Tested on animals:Yes
Sculptwear Contouring Massage Cream Mask contains a very good mix of moisturizing ingredients for normal to dry skin, and it leaves skin looking radiant without feeling greasy. That's great, but, marketing aside, this fragrance-free formula cannot lift or re-sculpt skin—the cleverly crafted "renewed sense of lift" claim doesn't state your skin is actually being lifted.
We explain the primary issue about lifting products in the More Info section below, but the gist of it is that skin sags due to numerous factors, including elastin damage, gravity, muscle and fat pad movement, and gradual, age-related bone loss—all factors skincare cannot change (Skin Research and Technology, 2009, and DermatoEndicrinology, 2012) .
We wanted to rate this mask higher for its moisturizing ability and indulgent feel, but were stopped short due to the jar packaging. A classic jar like this means the formula's light- and air-sensitive ingredients are exposed to the very things that degrade them with each and every use. See More Info for the scoop on why this type of packaging isn't a wise buy—at least if you're banking on anti-aging benefits.
What about Clinique's Sonic System Massaging Applicator, a handheld attachment that's sold separately for $35 and is recommended (in the product insert and on Clinique's website) for use to apply this mask? It's an option but doesn't really add all that much other than a massage element—and you need to own Clinique's Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush to get the Massaging Applicator to work! If you don't already own the brush then the whole contraption gets quite pricey without adding any actual skincare benefit in exchange. Sadly, massaging skin that's begun to sag won't result in loose skin becoming tighter.
Sculptwear Contouring Massage Cream Mask cannot make good on its claim of lifting skin, though to Clinique's credit, they're not stating that directly (but lifting is certainly implied). This creamy mask feels wonderful and is chockful of moisturizing ingredients that leave skin smooth and radiant—if only the formula's best ingredients weren't likely to be compromised due to the jar packaging! See our list of Best Facial Masks for superior options.
- Contains a very good mix of moisturizing ingredients for dry skin.
- Leaves skin looking hydrated and radiant without feeling greasy.
- Cannot lift or re-sculpt skin; a "renewed sense of lift" doesn't state your skin is actually being lifted.
- Jar packaging hinders the effectiveness of the antioxidants this mask contains.
Jar Packaging: The fact that this moisturizing mask is packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients it contains won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, almost all vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air. Therefore, once a jar is opened and lets the air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate. Jars also are unsanitary because you're dipping your fingers into them with each use, adding bacteria that further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients.
The vast majority of ingredients that are most beneficial for your skin are not stable in the presence of light and air, which is exactly what happens when you take the lid off a jar (Pharmacology Review, 2013 & Journal of Biophotonics, 2010).
One of the critical factors in any anti-aging or skin-healing formula is the amount and variety of antioxidants, cell-communicating ingredients, and skin-repairing ingredients, and the more the better. These function in a variety of ways to reduce the effects of the constant environmental stresses your skin experiences (Dermatology Research and Practice, 2012 & The Journal of Pathology, 2007).
Once you open that jar you bought, you immediately compromise the stability of the anti-aging superstars it contains. (You can visualize their benefits disappearing like puffs of air each time you open up that lid!)
Lifting Products: 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 they can significantly improve many of the signs of aging, such as firming skin, reducing wrinkles and brown spots, and eliminating dullness.