For the past couple of years, sheet masks have held court as one of the most popular methods for delivering skin care formulas — whether you're concerned about pores, dull skin, or your face is just giving away the hangover you're suffering through, it's pretty much a guarantee that there's a sheet mask for that. So it was only a matter of time before a bronzing version hit the market, and it's no wonder that the St. Tropez Tanning Sheet Mask is making it happen first.
St. Tropez has long been known for launching innovative tanning products that give off a flawless, sun-kissed glow without the sun damage, so getting in on the sheet mask trend with its Self Tan Express Bronzing Face Sheet Mask seemed like a natural next venture for the brand. But while I tend to love their products, I was on the fence, because I'll be honest: Sheet masks in general can sometimes stress me out a little bit.
I know, it's completely counterintuitive, but hear me out for a sec. While there are some amazing sheet masks I love and don't have these complaints about, there are some downsides to many of them. I don't like that certain sheet masks can rip easily when you're unwrapping them, they slip and slide off of your face when you're vertical and attempting to do something else, and I'm never sure if the product is entirely missing spots around my nose, eyes, and mouth. Basically, I often think they're more fussy than relaxing.
But since St. Tropez does tend to impress me, this skeptic was down to try their new tanning sheet mask with the promise of a golden summer-worthy glow, more hydrated skin, and hopefully, at least a few relaxing minutes.
Here's the deal with the St. Tropez Self Tan Express Bronzing Face Sheet Mask and a few things you should know about it before trying it yourself.
1. Applying The Sheet Mask Is Easier Than Expected
Before I even opened the mask, the first step was to apply a non-oil based moisturizer about a half inch away from my hairline to avoid getting the product in my strands, per the guidance of St. Tropez tanning expert Sophie Evans. Then, it was time to dive in.
I was pleasantly surprised to find a pretty sturdy film lining the back of the folded-up sheet mask, which made unwrapping it so much easier. It could still rip if you aren't careful, but on the whole, it was pretty user friendly. (However, this did make it look even more eerily similar to that scary Jason mask than your usual sheet mask already is.)
You peel off the film as you apply the actual mask part, and I admit, this was a little nerve-wracking. There's more at stake with placement when there's potential for awkward tan lines on your face, so this made me a little uneasy. But, I trusted the process, knowing that the brand probably hadn't released a product that would leave everyone who used it with a sheet mask-shaped tan. After it was in place, you've got to wash your hands in hot soapy water stat, lest you end up with Cheetos fingertips for a few days.
2. You Only Have To Leave The Mask On For 5-10 Minutes
While the mask was on, I was pleasantly surprised by how well it stayed in place — no slipping, no sliding, no dripping. I wasn't confined to involuntary Savasana, so I could watch Friends on Netflix in peace without the need to constantly adjust. I set my timer and relaxed.
How long you leave it on depends on how tan you're looking to get. Five minutes will give you a light bronzing, 10 minutes will give you a more noticeable color difference, and 15 minutes might require you to invest in all-new face makeup. (Not really, but it will get you the tannest — St. Tropez doesn't recommend leaving it on for longer.) I went with 10 minutes.
After you remove the mask, you gently massage the remaining serum into your skin, including toward your hairline and down your neck. Then you wash your hands and wait. There's no guide color so you can wear it under makeup during the day while the tan develops (it continues to deepen for about eight hours), but I opted to do it at night so I'd wake up to a tanner reflection.
3. The Mask Will Make You Look Like You've Just Returned From A Beach Vacation
Photos don't do quite do the results justice (also, apologies for the bedhead), but I swear I'm tanner here than I was the night before. And, miraculously, no streaks. The tan looks remarkably even, and it's not so dark that my face looks like it doesn't belong with my pale AF body. Although, next time I'll probably use some gradual tanning lotion at the same time to really channel those vacation vibes.
Another surprising result? My skin didn't feel dry at all — in fact, just the opposite. This was unexpected considering I hadn't used moisturizer on my face the night before, for fear of messing up the tan. Turns out, the mask also contains hyaluronic acid so it packs a punch of smooth, supple hydration in addition to the color.
The Final Verdict
Overall, I'd absolutely use the St. Tropez Self Tan Express Bronzing Face Sheet Mask again — self tanning can be a bit of a pain, so this was an easy, no-fuss way to get the glow with pretty much zero effort.