Face masks are one of the beauty items that are sold or perceived misleadingly. While face masks can enhance your skincare by bringing in extra ingredients that your routine does not include, they are not the ones to give you youthful and healthy skin. Many perceive face masks as cosmetic saviours but in practice, it is like dieting once a week and expecting to loose weight. It’s your skincare that is doing the heavy lifting. However, if chosen wisely, that one day of extra effort can bring in some benefits too.
For this reason, it is very rare for me to find masks that actually give visible results. However, when I tried the GlamGlow Gravity Mud Mask I was impressed from the first usage. It didn’t really do what it claimed, firm the skin, but it left my skin nicely bright and clean.
Let’s have a look at the details.
Colour and Texture
The face mask comes as a silky white cream that spreads easily and dries completely after a few minutes. It creates a peel off mask that works really well, even if you don’t create very thick patches.
The mask is supposed to turn from white to chrome while wearing and drying but mine never changed colour at all and I’ve tried different batches of it. Perhaps the change is very small and not easily noticeable.
This face mask has a strong sweet smell that is pleasant.
The mask comes in three sizes. A travel size in a small tube containing 15g, a full size in a jar containing 50g and a mega size in a large tube containing 100g. As you might imagine the most cost efficient is the mega size 100g.
50g = £42 which makes it £0.84 per gram of product.
100g = £59 which makes it £0.59 per gram of product.
Overall, neither options are exactly cheap and a big part of the price comes from the fact that GlamGlow is a reputable brand with strong social media coverage. They even have the hashtag #glamholics !
To give you an idea of how any uses you will get out of the different sizes, you will need somewhere between 5-8g per mask, depending on how thin or thick you layer it on. This means that the small travel size tube can give you 3-2 uses. The 50g tub will give you 10-6 uses and the mega size 100g will yield 20-13 masks. So if you want to compare this price-wise to single face sheet masks, the cheapest option, 100g pack, will make each use cost between £2.95-4.54 per mask. Not as expensive as it initially sounds.
As mentioned above, this mask comes in two different types of packaging, tub and tube. I would highly recommend getting the tube instead of the tub, not just because of the price difference. The tube is more sanitary, even if you don’t use your hands in the tub, and also will protect the ingredients from and light for longer.
Both options come with cardboard outer packaging which have the same branding and design as the product, purple with silver writing. It all looks nice and stands out and I love that GlamGlow colour codes their masks so you can quickly know which one you are holding without reading any of its labels.
The mega size 100g pack cardboard packaging comes with the cutest little note inside that says “Hello sexy” as you open it, and yes it’s cheesy but sometimes it’s the little things that make products stand out.
The 50 and 100g products come with a GlamGlow brush to apply the face mask with. The brush is of good quality and neither too soft or too harsh. It might look like a little addon at first but it actually helps and works nicely for applying the face mask. It definitely avoids getting sticky fingers at the very least and it easily washes with just plain water.
Practicality of use – user experience
This mask is very easy to use even if you apply it with your fingers. It spreads easily and dries within 15-20 minutes. After 20 minutes, when it’s fully dry and ready to be removed, it comes off almost in one piece, depending on how thick or think you layered it on. It’s nowhere near as annoying to take off as a lot of other peel masks that come off in 100 pieces.
The brand doesn’t specify a skin type for this product. This mask is also not specifically designed for a particular skin type and the ingredients contained are suitable for all.
However, if you have sensitive skin it might be wise to try a little bit of this at the back of your hand first as this mask contains fragrance and other potential irritants.
In general, do not use cosmetics on broken skin.
This mask lasts for 9M.
Here’s what the brand says about the product:
“GRAVITYMUD™ is the social sensation that everyone has been talking about. An Out of This World Innovative Peel Off Mask Treatment that instantly leaves skin feeling firmer and more lifted.
Mega-targeted ingredients transform from white to chrome. Allow to dry for 20 minutes – the perfect amount of time to get some good selfies! Peel to reveal sexy contours and more toned-looking skin. Powered by TEAOXI™ Marshmallow + Liquorice Leaf.”
Although I never noticed any skin firming, the mask firms but not the skin, which is the claim of the mask, this mask gives me clean and bright skin. I can tell where I used the mask and where I didn’t and it has become part of my weekly deep clean.
The GlamGlow GravityMud treatment mask contains 31 ingredients of which 23 will offer you some skincare benefit (some more than others), 8 potential negatives and 9 irritants.
While this face mask contains some ingredient goodies it overall contains a lot of potential negatives, more than most cosmetics I ever wrote about. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use it, as most of the negatives are not proven, but if you are one of those people who prefer to avoid for peace of mind then you might want to give this product a skip.
However, remember that everything in moderation is sometimes also your friend. Sure, ingredients such as alcohol can dry and damage the skin but using it once a week in a mask like this will not make considerable difference. In fact, alcohol can kill bacteria, that’s how scientists and doctors sterilise their hands, and it might actually be beneficial when used every now and again.
I use this mask as a cleanser, but if you prefer or only use masks for skin nutrition then there are many better options that this one.
To keep this article short, I am only listing the skin nourishing or skin positive/negative ingredients and ignoring the ones that only play formulation purposes. For the full list of these products’ ingredients scroll down to the “full list of ingredients” section.
- Water\Aqua\Eau based formulation.
- Butylene Glycol – Skin conditioner that can also prevent moisture loss from the skin. Sometimes also used as fragrance.
- Glycerin – Found naturally in the skin so can be seen as a skin replenishing ingredient. A skin conditioner that helps improve and smooth the appearance of skin. A good moisturiser that is almost always present in moisturising products.
- Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate – Skin conditioner.
- Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water – An astringent (=causes contraction of skin cells and other body tissues – in cosmetics astringents are most famous for reducing redness and the appearance of veins) making this compound effective for local application on bruises, sore muscles, varicose veins and inflammation. Some research suggests that it has anti-oxidant and anti-flammatory effects and that it is even an effective in reducing eczema.
- Montmorillonite – An absorbent.
- Pentylene Glycol – A humectant (=locks water in).
- Polysorbate 20 – Can lubricate and sooth the skin.
- Canadian Colloidal Clay – A skin conditioner.
- Caprylyl Glycol– Skin conditioner and anti-microbial agent.
- Althaea Officinalis Leaf Extract – Skin conditioner and soother.
- Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan) – A skin conditioner and anti-oxidant that contains vitamins and minerals. Can also protect against UV.
- Colloidal Platinum – A skin conditioner that has anti-microbial and anti-oxidant properties.
- Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate– A skin conditioner and humectant. Can help dry/flaking skin and reduce irritation and inflammation. Some clinical tests show it to be an effective ingredient against atopic dermatitis. Some studies suggest it could also be a brightening agent.
- Ascophyllum Nodosum Powder – An anti-oxidant. Contains vitamins, amino acids and minerals. Can sooth irritation and boost circulation.
- Polymethylsilsesquioxane– Creates a lubricating, smooth, silky feel and increases the skin’s ability to repel water. Anti-caking agent.
- Citric Acid – A natural preservative, can be used to even out skin tone.
- Lecithin – A lipid that improves skin equilibrium.
- Porphyridium Cruentum Extract – A skin conditioner.
- Soy Isoflavones – Skin conditioner and soother.
- Sodium Hyaluronate– A hero compound, known as the “fountain of youth” Plays a major role in anti-ageing processes and is found in embryos in high concentrations. Can hold onto water 1000 times of its weight meaning that it is an amazing moisturiser by locking moisture in. Helps wounds and burns heal and it’s linked to increased collagen generation Also used as a temporary cosmetic filler. Check out: Hyaluronic acid – the fountain of youth?
- Xanthan gum– Skin conditioner. Holds water and improves the shelf life of the product.
- Coumarin – An anti-oxidant.
- Polyvinyl Alcohol – Can aggravate the skin if not used in combination with the right ingredients and amounts.
- Alcohol Denat. – There is evidence suggesting that low molecular alcohols (denat. or not) damage and dry the skin. This can in turn enhance the penetration of other compounds into the skin, although sometimes this might not be a negative.
- Alcohol – See above.
- Polysorbate 80 – Although there is no solid scientific proof, this ingredient has been the subject of a couple of studies noticing cancer, developmental and reproductive toxicity concerns.
- Lecithin – Generally considered safe but some suspect this to be a carcinogen. However, there is no proof.
- Fragrance (Parfum) – This ingredient represents an undisclosed mixture of compounds that give the product scent. There’re more than 3000 molecules that fall under this category and I personally do not like that there are some ingredients that are undisclosed and hidden under this general name. Fragrance also does not offer any skin care benefit, in fact there is some evidence that it can damage the skin.
- Coumarin – Limited evidence of cancer. Like with parabens though, there is no solid proof so it is up to you whether you want to avoid this or not.
- Sorbic Acid – This compound has mixed evidence with some suggesting that it could be a human skin toxicant where others find it only slightly irritating. There are some studies that link it to cancer and some have reported it as an allergen.
Ingredients that can cause irritation to some:
This is actually really case specific, as different people have different sensitivities and allergies. Just because a compound has been reported by some to cause sensitivity, it doesn’t mean you will have an issue. “Sensitizer” compounds being present is not a negative in my opinion, as this is the case with pretty much everything out there and funnily enough I’ve seen products that are targeted specifically for sensitive skin, containing some compounds that have been reported by some, or are known to be, sensitizers.
If you have sensitive skin or you are prone to skin sensitisation and unwanted reactions, try a little bit of this at the back of your hand first and consult a medical doctor if you are concerned.
Also check out: What is sensitive skin? What are the causes and what can we do?
With that being said, the following compounds present in this face mask have been either proven or claimed by some to be sensitizers, irritants, allergens etc: Butylene Glycol, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Pentylene Glycol, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan), Citric Acid, Fragrance (Parfum), Coumarin, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid.
Full list of ingredients
Water\Aqua\Eau, Polyvinyl Alcohol, Alcohol Denat., Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Montmorillonite, Pentylene Glycol, Illite, Polysorbate 20, Canadian Colloidal Clay, Caprylyl Glycol, Althaea Officinalis Leaf Extract, Tapioca Starch, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan), Colloidal Platinum, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Alcohol, Ascophyllum Nodosum Powder, Polysorbate 80, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Citric Acid, Lecithin, Pullulan, Porphyridium Cruentum Extract, Soy Isoflavones, Sodium Hyaluronate, Xanthan Gum, Fragrance (Parfum), Coumarin, Disodium Edta, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Bismuth Oxychloride (Ci 77163).
I like this mask for all the wrong reasons. This face mask might not have done what it claimed but it cleans my face nicely and gives it a bright, non-dull finish. I use it once a week as a cleanser mask to take away any left-over makeup and dirt before turning into blackheads or spots. The GlamGlow GravityMud mask has become part of my weekly deep clean but it is not a mask I would turn for skin nutrition or a mask I would use more often.
Beauty is a very personal thing, we all have different skin, requirements and biological build which can influence things. What worked for me might not work for you and vice versa. Have you ever tried these products? Did they work for you? Let me know your experiences below!
I am not affiliated with any company or brand. These are my views and experiences.
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