French Face Masks

Updated: Jan 29

Historical French face masks that stand the test of time. Many of these date to the 1700's.


Health Witch did a little beauty archaeology.





The Anti-aging & Dark Spot Face Mask


This mask is to treat hyperpigmentation such as age shots and dark spots left behind from acne, and the sugar makes for a good facial exfoliator.


Ingredients: lemon juice, 1 teaspoon granulated sugar, ¼ sheet gold leaf


Take ½ lemon, make a hole and fill it with the sugar. Then cover that hole with the gold leaf and lightly roast that lemon in the oven. Remove the lemon (make sure it’s not too hot) and apply it to your face. Leave it on for up to an hour, then rinse well with cool water.


The Acne Face Mask


This historical mask was created to address acne and acne scars left behind. Passed down from generations to generations.


Ingredients: 1 house floret, witch hazel, strainer or cheesecloth and mortar and pestle.


In the pestle and mortar pound the houseleek and squeeze out any juice. Pour some drops of witch hazel on the houseleek juice until it turns milky. Apply the liquid to acne and acne scares, then leave it on overnight.


The Overnight Protection Mask


This recipe dates back to the 1600’s, concocted by women to bring nutrients and protect the skin from inflammation.


Ingredients: 4 ounces jojoba oil (substitution for almond oil), 3 ounces pomegranate seed oil (substitution for olive oil), 1 ounce beeswax, 2 tablespoon of onion juice, 10 drops vanilla essential oil.


Add the oils and wax to a warm pan and melt it all together. Add the onion juice and vanilla oil. Stir till melded together (make sure it does not get too hot to separate). Let it cool and message into face, neck, hands and feet at bedtime. Leave it on overnight and wash off in the morning.


Marie Antoinette’s Mask


A mask to tighten pores and brighten the face.


Ingredients: 2 tablespoons cognac, ½ cup dry milk, 1 egg white and juice of one lemon.


Mix all ingredients in a blender till it becomes a smooth paste. Use ¼ of the mask to apply to face, and let it dry for at least 15 minutes. Use the rest of the paste to remove the mask, messaging with your fingers in circular motions. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.


The Eye Mask


An eye mask for dark circles.


Ingredients: 1 teaspoon chopped and processed basil and parsley, 1 lettuce leaf, 1 cabbage leaf, and 1/3 cup water.


Bring the water to boil, add all the ingredients, and simmer it for 20 minutes. Strain and add to a glass jar. Once very cool (let it cool in the fridge), dip a cotton round in the mixture and put it around the eyes. Leave it on for 10 minutes and rinse. Use and store the rest of the mixture in the fridge for 1-3 days.


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