Sometimes, I don’t want to shine bright like a diamond.
My battles with overzealous shine production are no joke – while my skin type is technically ‘combination,’ you wouldn’t know it between the months of May and September.
With summer heat making my face look like an oil slick by 3 pm every day, I jumped at the chance to try the latest of UFO’s Advanced Formula Masks: Matte Maniac.
A highly-concentrated blend of active ingredients, the oil-free Matte Maniac formula harnesses the purifying power of charcoal for clean, healthy-looking skin. Charcoal draws dirt, oil, and other impurities to the skin’s surface, gently removing toxins in the process. At the same time, snow lotus and witch hazel extract help soothe skin while minimizing the appearance of pores
Matte Maniac pairs with the UFO Smart Mask device (not UFO mini). It starts with Blue LED and warming, you move to Blue LED with T-Sonic pulsations and cooling for 30 seconds of purification, followed by a one-two punch of red & blue LED plus cooling and pulsations to help soothe the skin.
My usual facial routine in the AM is pretty simple – I wash off the PCA Clearskin moisturizer with Origins Checks and Balances Cleanser (and my trusty LUNA 2, of course), then slap on some Cetaphil SPF 15 moisturizer and a bit of concealer under my eyes before heading out the door.
Adding 90 seconds to my morning proved to be no problem at all – in fact, it was a really good way to put a cap on how long I spent checking social media in the morning! (It was also nice to take a bit of time to myself – a practical amount of pampering time, if you will.)
Step 1: Prep
Thermo-Therapy prepares skin to receive the full benefits of this purifying mask while blue LED light begins helping to minimize imperfections.
Step 2: Purify
T-Sonic pulsations are added to the blue LED to enhance penetration of the charcoal-infused formula.
Step 3: Calm
Cryo-Therapy calms skin and locks in mattifying serum while soothing red LED light is added to the blue, for a dynamic photofacial with twice the impact.
While the formula itself is light, if you’re not used to masking in the morning you will feel slight residue on your skin – but I found this sensation faded by the time I got into work.
I started using Matte Maniac with my UFO on Sunday as part of my ‘start of the week’ skin routine (steaming, exfoliating, mud mask, the works). I then used it every morning for the rest of the week, to see what effect it would have.
As any fellow greasy gal knows, you can start the morning looking fresh and fine, but it’s only a matter of time before you start to shine.
I figured by Day 6 I would be best able to see how the mask was working, so I tracked the status of my skin throughout the day:
I am a matte goddess, impervious to the heat during my walk to work. There is a slight wind blowing back my hair and sundress, so basically I am every 90s movie hot girl walking into the shot.
Our office is freezing cold, so not much of a test there. However when I duck into the bathroom (which is oddly 35° and humid) to check, I look exactly as I did leaving the house.
It was a 20 minute walk in the hot sun, but I’m not nearly the shiniest of my lunch group. I consider this a win.
I don’t feel greasy, so my mid-afternoon tea break doesn’t also need to be a literal ‘powder my nose’ break either. This is also a win.
It’s at the end of the day, and as we’re going out for team drinks, this is usually give my face a clean with the FOREO’s creamy yogurt DAY CLEANSER (I am low-key obsessed with how soft it makes my skin) and re-apply my makeup.
Looking in the mirror, my skin isn’t not greasy, but it’s probably 10x better than it would normally be. I skip the wash for oil blotting sheets and a light application of INNISFREE No-Sebum Mineral powder.
Everyone’s skin is different, and it’s hard to compare things like how oily your skin is – at least until we’re all comparing LUNA fofo profiles! – and while Matte Maniac didn’t give me the end-of-the-day flawless look I was hoping for, I am still impressed with what it managed to do with my oil-slick of a complexion.
I’m going to keep using it, and see if a month of use will really make a difference!
Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Lane Baumeister is a staunch proponent of the em-dash and made-for-TV movies