Steam Eye Mask
Category : Beauty
This fascinating product is made by Kao in Japan, and is described as ‘an innovative self-warming steam mask’ which heats up gradually to 40 degrees C and produces steam which ‘relieves and relaxes your hard working eyes’. A hard sachet inside each half of the mask sits over your eyes, and these hold iron powder which starts to oxidise when it comes into contact with the air. The chemical reaction produces heat and so the mask begins to warm up as soon as you remove it from the foil pouch, and this also triggers the release of the aromatherapy scent. There are several varieties including rose and lavender, but I chose the chamomile and ginger aroma for calm, and relief of stress.
The mask itself is made of a soft, stretchy material more like fabric than paper, with a slit to accommodate your nose and loops to slip over your ears to hold it in place. I was afraid that 40 degrees C would be a little too hot for me, but in fact there was no problem and I found the chamomile and ginger scent to be very pleasant and not at all overpowering. I used this mask in the morning whilst still in bed, and it could easily have sent me back to sleep again. I kept it on for about 20 minutes but it stayed warm for at least an hour. The steam isn’t visible but my eyes did become moist, so I am not sure I would like to try this in an office lunch break as suggested, for fear of my mascara running down my face. It might be very nice on an overnight flight, though. At S$6.50 for a box of 5 masks, this is really good value.