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4 Masks You Need To Add To Your Skincare Routine ASAP

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As a child, I would watch my mom and grandmother get their skin together every day and night. My mom worked in the beauty industry and she showed me how to properly cleanse, moisturize, and protect my skin. So by the time I was 16, I created a daily skincare routine to help me get through puberty. As I got older and started exploring skincare myself, I realized that what I was doing wasn't enough.


Although cleansing and moisturizing is essential, as we get older, we have to start catering to our skin's individual needs. Maintaining healthy skin is a process, but it can be made easier by implementing masks that will work to improve the look and feel of your skin. Read on to check out the 4 types of masks I recommend you adding to your skincare routine for healthier, radiant skin.

A Mask For Problem Skin

Oh, acne! While we don't love it, it's important that we know how to handle it. Skincare is not always a one product fits all type of thing. You have to know your skin, the problem you're experiencing, and then find a product/routine to get rid of it. I wish I can just wash my face and all my acne will disappear! And since that's not the case, you have to look for products that will assist you in eliminating and/or diminishing your breakouts.

I love ORIGINS Out of Trouble 10 Minute Mask to Rescue Problem Skin (Amazon, $27) because it minimizes my breakouts, and my skin is clear within a week. It says to leave it on for 10 minutes, but I usually leave it on longer. (The faster I can get rid of them, the better!) If the Out of Trouble mask isn't your steez, look for any acne treatment that contains sulfur, salicylic acid, and Alpha Hydroxy Acids - your skin will love you.

A Charcoal Mask That Detoxifies

Charcoal masks are great for acne, too. If you combine this with the first step, then you'll be good to go. The great thing about charcoal masks is the fact that they work so well for breakouts and your skin in general. A good charcoal mask removes bacteria, deep cleanses your skin, and balances oily skin.

The Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask (Amazon, $38) that I use by ORIGINS is my favorite! Their Bamboo Ash ingredient removes all impurities and adds some major glow to my skin!

A Mask That Adds Moisture

If you have combination or dry skin, then girl, this is for you. I love using moisture masks because the weather can dry us out even more and moisture masks help you regain your moisture and glow.

I love the Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask (Amazon, $30) for many reasons. It smells amazing and is made with apricots and avocados. It's also a clear mask so no one has to know you have it on, and you can sleep with it on all throughout the night. That way, the moisture is sealed into your skin during its most restorative period of the day: while you sleep. You can also try other moisture masks from brands like Glossier and Dermalogica.

A Peel Off Mask That Refreshes

Peel off masks aren't as bad as they seem, especially if you use the right one. I consider peel off masks to be the snap back of skincare, because it really snaps your pores into shape.

I would recommend getting a mask like ORIGINS GinZing Peel-Off Mask (Amazon, $39), because the peel off is easy and gentle, and my skin is left feeling smooth and refreshed. I would avoid masks that tug on your skin too much, it's your face after all, so you want to be gentle.

*Featured image by Krissy Lewis

What are some of your favorite masks? Drop your skincare routine below!

Before Tracee Ellis Ross was the adored Rainbow on black-ish, she was the quirky and stylish Joan Clayton on Girlfriends that so many of us loved. Girlfriends was a sitcom that showcased four friends living in L.A. and navigating dating and friendships. The series which premiered in the fall of 2000 has had a lasting impact on the Black community thanks to its relatable characters and notable one-liners. After eight seasons, however, the beloved series ended abruptly with no explanation and no closure for fans.

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When I was ten, my Sunday school teacher put on a brief performance in class that included some of the boys standing in front of the classroom while she stood in front of them holding a heart shaped box of chocolate. One by one, she tells each boy to come and bite a piece of candy and then place the remainder back into the box. After the last boy, she gave the box of now mangled chocolate over to the other Sunday school teacher — who happened to be her real husband — who made a comically puzzled face. She told us that the lesson to be gleaned from this was that if you give your heart away to too many people, once you find “the one,” that your heart would be too damaged. The lesson wasn’t explicitly about sex but the implication was clearly present.

That memory came back to me after a flier went viral last week, advertising an abstinence event titled The Close Your Legs Tour with the specific target demo of teen girls came across my Twitter timeline. The event was met with derision online. Writer, artist, and professor Ashon Crawley said: “We have to refuse shame. it is not yours to hold. legs open or not.” Writer and theologian Candice Marie Benbow said on her Twitter: “Any event where 12-17-year-old girls are being told to ‘keep their legs closed’ is a space where purity culture is being reinforced.”

“Purity culture,” as Benbow referenced, is a culture that teaches primarily girls and women that their value is to be found in their ability to stay chaste and “pure”–as in, non-sexual–for both God and their future husbands.

I grew up in an explicitly evangelical house and church, where I was taught virginity was the best gift a girl can hold on to until she got married. I fortunately never wore a purity ring or had a ceremony where I promised my father I wouldn’t have pre-marital sex. I certainly never even thought of having my hymen examined and the certificate handed over to my father on my wedding day as “proof” that I kept my promise. But the culture was always present. A few years after that chocolate-flavored indoctrination, I was introduced to the fabled car anecdote. “Boys don’t like girls who have been test-driven,” as it goes.

And I believed it for a long time. That to be loved and to be desired by men, it was only right for me to deny myself my own basic human desires, in the hopes of one day meeting a man that would fill all of my fantasies — romantically and sexually. Even if it meant denying my queerness, or even if it meant ignoring how being the only Black and fat girl in a predominantly white Christian space often had me watch all the white girls have their first boyfriends while I didn’t. Something they don’t tell you about purity culture – and that it took me years to learn and unlearn myself – is that there are bodies that are deemed inherently sinful and vulgar. That purity is about the desire to see girls and women shrink themselves, make themselves meek for men.

Purity culture isn’t unlike rape culture which tells young girls in so many ways that their worth can only be found through their bodies. Whether it be through promiscuity or chastity, young girls are instructed on what to do with their bodies before they’ve had time to figure themselves out, separate from a patriarchal lens. That their needs are secondary to that of the men and boys in their lives.

It took me a while —after leaving the church and unlearning the toxic ideals around purity culture rooted in anti-Blackness, fatphobia, heteropatriarchy, and queerphobia — to embrace my body, my sexuality, and my queerness as something that was not only not sinful or dirty, but actually in line with the vision God has over my life. Our bodies don't stop being our temples depending on who we do or who we don’t let in, and our worth isn’t dependent on the width of our legs at any given point.

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Featured image by Getty Images

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