Way back in 2017, Madonna famously touted the benefits of butt masks. “Don’t you want soft skin on your butt? Don’t other people look at your butt? Your butt has an audience! I encourage it,” the iconic singer exclaimed to the New York Post as the world collectively raised an eyebrow. But this is Madonna we’re talking about — of course she was ahead of her time. Today, butt masks are trending with the masses, making it easier than ever to pamper yourself like the Queen of Pop.
Even if your derriere doesn’t have the audience of, say, a butt-baring superstar, it can’t be denied that all women deal with fun issues in this area every once in a while. “The most common problems for the buttocks area are acne and hyperpigmentation,” Dr. Aanand Geria, a dermatologist with Geria Dermatology in New Jersey, tells The Zoe Report. Sure, you probably have a few sheet masks in your collection designed to treat these same exact concerns — but it turns out, the skin on your backside is not the same as the skin on your face.
“The skin on the body, in general, is much less forgiving than the face because there are fewer pores (hair follicles) which contain stem cells,” Dr. Geria explains. “The latter is important for our skin in terms of repairing damage — this is why wounds on the face heal so much better than those on the body.” He says that pimples and scarring on the butt will stick around longer than blemishes on the face. Unless, of course, you treat your tush to its very own skincare regimen.
Booty-specific products typically contain active ingredients at higher concentrations than you would normally use, or stronger exfoliators to penetrate thicker skin. For example, the ground walnut shell in Anese’s That Booty Tho scrub is likely too rough for the face but works wonders on your other set of cheeks. The same can be said for the exfoliating orange peel extract in Bawdy’s Slap It mask — it’s strong, so it’s not something you’d necessarily find in facial skincare.
“I have had butt cryotherapy, butt facials, and I have been taking care of my butt daily,” Sylwia Wiesenberg, the founder of Bawdy Beauty, a brand that specializes in sheet masks for (you guessed it) the butt, tells TZR. “I don’t know what my butt would look like today without all of this — I should have done one cheek only [when I started] — but at 40, I feel fabulass!” If that’s not a glowing endorsement for a regular back-end routine, I don’t know what is.
Jokes aside, Bawdy is serious about butt care. For starters, the brand’s sheet masks are perfectly-shaped. “I tried regular face sheet masks on my butt and they left me with visible outlines of a mouth, nose, and eyes,” Wiesenberg laughs. “Plus, I needed two of them — so the economics don’t work, especially when you focus on quality masks.” Bawdy also only uses clean, natural ingredients that address common backside problems: Aloe leaf fights acne, orange peel exfoliates, and chamomile has antibacterial properties to fight butt breakouts.
“Since the buttocks is particularly prone to acne, because the pores are blocked all day long due to sitting, scrubs can be helpful,” Dr. Geria says. Reach for Anese That Booty Tho scrub to gently buff away dead skin cells and help eliminate any behind blemishes. “Be careful not to scrub more than once or twice a week, as this can cause irritation,” he warns.
The dermatologist also recommends looking for a booty mask with sulfur or clay to absorb excess oil and buildup (like Anese Down With the Thickness), as well as inflammation-fighting and skin-brightening ingredients (like the goji berry and caffeine in Bawdy’s Slap It mask) to ensure even tone and texture.
If a firmer, plumper rump is what you’re after, Dr. Geria says to be wary of masks that claim collagen will help. “Unfortunately, collagen in a skincare regimen is useless, since the molecule is too large to penetrate through the skin into the dermis,” he explains. However, you may see results from "plant-based collagen," a substance made from plant matter that mimics the real thing and helps your body replenish its own collagen stores. High doses of hyaluronic acid (found in Nannette de Gaspé Uplift Revealed Tush Mask) can make the skin in this area look plumper, too.
While the butt mask craze may seem like it’s putting more pressure on women to look perfect in every way, Wiesenberg sees it as a celebration, instead. “The butt, to me, is the most beautiful muscle in your body, the most powerful one too — the stronger it gets, the faster you run, spin, and squat,” she says. “So I decided to make butt beauty matter; to make women [love] the part of their body they criticize the most.”
As far as the logistics of applying and removing these sensitively-placed masks? Follow Madonna’s lead: “Put it on, you lay down… Maybe you can ask your significant other to remove it for you.”
Ahead, the must-have masks, oils, and lotions that are making #bootybeauty happen.
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“Dull skin, acne, loss of elasticity, and dryness happen because we don’t take care of our butt — giving it a few minutes of your time will make it glow for years,” Bawdy’s founder says. Apply this once a week and “your skin will be super smooth, glowing, bump-free, and ready for a great buttfie.” (That’s butt selfie, by the way.)
A weekly exfoliating session with this scrub will help your backside thrive, thanks to the super-fine walnut grounds. Its consistent five-star reviews are proof.
The Nannette de Gaspé brand is part skincare, part technology. Its “micro-vectorized delivery system” transports ingredients deeply into the skin via a waterless dry mask, “which allows the skin to benefit from a 90% concentration of active ingredients,” de Gaspé tells TZR. This mask specifically helps to "visibly improve elasticity, plump, and re-densify the skin while also smoothing its overall texture," she says. "Results last longer than ‘quick-fix’ masks or firming lotions and creams that currently exist on the market — we have seen results that last anywhere from four weeks to several months.” It’s no doubt the most high-tech butt mask on the market.
“Anything you put on your body, face or butt should be clean and non-toxic,” Wiesenberg says. “It is important to look for active ingredients like citrus extracts, caffeine, goji berry, or aloe — and fruit acids are always great to support natural peeling.” All of the above appear in Bawdy’s Slap It sheet mask.
The jury’s out on whether the collagen inside will help plump your rump — but dermatologists agree that this mask’s kaolin clay will remove impurities and bacteria while vitamin B keeps the area hydrated and smooth.
Palmer’s takes its iconic coconut oil formula to the back with this sheet mask for the body, infused with guarana extract to boost circulation for a firmer, glowier butt.
Brazilian Bum Bum Cream promises to make your butt look and feel like, well, a Brazilian bum bum. (Watch out, Gisele.)