The law of big numbers says that the more votes in a category, the more truth there is to the average, so I decided to try this aspirin mask thing. Executive summary: it's TRUE, it works, to near HG levels of effectiveness.
Me: problematic late-30s combination skin, tendency towards cysts, some shallow acne scars and rosacea. There's always some kind of trouble going on and right now is no exception.
Day 1: Tried to dissolve some tablets in a little warm water. Darn coating, but I can't find uncoated tablets to save my life. So I put some tablets in a freezer bag and hammered them with a rolling pin; tough little suckers, bag developed small holes. Someone on MU suggested a coffee grinder. Good idea. Anyway, I made a very chunky, grainy, watery paste, applied it for 15 minutes, and rinsed. After, I went over my face with some nice-smelling Vichy toner on a cotton ball. Result: Wow, smooth. The grainy paste really exfoliates, like a salt scrub. I was on my way to developing a bunch of tiny underskin bumps and it really seems like they went down the next morning. No real difference to keloids, scars, but one cyst seems to have been hastened along. There's a weird little red mark under one eye that I'm going to keep my eye on (not a zit, more like a spider vein or an enlarged vessel - been there for months).
Day 2: I did another one the next night, same consistency, same time. It does make me sneezy, so maybe I should think about using honey or aloe vera as a binder... but yes, I immediately notice a difference - bumps smaller, and that little red bump also seems smaller too... Still smooth.
Day 3: I wanted to try the honey option. Maybe we just have the runniest honey on hand, but I couldn't make a paste that wasn't sliding off my face in minutes. Back to the water & Aspirin method. I really can see a slight improvement in the texture and tone of my skin - I seemed to need less makeup in the morning, and those four or five pimples that were rearing up? They are already in disappear mode. That used to take weeks! Also: I found leaving the aspirin to dissolve overnight in the small dosage cup works well for a quick spot treatment in the morning.
Day 4: So let's see what it's like mixed with some inexpensive drugstore mask to reign in the dusty sneeziness. Better. I am quite certain that I am using less makeup. Things are just less red, less bumpy.
Days 5-8: Took a break, other than some spot treatments here & there. And that red thing under my eye *IS* going down. I don't need concealer on it anymore. Yay!
Days 9-14: My skin has improved noticeably. At this point - no zits, just clear skin, other than scarring which the aspirin mask can't really help with. But overall it's definitely smoother, less bumpy, and the tone seems evener, too. I could leave the house without foundation, if I wanted to: things are that much better.
End Result: It's a winner: cheap and effective. The only downside is that it's messy. After two weeks, my sink is covered in white powder blotches and looks like a drug lab. But more people see my face than my sink, so I'm thrilled! I'll keep using it.
Okay my review is not going to be a review but rather, I'd like to share some information with you ladies (or guys if you're reading this). We already know this stuff works from all these testimonial (I've tried it as well and it definately softened my skin), but is it safe?
Well, I did some reading on published medical journals. I had a lot of trouble understanding half of what I read but I managed to get some information out of them, and I'll write what I learned here.
--First of all, scientists think there's less risk of gastro-intestinal bleeding when aspirin is applied topically. (So for those of you worried about stomach ulcers, stop freaking out.)
--HOWEVER, aspirin does get absorbed through your skin and it does have effect on your blood clotting ability.
--Skin absorbs aspirin very quickly, but it remains in your skin and is released slowly into your system.
--Fatty acids help your skin to absorb aspirin quicker. *cough* olive oil, vaseline, etc*cough*
--Orally ingested aspirin takes 30-45 minute to reach peak level in your blood stream but topically applied aspirin takes up to 3 hours to reach peak level (this is due to the slow release by your skin).
--One study showed that 22% of aspirin put on the skin shows up in the body after 96 hours. (This does not mean the aspirin was left on for 96 hours...) Also, the study did not discriminate between aspirin or salyclic acid (which has no effect on platelet aggregation). Therefore, the actual aspirin absorption could've been less than 22%.
--In another study, subjects were applied 350mg of aspirin (1 tablet) everyday and were told to leave it on for at least 12 hours. The subjects' blood clotting ability was significantly inhibited after 10 days.
