Key ingredients: Charcoal
What it does: A charcoal face mask that sucks blackheads from your skin. It absorbs dirt, grime and regulates oil secretion.

How it feels/smells/looks

It’s almost like a shiny black toothpaste. It’s very runny which I didn’t expect, but thickens once on your skin.

Why I like it

My skin was left feeling softer for sure. I also liked how you could clearly see what it had taken out of your skin. Keep in mind, however, all those photos you’ve seen on social media were clearly taken under a microscope. I thought the results would be 100-times grosser/crazier. In actual fact, blackheads are tiny and so the results don’t look all that impressive.

Areas for improvement

It would be nice if it was a little thicker, I spilt it everywhere as soon as I took off the lid.

Final comments

I liked this mask, it was fun to use, albeit a little difficult to peel off. I definitely wouldn’t apply to my entire face, this one’s better suited to your nose and cheeks. I definitely did see results straight away though, they just weren’t as dramatic as I was expecting.

What inspired you to start a skincare brand? Have you always had an interest in beauty and what were you doing prior to?

I discovered activated charcoal on a trip to Japan and instantly saw the benefits, so I wanted to create a skincare line using this as a key ‘buzz’ ingredient. Skincare has always been an interest of mine, and I’ve always been a big believer that what you give your body, your body gives back to you. Whilst I had always had an interest in skincare, my background is vastly different. I left school at 18 with my sights set on pursuing a career in law, and I am now in my penultimate year of study to become a lawyer. BLAQ was the first creative project I had embarked on.

Can you take us through some of the beauty benefits associated with charcoal?

Charcoal, a natural ingredient, when used in skincare helps to extract the dirt and toxins that build up in our pores. It’s this excess build-up that makes our pores appear larger. Charcoal is one of the most effective ingredients to minimise pores and is perfect for detoxifying and nurturing skin back to its healthy state.

What were some non-negotiables when developing the brand and what held most importance?

We wanted to be a desirable unisex brand that stands out both on the shop shelves and also on your at-home vanity cabinet. We were determined to use ingredients that had proven results for beauty. Plus, we wanted to be clear about the benefits – never with a ‘one size fits all’ mentality, but instead tailoring different products to skin types and concerns.

Tell us about your new product, the BLAQ Cleanse & Exfoliate Dual Wipes – who is this best suited to and why?

We wanted to create a product that can be used every day, and that your skin will reap the benefits from. This is for the gym-goer, the late-nighter, the busy mum, those who just need an instant pick-me-up.

We have created something unique that not only cleanses and cleans skin, but also exfoliates to remove dirt build-up as a result of city living. These wipes are infused with antioxidant and beta-carotene rich aloe vera to nourish, protect and hydrate the skin and is packed with chamomile extract to boost moisture and soothe irritated skin. The addition of microbeads also help exfoliate.

What are some other products offered by BLAQ?

We started with the BLAQ Face Mask and it’s been welcomed into the world with open arms. Since then, we have created the Hydrogel Eye Mask, I’ve found it ideal for in-flight routines and also to de-puff after a long week, a charcoal infused Body Scrub and a Teeth Whitening Wand minus the nasties. We also recently launched an exciting Limited-Edition Meteor Shower scrub, made from real Meteors, however this sold out quickly – but watch this space!

What is your personal favourite and why?

The Blaq Face Mask will always hold a special place in my heart, but I am especially excited about the face wipes – I love the versatility. I’ve been using the wipes for a while now during the development stage. I use the cleansing side at least once a day while out and about running errands in the city and I use the exfoliating side at least once a week for a deeper clean.

It’s so great that your products are unisex! What other beauty essentials should every active girl have in their gym bag?

Dry shampoo is key for those that are time poor, but active. I have also recently discovered a hair perfume from Aussie brand SALT By Hendrix., which I love. A good moisturiser with an SPF is necessary to lock in moisture loss from a work-out. A natural paw-paw gel for your lips.

What are some skincare changes you personally recommend making as spring kicks off here in Aus?

Rebuilding your skin’s moisture after some very drying weather in the winter is imperative. I look out for products that double as a moisturiser and SPF and that are high in Vitamin E, antioxidants and alpha and beta hydroxyl acids which keep my skin hydrated. I like to use the Body Scrub once a week to pull out impurities and dead skin cells, it’s also amazing for a lasting glow!

Are there any celebrities that have used and loved BLAQ?

Yolanda Hadid was spotted enjoying the Mask!

What’s next for BLAQ?

So many great products in the pipeline and products our customers are going to love.