Before I got into Asian Beauty, I had no idea about the concept of a sleeping mask (also known as a sleeping pack). Sleeping masks just aren’t commonly found in the Western beauty market and it isn’t a product that is well known outside of the AB realm. Within, AB however, there are many different types and varieties from all the major brands and this review focuses on the bestselling Water Sleeping Mask from Laneige.
When you think of Laneige, you immediately think of their Water Sleeping Mask. It’s the brand’s signature product that is iconic and well-loved. The saleslady in Korea told me hordes of tourists, particularly from China, come to Korea JUST to buy this sleeping mask. In bulk. On Laneige’s website, they cite this as being their international best-seller with 16 million in sales and 1 sold every 12 seconds. That’s certainly impressive. So of course, I was really eager for this to be the first sleeping mask I tried out since it came so highly recommended and raved about.
Why do we need a sleeping mask?
During daytime your skin experiences a lot of stress and disruption due to reduced amounts of moisture and being exposed to many harmful factors and impurities such as pollution, UV rays, bacteria, weather etc. Even feeling stressed and what you eat impacts the skin condition. All these things contribute to skin looking dull and dry, increased sensitivity, blemishes, redness and premature ageing.
Laneige carried out a 15 year study on what goes on with skin during the night and their results discovered the need for sleeping care products that would purify the skin overnight to make it clear, glowing and moisturised. When you sleep at night, the skin has increased absorption capabilities and is able to rest and recharge. This is why people say a good night’s sleep is the secret to well-rested skin. However, skin loses a lot of moisture if nothing is applied. Therefore, having good skincare at night is important to restore and recover the skin condition the following morning because the skin is able to benefit and absorb more from what you are giving it.
This is where the Laneige Water Sleeping Mask comes in. This was first launched in 2002 as the Water Sleeping Pack and has gone through 3 upgraded and improved versions since. The latest one which I have, was launched in Spring 2015.
- 2002: Water Sleeping Pack
- 2005: Water Sleeping Pack Plus (upgraded moisturising and skin rejuvenating effects)
- 2009: Water Sleeping Pack_EX (upgraded moisturising + brightening + deep sleep effects)
- 2015: Water Sleeping Mask (current version)
This Water Sleeping Mask promises to make skin clear, glowing and revitalized in the morning and recharges skin with abundant moisture as if you’ve had a good 8 hours sleep.
This latest version incorporates 3 of Laneige’s trademarked and exclusive technologies:
- SLEEP-TOX – purifies and revitalizes the skin during sleep, keeping it in the optimum condition so you wake up with clear and glowing skin. The apricot extract gives a brightening effect by removing free radicals while the primrose extract helps skin purification.
- MOISTURE WRAP – activates agents such as Hydro Ion Mineral Water, to help the skin retain and lock in moisture overnight. The Beta-glucan mineral network covers your skin like a moisture layer.
- SLEEPSCENT – aromatic scent containing orange fruit flower, rose, ylang ylang and sandalwood oil. Allows the skin to rest and boosts its ability to regenerate while helping to relax the body and mind to promote deep sleep.
It also has a very mild formula that is soothing, gentle and safe on the skin. It has been tested to be non-comedogenic and suitable for sensitive skin.
Like the Laneige lip sleeping mask, it comes in a sturdy plastic tub which looks like frosted glass. I love the upgraded packaging compared to the old version of this because it has a beautiful matte blue colour with sharper angled edges making for a more high quality looking product that matches its price tag. The only difference is this contains 70ml of product compared to 80ml for the EX version – the packaging is smaller for the 80ml so it may initially look like the new one contains more but they have actually reduced the quantity. This also comes with a small transparent spatula to scoop the product.
I know what puts many people off Laneige is that their products usually have a fragrance but I love the smell of all their products and this is no exception. It surprises me that people can find this smell too strong because for me it’s an amazing light, fresh scent. I don’t like overpowering fragrances that smell fake or artificial and this sleeping mask is none of that in my opinion.
Laneige says to smell the mask for about 3 seconds before using to help you relieve stress and relax. I’m not sure how effective that is, but I always take a big sniff of it anyway because it smells so damn good and I can’t get enough of it. In bed I can also smell a hint of it on my face, which I suppose is the point since the sleepscent technology is supposed to ensure a better, well-rested sleep.
This is recommended to use 2 or 3 times a week but you can use it more or less depending on how dry your face is. This is a leave-on mask so you apply it in the evening, go to sleep and then wash it off the next morning.
I apply a few times a week, but up the usage to nightly if my skin is particularly dull or tired looking. In your skincare routine, this would be the very last product to be applied in the evening before bed. I typically use toner, actives, essences, serum, eye cream, moisturiser before sealing it all in with this sleeping mask. Or I also often use this in place of a normal evening moisturiser. I take a generous amount (2.5cm in diameter the recommended amount) and spread it over my face and neck.
It has a lightweight, gel-like consistency with a cooling sensation when applied and spreads silky smooth over skin. It absorbs quickly but still leaves your face feeling moisturised without a sticky feeling. This is good because you can sleep a few minutes after applying and not have to worry about it transferring onto your pillow.
As soon as I apply this mask it makes my face feel so amazingly soft, smooth and bouncy. The first time I tried it I couldn’t stop touching my face. It was just that good. It’s not sticky or greasy and doesn’t feel heavy despite layering it over other products. No matter how many products I apply before it, when I apply this, it manages to absorb quickly. I’ve also tried applying it in different quantities and when I use a great big dollop my skin still sucks up the moisture without turning me into a grease ball.
When waking up the next morning after using this, my t-zone is never oily like it can be with some moisturisers overnight. Yet, my skin doesn’t feel dry or taught. It feels well moisturised and still soft and supple from the night before. I do find generally that I wake up with brighter and clearer skin and has been so helpful for when my skin tone is dull. When I wash my face in the morning, it does feel like I’m washing off a smooth soft layer of skin, proving that its effects do last the night.
I absolutely adore this Water Sleeping Mask! I love that it just seems to adapt to what my skin needs. No matter what my skin condition, it always provides just enough moisture to keep my skin hydrated and feeling firm, smooth, soft and healthy looking. It really has the ability to lock in moisture during the night because I always wake up after this with my skin feeling and looking so refreshed. Not dry. Not oily. Just perfect. This makes it such a suitable product for all skin types, especially oily/combination people who might worry about moisturisers being too heavy. Its also a very useful product to have on hand when I’m feeling too tired or lazy to apply my entire skincare routine and this doesn’t compromise my skin condition at all.
I think I’ve ruined myself when it comes to sleeping packs because I’ve found one so perfect already that others I try will have a lot to live up to. Definitely my HG skincare product that I’ll be repurchasing when I run out. If I could recommend only 1 product for your skincare routine it would be this.
If you’d like to purchase you can get it online from IBBI.