I found most of this information in this journal article published by the American Heart Association which can be found here:
You can also so some of your own research. I suggest reading medical journals since they are more up-to-date and more credible, compared to Bob's answer on Ask Yahoo, or some shady post on a skin-care forum. You won't find any research specifically for "aspirin mask", but you can find information on the "transdermal administration of aspirin" and "chronic low-dose administration of aspirin".
So what is my view on all of this? So far from all the studies that I've read about in the journals, the subjecs (whether it be rats or humans) had the aspirin on for about 12 to 24 hours. That's a lot longer compared to 15 minutes for the mask, but the studies used a max of 720 mg of aspirin (max of 2 tablets). What I've read here on MUA is that some of you use 3+ tablets everyday. I DO NOT RECOMMEND USING THAT MANY TABLETS, even if you only leave it on for 15 minutes. Who knows how much yoru skin can absorb and later release into your body?
So to be safe, use this treatment once every other day or every 2 days with a max of 3 tablets each time. (For those of you using 5 or more, do you want to die?) Also, DO NOT leave it on for more than 20 minutes. (Again, do you want to die or, to say the least, get a noticible layer of skin peeled off your face?) Make sure you cut it with honey or aloe vera..anything non-oil based.
3 Lippies for possible health risks.
Hope this helped somewhat. FYI, I'm not a medical doctor. I'm simply a college student with some good researching skills, so don't take my word for it. =)
I have had acne since I've been in middle school and have only found certain products and routines that only minimize the amount, but not gotten rid of it. I mainly used Cetaphil products (Cetaphil gentle skin cleanser and moisturizing lotion).
I found out about the aspirin mask from RiceBunny's website (www.xanga.com/RiceBunny) where she used it with honey and exfoliated the face using an electric toothbrush. She recommended the mask for several treatments: lightening your skin, fading acne scars, getting rid of acne, and several other uses.
About two weeks ago I bought a bottle of MAC Select Tint SPF 15 and a tube of MAC Select Moisturecover, and my skin started to break out terribly. I have NEVER had good luck with MAC face products, ever (read my other reviews of those products too), and I don't even have good skin as it is. So I had to go in major overdrive and get rid of the cystic acne, redness and blemishes. I had been using the aspirin mask before, only once every other day previously (was afraid it would be too harsh for my skin), and it was working slowly but steadily. I decided to try and do the aspirin mask every night and see how my skin would react to it.
WONDERFUL news...and I'm just sorry I didn't take a before picture :) The first night I did the aspirin mask after my face started breaking out from the foundation, I could already see and feel a difference...everyone knows that :) But by using the mask every night after that, the pimples and blemishes and redness went away SO fast.
Here is the routine I have developed for the aspirin mask, as I don't have honey at home (and if I did I'd like to eat it instead :P), and it has gotten my face on the road to being clear and glowy, moreso than I have ever experienced before.
At night I wash with Purpose Gentle Skin Cleanser (I stopped using the Cetaphil because it just wasn't cutting it at getting all the junk off my face...BUT there is another WONDERFUL use for it...read on :D) in the shower. Then I get a little plate and drip about 4 or 5 drops of warm water on 1 tablet of 325mg Aspirin. I wait a few seconds and when it starts dissolving, I help it along by smooshing the pill with my fingers until it becomes a rough paste.
Then I take the Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser and squirt about a nickel-sized amount right into the aspirin and mix it with my fingers for a few seconds until the whole thing is mixed evenly. I take the mask with my fingers and gently apply it all over my face (careful to avoid eye and nostril areas) in light circular motions.
I wait 10 mins until the whole mask feels completely dry and all the medicine has absorbed into my skin (also a great reason to use Cetaphil instead of just water...it keeps your skin soft and does not dry it out). Then I use a Crest SpinBrush (about $6 at any Wal-Mart or Target), run it under warm water for a second, turn it on and go in large circular motions over my skin. DO NOT APPLY A LOT OF PRESSURE. ONLY A SMALL AMOUNT OF PRESSURE IS NEEDED! After every "spot" (i.e. cheeks, chin, temples, forehead, etc), I like to rinse off the brush with some more warm water and go onto the next.
