Much unlike many a magazine editor who recommends you buy all sorts of crap that they most likely got for free, your Jezebel staff doesn't get jack shit (other than books, unsolicited). And that's how it should be. But on our own time, in our personal lives, we still buy stuff. So this is Worth It, our daily recommendation of random things that we've actually spent our own money on. These are the things we buy regularly or really like, things we'd actually tell our friends about. And now we're telling you.
I've never had a professional beauty treatment. But, thanks to my very real fear of spa-induced poverty and my desire to feel bootleg fancy every once in awhile, I have learned to explore the cheaper, DIY realm of beautification, usually located in the drugstore. And my favorite product for an evening of klassy drugstore indulgence is the original sea monster green Queen Helene Mint Julep Face Masque (clichéd cucumber slices on the eyes optional).
I was first introduced to the $5 product by a friend who brought it over because she thought it would be a good activity to do while we watched Sister Wives (a weekly tradition that has inspired many a low-budget project). And it was indeed a good activity, so much so that I ended up buying my own ("33% More!") tube the very next day. The Queen Helene masque (mask?) has a toothpaste-cum-clay consistency, isn't too messy to apply, and smells like — you guessed it— mint. It dries out zits, in my experience, and it exfoliates (er, I think it does...My face is smoother after using it, so yes, yes it exfoliates!).
As is usually the case with any face masque/mask, Queen Helene's concoction "draws out impurities" — but as it dries and gets all hard and crusty on my face, I can actually see said impurities. Not quite in the Biore Pore Strip way, but I can see where, exactly, the oil is puddling on my face because the mask dries darker in the spots where it's soaking up extra grease. For me at least, this helped get me familiar with the proverbial "problem spots" that I'd not yet managed to pinpoint. It's like the hand mirror of facial oil.
Once you've had The Queen on your face for 15 minutes, your skin will begin to have the mild claustrophobic freakout that indicates that it's time to rinse yourself off. Conveniently, Sister Wives has probably gone to a commercial break, which should allow you enough time to race the bathroom and gently massage away the green crust with a warm wash cloth. Once wiped clean, your face will be left feeling tingly, smelling minty, and looking smoother than before. Now you can conquer the world. As soon as you're done watching television.
Having said all this, I would not recommend Queen Helene to someone with dry skin, as the masque/mask is the opposite of moisturizing. This product is best for folks with normal to oily skin who also want to practice their impression of a drunk evil stepmom from the movies.
Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque, $4.79 at Drugstore.com.
Worth It only features things we paid for ourselves and actually like. Don't send us stuff.