Pumpkin spice season may be giving way to winter, with holiday-inspired scents, like peppermint and gingerbread all but taking over, but you don’t have to say goodbye to your favorite fall fruit just yet. One pumpkin product that users relish in all year long for its ability to rejuvenate dry and tired skin is Peter Thomas Roth’s Pumpkin Enzyme Mask ($60, QVC). I tested this best-seller to see if its glowing five-star reviews held up.
This mask clams to offer up an exfoliating, peeling, and polishing three-for-one punch thanks to its pumpkin enzymes. As natural beauty expert Paige Padgett told Woman’s World in September, pumpkin is “packed with antioxidants that brighten skin, plus enzymes that rev collagen production to ward off fine lines.”
These enzymes are also an exfoliant, working to slough off dead skin cells and aid in the turnover of fresh, new skin cells — something that’s especially important as we get older. "Our skin cells naturally renew, but as we age, the rate at which this occurs declines, which can cause signs of aging, dehydration, dull tone, breakouts, or general skin imbalance,” Florida-based esthetician and InstaNatural brand director Heather Wilson, LE, told our sister site FIRST for Women.
This product is also packed with alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), which chemically dissolve and peel away any lingering cells. It then polishes the skin with the same type of micro-crystals that can be found in a microdermabrasion treatment.
When used for three to seven minutes, one to two times a week, this mask promised to "reveal smoother, younger-looking, radiant, and revitalized skin," according to the QVC website. But does it deliver?
First thing’s first: This stuff smells amazing. The second I opened the jar, I was hit with the sweetest pumpkin pie smell I’ve ever experienced. Honestly, my biggest challenge when using this mask was the restraint it took not to try a little taste (newsflash, kids: It's not edible).
From there, I proceeded to follow the instructions and spread a thin layer of the goop-like substance onto my clean, dry skin. While its orange hue made me look ever-so-slightly like an oompa loompa, it was far more attractive than, say, a charcoal mask, or an ill-fitting sheet mask, both of which have previously left me resembling a creature out of a horror film.
The mask should be left on for up to seven minutes, depending on your skin type, but by two to three minutes in, I started to feel a slight stinging, burning sensation. It didn’t hurt or bother my combination to dry skin so I kept it on for the full seven (I actually like for my product to give off a little sting, so I feel like it’s actually doing something), but it may be worthwhile for those with super sensitive skin to test and adjust their time as needed.
Once finished, I wet my hands and removed the product, using a massaging, circular motion. The first thing I noticed was that my skin felt incredibly clean — even fresher than after using my beloved daily M61 Power Cleanse wash (from $10, Bluemercury).
The second thing that struck me was that unlike a chemical peel you receive from a dermatologist, this mask left no trace of dry skin behind. Despite the tingle, not a single dry or rough patch was visible, and 24 hours later, I was still flake-free.
Having gone through the process just two times now, it's a bit too soon to tell if will ultimately reduce my fine lines, even out my skin's texture, or minimize the appearance of my pores, but customers who have used it longer swear that it works wonders for their dryness and dark spots.
“I am 60 years old, and for quite a few years now, have noticed increased dryness on my forehead,” one QVC buyer wrote. “I take good care of my skin, but could not find a product that reduced the dryness, until I found this product. It is gentle enough, and I use it every day. … The dryness has decreased by 90 percent.”
Wrote another buyer, “I can honestly say that this stuff is amazing. I have a lot of dark spots from acne scarring and I can say that this stuff has already helped tip lighten them after just three uses.”
Honestly, I would continue using it either way solely for the scent alone, but add in the fresh, flake-free exfoliation, and I'm officially sold. Long live pumpkin season!
Where to buy: $60, QVC
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