[23.5N] – Oriental Tea Balancing and Rice Soothing Gel Mask

23.5N is a brand which I discovered through instagram, it suddenly appeared everywhere! Except of course in Europe, because it takes a while for things to trickle down to us. Luckily for me, my friends at Mooni Mask had started to trial them before putting them in store. And they offered to send me a couple of the gel masks to try out and offer my honest opinion on! For the last few months these masks have been stored in my fridge, and tested in different scenarios. Now that they’re available on Mooni Mask to purchase I’m here to share my opinion with you.

23.5N Oriental Tea Balancing and Rice Soothing Gel Mask Review

Brand Statement

23.5N is a Taiwanese brand which is paraben, artificial colouring and fragrance free. Which is great for those with sensitive skin. The brand tries to utilitse the “crops” from Taiwan in it’s products, and has a natural philosophy. It’s brand name comes from the Tropic of Cancer which cuts through Taiwan, 23.5 degrees.

Ingredients

Oriental Tea Balancing: Aqua, Tea Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Carbomer, Tremella Fuciformis Extract, Niacinamide, Benzyl Alcohol, Mantha Piperita (Peppermint) Extract, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone

Niacinamide is good for brightening so it’s nice to see it in the ingredient list. I’m slightly confused as to the peppermint’s inclusion. Usually this means the product will tingle on the skin, but I’ve yet to experience that. It can be an irritant though, so be careful of that.
The Tremella Fuciformis, is better known as snow fungus. I don’t think I have other products with this in, that I know of, but it’s a hydrating/soothing ingredient.

Rice Soothing: Aqua, Rice Extract, Aloe Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Adlay Extract, Oat Kernal Extract, Carboner Ceramides, Benzyl Alcohol, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone

Rice is known for helping to brighten skin tone, and aloe is great for soothing.
Between the two ingredient lists you can see they’re pretty short, which is nice to see as I’m not a fan of overly complicated lists. 
Both do contain Benzyl Alcohol, which not everyone will be pleased with. It’s a preservative which does help the mask last longer though, and I’d much rather my products were preserved than start going mouldy.

Packaging

These are packaged in dinky little screw top jars. The top of which either has a tea leaf, or the rice bran, which helps to differentiate them when you’re in a rush and they’re in a bag. These are pretty sturdy, I did the drop test (by accident) and fortunately nothing broke. They are screw top and did not come with a spatula. It’s a nice simple design which would fit into most people’s bathrooms.

Product and Scent

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the name of the product, these both have a gel like texture. I find it’s pretty easy to scoop the required amount from the jar and apply to my face. They spread very easily and leave a light layer on my skin. The Oriental Tea Gel Mask did smell of brewed tea to me when I got close to it, though this didn’t last on my face. I was not able to get a scent from the rice soothing mask.

Directions of Use

There’s two different ways to use this mask. And rather handily the instructions are on the jars themselves!

  • For an intensive treatment, apply a generous layer to cleansed face, leave it on for 20 minutes and rinse it off.
  • For basic care like a moisturizer, apply a pea-sized amount to your face daily after your toner, serum step daily without rinsing it off.

I personally preferred using it as a wash off mask, and I’ll get onto why in the review. 

Review

I’ve been storing these little treasurers in my fridge and have loved using them. I do however prefer to use them as a wash off mask, when my skin is feeling hot or particularly irritated. The reason for this is that I found when I did trial it as a sleeping pack, I could feel it on my skin. It dried a bit tightly, by which I mean when I smiled I could feel the mask tighten on my skin. Which I don’t particularly enjoy as a sensation at night.
However as a wash off mask they excelled! It’s been a particularly hot summer for us in London, and these have really helped keep my skin soothed and far less sticky. It’s a great sensation to put on these cold gels when you’re feeling sticky from the outside heat.
The Oriental Tea Balancing Mask actually did help my skin look less oily, which is a massive plus. My nose in particular was less of an oil slick the days after I used this mask. I did just test out the travel sized version though so can’t speak to if over a longer period of time this benefit lasts. The Rice one is actually the mask I prefer between the two though. I found it slightly more hydrating, more soothing to wear and I think it did help with brightening my skin. A must when I’ve got a busy week at work and am getting far less restful sleep than I would like.

All in all both are decent masks to add to my collection. I love the size of them, perfect to trial and keep on hand. I’ve had about 3 uses from each, and they’re about half full! I’m a bit stingy with my applications though, so I would say 5 uses is a reasonable expectation.

Where to Buy

Mooni Mask –  6 Euros 

Beaut East Sphere – £6.50

BeautiBi – $6

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