foaming cleansers that are an amazing alternative in these times when we are wearing less make up and SPF. Even now, when you are not spending days outside collecting all the pollution city has to offer, you might still find your skin congested. Never underestimate the power of flora and fauna that live on your pillow, keyboard on your lap top and other surfaces of your home you touch before touching your face.

I know we all got a little lazy during this #stayathome extravaganza, but all you need to get rid of the congestion is 10 minutes of your time twice a week. Even just 3 minutes could be sufficient …

Clay has that amazing property of clearing your pores of impurities. If you are one of those who would like make your pores look smaller – look no further. We all should know by now that the size of your pores is given – like the length of your arm 🙂 If you’d like them to appear smaller, just keep them clean! Clay is a good place to start.

A decade or so ago I was completely into “natural” skincare. I would be making my vitamin C serums daily in my bathroom with a light off – so it wouldn’t unstabilise. Making an efficient clay based cleansing mask is actually one of the easiest (and most affordable) home made product and to be honest I still strongly believe they are as efficient as those with relatively high price tag. There are quite a few nice clay based masks available on the market.

Once or twice a week only follow these steps:

1 Cleanse your face

2 Exfoliate – by removing dead skin cells of your skin your mask will be more efficient as it doesn’t have to work through layers and layers of dead skin. You can do this with your favourite scrub or an acid toner.

3 Apply clay mask all over the face avoiding eyes and lips or just on affected areas (T zone)

4 Scare everyone that lives with you

5 Leave it on for 10 minutes max

6 Remove it with a cloth and cleanse your skin again (I normally use gentle cleansers – check)

7 Feed your skin with toner, serum(s), cream(s), oil(s) …

1 Aesop Chamomile anti blemish masque

Don’t get distracted by the anti-blemish claim. This is a really gentle and calming pink clay based mask that I find the least drying of all clay masks I’ve ever tried. Chamomile and tea tree will soothe that angry redness without stripping your skin.

If you have a big fat blemish in the making, pop it on overnight. It should speed the “recovery” process.

60ml £31

2 The Ordinary Salicylic acid 2%

This jet black mask is a hybrid between clay (kaolin and charcoal) and acid. The texture is much more liquidy than the majority of clay based masks and applies evenly quite easily. Removing it on the other hand is quite a mission. The charcoal will whether stain your muslin or you’ll need to clean your sink if you’ll just wash it off. Its cleansing power is a tad stronger than the Aesop one.

50ml £9.90

3 Dr Jart – Dermaclear Trans-foam Clay

This one comes in three versions, yet I haven’t found them very different. If you can’t be bothered to use a classic clay mask that you have to leave on for 10 minutes, one of these should be your go to. After washing you pop it on and leave it on for just three minutes. When you’ll wash it off, it will turn into a foaming cleanser so it’s easy to remove and it doesn’t need cleansing afterwards. Super time saver! They are gentler than the other two so you can use it more often … well you kind of have to if you want similar results. After having a baby this is the one I use the most as I put it on in the morning and remove it in the shower a couple of minutes later. 

50ml £8 | trio 3 x 50ml £21

Do you use clay based masks? Which are your favourites?