From puberty to my late 20s, I didn’t really know what to do with my skin. Long after most people exit their gawky stage, I found myself battling breakouts… and when I say “battling,” I mean “having breakouts but not really knowing why or what to do about them.” As I approached 30, the idea of struggling with acne when most other folks were starting to think about fine lines and wrinkles sounded nightmarish, and I finally decided to take a deep dive into all things dermatological. Before I knew it, I was fully immersed in the dewy cult of skincare where I happily live to this day. I love trying new products and over the years I’ve switched things up a lot, with one exception: Herbivore’s Blue Tansy Resurfacing Clarity Mask. This is my ride-or-die, and I do not foresee ever skipping it when performing my various ablutions.
- Price: $50 for a 2 oz. (60 mL) jar
- When to use: Every other day for the first five days and two to three times a week after that as part of your weekly skincare regimen.
- Who’s it for: Anyone with skin, but especially folks with oily, unevenly textured, blemish-prone, or dull skin, or folks who want to minimize the appearance of pores.
- How to use: Apply a thin layer on clean, dry skin and leave on for 5 to 20 minutes (more on that range in a bit). Rinse with a washcloth and warm water.
The ingredients & how it works
While this is not a comprehensive list of ingredients, these are some of the power players that make Blue Tansy so effective:
Blue tansy oil: This Moroccan plant is related to chamomile, and just as chamomile tea can soothe your body before bedtime, blue tansy can soothe your skin. That’s because it is a natural source of azulene oil, an anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial compound that soothes redness and irritation.
White willow bark extract: Willow bark is a natural source of salicylic acid, which is a beta-hydroxy acid or BHA — an acronym you may be passingly familiar with if you’ve spent any amount of time in Skincare World. Basically, a BHA is a chemical exfoliator that’s especially good for blemish-prone skin because it not only has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, but cuts through oil and dirt in your pores without irritating the skin.
You might feel a tingle when using this product; thank the white willow bark extract. A gentle tingle is normal (and nice!), but if it rises above a gentle tingle it’s time to rinse. This is also where “leave on for 5 to 20 minutes” comes in. I keep it on for 20 minutes but if the tingle turns to a burn, 5 to 10 minutes might be your sweet spot.
Fruit enzymes: Enzymes from papaya, pineapple, and eggplant serve to break down protein in the outer layer of skin that bonds dead skin cells together, evening skin texture and reducing the appearance of scars.
Aloe: Y’all know aloe, right? The stuff you put on your skin after you get a sunburn? Turns out it’s soothing even when you haven’t been baked by the sun!
The Herbivore Blue Tansy mask also includes various other plant extracts including turmeric, basil, radish, and jasmine. A full list of ingredients can be found on Herbivore’s website, which also notes that the formula is vegan and cruelty-free.
The color, smell, & consistency
Because Herbivore does not add artificial coloring to this product, the color can vary from a beautiful deep blue to a lovely mossy green. Herbivore describes the scent of its Blue Tansy mask as “deeply herbaceous and slightly medicinal” and… yes, that’s kind of the perfect description. Emphasis definitely on the “herbaceous,” though. I personally love this scent, but it is quite strong.
As for feel, this mask has a gel-like texture which is… fine. You probably wouldn’t want to wear something with this texture on your face all day, but it’s not annoyingly sticky.
Look, my skin was never terrible. Like, I don’t think anyone ever left a conversation with me and thought, “Thank God my skin doesn’t look like that.” But years of acne breakouts, especially around the mouth (and, yes, picking at those breakouts) had caused some scarring, uneven texture, and pigmentation. Even when I didn’t have a breakout, there were times when my acne scars made it look like I did. Today, my skin tone has evened out considerably and my breakouts are few and far between.
Granted, we’re talking about a years-long campaign to improve my skin, which has involved a variety of products, but Herbivore’s Blue Tansy mask has been the one consistent step in that time. On top of that, immediately after using this product, I can see an improvement in my skin. Like, I’ll come downstairs and even my 9-year-old will ask what’s different.
Pros & cons
- It really works on reducing the appearance of uneven
- It’s vegan and cruelty-free.
- You only use a little bit at a time so one jar will last you quite a while, even with twice-weekly use.
- It smells and looks beautiful (obviously this is subjective).
- The packaging is recyclable — for best results, specific instructions are available on the website — and Herbivore has a sustainability initiative to “100% eliminate all virgin plastic from our packaging by 2025.”
- At $50, it’s not cheap.
- Just because the products are plant-based doesn’t mean they’re wimpy, and this may be too strong for folks with more sensitive skin.
- The smell might be a lot for some people.
The final verdict
I have found the secret to healthy, happy, glowing skin is to not get too precious about your routine: try out new things and see what your skin needs in a particular moment or season. Unless, of course, you’re talking about Herbivore’s Blue Tansy Resurfacing Clarity Mask. I am absolutely precious about using it one to three times a week and do not foresee swapping it out for anything any time soon.
Soothing and fragrant, Herbivore’s Blue Tansy Resurfacing Clarity mask has been the go-to constant in my skincare routine for years. It has improved the appearance of scarring, uneven skin texture, and redness and helped prevent frequent breakouts. When used two to three times a week it keeps my skin looking bright and smooth.
Had To Share highlights the products and finds that Romper editors and contributors love so much, we just had to share in the group chat.