This year was all about the sheet mask! The Korean beauty staple has taken over the world and has now become a skincare must-have. Celebrities have been taking to social media to show off their sheet mask selfies, making them even more popular. Want to get on the sheet mask train? Here’s everything you need to know!

1. Sheet masks are designed for skin hydration


Sheet masks are essentially a piece of cloth with holes for the nostrils, eyes and mouth, drenched in nourishing serum and soothing ingredients. Even if they do wonders for skin hydration, they aren’t designed to clear pores or remove dirt. So, sheet masks won’t replace your weekly exfoliating skincare routine or mud mask: only use them if your skin is dry, irritated or dehydrated.

2. Traditional sheet masks don’t replace serums, either


Even if you can find quality sheet masks at a very low price, daily use can get pricy. Plus, since the skin hydration provided by traditional sheet masks doesn’t last more than one day, they don’t completely replace a hydrating serum. Use your serum daily like you normally would, and think of the mask as a special beauty treatment for added skin glow.

3. Sheet masks aren’t for every skin type


A sheet mask will deeply moisturize the face, which is perfect if you have naturally dry skin. However, if you have naturally oily or acne-prone skin, the last thing you need is more oil; you should test the mask first on a section of your face, preferably the side of your cheek. If you notice blemishes the next day, you should probably stick to mud or clay masks, which will be more helpful for your skin type.

4. Sheet masks are extremely clean


Unlike traditional masks that require you to wash your hands (and even your hair) after application, sheet masks are a low-maintenance skincare treatment: you can just tap them on and go. After removing the sheet, no need to wash your face: simply massage the serum on your face for extra hydration. The application itself is also very hygienic, since you don’t have to put your fingers in a jar or touch your face too much; the only thing that touches your face is the mask, which lowers the risk of adding more bacteria and dirt to your skin.

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5. There is a trick to applying a sheet mask


Traditional sheet masks may be efficient, powerful and practical, but they’re not so easy to apply. They come in a standard size but, as not all faces are the same shape or size, they can be tricky to use. However, there is a trick to it, and once you know it, you will be applying them like a pro in no time. Start at the forehead and line up the eye holes to avoid any air bubbles. Smooth the mask over the cheeks and then gradually pat it all down so that it is flat against your face, finishing off with the chin. Once it is flush against your face, lie down so it can work its skincare wonders!

Just like most skincare treatments, not all sheet masks are right for everyone, so make sure you choose the one that is best for your skin type and your needs, and let these beauty wonders work their magic!