I rinse off with tepid water and towel dry. Then I use Neutrogena Alcohol-Free Toner on a cotton square (I don't like using cotton balls as I find they release lint everywhere on my face, and I want to try and avoid touching my face as much as possible) and again, using circular motions, go over my face and neck.
This next part is only for my particular face type; I use a prescription topical treatment called Benzamycin (has a combination of Benzoyl Peroxide and Erythromycin, an antibiotic) all over my face for an extra punch of blemish/acne fighting ingredients. I let about 3/4 of the way dry and apply Cetaphil moisturizing lotion to my face by PATTING it on, NOT rubbing. This helps the lotion to absorb without interfering with the medicine.
In the morning I wash my face with Purpose gentle skin cleanser, tone with Neutrogena alcohol-free toner and apply Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture with SPF 15 on my face (although I might switch this moisturizer out because it makes my face quite shiny throughout the day).
So far this is the only thing that has ever made and KEPT my face clear. My period is coming up soon (sorry...too much information) and I will see how this regimen keeps up during the "battle" :)
I have been wanting to try this FOREVER! But, I never put it on my shopping list.. so I always forget to pick up a bottle. When I was at Dollar Tree the other day, I finally remembered to pick up a bottle. 175 tablets for only $1! Great buy! Let me start off with telling you my skin type. I have dry-normal skin. My skin is semi sensitive. If I put anything oily on my face, I will most likely break out. I get a pimple here and there.. nothing serious. But lately, I've been waking up to new pimples every day. I've got a few bumps on my forehead, some pimples on my lower cheeks and near the chin area. I used the Queen Helene Mint Julep Mask.. and It didn't really do the job. I love the Queen Helene Mask, but its not a quick fix. I took 3 asprin tablets with a few drops of water and let it dissolve, then I dabbed it all over my face.. mainly in the areas where I'm breaking out. I laid down for 10 mins and washed it all off. Then, I applied a little witch hazel on a cotton ball to my face and went to bed. I woke up with a clear face. No joke. 90% of my breakout was gone. OVERNIGHT! This stuff is my saving grace. If I see any signs of break outs, this will be my HG mask. I'm going to continue using this 1-2 times a week. Check out this link for my before and after pic! http://i28.tinypic.com/10yhqwo.gif
I really love what this mask has been doing for my skin! I have every problem known to skin, I swear. Very sensitive, acne, wrinkles, uneven texture... omgosh what a mess. Well I've been on a crusade to improve my skin and have been trying many things.. this mask is one of my favorites but I DO have a word of advice for those who are sensitive or just basicly too chicken to try it.
The first time i did the mask I broke out in one area of my face and I thought well I'll never do that again! But after I started thinking about that particular area on my face I remembered that was where I started to rub in circular motions when rinsing it off. And the skin in the other areas where I didn't rub looked
SO NICE! So the next time i used the BC powder with caffiene.. let it dry and just used the water power of the shower to remove the asprin. And it was beautiful! My skin looks like I had work done... well minor work (lol) but I feel like a million $ and thats what counts. So no scrubbing for tender ladies and get the powder packets because it's not quite so gritty.
Ladies (and Gents) this is THE HG of Aspirin Masks.
The HG of all Masks, period.
4 Uncoated Aspirin
A couple spritzes of water from a Mist Sprayer (You can get this at any drug or dollar store) to turn the aspirin into a powder
*A squirt of The Body Shop Hemp Hand Cream*
I initally tried the other recipes for this mask (Honey, Yogurt, Vit E, Aloe). I have been using this particular combination for a week now and my skin is _amazing_. I was on medication that gave me cystic acne and deep, pitted acne scars. I have dry, sensitive, acne prone skin. I have tried accutane, which made me turn a lovely peely shade of muave.... I used Paula's choice which helped SO MUCH but I was looking for more.... I have been using the aspirin mask as seen on ricebunny's xanga site for several weeks, then came the idea to use the hemp cream. You mix it together and it goes on with wonderful creamy consistency.... Does not flake... and your skin becomes SOFT. I thought it was soft using honey and yogurt.... But mixed with the hemp hand cream it is SUPER SOFT. I did not get any dryness whatsoever.
I never thought that a former pizza face could go out during *that time* of the month with just a touch of concealer and powder. No zits, faded scars all within a month. Try it. Love it. Spread the joy!
