When sheet masks first made their way to North America, we were all obsessed (even to the point of documenting them with sheet mask selfies—remember those?!). After all, there’s nothing like the instant gratification of popping on a cool, wet mask and letting it flood your skin with moisture.
But hydration isn’t the only reason to love this skincare category. These masks—which are typically made of bamboo, cotton or cellulose, and soaked in juicy serum—have gotten a lot more sophisticated in recent years.
Now, we can choose from formulas that help with brightening, clearing, calming and plumping, thanks to ingredients like niacinamide, peptides, vitamin C and more. It’s also easier to avoid the stuff we don’t want, like fragrance and alcohol, which used to be commonplace when these products initially landed on the market. There are biodegradable options, too, which is especially important if you’re using sheet masks on a regular basis.
To help you pick your next sheet mask, I created this guide. Keep scrolling for the best sheet masks, why I chose them, and what you need to know about each one.
Editor’s Picks (At a Glance)
Best Clean Beauty
Best Cult Classic
Best for Acne
What to Look for in a Sheet Mask
Since a sheet mask is all about pumping beneficial ingredients into your skin, you want to make sure you’re avoiding anything that could potentially irritate or clog your pores. This is what I look for:
- High in humectants: These ingredients draw in moisture, and include aloe, glycerin, provitamin B5 (panthenol) and hyaluronic acid.
- Low in fragrance: Since it’s a common skin irritant, fragrance should be at the end of an ingredients list or better yet, not present at all.
- Low in alcohol: Although alcohol can enhance the penetration of other ingredients, it can also be drying (defeating the purpose of a sheet mask).
- Low in silicone: As a synthetic film-former, silicone leaves a residue on your skin that can trap debris in your pores, slow down turnover and cause pilling. Another reason to avoid silicone-coated sheet masks is that it renders them non-biodegradable.
- Low in mineral oil: Similar to silicone, this ingredient is non-biodegradable and creates an occlusive seal over your skin that can hinder natural cell renewal.
- Low in PUFAs: Oils high in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are unstable and oxidize quickly, accelerating aging.
- Biodegradable materials: Instead of plastic textiles, look for sheet masks that are made from cellulose, bamboo, cotton, wood pulp or viscose rayon.
The Best Sheet Masks of 2022
Best Clean Beauty: Go-To Transformazing Mask
- What it is: Go-To Transformazing Mask is a hydrating and brightening sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 10 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Propanediol, betaine, vitamin C (sodium ascorbyl phosphate), niacinamide, kakadu plum, finger lime, Tasmanian pepper leaf.
- Material: Bamboo.
- Editor’s notes: If you’re looking for a juicy, well-priced sheet mask that uses only clean ingredients, this one’s for you. It quenches thirsty skin with an array of lightweight humectants, while niacinamide, vitamin C and a trio of Australian botanicals reverse dullness.
Best K-Beauty: Benton Aloe Soothing Mask Pack
- What it is: Benton Aloe Soothing Mask Pack is a soothing and hydrating sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 10 to 20 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Aloe, green tea water, glycerin, pentylene glycol, sodium PCA, hyaluronic acid.
- Material: Tencel (rayon).
- Editor’s notes: This mask is saturated in an essence comprised of more than 48% aloe vera. That makes it ideal for sensitive types, or anyone whose skin needs calming from sun exposure, inflamed breakouts or product irritation. It’s also fragrance-free and oil-free.
Best Splurge: 111Skin Y Theorem Bio Cellulose Facial Mask
- What it is: 111Skin Y Theorem Bio Cellulose Facial Mask is an anti-aging, brightening, repairing, hydrating and soothing sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 20 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Glycerin, butylene glycol, trehalose, amino acids, provitamin B5 (panthenol), caffeine, zinc, vitamin C (magnesium ascorbyl phosphate), shea butter, horse chestnut, allantoin, lethicin, Centella Asiatica, NAC, licorice, peptides.
- Material: Plant cellulose.
- Editor’s notes: It’s definitely a splurge, but with this sheet mask, you’re getting an all-in-one treatment created by a renowned cosmetic surgeon to target multiple skin concerns. The material acts like a second skin to push reparative and barrier-strengthening actives deep into the skin (including NAC Y2, the brand’s signature complex of antioxidants and amino acids). The result is a plumper, brighter, calmer complexion in mere minutes.
Best Budget: Sweet Chef Celery + Hyaluronic Acid Fresh Pressed Sheet Mask
- What it is: Sweet Chef Celery + Hyaluronic Acid Fresh Pressed Sheet Mask is a hydrating sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 15 to 20 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Butylene glycol, glycerin, niacinamide, propanediol, celery, hyaluronic acid, Centella Asiatica, provitamin B5 (panthenol), allantoin.
- Material: Plant fibers.
- Editor’s notes: This sheet mask is from Glow Recipe’s more budget-friendly sister brand, and the price point makes it affordable enough for frequent use. It floods your skin with all kinds of humectants for plumping, non-greasy moisture. It’s also free of oil, alcohol, fragrance, essential oils and silicones (which is a rarity with cheaper masks!).
Best Cult Classic: SK-II Facial Treatment Mask
- What it is: SK-II Facial Treatment Mask is a hydrating and brightening sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for five to 15 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Fermented yeast, butylene glycol.
- Material: Cotton.
- Editor’s notes: This Japanese sheet mask has been a cult-favourite for as long as I can remember. It’s drenched in the brand’s star ingredient, Pitera, a mix of amino acids, vitamins and minerals derived from yeast fermentation. (Fun fact: Pitera was discovered when scientists noticed the brewers in a sake factory had remarkably youthful-looking hands!). Oh, and get this—each mask is loaded with as much as one third of a small bottle of Facial Treatment Essence.
Best Hydrating: Magicstripes Hyaluronic Intensive Treatment Mask
- What it is: Magicstripes Hyaluronic Intensive Treatment Mask is a hydrating and anti-aging sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 20 to 30 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Glycerin, algae, betaine, aloe, hydrolyzed collagen, rose, hyaluronic acid, vitamin E.
- Material: Cotton.
- Editor’s notes: If your skin needs intensive moisture, stat, look no further than this concentrated, gel-like sheet mask. Not only is it packed with ingredients that bind and lock in moisture, it also has a firming, line-softening effect. It needs to be left on for a longer duration than most masks (up to 30 minutes) to allow all the goodness to fully penetrate.
Best Clean Beauty: Farmacy Brightening Coconut Gel Sheet Mask
- What it is: Farmacy Brightening Coconut Gel Sheet Mask is a brightening and hydrating sheet mask. It’s meant to be worn for 10 to 15 minutes on clean skin.
- Key ingredients: Glycerin, niacinamide, propanediol, betaine, coconut water, echinacea, collagen, broccoli, allantoin, provitamin B5 (panthenol), hyaluronic acid.
- Material: Plant cellulose.
- Editor’s notes: This cooling, dewy sheet mask gets you glowing with clean ingredients (or as the brand calls them, “farm-to-face skincare”). It has a slightly thicker gel texture, and is high in niacinamide, one of the most proven brighteners. You’re also getting plenty of hydration, thanks to humectants like collagen and hyaluronic acid.