In the insanely crowded and competitive Asian skincare industry, product repackaging and/or reformulation are common tactics for brands fighting the never-ending fight to retain customers’ interest in their products. Sometimes the product updates work, like when My Beauty Diary revamped their main sheet mask line last year. Other times, though, a product update feels like when wholesome former child stars grow up and decide to repackage themselves by taking off their clothes in public and discovering mind-altering substances (also in public): unnecessary and kind of upsetting.
Point is, an update to a perfectly good product is always a gamble. When the updated 2016 versions of My Beauty Diary’s core masks started showing up on Amazon, though, I wasn’t too nervous. It’s MBD! What could go wrong?
Affiliate links in this post are marked with an asterisk(*).
What’s new in the 2016 My Beauty Diary masks?
2015’s MBD update was a major one that replaced the comparatively thick pulp sheets used in the 2014-and-earlier masks for much thinner sheets made with silk fiber. 2015 to 2016, on the other hand, makes much more subtle adjustments.
First of all, the material. Is it different from 2015’s?
I’m not sure!
My first impression of the 2016 material is that while it’s the same basic fabric as 2015’s, it may be a tiny bit thicker and stiffer. Then I opened up one of my few remaining 2015 masks, placed them side by side, felt them up one after the other, and now I don’t know anymore. Lord Fiddy couldn’t tell, either. If the 2016 sheets are thicker, they’re only thicker by a few threads. Not enough to make or break the update either way. The material has the same slightly textured feel and holds just as much essence as the 2015 MBD masks, so if you liked those, you should be fine with the 2016s.
I do wish the material were a little thinner and clingier, as I find these bunch and shift on my face more than some other brands’ silk masks do, but my fit issues with these are minor compared to problems I’ve had with non-silk masks.
The difference in size and cut between the 2015 and 2016 versions is more noticeable. The 2015s were noticeably shorter and narrower than the older MBD masks. The 2016s go back to a longer and wider cut that’s closer to the 2014 size, which should make them a better fit for people who find the 2015 mask sheets too small. The 2016s have larger eye and mouth holes than the 2015s, too. Personally, I really liked how the 2015 masks covered my skin right up to my lashlines and the edges of my lips, because every bit of my face wants that MBD goodness, but the drips into eyes and mouth did get annoying. Sheet mask essence doesn’t taste good.
The masks still come with 23ml of essence, the same volume that they have since at least 2014, but they now come in (prettily updated) boxes of 8 rather than 10. That reduction is a little disappointing but not really surprising. Brands in pretty much every industry have been downsizing the amount of product we get for years and years now. It is something to be aware of if you’re being extra careful with the per-mask cost of your sheet mask hobby, though.
The 2016 packaging makes a big deal out of three moisturizing features used in these masks: Aquaroad, Tinysome, and Cosphingo. Aquaroad and Cosphingo aren’t new terms. Aquaroad refers (I think; my Chinese reading skills are pretty dreadful) to the MBD mask sheets’ ability to infuse hydration into skin (I guess by creating “roads” for the “aqua” to get in). Cosphingo is the moisturizing ingredient glycosphingolipids, which you’ll see in just about all of these masks. Tinysome is new as far as I can tell, though. Presumably, it means that MBD is making liberal use of liposome technology to enable their ingredients to absorb into skin more effectively. The Tinysomes (I picture microscopic mini-elves, brandishing sheet masks and dripping with hydration) sound promising.
