Hydration Innovation: 5 Natural Skin Moisturizing Masks to Try this Winter


Winter weather is notoriously hard on skin. Outside, lower temperatures often mean lower humidity; inside, those of us who use swamp coolers in the summer and central heat in the winter will also be facing a more arid environment. What’s worse, those of us who work outside the home are likely alternating between cold, harsh weather and the warm, dry office air throughout the day. Here are five of our favorite ultra-hydrating skin masks designed to drench your skin with moisture—for a soft, healthy-looking complexion this winter.

SOOTHING SEAWEED. Known for their incredible, nutrient-dense moisturizing properties, marine botanicals have been used on the skin for thousands of years by cultures around the world. We particularly love the Seaweed Mask from Be Natural Organics, which is made from marine plants grown in pristine waters and harvested at the most nutritionally potent point in its growth cycle—it supplies the skin with 14 vitamins and 16 amino acids to hydrate and repair dry, damaged skin cells. Rhassoul clay draws toxins and other impurities from the skin, while Vitamin E provides an addition boost of hydration and environmental protection.

 MINERAL MAGIC. Ahava’s Hydration Cream Mask is infused with essential minerals, mud and water from the Dead Sea—the lowest geographical point on Earth, revered since ancient times for its healing waters. Formed 10,000 years ago during the Holocene Era, Dead Sea mud is infused with high concentrations of magnesium, potassium, calcium and other nutrients essential for healthy skin; it also contains purifying sulfides and healing, salt-rich brines from the natural hot springs nearby. Though the Hydration Cream Mask is formulated to infuse the skin with healing hydration in just three minutes, it can also be left on overnight—recommended!

ORGANIC OATMILK. When it comes to hydrating compounds, beta glucan is a bit of an unsung hero. This 100% natural fiber and polysaccharide is derived from a number of whole food sources like oats and mushrooms. Not only is it useful in helping the skin retain moisture, beta glucan also helps regulate the way your body responds to stress. This skincare multi-tasker is the foundation for Blissoma’s Lavish Loving Recovery Beta Glucan Mask, which contains beta glucan derived from oat milk, reishi and maitake mushrooms as well as healing Amazonian cupuacu butter and an exotic oil blend to help reverse the effects of cold, harsh weather on your skin.

SUPER SOAKER. Any dermatologist or esthetician will tell you that the first step to lasting hydration is a good, thorough exfoliation. That’s the philosophy behind Murad’s ingenious two-step Hydro-Glow Aqua Peel, and according to a sponsored study, it works—after just one use, participants reported a 400% increase in youthful hydration. Each of the four single-use packets in each kit contains an exfoliating Retexturizing Swab, pre-soaked with natural lactic and glycolic acids to gently smooth away dead, dulling skin cells; follow this with the hyaluronic acid-based Moisture Infusion Mask to replenish skin, plump away wrinkles and lock in moisture.

AMAZING AVOCADO. You already know that avocado is good for your body, thanks to its high protein and “good fat” content—but did you know it’s equally beneficial for your skin? Rich in Vitamins A, B1, B2, D and E, the fruit is rich in emollient (skin softening) oils and nourishing fatty acids. True Botanicals’ Resurfacing Moisture Mask combines nurturing avocado butter with the gentle resurfacing and anti-aging properties of lactic acid, PLUS the skin-plumping super powers of astaxanthin: a natural compound known to boost collagen production, strengthen cell membranes and diminish fine lines, dark spots and stubborn under-eye circles.

Tim Stanley