Post updated 9/15/16. Still in love with Mr. Rx.
There is really no way to say this without sounding like a total weirdo, so I’m just going to be blunt with you guys:
I’m in love with a cartoon character.
Not just any cartoon character, but a cartoon character who’s not even my type. This cartoon guy is stocky and dorky and his T-shirts are always a little too tight.
But I love him.
His name is Mr. Rx. He represents COSRX, and lately, it seems like everything COSRX makes is gold for my skin. Their recently launched Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask and Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask are no exception. After extensive, enthusiatic testing, I’m happy to report that my first impressions of the masks were spot on. Both of the products have earned a regular spot in my skincare routine.
(In fact, nearly a year and at least one repurchase of each variety, I still reach for these sleeping packs regularly and despite many newer and more “exciting” options on hand.)
Review: COSRX Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask
I received my first jar of COSRX Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask as a press sample from Jolse and have purchased two or three more jars since then.
Purpose: COSRX Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask is a hydating and occlusive final step moisturizer.
Best suited for: Normal, oily, dehydrated/oily, and acne-prone skin.
Do not use if: You are sensitive to bee products, silicones, or anything else in the ingredients list.
When and how to use: Smooth a thin layer over face as the final step in your morning skincare routine or a thicker layer (or two thin layers, I dunno, you do you) as your final evening skincare step. Can also be used as a wash-off mask by applying a thick layer and wiping or rinsing off after 15 minutes.
COSRX Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask ingredients: Propolis extract (85%), butylene glycol, glycerin, betaine, 1,2-hexanediol, PEG-60 hydrogenated castor oil, arginine, cassia obtusifolia seed extract, dimethicone, ethylhexylglycerin, carbomer, sodium hyaluronate, beeswax, allantoin, panthenol, sodium polyacrylate, adenosine
Notable ingredients: As you can tell from the percentage listed in the ingredients list, the propolis extract is the star here. Honey doesn’t actually appear anywhere in the list, which is kind of weird, but what are you gonna do?
I love propolis for its antioxidant and antibiotic, antifungal, and antiviral potential, as well as for the immediate glow a good propolis product gives my skin. Like most other skincare ingredients, propolis hasn’t been studied nearly enough in a cosmetic context to be considered “proven,” but that may have less to do with propolis’s actual abilities and more to do with a lack of funding and academic interest in cosmetic skincare ingredients. As a folk remedy, propolis has a long history. In my opinion, that makes it worth a shot.
The Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask is a light and very easily spreadable golden gel with an almost undetectable hint of that sweet smell that I’ve come to associate with propolis extract, since my Tosowoong Propolis Sparkle Ampoule and Graymelin Propolis 80 Energy Ampoule smell like that, too.
The gel imparts a cooling, soothing sensation and dries down quickly to an almost weightless gossamer film. Without repeating my first impressions post about this product too much, I’ll say that the texture of the COSRX honey mask really saved me during last month’s hot and unusually humid nights. It’s tangibly there, as just about any occlusive product is going to be, but in thin layers, it isn’t sticky, and built up in multiple layers, it remains manageable. I like to smooth a couple of layers of this on immediately after my nighttime sheet mask(s). It’s dry by the time I go to bed, and I wake up with soft, supple, hydrated skin that never dips below the 53% water mark, even after a long night of mashing my face into my pillow under a ceiling fan turned up full blast.
COSRX markets this product primarily as a sleeping pack, but I’ve found it works just as nicely as a daytime moisturizer, thanks to its smooth and totally non-greasy finish. In fact, these days I reach for it more than I reach for any other day cream or lotion. Since it dries so quickly, it lets me get on with my sunscreen faster, and it plays well with all of the sunscreens in my collection. The calming properties of the propolis help keep any redness, blemishes, or irritation I have in check throughout the day. The honey mask also gives my skin a lasting dewy, juicy glow that works particularly well under more drying sunscreens. And I never complain about a little extra antioxidant protection.
I also tested this mask as a wash-off pack. This is the only area where I found the product fell a little bit short. It’s not that it didn’t give me some extra hydration–I just don’t see the point of washing it off in the first place. To me, a wash-off mask is a product that you have to wash off because it isn’t formulated for all-day wear. Think thick, gloppy scrubs full of exfoliating grains and emollient oils, or dense, sticky masks like I’m From Honey Mask. If I can use the product as a regular moisturizer, I don’t see why I shouldn’t. All-day use gives my skin more time to benefit from the star ingredient. Slopping on a thick layer just to wash it off in fifteen minutes, on the other hand, feels wasteful. It’s like making a whole pan of bacon and then just licking one slice and throwing the whole batch away. Why would you do that? Who does that? Why? It’s too good to waste like that! Don’t do that.
