The last product in my acne-fighting arsenal is ARCONA’s Tea Tree Mask. Back in my pre-green days, I used DDF Sulfur Mask. When I went eco-friendly though, I was not terribly impressed with the chemicals in DDF and phased them out as I used them up. I was on the hunt for a replacement to that suflur mask for quite some time. I tried all sorts of clay masks, and never really got the results I was looking for. I then discovered ARCONA’s raspberry clarifying pads and then their berry cleansing bar (which I also love and will review some day), so started trying other products. When I saw they had a mask specifically for acne, I was on it! Not only is an awesome eco-friendly subsitute for DDF’s mask, I think it works even better!
The consistency of the mask is a little thinner/wetter than many clay-based masks, which I actually prefer because it doesn’t dry out like many do. It used to come in a jar, but now it comes in a squeeze tube which is good because it is more sanitary and less messy.
The first thing I noticed about the mask is the smell. It’s very fresh. It does have sulfur, which can have the stereotypical sulfur smell (if you don’t know what sulfur smells like, its kind of like rotten eggs), but I really can’t smell it in this mask and if I do catch a whiff, its really really faint. The smell overall is hard to describe, kinda minty (which is odd because there is no mint in it), kinda floral with a hint of tea tree oil. It’s really nice.
Because this is thinner and more wet than traditional masks, its a breeze to apply. It also makes my skin feel tingly. I’m not sure why, it doesn’t contain menthol which can cause that cool tingly feeling. There’s nothing else in the ingredients list that would make me think could cause a tingle-feeling. I’m guessing it’s the bentonite but I’m not quite sure. I don’t really mind either way though, it’s not irritating or burning at all, and if feels very refreshing!
The directions say to leave on for 15-20 minutes so that’s how long I leave it on. It doesn’t completely dry by that time, which I actually prefer because those drying clay masks make me feel like my face is getting sucked away. Very uncomfortable. This leaves my face feeling cool and refreshed.
For whatever reason, this can leave my face a little red, mostly on my forehead. Not really sure why, and it doesn’t leave any sort of irritation and it some instances helps red spots go away, but it can cause a bit of redness overall for awhile so I do not recommend this before a hot date until you know how your skin reacts. My face also does this with Juice Beauty’s green apple peel mask, so it could just be my skin.
Sooo, it smells nice and applies nice – but how does it work? Well – obviously since I’m writing a review it works great! My skin just feels and looks better after I use this. Larger blemishes seem less red and inflamed, and my skin overall just feels soft and smooth. I have also used this just as a spot treatment before and I swear it just makes pimples less noticeable. Sometimes it helps draw out deep pimples to the surface for better extraction (gross, I know). If they are already at the surface, it helps them become less inflamed and puss-filled (also gross, I know). Either way, it works wonders as a spot treatment or overall mask!
Now for the ingredients!
Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Sulphur, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Plant Oils), Kaolin, Bentonite, Titanium Dioxide, Melaleuca Altenafolin (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Allantoin, Lavender Extract, Geranium Oil, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract.
So the first two ingredients – Witch Hazel and Sulphur (or Sulfur) – are awesome against acne. Farther down the list is tea tree oil which is also awesome for acne and research trials have found it’s as effective as benzoyl peroxide with less side effects. You can read the research abstract here.
The kaolin and bentonite are clays which can help draw out impurities. Because there is more liquid between the witch hazel and plant oils than clay, this is not the stereotypical clay mask that dries to a hard finish. As I mentioned before though, I really don’t mind and even prefer it that way! Do I really need my skin dried out and extremely tight to fight acne? No.
What is also very nice about this mask is that it contains grape seed extract and allantoin – both are anti-inflammatories and great for skin. I think these two could be why my acne seems less red and inflamed after using.
The preservatives (since this is a liquid you NEED preservatives) are the grapefruit peel oil and extract. I’ve heard mixed reviews regarding the efficacy of these but I have not had any problems with it going bad, even after multiple months and I’m on my third container of this stuff. So it works for me!
Overall, ARCONA’s Tea Tree Mask is great mask for acne and an awesome substitute for those who have sworn by DDF’s sulfur mask. Not only does it contain research-backed acne fighters like witch hazel, sulfur and tea tree oil, but it also contains anti-inflammatories which help skin overall. Another winner from ARCONA!
Disclosure: This product was bought with my own money. This post contains affiliate links.