Sheet Masks/Ingredient Highlight: Green Tea

Most people know of white, green and black tea, but do you know they are actually from the same plant? White tea went through the least amount of processing so it retained most of the anti-oxidants and have least amount of caffeine, while black tea is fully oxidized so it contains least amount of anti-oxidants but the most caffeine. Green tea is between the two, and the focus of most clinical/scientific studies on tea. You can benefit from the potent anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants of the tea orally or topically. If you are interested in learning more about tea for drinking, this gives a nice explanation.
Or if you are interested in tea in skincare, it is often listed in the ingredients list as Camellia Sinensis Leaf. The benefit of tea are attributed to polyphenols, belong to the subtype called catechins, possessing antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic properties. Green tea has more catechins than black tea (about 25% vs 4%). White tea is almost as rich in catechins as green tea but is different in composition and less well-studied. The main catechins in green tea also includes epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which can prevent collagen breakdown and reduce UV damage. Green tea also contains methylxanthines, which stimulates skin microcirculation and improves the tone and health of the skin.

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Because green tea exert sun damage protection by quenching free radicals and reducing inflammation rather than by blocking UV rays, it can enhance sun protection when used in addition to a sunscreen. With that said, some chemical sunscreen may react with green tea, especially in sunlight, so it’s best paired with a zinc oxide-based sunscreens (chemically inert). If you are thinking of doing a green tea DIY, that is fine but make sure to use it up within 24hrs for the most benefits. I also found this article that did an experiment and found that majority of the EGCG in freshly made green tea is gone after a few hours. Green tea polyphenols are oxidized and lose their activity when exposed to air. While I’m not super picky about packaging for most skincare, I would advocate for your green tea product to be in a pump or such rather than jar.

Skin Types: All skin types.

Purpose: Anti-inflammatory, anti-aging and contains lots of antioxidants. Buy products with minimal air exposure to retain most benefits.

THEFACESHOP Real Nature Mask, Green Tea
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The sheet mask have a floral, green tea and alcohol scent. The sheets are thin but sturdy, and just a tad longer than average. The essence is clear and liquidy. While scent of alcohol was a bit strong, it feels great on the face, no irritations whatsoever. After taking it off, the skin feel moisturized and smooth. You can rub in the leftover serum, since it is lightweight and absorbs easily, then apply a moisturizer over it if you have dry skin.

SKINFOOD Everyday Green Tea Facial Mask Sheet
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This is the first SkinFood mask I’m trying! It have a very mild sweet green tea scent. The sheet is a bit thicker than most and embossed, similar to Sephora sheet mask. It doesn’t cling/hug the skin like other thinner/smoother sheets but adheres well enough that I can walk around without it sliding off. The essence is clear and liquidy, it absorbs easily leaving the skin feels moisturized and soothed. There was no extra essence left in the packet and the skin feel soft and smooth and clean. It’s appropriate for all skin types, but I do wish they had included ingredients list on the back or something.

Nature Republic Real Nature Mask Sheet, Green Tea
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The mask have a sweet floral scent, the sheet is thin but sturdy and adheres well to the face. The essence is drippy and watery but the mask feel great on the skin. Skin feel moisturized after taking it off, a little bit greasy but it completely absorbed after 20 minutes or so. There’s quite a bit of essence leftover so I saved it to apply with fingers the following days. It’s appropriate for all skin types except oily (might be a bit stuffy).

Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Mask, Green Tea
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It have a strong fresh green tea/floral scent, strong due to alcohol, but did not irritate on my sensitive skin from winter. The sheet is smooth and sturdy, adheres to the face well and  feels nice and cool. the liquid is very liquidy and absorbs easily. There’s enough left to rub on afterward but not next day. Skin feel calm and moisturized, and it’s appropriate for all types.

I am sold on the benefit of green tea after all the research. As for the four sheet masks I tried, most of them are pretty similar but I prefer THEFACESHOP a bit more because it’s hydrating but lightweight enough that I can use it summer or winter. But my favorite green tea product have to be Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum (recommend for dry/sensitive skin and use under SPF), my sample only had enough for 1.5 use so I need to buy the full size before I can give a proper review. Do you like green tea in your skincare?

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