Updated rating: 4.5/5 (Original rating was 4/5, but the fact that I’ve repurchased this product so many times tells me it’s nearly holy grail for me.)
COSRX Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask is available from:
I’ve enjoyed using the Ultimate Moisturizing Honey Overnight Mask so much in the last few weeks that it’s been hard for me to make myself try any other final step moisturizer. It’s a good thing I’ve been able to make it work for me as a day cream, since that opened the evening slot up for COSRX’s other new offering, the (brace yourself) Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask!
Review: COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask
I received my first jar of COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask directly from COSRX and have since repurchased it twice.
Purpose: COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask is a moisturizing and brightening final step occlusive moisturizer.
Best suited for: Normal, dry, dehydrated/dry, and aging skin.
Do not use if: You are sensitive to niacinamide, silicones, olive oil derivatives or anything else in the ingredients list.
When and how to use: Smooth a thin layer over face as the final step in your morning skincare routine or a thicker layer as your final evening skincare step. Can also be used as a wash-off mask by applying a thick layer and wiping or rinsing off after 15 minutes, but again, why would you do that?
COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask ingredients: Oryza sativa (rice) extract (65%), butylene glycol, glycerin, helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, betaine, niacinamide, dimethicone, 1,2-hexanediol, cetearyl olivate, sorbitan olivate, elaeis guineensis (palm) oil, guineensis (palm) kernel oil, hydroxyethyl acrylate/sodium acryloyldimethyl taurate copolymer, cetearyl alcohol, ethylhexylglycerin, arginine, carbomer, allantoin, xanthan gum
Notable ingredients: Rice extract is another popular but unfortunately not extensively studied skincare ingredient. Moisturizing and full of skin-friendly components like flavonoid antioxidants, rice is traditionally used to soften and brighten skin (at least according to “stuff geishas like” brand Tatcha). I haven’t used any rice-based products extensively, but the ones I have tried–sheet masks and a Skinfood scrub–I’ve liked. (And a year later, my extremely positive experience with the rice-heavy Naruko Face Renewal Miracle Essence has me feeling very positive about rice in skincare.) Also of note in this ingredients list is niacinamide, which the honey mask lacks.
Let me get this out of the way right now: this mask was a huge surprise to me.
I didn’t expect to prefer this mask to the honey, not by a long shot. I already have a very established, long-standing love affair with all things bee, and although I have enjoyed the rice products I’ve tried, I’ve never liked one enough to really seek the ingredient out. Rice is rice. It’s there and it’s nice, but it isn’t very exciting, won’t make you look twice.
(9/15/16: Still sorry)
Well, you know what? Sometimes I’m wrong. At least this time, I was wrong in a way that turned out well, and not wrong in a way that ended in embarrassment and sadness.
COSRX’s Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask is a rich, smooth, slippy white cream with a faint starchy scent. Like the honey mask, it glides on easily and feels lovely on my skin. Unlike the honey mask, it gives me a very mild tingle when I first apply it. It’s not an irritation tingle, but rather a pleasant warmth that makes me feel like something in the product is getting right down into my skin and starting to work its magic. The product does take a few minutes longer than the honey mask to dry down, but as long as I apply it in thin layers, I don’t have any problems with excessive heaviness or stickiness, and it leaves no oily residue behind on my skin even when applied in large quantities.
And the results?
Here’s the thing. The first couple of mornings after I used this mask, I saw exactly the kind of results I expected. Which is to say, nothing super impressive. My skin felt nice and soft, but I wasn’t amazed. At first.
And then things just kept getting better and better. In the first place, this mask holds moisture in my skin like no other. I reached a personal skin hydration best of 63% when using this, and was still at 60% when I checked my skin again in the morning. On top of that, after a few days, I started to notice increased plumpness and firmness after my morning cleansing. It was especially notable on a morning after I’d used nothing but the rice mask and my PocketDerm (now Curology) prescription the night before.
The delightfully strange marketing for this product features an anthropomorphic Korean rice cake. The implication is that the Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask will deliver smooth, “chewy” and bouncily resilient skin. That didn’t happen for me overnight, but over time, it definitely has. I’ve become addicted to the effects, so much so that today I even began forsaking the honey mask for a thin layer of the rice as a daytime moisturizer instead. On days when my skin needs more moisture, it delivers just enough.
I get easily bored of most skincare products, and I hadn’t expected to feel any differently about the Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask, especially since it’s one of the blander products I’ve used recently. But this smooth, mild cream has become one of my absolute favorites. I’ve got a number of other creams in the testing queue, but I keep putting them off for “just one more night” with the rice mask. It’s treated me that well. Actually, it’s treated me so well that I’m totally comfortable giving it the title of New Holy Grail.
COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask is available from:
Now the only thing left to ask is, Is Mr. Rx single?