BTW: I use this in conjunction with 100% pure shea butter afterwards which has also done wonders. Great for dry, sensitive, acne prone skin.
UPDATE: I spoke to a Pharmacist about using the acne mask-for those of you who feel iffy about it. He said, "What a great idea..... I can't believe no one has thought about that before." I guess he had not been looking on MUA! There are no isses with blood thinning or long term use. It is just a great face mask!
I have one thing to add to the aspirin rave. The perfect way to prepare a mask and scrub in one is to use the DISSOLVABLE TABLETS (the ones you can put into water and drink), not simple aspirin pills. I buy the tablets made by Bayer, 10 in a package and contains extra ascorbic acid (vitamin C). This dissolves to a much more even and finer consistency than the regular pill and exfoliates much better. So here’s how I do it:
♥ Grind up one tablet in a small jar to a fully powdery consistency.
♥ Pour ONE OR TWO drops of water on it, by no means more!
♥ The tablet will start to sparkle and produce a foam. It is important not to put more water on it, because then it will become more liquidy and impossible to apply as a mask.
♥ Apply the foam to your face, and scrub as long as you can!
♥ Leave it on your face to dry for 15-20 mins. Re-wet it in the halftime and massage around a bit.
♥ Squirt water on your face and massage around once more, then wash the whole thing off.
♥ Apply some astringent to seal your pores, then moisturize.
This aspirin tablet is sort of like a small home microdermabrasion. The particles are very fine and small, so they cause less damage to the skin and exfoliate much better. Ideally, the day after I do the mask I can extract everything from my skin very easily. After that there won’t be any more blackheads or pimples for at least 5 days. This mask also reduces excess oil permanently and makes my pores smaller. There only very soft and very clear skin. And my undying love for aspirin.
So ladies, go buy the tablets instead of the pills! It makes a world of difference.
Tried it a few times previously, just plain aspirin with water. Itched like hell and flaked off causing me to sneeze. Did make skin smoother but way too dry (and I generally have oily skin). Recently a brainwave hit and I ground up the pills and mixed it with liquid glycerin instead, really helped with the dryness and also functions as a nice scrub. I use 4 aspirin tablets to a tablespoon of glycerin, absolutely love this combo! I also use it on my body after shaving to prevent those pesky ingrowns, but mix that with emulsifying ointment instead. That plus a lactic acid moisturiser has really helped in preventing eczema flare ups :)
I try to use an aspirin mask on my face at least once a month. Since I've started, my skin tone has become a lot more even and breakouts come much less often, usually only during stressful times like exams but I think that's more of a psychological thing than a skin thing. I think it makes my skin look a lot more healthy as well. I'm not sure I would use the word 'glow' to describe it, but my skin has been so clear and fresh (apart from the aforementioned). It's definitely a cheap and dependable alternative to more expensive masks. I'll never be buying another mask cream again because I know I can go down to the pharmacy and buy 60 aspirin tablets for $2!
I make the mask with two or three uncoated aspirin tablets, some drops of water and a glob of honey. I stir it all up, and massage it along my t-zone. I don't really time how long to leave it on, I just let it sit there until I'm sick of it being on my face. Then when I'm washing the mask off, I use the aspirin granules as a gentle scrub. This method has worked the best for me.
I usually have a light case of acne but due to some recent AP tests and the stress, I broke out pretty bad. Feeling pretty lowly, I decided to try the aspirin mask I read about a few moths ago. I mixed 4 tablets with water and spread that evenly on my forehead and nose area and left it for 20 minutes.
After I washed it off I immediately noticed a difference; the swelling had gone down considerably and the redness was less noticable. I was thrilled! 20 minutes later it was even better! About 5 hours after the initally try I did it again, focusing on the pimples rather then the general area. Once again, fantastic results.
As a finally note, there are some things to keep in mind;
-You WILL look like Frosty the Snowman thew up on your face
-As the aspirin dries, its starts to fall off your face, my laptop is covered in white powder :)
-It did get in my eyes and stung a tad but it wasnt anything terrible.
No acne cream/medication/antibiotic has ever worked so well for me. I STRONGLY advise everyone to try this out. Based on the other reviews, I can tell that most have experienced the same joy as I :)