I Swear by This £8 Face Mask When I Have a Breakout

I love a face mask. Apart from cleansing (seriously, is there anything better than getting home from work and giving your face a good wash?), applying a face mask has to be one of my favourite skincare rituals. I'm not a daily masker—Wednesday and Sunday are my dedicated face mask nights, FYI—but I do have various formulas on hand so I can tackle whatever skin issues I'm having at a moment's notice. Whether it's dehydration and sensitivity or dullness and breakouts, there are a handful of masks that I know I can rely on and I always come back to.

In fact, during a particularly troublesome skin week recently, I realised that I've been repurchasing one such mask for the best part of six years—that's how much I swear by it. And, since it's just £8 a pot, I can slather it on totally guilt-free.

The mask in question is Lush's Mask of Magnaminty—a clay-based formula that I love for soothing skin during hormonal breakouts and for calming blemishes that have made an unexpected visit. And yes, if you didn't already know, Lush isn't just a place to shop for bath bombs—it actually has an incredible offering of skincare products too.

Made with skin-brightening peppermint oil, exfoliating aduki beans, antibacterial honey and detoxifying kaolin clay, Mask of Magnaminty manages to be both soothing, radiance-boosting and exfoliating all at once. The mix of natural ingredients means that it's gently yet effective—so there's no risk of irritation—and it also doubles up as a body treatment. Apart from the way that it leaves skin looking brighter and healthier after application, the thing that I love most about it is the fresh, minty scent, which is incredibly uplifting.

Although the Mask of Magnaminty is an absolute staple in my skincare routine, there have been plenty of other Lush face masks that have woven their way in and out of my stash over the years. Before I chat you through some of my favourites though, it's important to point out that, although the Mask of Magnaminty will last for up to three months once open, the majority of Lush face masks are freshly made and will only last for up to 28 days in the fridge due to all of the fresh, active ingredients.

Keep scrolling for the full lowdown on the best Lush masks—and to shop the ones that are right for your skin's needs.

My favourite Lush mask actually comes in two formulations—this self-preserving one and the original formula. The ingredients are pretty much the same, but this version doesn't contain any synthetic preservatives like fragrance to keep it fresh, so I've recently made the switch to this one.

It uses extra honey to preserve the formula resulting in slightly thicker, more luxurious texture but all the same skin-soothing benefits. I use this twice a week during my period when hormonal breakouts are at their worst, and about once a fortnight for the rest of the month to keep my skin calm and happy.

If you have pretty good skin but are looking for a non-irritating mask that you can use regularly to keep your complexion looking bright, this will be right up your street. I've used this during times when my skin has been at its best and I just want a weekly treatment that will keep things ticking over.

No surprises for guessing that oats are the star ingredient of this mask—they're useful for their naturally exfoliating properties. Combined with restoring illipe butter and nourishing banana, your skin will be left incredibly soft and smooth after 15 minutes with this on. 

Be warned—one of the key ingredients in this fresh face mask is garlic, and the first whiff can be pretty pungent. But if you can get past the scent, this antibacterial mask is a real saviour for spot-prone skin. In fact, there have been times when I've kept a pot in the fridge to use as an on-the-spot treatment.

As well as garlic, it contains purifying kaolin and antiseptic tea tree to fight bacteria and calm blemishes. In fact, one reviewer raved that they "have been suffering from cystic acne, and in one use this mask dried out some of my most painful bumps."

Think of this face mask as a double espresso for your skin—it has pretty much the same invigorating benefits for your face as your morning coffee has for your energy. An infusion of coffee, cocoa and vanilla means this mask smells good enough to eat—but don't.

Instead, slather it onto your skin for 15 minutes and let the caffeine get your blood pumping. Once you wash it off your skin will look radiant, fresh and ready to face the day.

This is a real cult favourite in Lush stores with one reviewer claiming "this face mask is honestly the best one I have ever used."P raise indeed. It combines skin-strengthening seaweed with soothing aloe vera and calm rose petal to make this mask a great option for sensitive skin types.

Apply it a couple of times a week for best results as the millet flakes will gently exfoliate skin to restore brightness and kaolin will act like a deep cleanser to slough away any dirt trapped in your pores.

I'll be totally honest—these jelly face masks from Lush aren't my favourite to use, purely because I find the texture quite fiddly to apply. You need to pinch off a piece of mask, massage it between your hands and then smooth it onto your skin.

Once that's done, however, this mask really does work. It uses the fruit enzymes found naturally in papaya juice to nibble away dead skin cells and brighten your complexion and powdered charcoal to deeply cleanse and restore glow.

Be prepared to clean your sink after you've used this face mask—it's packed with charcoal and completely black so can cause a bit of a mess. However, this for me is the perfect pre–special occasion mask. If I have a wedding or a day when I'm going to want my makeup to stay put for hours then this is a great prep step.

It uses Fullers Earth—a type of clay—and charcoal to soak up excess oil and mattify your skin. Plus, it contains sea salt to exfoliate away dry patches so your makeup will glide on more smoothly. 

This is one of the first face masks that I ever remember buying from Lush—and I'd have to still give it points for being the best smelling. In fact, at first glance, it looks a bit like raw brownie batter.

The key ingredients here are rich cocoa butter to soften and moisturise, a linseed infusion to nourish skin and rhassoul mud to draw out any dirt and impurities that are lurking beneath the surface. Your skin will be left soft and hydrated after just 10 minutes. 

Whether you have naturally sensitive skin or you've overdone it with acids and exfoliators and need to bring your skin back into balance, this soothing mask will sort you out. 

It uses gentle calamine and balancing rose oil to calm and soothe irritated complexions. It takes 10 minutes to work, but by keeping it in the fridge you'll enjoy the cooling benefits from first application. Once you wipe it away, your skin should look more even in tone and redness will have diminished. 

This face mask delivers a dose of protective antioxidants and minerals straight to your skin—ideal if you live in the city and are looking to reduce the effects of pollution on your complexion.

Blueberries are the star ingredient thanks to being naturally rich in vitamins A, C and E—all essential to protect skin from the damage caused by environmental aggressors. Alongside soothing chamomile and calamine, your skin will be left soft and soothed with a rosy glow.