I generally consider myself as a dude that’s pretty in touch with things. I know what a DVF wrap dress is, I can understand why YSL revolutionized the fashion world, I know with absolute certainty that the Thomas Keller BLT is quite possibly the best sandwich ever created by mankind.

I am completely lost when it comes to beauty products.

For the most part, my daily regiment involves waking up (on most days, a difficult task), taking a shower, and voila! This is not because I couldn’t use more work, but more because I don’t know what further work there is to be done. I firmly believe this is true with most guys (well, the straight ones).

I’ve got no clue what an exfoliant does, why a toner is necessary, or what the difference is between a scrub and a cleanser. Do I need a detangling shampoo, or wtf is with leave-in conditioner? These are all unsolvable mysteries.

What I have figured out, though, is the aim of most beauty products: youth. From what I gather, 9 times out of 10, any given skin product will make your skin more youthful by way of moisturizing it, reducing/eliminating/preventing lines, making it look shinier, and something about pores (I’ve got no clue how one makes pores invisible, seeing as how they can’t magically disappear). One product will feature one herb, fruit or other form of produce (the beauty product industry seems resolutely animal-friendly, until it gets to the testing), another product strictly with the rocks, gems or minerals. What makes one product any better than another? I’ve got no clue.

When it came to guinea-pigging for this installment of Beauty Friday, I chose a mask because, as my cliched mind turns its wheels, the first image I conjure up when it comes to beauty products is a person with a mask on and two cucumber slices covering their eyes. It’s a classic! From there, I chose the Ole Henriksen mainly because I liked the packaging (simple, minimalist, not too girly)(considering I’m already reviewing beauty products, the balancing not-too-girly packaging had a bit more importance than usual)(insert comments re: crushing insecurities here), and because it smelled the least chemical-y.

The mask is clay based, which appeased all my preconceptions, and the remainder of it is a variety of flowers, salts, etc. that I really couldn’t tell you much about (there’s more detailed info here). I tried it before bed after reeling from the disappointment known as the second episode of Flash Forward, wondered if John Cho could tell me about what-the-hell-I-am-doing, and felt those pores tightening up as best they could. (No cucumber slices here)

Kidding aside, my face pretty much felt like it was tingling all over in a way that I’m assuming is good. It firmed up for 20 minutes, and after spending awhile trying to wash it off – the stuff cakes on and it feels like washing cream cheese icing off your face – I could actually tell that my skin felt cleaner and shinier, but not in a greasy way. Not sure if I could now suddenly pass for someone 10 years younger, but gimme a couple of weeks with it.

Available in Vancouver at Beautymark for $36.50.

Signed, the It Guest.