Have you ever wondered what would happen if you put volcanic ash on your face?
Well, neither had I before I received my April ipsy bag with a deluxe face mask sample of: The Original Fango Mud Therapy by Jor’el Parker.
When I first received this product, I looked at the ingredients. It contained sweet almond oil, avocado oil, and green tea antioxidants. These all seemed like really soothing, wonderful ingredients. Then I looked at the last one on the list: volcanic ash minerals. Really? Volcanic ash? I was confused, but then I remembered some other unlikely ingredients that are amazing for acne: mud, charcoal, sulfur, etc. Maybe this would be a pleasant surprise.
I put the face mask on and was pleased by the dark green color. It looked cool and made me feel like I was Elphaba from the musical Wicked (I might have also had an impromptu karaoke session with myself at this point – don’t judge me). The directions said to keep this on the skin for approximately five minutes. Well, as a mask “expert” I’ve discovered that often masks work better if you leave them on for longer than the directions instruct. This time, I should have just obeyed.
After about twelve minutes, I felt an intense burning sensation on my face. It was sudden…and alarming. I immediately ran to the bathroom and tried to scrape off the mask, but it wouldn’t budge. I grabbed a drenched washcloth and scrubbed with all my might. Finally, it was all off, but my face looked like I had a third degree sunburn and it still ached. I couldn’t tell if it was so red from the volcanic ash or all the vigorous scrubbing. I put on a soothing cucumber-based moisturizer and waited to see what was going to happen to my skin. After about an hour, I still looked like I had a terrible sunburn and even just opening my mouth hurt my face. The redness had faded by the next morning, but for days my skin felt raw and overly sensitive and I developed several breakouts.
Gentle readers, the moral of this story is: don’t put volcanic ash on your face. And if you decide that you really must, follow the directions and wash it off after five minutes.