Charcoal or 9000 year old Irish Moor mud? Origins and new PTR mask review

I didn’t think much when I picked up my first tube of Origins Clear Improvement Charcoal mask almost 5 years ago, but after using it 2-3x per week every week for a few month, I realized I had no clogged pores during that time! I was using Biore pore strips every other week back then, but with this I saw no clogged pores and didn’t need to use the strips at all! It also helps to draw all the blemish to the surface, which is a good thing because they are out of your skin faster, and a bad thing if you use it the day before a big event.


It’s a light grey creamy mask with a mild fresh scent. It tingles a bit when applied and dries hard. It does an excellent job of keeping my pores clear, does help to control oil and make blemishes go away faster. However, that tingling can hurt if you have sensitive or irritated skin and it can be a little drying for dry combination or dry skin….. which is why I never really rave about it eventho it’s been a stable of mine for the past 5 years.

I was in the mood for something new, and my skin is getting bumpy and slightly oily and blemishy due to warming weather, so when I saw the email about Peter Thomas Roth’s new Irish Moor Mud Purifying Black Mask I just went ahead and bought it. So far the brand’s got a good track record in my book, so I hope this will continue the trend.


But first, let’s go back to the “With the highest level of organic content in the world, 9,000 year-old black Moor Mud is harvested by hand from the Irish countryside.” These kind of description always make me mildly annoyed. Yes, I feel pampered about my product containing black rose extract from a specific region of Europe, or 9000 year old mud….. but how sustainable are they? are they really more effective than real rose or normal mud? How much good stuff is left after you process/purify the mud (cuz, you know, there’s probably centuries of animal poop and other not so good bacteria in there). How did you prove it have “the highest level of organic content in the world”? But fine, if the product works and the price is good, then that’s all that matters.


The second ingredient is glycerin so I am comforted in the fact that it being hydrating is not just an afterthought. Peat (which I assume is the Irish Moor mud), charcoal, lava powder and sargassum fusiforme extract (Black Hijiki seaweed) are the highlight of this mask and all within the top 10 of the ingredients list. In this case, I paid for Irish Moor mud mask with seaweed and charcoal, and that is exactly what I’m getting. So far so good.

The jar is clear like the rest of the PTR mask jar, it’s just the mask is so very very black. And it really is scentless, too. It have a thick gel cream consistency and there is no sensation when applied onto the face. Occasionally I can feel tiny bits of something, but it’s not leaves like GlamGlow and not hard grits, you almost can’t feel it so whatever. It dries soft like a gel mask instead of a clay/mud mask and is pretty easy to rinse off, altho they suggest using a wash cloth for thorough removal. After taking it off, my skin texture and pores does look a little better altho there is no immediate effect on acne. My face did look brighter immediately after rinsing but that’s temporary, and the skin feel soft and hydrated. After using it a few times, I do think it helps to shrink the acne but it’s very slow process and the effect is not as obvious as Murad Clarifying or Ole Henriksen Lemon Strip (both are much harsher and more drying).

I wanted so bad to blog about it immediately after trying it once, but I have to confirm whatever effect I got is not a fluke or coincidence. I’m happy to say it’s worth its price. I might go for Origins Charcoal mask in the summer when my skin is more oily, but ideally I need something for pores and blemish AND hydrating/soothing in the winter. Chantecaille Detox mask is kind of similar in purpose/effect/result, but this PTR Irish Moor mud is cheaper so for now, this is going to be one of my winter stables.


6 thoughts on “Charcoal or 9000 year old Irish Moor mud? Origins and new PTR mask review

  1. you’ve inspired me to try out the Origins mask again. I used it a few times a while back and broke out. But maybe my skin will like it more (or maybe I’ll try it just on my T-zone). Thanks for sharing your experience with the PTR.

    1. It did tingle and I wouldn’t recommend it for sensitive or irritated skin. Honestly I didn’t like it the first time I tried it cuz it did seem to bring stuff up to the surface, but after a month of regular use, it did keep my pores very clean. I would recommend trying it again 2-3x per week for 2 weeks, then if your skin still hates it or the break out continues then by all means ditch it!

  2. i thought this mask was interesting, but i’m quite content with my chantecaille, and I think omorovizca is the sam concept?? Though once i use up those, i’ll be sure to try the PTR! I used to like the origins as well 🙂

    1. I tried Chantecaille long ago so I don’t remember accurately, but I feel like this and Chantecaille are very similar. I haven’t tried Omorovizca masks yet, wasn’t a fan of their cleansing balm but the mist is pretty nice.

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