Moor’s Mud & More

The best part of summer is how skincare gets a swift kick in the arse. While battling wintery dryness is usually resolved with a good face oil, summertime skin woes usually include exfoliants and masks to help rid skin of excess surface oils produced from the constant application and removal of sunscreens, BB creams, day creams, and anything in between creams. Oh and…the sun and fun.

Masks have had an interesting history. Masks have been a part of the standard beauty regimen in both ancient and modern cultures. Here’s an interesting fact; a 1972 expedition to study archeological and ethnological relics of the ancient Etruscan civilization discovered linseed flour used in the preparation of masks. Yes, waaaay back in BC times, women were beautying up with organic treatments.

Jennifer Newman – the twinkly sweet founder of this vegan, cruelty-free brand – builds upon this age-old tradition by bringing the magnificent Deep Sea muds (imported from the fertile waters of Israel) in her Stiml8 Mud ($70) treatment; a super soft facial mud mask with a minerally-charged formula that exfoliates gently to loosen up trapped toxins & sop up impurities.

Why does Jennifer’s concoction matter? Because she’s actually a pro portrait photographer, who realized after touching up countless images that women need to work on their bumpy, unsloughed skins before a session.

Experimenting with the healing magic of Dead Sea and Moor muds on her own acneic skin helped her fine tune her mask into something that works for just about anyone. One look at the ingredients and you’ll want to put this mask on your little list of high luxuries.  It’s going to be an unarguable crowdpleaser, for sure.

Unusual among the glut of clay crap out there, the exacting details of the mask are unique. For one, the duo of muds bring high amounts of minerals like Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium, and Iron, which have been scientifically proven to improve cellular metabolism and turnover rates.  While the black-ish goo gets to work on soothing and conditioning your skin with the combined thermopexic properties (read: a warm, tingly feeling), what makes the mask feel fresh is the boost of moisture from sustainably harvested Kelp and Kombu Seaweeds, which are steeped in Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, C, E, and K.  Seaweed's natural, anti-inflammatory action can reduce those proverbial problem spots and help deliver deep moisture from oils in the mask into the skin. Rosacea and psoriasis patients even see vast improvements with the non-harsh mud.

While light gloops of blended clay help suck up the grime from your polluted pores, it’s the creamy cocktail of essential oils like Tulsi, White Grapefruit, and Oregano that replenishes the normal lipids. The most surprising thing in this mask is Malic Acid (sourced from apples), which brightens skin for a nice radiance.

I know drier skins will want to know if this is one of those sucks-you-scarily-dry masks, but rest assured it’s not.  I gave my face a quick scrub with the super gritty White Bamboo Exfoliator and left the mask on for about 20 minutes and inhaled the deeply herbal aromas that step out with the voluptuous richness of Cumin that heavily hovers above the touches of Ajowan, Oregano, Patchouli & Clove essences.

Yes, it tightens without the tautness that hurts. The face was definitely way more polished and hydrated. Twice a week of ugly masking will get you days of prettiness, I promise.