I have literally read thru all the reviews to see how others are using this Sleeping Mask because there seems to be some confusion to its actual properties. When used alone, this mask will not benefit your skin at all. It is designed to optimize what moisture your skin currently has the next morning. It is listed in the instructional pamphlet in the first paragraph as an "intensive moisturizing sleeping mask" and I think therein lies the confusion. If you stop reading there, you won't reap the benefits of the product.
The pamphlet discusses how "Skin loses a lot of moisture overnight if no skincare product is applied to it at night. The Sleeping Mask is a moisturizing sleeping mask that charges skin with the moisture needed overnight." What the pamphlet fails to continue to explain is that a lot of what we put on our faces at night is rubbed off on our pillowcases unless we sleep on our backs and don't move at all. (I don't know anyone that doesn't move in their sleep.) So no matter how much of the good stuff we put on, and yes, there is a theory that after the first 15-20 minutes the absorbtion rate is greatly reduced and your skin doesn't respond to anymore of the product anyway, much of the product goes onto our lovely satin pillowcases.
This product holds our normal serum/essence/refiner/emulsion/etc. in so they don't rub off. It acts like a seal on top of the other normal products that you would be putting on in the evening. For that, and that alone, I give it a 5-Star rating. I have never had a product that worked like that to keep a product on my face and off my pillows.
As to the additional claims that are from the enclosed Laniege pamphlet:
1. "The Sleeping Mask is a moisturizing sleeping mask that charges skin with the moisture needed overnight." The pamphlet tells me to apply the mask after skin refiner and emulsion are applied. Usually emulsion is towards the end of the routine so I already have a number of moisturizing products on my skin. Adding this sleeping mask for additional moisture seems redundant but perhaps something is lost in the translation, I'm not sure. If you have seriously dry skin, it works. If your skin is oily, I'd say cut back on some moisturizer, but not all of your products. Play around to see which work best, but always use your normal routine skincare as usual before this mask.
2. "The anti-oxidant function of apricot extract provides a brightening effect and makes skin look clear and bright by removing free radicals that give stress to skin." Haven't noticed any brightening effect that my Vitamin C doesn't take care of better.
3. "The various effective sleeping care ingredients absorbed into skin overnight help skin absorb makeup the following morning." That's a huge claim that I really won't comment about. I don't use a lot of make-up anyway and I wouldn't want my skin to absorb makeup because I'm using such a heavy load. I get what they're saying but I prefer a natural look with a lighter hand to show fresher skin. Isn't that the point of skin care products?
4. "Helps skin have a good rest, provides moisturizing feel without leaving any sticky residue." It isn't sticky, I'll agree with that. My skin looks decent in the morning, I'm happy with the results, I always get compliments on my skin, so whatever I'm doing (a crazy mix of products and techniques) seems to work. Once it dries, and it does dry quickly, I don't even know it's on my face. Big plus there. No gooey stuff, no greasy mess.
The smell is almost non-existent to me. I keep my jar in the fridge and always use a scoop to get the product out. The huge jar is lasting me a half a year so far and it's half-empty at this point so it's a good deal. As a stand-alone moisturizer it fails because that's not what it is. As a mask on top of other products, it works. As a protectant to keep my pillowcase clean and keep my other skincare products on my face, it excels. For that reason, I would re-purchase. I'd advise getting a sample or purchasing a trial-size first and using it the proper way to see if it works for you. Laneige suggests once or twice a week, but I've used it more often than that. They also suggest not using eye care products with this but I feel eye care is essential, just my humble opinion.