Botanics Shine Away Ionic Clay Mask

Up until last month, skincare for me has been a bit ‘meh’.  There have been a few products I’ve been interested in, but nothing to get hugely excited about.  However, in the past month there have been loads of new arrivals that have really got me buzzing and one of these ranges is the new Botanics line from Boots.

The Botanics range is a collaboration between Boots and The Royal Botanics Garden at Kew, and consequently Boots spent 3 years developing the formulations to create a strong and affordable line of skincare.  The range is not only well put together, but impressively full; the facial skincare alone has five different sub-categories to cover a wealth of skin complaints.  Obviously, my interest was piqued in the range aimed at my skin type, which is the Shine Away line.

If I had to be critical, I’d say that calling the range “Shine Away” is a bit limiting as it suggests that the only thing the products promote is removal of shine.  However, the four products in the range are all aimed at problem skin types and treating not only shine, but also blemishes too.  There’s no escaping the fact that I love a good mask treatment, so when I was offered the chance to try something from the range, I zoned straight in on the Ionic Clay Mask.

The Ionic Clay Mask is designed to “actively remove impurities and deeply cleanse” and contains clarifying Willowbark.  I’m not familiar enough with Willowbark to know if it’s a good quality ingredient or not, so I can’t really comment on its inclusion.  What I can say is that it is a natural source of one of my favourite spot-fighting ingredients, Salicylic Acid.

I was expecting this to be a run-of-the-mill type clay mask (it contains Oceanic Clay) that would feel heavy on the skin, dry and crack off.  Interestingly, this is actually a very smooth textured and runny mask that’s easy to work over the skin and sets to a very clean finish.  It’s something you can use very quickly if you’re in a hurry as you just need to wait until it’s dry which you can speed up with a hairdryer.  Once on, it’s starts drying very quickly and, when left to dry naturally, takes about ten minutes.

This is a good look for me…mask recently applied and just starting to dry. 

When dry, your skin underneath feels very taught and as if the mask is suctioning away at your skin; as odd as this may sound, I personally love that kind of feeling from a mask as I like to feel like a treatment that promises to draw out impurities actually feels like it’s drawing out something!

Washing off is much easier than it is with standard clay masks due to the smooth texture.  The only area it’s a bit tricky is over the eyebrows (in fairness, you’re not really supposed to put it on the eyebrows anyway but I sometimes get little spots there so I like to treat the skin there too) but even that isn’t too difficult with the aid of a facial sponge and some warm water.  The easy removal is a huge selling point for me as I’m not a fan of scrubbing away at difficult to remove clay masks and this is often a factor that puts me off using them.

Mask almost completely dry (other than the bit on the eyebrow).

After removal, skin is left looking very polished, clean feeling and tight.  Skin isn’t left overly dry, but if you’re prone to dryness or combination skin then a soothing toner (or a spray of mineral water – my personal choice for post-mask skin-quenching) will ease any tightness.

I have a lot of masks.  And I really mean A LOT.  So for me, the mark of a good mask if when I subconsciously keep going back to use it more which is something I’m definitely doing with this one as it’s quick, easy and effective.  Most importantly, skin looks much, much cleaner afterwards; any under-skin spots are brought forward to start their drying-out process and surface spots feel dryer immediately after use.  This is the perfect tonic for when my skin is showing signs of playing up.  I highly rate this mask if you’re spot-prone or suffer from shiny skin as this delivers great results for both skin complaints at the very affordable price point of £6.99 for 100ml; at a guess I’d say that’s enough for at least six treatments.

It’s currently on special at Boots with a third off at £4.66.

Disclosure: PR sample sent for the purpose of this review.  



  • Kat (
    August 7, 2012

    Added to my “to buy” list for the next time I’m in Boots 😀 Just out of curiosity have you tried Queen Helene’s Mint Julep Mask? If so how does the Botanics one compare?

    • BeautyGeekUK
      Kat (
      August 7, 2012

      I haven’t tried it, although I’ve heard it’s really good. I’d struggle to compare this to another mask as it’s so much smoother and thinner than typical clay masks…I’ll have a think! xx

  • Kerry (makeup junkie)
    August 10, 2012

    I may have to purchase this. Have you tried RENs gyclolactic radiance renewal mask?

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