Since we began doing the Controversial Cult Fave column, there have been a few repeat requests for products we should review. One of the most frequently mentioned ones is the famous GlamGlow Youthmud Tinglexfoliate Treatment, a mud mask that has been touted as one of the best ones on the market today–that happens to cost almost $70. But it has amazing reviews and appears frequently on shopping guides, so it seemed like the perfect option for this week!
What It Claims
On the GlamGlow site, its history is explained:
GLAMGLOW® was founded in 2010 by Glenn & Shannon Dellimore exclusively for behind-the-scenes in the Hollywood Entertainment, Music, Fashion & Award industries. Recently made available in 2011 for retail, GLAMGLOW® has taken the World by storm.
GlamGlow is often recommended as an industry secret that will provide a quick fix to your skin issues–Youthmud, in particular, is intended for brightening up your complexion, making it an ideal option for folks who may feel self-conscious about their overworked summer skin or dry, dull complexion due to stress.
Here’s how GlamGlow describes it:
Designed as a 10-minute professional ‘facial in a jar’ for behind-the-scenes use in Hollywood’s Entertainment, Music, Fashion & Award industries, YOUTHMUD™ provides immediate camera-ready glowing skin. NEW Patented TEAOXI® technology with real Green Tea Leaf is the ‘magic’ behind our powerful anti-aging and anti-wrinkle results, delivering fresh antioxidants directly into the mud to hydrate, balance oil production and fight free radical damage. French Sea Clay works to detoxify & awaken the skin by drawing out impurities, while Ivy helps tone, tighten and lift the skin. Revitalize dull, dry skin with Volcanic Rock multi-level surface exfoliation & experience smoother, brighter, softer skin. Get your Youthful Sexy Glow back in just 10 minutes.
Sounds ambitious. And here are Sephora‘s stats on its effectiveness:
- 97% agreed it left their skin smoother, brighter, and softer after 1 day of use.
- 91% agreed it brightened their dull skin after 1 day of use.
- 100% agreed it brightened their dull skin after using it 3 times during a 7 day period.
- 94% agreed it provided gentle surface exfoliation after 1 day of use.
- 97% agreed it provided gentle surface exfoliation after using it 3 times during a 7 day period.
I like numbers! Numbers make me less skeptical! (Okay fine, they actually make me more skeptical, but it’s good to know what they’re gauging success by.) It also has hundreds of glowing reviews on Sephora, with purchasers saying it left their skin “soft and healthy-looking,” calling it their “favorite,” and even “worth the money.” Speaking of money, though, it costs $19 for 0.5 oz. and $69 for the full 1.7 oz. size, making it a little daunting for many potential consumers.
What It Looks Like
I have to admit–I am a total sucker for good packaging, and GlamGlow has got flashy, fancy packaging down pat.
Here’s the mask in the jar:
I used the mask for two weeks two-three times per week. Here’s my skin before:
When I started this and took these photos, I was in the process of moving, so my skin was worse than usual and I wasn’t feeling so great about it, so I figured I would give myself a day to just relax and do a face mask (while drinking a fancy bodega beer, duh). Here are another of my skin prior to applying the mask for the first time:
I applied the mask in circular motions with my fingertips.
It felt cool in a calming sort of way, though it also does feel like it’s tingling a bit. (I have a high wherewithal for beauty-related sensations, though, since I do so many of them, so it may feel more natural to me than other people.) It’s chunky, not smooth the way some masks are; I personally enjoy this, but I read at least one comment on Sephora from somebody who found this unappealing.
I let it dry for 10ish minutes…and took selfies while doing so, instead of all that productive stuff I should probably have done. Whatever! This is my job, right? Anyway, this is what GlamGlow looks like when I am Snapchatting people. I’m just asserting my natural appeal, or something:
It gets very tight when it dries, so you won’t really even need a timer to determine when it’s done. It’s borderline uncomfortable, TBH, but so are most masks that harden when they dry. I washed it off with cool water.
This is what it looked like after!
And a few more “afters”:
And a closeup:
My skin did look noticeably brighter, so that was nice, but the main thing I liked was that it felt amazing. The texture of my skin can be a little bumpy right underneath my eyes, along my cheeks, and on my chin. It’s not necessarily pimply, it’s just a sort of mild roughness that makes makeup bunch up along those spots. After the GlamGlow mask, my skin felt much smoother and ready to have makeup applied to it.
Two weeks down the road and a few masks later, I’ve been getting rather fond of GlamGlow as an every-few-days habit. This is what I would look like with a mud beard:
And here’s the final “after”:
If you tend to wear moderate to heavy makeup on a regular basis, this is a good way to keep your skin smooth and ready for cosmetics to be applied. After I used it, I totally understood why it had a reputation in the entertainment industry; it is great for actors who deal with long flights, a lack of sleep, lots of bright lights, and tons of makeup applications.
Would I recommend it to a friend? Yes, provided that my friend wasn’t looking for any miracles. This does what it promises to do: it makes skin “smoother, brighter, and softer,” which is great for an instant gratification feeling. It did not make me break out or turn red for three hours, which a lot of exfoliating masks tend to do, often because there are rough beads that don’t exfoliate so much as scratch. In fact, my cheek blemishes that have been troubling me for a few months now appear to be almost gone, which is an effect I did not expect!
Of course, it did not make my skin look airbrushed or flawless because realistically, no mask can. GlamGlow is a great mask, but just like all products, it isn’t a miracle in a jar. However, it works better than many of the masks I’ve tried (which is a lot, because I’m a compulsive beauty junkie), so I would definitely pass it on to a friend who is looking for a high-quality product that offers results. Plus, you don’t need to use a ton of the mask each time, so I still have a lot left after five uses–something that definitely factors into my decisions when it comes to spending a lot on one product. Start with the 0.5 oz. jar for $19 and if you’re really into it, get more!
Convinced? You can buy GlamGlow right here.
What else should we review? Tell us in the comments! And if you have any experiences of your own with GlamGlow, we’d love to hear about ‘em.