Today, we’re going to make a fun and practical (because who doesn’t need some hydrating, soothing, de-puffing action from time to time) do-it-yourself skincare product: eye masks.
If you’ve followed Live Simply for a while, you probably know that in the beginning days of the blog I shared a lot of homemade skincare recipes.
When we began our real food journey, which naturally brought about changes to our body and home products, there weren’t many companies making clean skincare products.
By “clean,” I’m referring to products made with non-toxic or natural ingredients, which are made by companies that are transparent about these ingredients. Because of this, I had to learn how to make my own products. I wasn’t going to let a lack of choices in the store stand in my way of making changes.
It’s encouraging to see the shift in the products available today. With the expansion of the internet and online bloggers and shops, it’s easier than ever to find clean skincare products. Now you can find makeup, nail polish, skincare products, and even cleaning products made with full transparency and safer ingredients.
Today, we have the choice between making a product or purchasing a product. That’s amazing! I welcome this choice.
Because of this, I’ve shifted my focus here on Live Simply from 100% homemade products (when it comes to skincare, body care, and cleaning) to also talking about store-bought options.
Today, most of the products I personally use come from companies, like True Botanicals, OSEA, and Marie Veronique. I recently shared my personal skincare routine here on the blog.
That said, there are some things that I still love to make: bath salts (for my weekly mama time ritual) and clay masks. And, recently, I’ve added eye masks to this list.
What Are Eye Masks?
Eye masks are exactly what they sound like: a mask that’s applied to the eye. Actually, under the eyes, not the actual eyes. The masks are applied under the eyes to help relieve puffy eyes, which is usually done with a cooling and hydrating mixture of ingredients. Some eye masks also include a caffeine boost.
There are a ton of store-bought options out there, and a few that use more natural or non-toxic ingredients. My favorites include: 100% Pure and Acure. Store-bought masks can be pricey, particularly if you enjoy them on a regular basis like I do. That’s where homemade eye masks come into play.
Homemade eye masks only cost a couple of dollars to make, and that’s for over 12+ eye masks. The average store-bought mask set costs between $4-7, for a one-time use, so that price difference can’t be ignored. And that’s why I’m sharing today’s recipe with you. Plus, it’s super cool to think that you can make your own eye masks, right?!
How to Make Homemade Eye Masks
The recipe I’m sharing with you today is made with just two ingredients: a fresh cucumber and a liquid of choice. For the liquid, there are a few options: rose hydrosol (rose water–anti-inflammatory for irritated skin), aloe (very hydrating), or plain ol’ water.
You’ll also need cotton facial pads. You know, the cotton pads used to remove makeup or apply a facial toner.
To start, use a food processor or blender to blend the cucumber and liquid down to a mushy liquid substance. Since the mixture is super thick, the pulp needs to be strained into a sieve, leaving behind a cucumber juice.
Once you have the cucumber juice, cut the facial pads in half and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Dip a facial pad in the cucumber liquid, one at a time, and transfer to the parchment paper. I usually get around 15-20 mask sets from this liquid. That’s a lot of future masks for only a couple of dollars.
Place the sheet pan in the freezer and freeze the eye mass for about 30 minutes, or until firm. Transfer the masks to a freezer-friendly container or bag and store in the freezer for future puffy eye relief.
How to Use Homemade Eye Masks
Once your eye masks are stashed away in the freezer, they’re ready to use. Anytime you need some extra help in the eye area–something cool for de-puffing or extra hydration–just pull a set of eye masks from the freezer and apply under your eyes.
Now, here’s the thing. The eye masks are coming directly from the freezer, which is FREEZING cold. This means the masks are going to be FREEZING cold. Plus, they won’t be very pliable.
If you prefer, set the eye masks on the counter for a few minutes, until they lose that extra chilly factor and are easier to work with. I personally don’t mind the initial cold experience.
