There's never been a better time to tend to our collective skin. With social restrictions and seemingly nothing but time on our hands, one aspect of life might not suffer through these trying times: your skin-care regimen. Aesop's new Sublime Replenishing Night Masque is a thin lotion to be applied before sleep, then washed off the next morning. It purports to deeply hydrate, balance, and brighten "dehydrated, patchy, fatigued skin." The mask contains vitamins B, C, E, and F—all known to wake up tired faces, riddled with dark circles. But can this product stand up against the stress of a pandemic, economic downturn, and shelter-in-place? Four W editors tested it to find out.
Maxine Wally, Senior Digital Editor
How familiar are you with the Aesop brand? What do you think of when someone says “Aesop” to you? I think of this time I went to Seattle and visited the Aesop store. The weather was gloomy and cloudy, drizzling with a misty rain (typical), and there was a bathtub in the shop. A couple friends of mine purchased products, and the salesperson loaded up a brown paper bag with samples. Additionally, everyone I know who has their life together tends to keep a large bottle of Aesop hand soap in their bathrooms.
Have you used night masks in the past? If so, how effective or ineffective were they? I can’t say I’ve ever used a night mask before. I’m relatively new to the skin care game. But when I was younger, I’d use Pond’s cold cream to remove my eye makeup before bed, and would leave a little bit extra on my skin—you know, for hydration. Does that count as a night mask?
What are your first impressions of the Aesop night mask? It smells so good. That's my first impression. I'm using this mask in the midst of the coronavirus quarantine, and being cooped up in the house is making me feel a little bananas. But this product, which feels like a light lotion, has a scent that reminds me of a more herbaceous Tiger Balm—something my mom used whenever I was sick as a child to soothe me. The smell transports me home. Well, to another home, anyway.
After a few days of use, what is your reaction to the Aesop night mask? Would you continue using this mask in the future? Although this stuff should receive some sort of award for how good it smells, I didn't experience any earth-shattering difference to my skin after a couple tries. I'll continue to use it, though, because I'm brand loyal, and for the memories associated with this aroma.
Tilden Bissell, Digital Designer
How familiar are you with the Aesop brand? What do you think of when someone says “Aesop” to you? My first experience with Aesop was definitely stealing the travel-size shampoo and conditioner at some fancy hotel when I was younger, but since then I’ve made it a (paid-for) part of my routine. I love their Geranium Leaf Body Scrub and A Rose By Any Other Name Body Cleanser, and if I could afford it, I’d use their B Triple C Balancing Gel every day.
Aesop is weirdly comforting to me; I associate it with relaxation and feeling at home. I think it’s because my best friend stocks their products in her bathroom too, so I’m constantly surrounded by it. Yes, I always use a little whenever I come over. Don’t worry, she knows.
Have you used night masks in the past? If so, how effective or ineffective were they? As I mentioned in previous pieces, I’m more into exfoliating masks that smell like they could take paint off the walls, so I haven’t been a huge fan of the overnight masks I’ve tried—sorry, Glow Recipe. Still, I’m committed to my before-bed routine, which involves some pretty intense moisturizing, so an overnight mask didn’t feel like too much of a leap.
What are your first impressions of the Aesop night mask? Clearly I’m big on the scent profiles of Aesop’s products—herbal, woodsy, lightly floral—so I was pretty sure I was going to love this one, and I did. The mask itself was a silky gel and went on easy; a little definitely went a long way and it was so lightweight I quickly forgot I had it on.
After a few days of use, what is your reaction to the Aesop night mask? Would you continue using this mask in the future? I was actually surprised by how effective this was: I’ve been using this every other day since last Wednesday, and my skin was glowing after a few days. My pores look smaller, my cheekbones more defined, and the overall texture of my skin was just *chef's kiss*. It’s been a rough week all around, but at least I look well-rested.
Jenna Wojciechowski, Fashion Market Editor
How familiar are you with the Aesop brand? What do you think of when someone says “Aesop” to you? I am quite familiar with the brand, which makes me think of clean products and freshness when it's mentioned. I am a loyal user of their hand soap and lotion, as well as their Parsley Seed Face Wash and face lotion with SPF.
Have you used night masks in the past? If so, how effective or ineffective were they? I have never used a night mask before. I was always worried about keeping something on my skin for that long.
What are your first impressions of the Aesop night mask? The texture was nice and light, there was no strong smell—which is ideal for something I will be going to bed wearing. After the first night of use, I noticed an immediate difference in my skin; it looked even-toned and clear.
After a few days of use, what is your reaction to the Aesop night mask? Would you continue using this mask in the future? I'm very pleased, but wouldn’t say it causes super noticeable differences. However, it is nice for continuous use and maintenance if you want something a bit more powerful than just a face wash at night. I would definitely continue using this face mask in the future.
Oona Wally, Senior Visuals Editor
How familiar are you with the Aesop brand? What do you think of when someone says “Aesop” to you? I love Aesop. I use their hand soap regularly and always steal the minis from hotels when they have them. Aesop, to me, is a simple luxury. I used to date a guy who used some flavor of Aesop moisturizer that made his skin smell incredible. I’m still trying to figure out which scent it was to this day.
Have you used night masks in the past? If so, how effective or ineffective were they? I have used a ton of night masks in the past for moisture, especially during the winter. I have super dry skin and am always searching for the perfect deep moisturizer that will leave my skin flake-free.
What are your first impressions of the Aesop night mask? I love the iconic labeling and packaging, which is always understated. The fragrance isn’t my favorite, but falls in line with their overall scent vibes, so I’m down with it. Love the texture of the formula, it's not too thick or heavy, but feels substantial. On first look and touch, I believe that this will be deeply moisturizing.
My ultimate pet peeve with moisturizing products is when I'm applying the formula to my face, and it starts to ball up and roll right off. Luckily, the Aesop mask absorbs right into my skin, and doesn’t sit on top, allowing for that ball-up.
After a few days of use, what is your reaction to the Aesop night mask? Would you continue using this mask in the future? I really enjoy using this mask. TBH, I probably use it a bit too often. I’ve been applying it nightly (I think the instructions say two to three times a week?), as I wake up feeling like my skin is hydrated, supple, and my pore size has been minimized. I had this weird dry, flaky patch on my forehead between my eyebrows for a few weeks and this mask cleared it right up (thank god, because I’m changing out my full-coverage winter foundation for my springtime CC cream). I will absolutely be using this entire jar, I doubt it’ll last me too long considering how often i’m using it.