Extreme Radiance Lifting Mask

by Ahava  
Price:
$42 - 2.5 fl. oz.
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Category:
Skin Care > Facial Masks > Moisturizing/Firming Masks
Last Updated:
10/21/2013
Jar Packaging:
No
Tested On Animals:
Yes

Other than a few ingredient missteps which become a minor issue because this mask is meant to be rinsed rather than left on skin, this is a good option for normal to dry skin. No, it won't lift skin, not even a little (see More Info to find out why) but it will smooth, soften, and treat skin to a good mix of skin-repairing and moisture-boosting ingredients plus almost all of the plant extracts this contains are soothing.

You don't need to spend nearly this much for a good moisturizing mask, but otherwise you're not likely to be disappointed by this moisturizing mask unless you take the lifting claims literally. Because this contains fragrance, it is not recommended for sensitive skin. For best results, rinse this from skin after 10 minutes.

Pros:
  • Contains a very good range of hydrating and soothing ingredients.
  • Easy to apply, easy to rinse.
  • Gel-cream texture feels pampering, which is what you want if you take the time to mask.
Cons:
  • Expensive (but at least the formula isn't disappointing).
  • Contains a small amount of problematic ingredients that make this a poor choice for use as an overnight mask.
More Info:

Many skin-care products claim they can firm and lift skin, but none of them work, at least not to the extent claimed. A face-lift-in-a-bottle isn't possible, but with the right mix of products, you will see firmer skin that has a more lifted appearance—and that's exciting! To gain these youthful benefits, you must protect your skin from any and all sun damage every day, use an AHA (glycolic acid or lactic acid) or BHA (salicylic acid) exfoliant, and use products that have a wide range of antioxidants and skin-repairing ingredients. Remember, no single product can do it all; it's the combination of products that has extensive research showing it can significantly improve many of the signs of aging, such as firming skin, reducing wrinkles and brown spots, and eliminating dullness. You'll find them on our list of Best Anti-Aging/Anti-Wrinkle Products.

This lightweight and cooling gel-textured mask works to firm, lift and smooth skin to restore its youthful, radiant appearance and tone. This fast-firming mask utilizes a unique delivery system to trap active ingredients and allow for ultimate absorption.

Aqua (Mineral Spring Water), Cyclopentasiloxane, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Caprylyl Glycol, 1,2 Hexanediol and Aqua (Water) and Sodium Hyaluronate, Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Isohexadecane, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, , C30-45Alkyldimethylsilyl Polypropylsilsesquioxane, Ruscus Aculeatus Root (Butcherbroom) Extract, Butylene Glycol, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Propylene Glycol, Maris Aqua (Dead Sea Water), Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Propanediol, Equisetum Arvense Extract, Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Sorbitan Laurate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Flower Water, Cetraria Islandica (Iceland Moss) Extract, Rabdosia Rubescens Extract and Sigesbeckia Orientalis Extract, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Allantoin, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Parfum (Fragrance), Bisabolol, Phoenix Dactylifera Fruit Extract, Dunaliella Salina Extract, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Lycium Barbarum (Tibetian Goji Berry) Fruit Extract, Rubus Ellipticus (Himalayan Raspberry) Root Extract, Tocopherol, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract, Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates, Disodium EDTA, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, PEG-4and PEG-4 Dilaurate, PEG-4 Laurate, Methylisothiazolinone, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-t-butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Red 40.

Ahava is the Hebrew word for love, and this group has adopted it for these skin-care products imported from Israel. Other than the endearing title, the point of difference for Ahava is that their products contain salts and minerals from the Dead Sea in Israel. So, you ask, is your skin going to love these products because they contain Dead Sea water? Supposedly, Cleopatra did, and, of course, she must have had skin to die for, or else Mark Antony wouldn't have risked everything for her. Is that a good enough reason to consider these products for your own skin-care routine? We hope not. Aside from the folklore, there is little truth behind the hype—why would anyone believe that Cleopatra knew any more about skin care than she did about computers or cell phones—and skin care in this millennium is indeed akin to rocket science.

Keep in mind the Dead Sea in Israel is called "dead" because nothing can live in it (technically, there are some bacteria and fungi that can). There are many environmental factors that contribute to making the Dead Sea one of the saltiest lakes in the world, but we won't get into that discussion. A comparison should give you an idea of just how salty it is. The seawater in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans has a salt content of 3–4%, while the Dead Sea has a salt content of 32%, as well as a large concentration of minerals such as sulfur, magnesium, calcium, bromide, and potassium. If you haven't been to the Dead Sea, we can tell you the aroma of the sulfur in the water is overwhelming. It is hard to imagine that anything so noxious would be considered a desirable beauty treatment.

Despite the smell and the high mineral content, there are no clinical studies or research showing that Dead Sea minerals have any effect on wrinkles, discolorations, sagging skin, or acne. There are, however, several studies demonstrating that Dead Sea minerals can have a positive effect on psoriatic skin, a practice known as climatotherapy (Sources: International Journal of Dermatology, October 2007, pages 1087–1091; Journal of Dermatological Treatment, May-June 2005, pages 308–313; and Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, September 2003, pages 451–457). Psoriasis is a skin condition characterized by rapidly dividing, overactive skin cells. How the Dead Sea minerals and salts affect psoriasis is still being debated. One of the more popular theories is that the mineral content of the water slows down the out-of-control cell division. Some research indicates that the benefit is cumulative and that the results can last for up to five months. Immersing psoriasis-afflicted skin in Dead Sea minerals is also a treatment that is better-tolerated than many conventional medical options.

Studies by the Department of Medicine and Department of Epidemiology and Dermatology at the Soroka Medical Center of Kupat-Holim in Israel and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev on psoriasis and other skin rashes noted that "improvement [in skin] was found when patients soaked in two pounds/one kilo for three baths per week, for a period of six weeks." Now that's a lot of Dead Sea water, and certainly not the amount you would get by using these products. Most important, however, if you are looking for Dead Sea water to heal wrinkles, think again, because wrinkles are completely unrelated to psoriasis or other skin rashes.

Even if Dead Sea salts could benefit normal skin in some way, the amount you'll find in the Ahava products and products from other Dead Sea–oriented lines are infinitesimally small in comparison with the amounts used in the published studies, and your skin deserves so much more than these one-note products can deliver. For more information about Ahava, call (800) 366-7254 or visit www.ahavaus.com.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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