Also, at first the eye masks may not stick well to your skin. Just keep adjusting as needed until they stick well enough to not need any assistance. This may take some fussing at first, but I promise they will stick so you don’t have to hold them against your skin for 15 minutes. Nobody has time for that.
The goal is apply the masks when they’re cold and leave them on the skin as long as desired. I find the masks to be so soothing, once they stick, that I don’t want to remove them.
I find the masks to be very soothing and an instant wake-me-up in the morning, along with being super hydrating and incredible at de-puffing. There’s no limit to how often the eye masks may be used. I’ve used them as often as I feel the need for some pampering or de-puffing.
Homemade Eye Masks
- 1/2 cucumber no need to peel or remove seeds
- 2 TB liquid of choice such as: aloe vera gel or juice, rose water (or rose water), filtered water
- 6 mint leaves optional, or as many leaves as desired
- 8-10 round cotton facial pads I've purchased mine from Whole Foods. Most stores sell cotton facial pads.
- food processor or blender
- medium bowl
- sheet pan
- parchment paper
- Cut 8-10 cotton facial pads in half. And line a sheet pan with parchment paper (or wax paper--just something the frozen eye masks won't stick to). Set aside.
- Cut the cucumber into slices or chunks. The size doesn't matter, just make sure your blender or food processor can easily puree the cucumbers.
- Add the cucumber slices, liquid of choice (such as: rose water, filtered water, or aloe vera gel or juice), and (if using) the mint leaves to the food processor or blender. Keep in mind, my blender doesn't handle such a small amount of food well, so I go with a food processor. This will depend your blender.
- Blend the mixture until smooth (about 30-60 seconds).
- Place a sieve over a bowl. Pour the mixture through the sieve to separate the pulp from the juice. Discard the pulp. Alternatively, you could add a small amount of the pulp to honey or yogurt and make a facial mask. Just a thought for stretching this pulp even further.
- Place a halved cotton pad in the juice for just a couple of seconds. Remove the pad from the liquid and gently squeeze out any excess liquid. Then place the pad on the sheet pan. Repeat until you've used up all the liquid.
- Freeze the eye masks until solid, about 30 minutes. Then pull the frozen eye masks away from the sheet pan and place in a storage container or bag and freeze until needed.
- The eye masks will keep in the freezer for a few months (I'm guessing about 3 months, although I've used mine much faster).
- Remove 2 eye masks (a set) from the freezer. Apply to the skin, under the eyes.
- The eye masks are coming directly from the freezer, which is FREEZING cold. This means the masks are going to be FREEZING cold. Plus, they won't be very pliable. If you prefer, set the eye masks on the counter for a few minutes, until they lose that extra chill factor and are easier to work with. I personally don't mind the initial cold experience. Also, at first the eye masks may not stick well to your skin, just keep adjusting as needed until they stick. This may take some fussing at first, but I promise they will stick so you don't have to hold them against your skin. Nobody has time for that!
- I find the masks to be very soothing and an instant wake-me-up in the morning, along with being hydrating and incredible at de-puffing. There's no limit to how often the eye masks may be used. I've used them as often as I feel the need for some pampering or de-puffing.
Why you need water when cucumber is full of water?
Hey NA, If you find that your blender will blend the cucumber without additional liquid, then you don’t need to add it. I haven’t been able to blend a cucumber without the addition of a liquid.
Ok. I actually didn’t add anything. Only cucumber but I did freeze the way you suggested. Hope that will work too as I do not have mint.
Also can these cotton pads be kept on entire eye area inclid
Mint is just an extra, so I think they’ll work great. You can use them that way, as long as it’s comfortable.
Really trustworthy blog. Please keep updating with great posts like this one. I have booked marked your site and am about to email it to a few friends of mine that I know would enjoy reading.
Looks like a great recipe, can’t wait to try!! What could I use instead of mint leaves? Lemon balm leaves, basil or another herb? I don’t grow mint in my garden. thanks
Hey Deb, You could skip the herb all together. The mint is just very cooling.