Can You Sleep in a Clay Face Mask?

A common question asked by many is – can you sleep in a clay face mask? The doubt arises due to the misconception that the longer you leave a face mask on, the better are its effects. You might think that leaving a mask on overnight is perfectly harmless or even beneficial, but that is clearly untrue.

Why can’t you leave clay face masks overnight?

Skin becomes excessively dry

If you use a purifying mask, it tends to get rid of impurities so you are left with clean and healthy skin. When you leave it on overnight, the effects of the mask is enhanced so it not only draws out impurities, but strips off the natural oils of the skin that act as protection – this action makes the skin prone to acne and environmental damage. So when you wash off the mask after waking up, your skin is overly dry and flaky.

Skin might get clogged

What happens if you use a hydrating mask? The primary function of this type of mask is to balance moisture content of the skin. It replenishes moisture in your skin, so it stays soft and supple. But when the mask sits on your skin for hours at a stretch, it clogs up your skin with too many ingredients, resulting in blocked pores.

Cause underlying damage

If you use a face mask to reduce blemishes and prevent breakouts, you should stick to the time mentioned in the instructions. Using them for longer might cause adverse effects on skin such as redness, irritation, or inflammation.

Leads to over-exfoliation

If you clay face masks with ingredients designed to exfoliate and slough off dead skin cells or brighten your complexion, leaving them on overnight can cause over-exfoliation. Your skin health deteriorates – it starts to look dull and lifeless.

How long should you leave on a clay face mask?

Face masks should only be used once or twice a week, to give your skin a chance to recover and heal. They aren’t meant to be an everyday step, like washing, toning, and moisturizing – and feeling the need to use a face mask every day could indicate that the rest of your skincare routine isn’t measuring up, so you should scrutinise it. Face masks should be left on for 10 to 15 minutes and then washed off.

But then again, waiting for the mask to get completely dry, means leaving it on your face for far longer than you are supposed to! This holds true for those with dry skin, because clay by itself is a drying ingredient. When the mask reaches the flaking stage, this may result in feelings of dryness, tightness or even itchiness. It is a clear sign the skin barrier is becoming compromised, so the face mask needs to be washed off before reaching that stage.