My most ambitious New Year’s resolution: Drink the recommended 2.5 liters of water every day. After all, it’s everyone’s answer to less bloating, more energy, a clear complexion and flake-free skin (I’ll believe it when I see it), which knocks out a whole slew of health-related resolutions in one swoop. While I was psyching myself up and stockpiling all the reusable water bottles, a shiny little package from Drunk Elephant crossed my desk. It was none other than the clean beauty brand’s first product drop of 2020: F-Balm Electrolyte Waterfacial. Perfect timing.
While a water-packed face mask isn’t a replacement for actually drinking H20, it validated my resolution for greater hydration. The cheeky name F-Balm (Get it? F bomb…) refers to the tiny little beads of encapsulated vitamin F that explode upon contact with the skin and deliver intense moisture overnight. (It sounds aggressive, but I can assure you there was no Pop Rocks–like feeling involved.) I was surprised to learn that vitamin F actually isn’t a vitamin at all—it refers to two essential fatty acids, linolenic acidand linoleic acid, which are keys to hydration that the body doesn’t create on its own. Regardless, I was more than ready to get a jump start on my resolution and try this waterfall of moisture immediately.
The first thing I noticed when I opened the box was that the packaging looked strikingly similar to my other favorite Drunk Elephant product, T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial (which tingles and resurfaces skin to glowy perfection, BTW) except with bright aqua coloring instead of baby pink. The texture is exactly what you’d expect: jelly-ish like a water cream (thanks to the roster of other hydrating ingredients like niacinamide, squalane and ceramides) and just a bit thicker given the whole mask component. I cleansed, put on my nightly lactic acid serum (as the directions suggest) and then layered on two or three pumps of F-Balm as the last step in my routine. It felt cooling on my face, which is always a nice side effect. It also rubbed in well, so I didn’t worry about getting it all over my pillow while I slept. I set my alarm for 6:30 a.m. and let it work its magic while I snoozed.
When I awoke, there was no filmy residue on my skin, like some overnight masks can leave behind. This one sunk in and visibly plumped my skin, so I didn’t look as tired as I normally do in the morning. I’m also pleased to report that my skin felt the effects all day long, even after washing my face and applying my daily dollop of tinted moisturizer. Turns out, that’s no mistake, because it took Drunk Elephant founder Tiffany Masterson and her team 12 different versions to nail down the final, all-day dew-inducing formula.