As far as the actual mask formulations, I’ve spent some time comparing labels and ingredients side by side to confirm that the mask essences have really changed. The changes I found are very minor. For example, in the 2016 Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Mask, the first six ingredients in the list are exactly the same as in the 2015. Generally, the first few ingredients listed take up most of the volume of a skincare product, so I think it’s safe to assume that the essence is pretty much the same as it was. Down below, some of the other ingredients have been shuffled around. The only somewhat substantial-looking changes I found from the 2015 to the 2016 hyaluronic acid masks were:
- Lemon extract is much farther down the list than it was in 2015
- Tomato extract is higher
- MBD added hydroxyethyl urea (presumably used here as a humectant) and apple and nasturtium extracts to the 2016 essence
- Propylene glycol hyaluronate and mallow extract have been removed
Again, all of these changes are pretty far down in the ingredients list. To me, that suggests that they’re fairly negligible; I wouldn’t expect significantly different results from the 2016 as opposed to the 2015 variety. If I were in a cynical mood, I’d say it looks like these changes were made just so the brand can market the masks as reformulated.
Still, I always say that no one can reliably predict a product’s performance based on its ingredients list alone, so let’s take a look at how a few of the new 2016 My Beauty Diary masks perform!
Mini-Reviews: My Beauty Diary Updated 2016 Sheet Masks
For my first haul of 2016 MBDs, I grabbed three different flavors: the Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Masks because I love the 2015 Liposome Hyaluronic Acid flavor, the Alps Edelweiss Ultra Repairing Masks because I’m a sucker for extracts and they sound awesome, and the Red Vine Revitalizing Masks because they showed up as available for super fast Amazon Prime shipping.
My Beauty Diary 2016 Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Mask
Might as well start with the flavor that’s most familiar to me. In the last year, I’ve gone through at least two boxes of the 2015 Liposome Hyaluronic Acid masks. They were one of my staple sheet masks due to their incredible plumping and hydrating powers. The 2016s have a lot to live up to.
2016 My Beauty Diary Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Mask ingredients: Water, glycerin, butylene glycol, propylene glycol, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, ananas sativus (pineapple) fruit extract, ruscus aculeatus root extract, pyrus malus (apple) fruit extract, citrus grandis (grapefruit) fruit extract, fucus vesculosus extract, laminaria digitata extract, hydroxyethyl urea, panax ginseng root extract, phenoxyethanol, polyglutamic acid, chlorphenesin, sodium lactate, arnica montana flower extract, nasturtium officinale flower/leaf extract, polysorbate 20, triethanolamine, sodium hyaluronate, lecithin, citric acid, sodium PCA, codium tomentosum extract, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, saccharum officinarum (sugar cane) extract, acer saccharum (sugar maple) extract, citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) fruit extract, citrus medica limonum (lemon) fruit extract, soluble collagen, polysorbate 80, glyceryl glucoside, carbomer, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, xanthan gum, sodium hydroxide, glycosphingolipids, fragrances, tocopheryl acetate (CosDNA)
It’s a relief to see that the reformulated masks still boast a blend of seaweed, ginseng, hyaluronic acid, and hydrating, humectant plant extracts. The 2016 Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Masks also stayed moist on my face for over 45 minutes, just like the 2015s, and their results are almost the same. While the 2015 Liposome Hyaluronic Acid masks gave me a slightly stronger brightening effect, the 2016s plump and hydrate my skin just as well as their predecessors did. I’ll continue using this mask flavor as my staple simple hydrator.
4/5 | Amazon Prime*
My Beauty Diary 2016 Alps Edelweiss Ultra Repairing Mask
This is the flavor I was most excited to try, both because it’s new and because it sounds incredibly appealing. The ingredients are unusual for My Beauty Diary, with more oils and other fatty moisturizing elements than most of the brand’s other flavors. All the extra lipids make the essence in these masks milky rather than watery. I love milky, lotiony mask essences. Also and very very importantly, the packaging is SO PRETTY.
