My experiences with DIY face masks have been, er, mixed, to say the least. Do you remember my experience with that lovely spicy cinnamon burn-the-mush-offa-yourself number, for example? Dis-as-ter.
That hasn't totally put me off trying homemade skincare remedies (although I do now steer clear of anything from the spice rack) and I've actually had great success with another of my cupboard concoctions. The aspirin face mask has a massive following around the beauty blogosphere and on MakeUpAlley, and I use it occasionally to help sort out Vesuvius-stylee breakouts on my chin. I can never just leave spots alone, which means that by the time the aspirin is pressed into action it has an angry, red, lumpy to contend with in addition to the original spot.
Anyway, I have yet to find another treatment that works as well to reduce the inflammation, causes the redness to recede, and noticeably shrink spots. Rather than plaster the mask all over my entire face, I just apply it directly on the eruption zone. Half a crushed uncoated aspirin tablet mixed with a really small amount of water and a drop of honey is therefore loads for my purposes; I crush the tablet in a spoon using the back of another spoon, and then add the water and honey before applying to the breakout for 10 minutes.
The anti-inflammatory properties of aspirin probably account for why it can reduce prodding-induced redness and swelling around spots, and its common chemical name of acetylsalicylic acid gives a clue as to why it can tackle spots themselves so effectively. It's chemically very similar to the salicylic acid that's so often found in skincare preparations for blemish prone skin and noted for its exfoliating abilities. Thumbs up!
I'm no healthcare professional, but this mask is likely to be unsuitable for anyone with allergies to aspirin. If in doubt, consult your doctor or pharmacist.