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Review: Origins Maskimizer

When I saw this ‘skin-optimizing mask primer’ I was shocked that it wasn’t a Korean product, because you know, they love to add additional steps to your routine! Plus, it’s an innovative idea that makes sense when you think about it (we will unpack this thought in the review below!). I’ve used Origins products here and there over the years, but none of their products really ‘stuck’ to my daily/nightly routine. I’ve always liked the look of their products and ethos when it comes to used sustainable, renewable and biodegradable ingredients. At the same time, I look for a lot of actives in my skincare products and so sometimes I haven’t had the ‘room’ in my routines to fit any of their products in. Being a ‘natural’ and green beauty brand, I didn’t equate Origins with ‘innovation’ and this is why I was so eager to try their Maskimizer! I’ve become much better at consistently using masks since people on Instagram are always posting photos of themselves wearing masks or talking about masks, so it’s handy for someone forgetful like me 🙂

So what exactly is a ‘masking primer’ and what is it supposed to do? Here is what Origin’s tells us!

A microfine hydrating mist that allows you to take your masks to the next level by enhancing spreadability, penetration and removal to deliver the best results. Formulated with skin-optimizing marine algae, renowned for moisture-attaining ability, this primer softens skin and opens up pores – making it more receptive to the high-performance benefits of masks. Suitable all skin types and any form of mask, expect peel-off. 

The reason I mentioned that a mask ‘primer’ makes sense, is because we often use toners or a facial mist, in-between skincare steps. Most lasses would spritz their face with some sort of  mist after cleansing and before applying a serum or moisturiser. Damp skin acts like a sponge, absorbing other liquids. If mists or water is left on the surface of the skin, it can evaporate causing trans-epidermal water loss (in short, this is very bad because it sucks moisture out of the skin). Applying another product on top of damp skin, usually a heavier textured product, allows the skin to retain the moisture (acting as a sealant if you will, whilst attracting more moisture depending on the applied ingredients). Therefore a pre-mask ‘primer’ masks sense – your mask should sit more comfortably on the skin and absorb more of the goodness in the mask, especially if it contains hydrators and actives.

Origins had its origins in 1990 by Leonard Lauder, son of Estee Lauder, and it was the first prestige skincare brand to focus on using natural ingredients in its products. Born from an awareness in the beauty industry and population of an increasing awareness of environmental issues. Origins’ vision was to develop high-performance products “powered by nature and proven by science”. Origins has taken a serious attitude to using recycled and responsibly sourced packaging, not testing on animals and using wind and hydro-power in their production processes.The Plantscription anti-ageing range is formulated to mimic the good bits of retinoic acid – the prescription anti-wrinkle ingredient that often causes side-effects. The Plantscription products, thankfully, come without those risks of flaking, burning and itching, and are therefore seen as something of a scientific breakthrough. All thanks to some tree native to Ghana harvested by local tribes.

I’m not sure how this pre mask primer opens up pores. This process isn’t explained by Origins. Heat is known to open up pores and stimulate blood circulation, and that is why skin treatments work so well after a sauna or after steaming the skin. This is also why it is recommended to cleanse the skin using lukewarm water. Also remember that half the results of the Maskimizer will depend on how good the formula of the mask is (what ingredients are included and their molecular size). In saying all of this, the Maskimizer contains some great ingredients. Algae (the products star ingredient) has been said to increase cell energy, retains moisture brilliantly and helps stimulate collagen and elastin production. Perhaps it is this stimulation that makes pores open up? Red algae also contains skin supporting sugars called polysaccharides, omega 3 & 6 fatty acids, proteins and essential vitamins. Algae is ingredient number four and seven in the ingredient list (both are red algae types) only behind water, butylene glycol (a slip agent) and glycerin, so the concentration in the product is great! We also have green tea extract (antioxidant), camomile extract and oil (anti-irritant), cucumber fruit extract (anti-irritant), caffeine (antioxidant, vasoconstrictor & diuretic – helps your skin appear smooth). All the extracts and star ingredients appear high in the ingredient list, which please me 🙂

So how do I find the product after assessing the ingredient list? The nozzle applicator is crappy – you don’t get a fine mist, the liquid squirts at you aggressively in one concentrated spot. Not great for distributing the product evenly. Also, if you get some in your eyes, it hurts like hell! I cover my eyes with one hand while I spritz the Maskimizer once on my forehead and then once on each cheek. I then pat the product into my skin a little, before applying a mask. I find my skin tingles a little upon application, but it’s not unpleasant and my skin doesn’t heat up. Because the product is ‘stimulating’ and contains essential oils (camomile essential oil) I’d be careful and test the product on a small patch of skin if you have sensitive skin. I wouldn’t use it if I had very irritated/sore skin either.

Do I think the product helps masks work better? I think so. I notice the biggest difference when using clay based masks. The Maskimizer helps keep skin feeling comfortable, hydrated and smooth in the end. Do I think you could get a similar result using a ‘regular’ face mist? I think so. The Maskimizer face mist (as I will now call it) contains some great antioxidants and hydrators, but the concept of dampening the skin in preparation for applying another product onto the skin for better absorption isn’t new. Perhaps some would call this product ‘gimmicky’. I do think  however, that the formula stacks up for the purpose of using it before a mask. It’s not a step I previously ‘committed to’ before applying a mask, maybe because generally my skin isn’t very dry and I have quite ‘young’ plump skin, so I just didn’t think about it. It definitely makes sense to ‘prime’ the skin this way before ‘masking’ and the Maskimizer does make the job easier. It’s a great habit for your skin either way!

The Maskimizer is affordable in my eyes. especially if you only use it as a pre mask facial mist. You get 95ml for $31 at Mecca. If for whatever reason you can’t get your hands on the Maskimizer or you’re worried because you have sensitive skin, you do have other options! I’d recommend using a thermal water mist. Thermal water is called ‘thermal water’ because the water deposits run deep under ground, being heated by magma and lava. The water is thus highly enriched by minerals and isn’t contaminated by other substances or air. The cleanliness of such highly mineralised water means that no preservatives or filtering processes are needed before the water is put into bottles. The minerals in thermal water stimulate skin to regenerate and this is why these types of waters are said to be healing. For example, magnesium helps the healing process, sodium and potassium regulate hydration/lipid levels and silicium helps strengthen the lipid barrier of skin. Thermal waters are recommended for various skin conditions, where skin is irritated and compromised (rosacea, eczema and other types of inflammation). Thermal water mists mean that you can dampen the skin in preparation for absorbing another product, but they also strengthen skin – and they are pretty affordable, available in all different sizes! 🙂

Above: Uriage Thermal Water, Origins Maskimizer, La Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water

In a nutshell, Origins Maskimizer is a handy and well formulated product. It’s helping me use facial mists more often generally. After applying a mask (if it is a wash off formula) I again use a mist to dampen my skin before moisturising or applying other products to my skin. You could use the Maskimizer for this, or use another more calming and gentle facial mist. I think I am becoming obsessed with facial mists at the moment actually lol I suppose we can think of skincare as a ‘journey’ and I love discovering new products which change my ‘thinking’ about how I treat my skin. Misting the skin at different stages of your routine and throughout the day is quite different for me. I would never mist my skin throughout the day for example, skincare was something I thought about either in the morning or at night, discounting the beach and sunscreen application. Now I get the whole facial mist ‘world’ 😛 Simple techniques can sometimes effect the skin greatly and I think this is one of those great simple tricks!

Do you love facial mists Beauties? And when do you use them in your routine? Let me know if the Maskimizer is a product that ‘speaks to you’!

Catch ya next time,

Beauty Bee~

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