2016 My Beauty Diary Alps Edelweiss Ultra Repairing Mask ingredients: Water, caprylic/capric triglyceride, glycerin, butylene glycol, propylene glycol, isopropyl palmitate, sorbitol, ammonium acryloyldimethyltaurate/vp copolymer, lactobacillus/rice ferment, phenoxyethanol, persea gratissima (avocado) oil, hydroxyethyl acrylate/sodium acryloyldimethyl taurate copolymer, chlorphenesin, limnanthes alba (meadowfoam) seed oil, polyacrylate-13, polyisobutene, leontopodium alpinum extract, isohexadecane, lecithin, polysorbate 20, sodium hyaluronate, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, saccharide isomerate, glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice) root extract, triethanolamine, polysorbate 80, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, fragrance, dimethylsilanol hyaluronate, sodium PCA, codium tomentosum extract, sorbitan oleate, scutellaria alpina flower/leaf/stem extract, polyglutamic acid, glyceryl glucoside, centella asiatica extract, carbomer, sodium lactate, cetearyl glucoside, citric acid, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, glycosphingolipids, tocopheryl acetate (CosDNA)
Sadly, these masks were a disappointment for me. While they are decently moisturizing, the moisture is nothing to write home about, and I didn’t notice any brightening, calming, or redness-reducing effects at all. Those effects are pretty standard for My Beauty Diary masks, so I’m actually shocked that the Alps Edelweiss masks don’t deliver them. On top of those complaints, these masks were bone dry by the 45 minute mark, another letdown.
There are other lotion-type sheet masks out there that last longer, give better results, and use softer and more comfortable microfiber sheets than these–I’ll be sticking to my Bonvivant Illuminator* and The Face Shop Mascream* masks in future.
The Alps Edelweiss Ultra Repairing Masks do smell pretty, though, so I guess that’s one plus.
2/5 | Amazon Prime*
My Beauty Diary Red Vine Revitalizing Mask
The old Red Vine masks never did much for me, but I got these anyway, because I really wanted a third flavor to try out and I felt like giving the Red Vine another chance.
2016 My Beauty Diary Red Vine Revitalizing Mask ingredients: Water, glycerin, butylene glycol, propylene glycol, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, glycrrhiza glabra (licorice) root extract, camellia sinensis leaf extract, citrus grandis (grapefruit) fruit extract, phenoxyethanol, chlorphenesin, triethanolamine, polyglycerin-3, arnica montana flower extract, vitis vinifera (grape) fruit extract, polysorbate 20, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower extract, nasturtium officinale flower/leaf extract, lecithin, citric acid, sodium hyaluronate, codium tomentosum extract, acer saccharum (sugar maple) extract, citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) fruit extract, citrus medica limonum (lemon) fruit extract, saccharum officinarum (sugar cane) extract, cichorium intybus (chicory) root extract, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, polysorbate 80, hydrolyzed elastin, yeast extract, glyceryl glucoside, carbomer, soluble collagen, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, polyglutamic acid, xanthan gum, fragrance, sodium lactate, sodium hydroxide, glycosphingolipids, sodium PCA, tocopheryl acetate (CosDNA)
Since I wasn’t a big fan of the old Red Vine masks, I didn’t have many expectations of these. Somehow, though, they ended up being surprise winners! The 2016 Red Vine masks stay moist on my face for nearly an hour at a time and give excellent firming and hydrating results as well as noticeable redness reduction. Out of the three 2016 MBD flavors I’ve tried so far, these impressed me the most. Also, they smell like grape candy when first applied. I love grape candy!
4.3/5 | Amazon Prime*
So far, I wouldn’t call My Beauty Diary’s 2016 updates an upgrade, but I wouldn’t call them a downgrade, either (except in terms of quantity per box). The changes are more lateral. They’re different and may be slightly better for some people or slightly worse for others, but not enough so to make the reformulation a remarkable one. The adjustments MBD has made seem like business as usual, just a thing that has to be done so that they don’t lose market share to the constant stream of new products pushing into the market. I’ll use the 2016s happily, but not any more frequently than I did before.
(My Beauty Diary does need to work on their lotiony essences, though. The Alps Edelweiss isn’t quite there yet in my opinion.)
Are you going to try out the updated My Beauty Diary masks? Why or why not?