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DIY Watermelon Jelly Face Mask for Glowing Skin

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Learn how to make a DIY watermelon face mask for glowing skin. This ultra-hydrating jelly face mask contains real watermelon powder to brighten and repair. It has a light and fruity watermelon scent, plus a bouncy gel texture that instantly re-hydrates and revitalizes dry, dull skin.

DIY watermelon face mask

Watermelon makes a refreshing snack on a hot day, but it also makes a refreshing treat for your skin!

My latest recipe is a face mask infused with real watermelon. Easy to make and even more fun to use, this hydrating mask has a unique jelly texture that drenches skin in moisture.

Not only is this mask intensely moisturizing, but it also harnesses watermelon’s naturally occurring antioxidants, vitamins and amino acids to help make your skin glow.

As well, since it’s meant to be kept refrigerated, this watermelon mask is an excellent homemade remedy to help cool off overheated or sunburned skin.

But before we get into this easy recipe, I’d like to talk about why this face mask, and watermelon in general, are both so good for your skin.

And if you’re looking for more homemade face masks, you might also enjoy this de-puffing caffeine mask or this soothing aloe vera face mask.

Watermelon in skincare

I discovered watermelon fruit extract while shopping for cosmetic ingredients, and I knew it would make a wonderful addition to a variety of DIY beauty recipes.

Watermelon-infused skin care products have been rising in popularity recently, undoubtedly due to the influence of a Korean beauty brand called Glow Recipe.

Their line of fruit-infused skincare products includes the wildly popular Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask and Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer.

Watermelon mask inspired by Glow Recipe

Unfortunately, I can’t use most store bought skin care products due to my hypersensitive skin. In particular, products containing fragrance of any kind are off-limits.

But I wanted to reap the benefits of watermelon for skin care, which led me to create my own watermelon face mask.

It’s important to note that my recipe isn’t meant to be a Watermelon Glow mask dupe. They are two very different products. I simply wanted to make my own mask with watermelon powder.

Benefits of watermelon for skin

It’s not just a marketing ploy – watermelon has a number of benefits when used in skincare. For one, it’s rich in vitamins, minerals, and various amino acids, all of which promote skin health.

Among watermelon’s amino acids is citrulline, which is essential for collagen synthesis. Citrulline is especially abundant in the red fruit, and actually gets its name from “citrullus lanatus,” the Latin word for watermelon.

There’s also something particularly special about watermelon: its carotenoid content. Carotenoids are natural red pigments known to possess UV-protective properties.

Lycopene, in particular, occurs in watermelon in high amounts. Tomatoes are typically known for their lycopene content, but it’s interesting to note that watermelon actually contains much more lycopene – 40% more, to be exact.

Evidence suggests that lycopene is one of the most important carotenoids in human skin. In fact, its protection is so potent that it’s been successfully isolated, purified and turned into an effective sunscreen. And where was this lycopene sourced from? Watermelon.

Watermelon’s lycopene content, along with its other beneficial compounds, have shown to be useful for blocking UV damage. In one study, a highly purified form of watermelon extract with citrulline was shown to offer significant protection from free radicals and sun damage.

Watermelon extract can even help reduce erythema and inflammation after sun exposure.

DIY watermelon face mask for glowing skin

Now, this is not to say that this watermelon mask can replace a good sunscreen. Nothing can. Plus, this recipe isn’t made with the same kind of highly purified watermelon extracts used in these studies.

But it certainly can’t hurt to give your skin a little extra carotenoid boost, especially after sun exposure. And the mask’s cold temperature feels particularly refreshing after being out in the sun.

Overall, it makes a great adjunct to safe sun habits and an effective natural sunscreen.

Watermelon face mask benefits

Skin hydration

This mask’s main purpose is to leave skin plump and hydrated. Similar to hydrojelly masks, it stays moist on your skin for quite a while without drying out.

This is thanks to a natural gelling agent that holds up to 50 times its weight in water. (More on that later.) And when you use the mask, a lot of that water is absorbed into your skin.

However, unlike a hydrogel, this mask is not a solid, and can be washed off with water. So, it’s better described as a jelly face pack.

Skin cooling

Whether from exercise, hot weather or sunburn, sometimes our skin gets uncomfortably hot. Rather than splashing cold water on your face, you can use this recipe as a DIY cooling mask.

When used straight from the fridge, its cold temperature helps relieve the feeling of overheated skin.

Skin soothing

As previously mentioned, watermelon extract can help soothe inflammation and redness, making this mask particularly useful for irritated or sunburned skin.

It also makes a good alternative to aloe vera jelly for those who are allergic or sensitive to it. So this recipe is an option for those looking for a soothing face mask without aloe vera.

Skin brightening

There’s something about healthy skin that just glows, and watermelon’s naturally occurring carotenoids and vitamin C can help boost your skin’s health and overall radiance.

DIY jelly face mask with watermelon

Watermelon face mask ingredients

Watermelon powder fruit extract

It’s no surprise that watermelon is the star ingredient of this watermelon face mask.

Watermelon powder fruit extract is obtained by spray drying watermelon puree. The result is a highly concentrated, pale pink powder that retains all of watermelon’s benefits.

I really did not expect watermelon powder to smell like watermelon, as many fruit extracts don’t retain their aroma after processing. So I thought I was imagining things when, while mixing the first batch of this face mask, I got a faint whiff of watermelon.

The dry powder doesn’t have much of a scent, but once mixed with water it releases a light, crisp fragrance. It’s not strong or candy-like, but it’s there.

How much watermelon powder should you use in this face mask?

It’s tempting to use a lot of watermelon powder for a stronger aroma. But unfortunately, watermelon powder fruit extract is recommended for usage at only 0.5% the total weight of a product.

In the context of this recipe, this means 0.5 grams, or approximately 1/16 of a teaspoon.

This seems very small, but due to the potent, highly concentrated nature of fruit extracts, they need only be used in small amounts.

As well, since watermelon fruit is 92% water, it’s not hard to imagine how removing all that liquid yields a very concentrated fruit extract.

Personally, I’ve tested watermelon powder at a higher concentration on my own skin, but I don’t recommend anyone else do this. Exceeding a cosmetic ingredient’s recommended usage rate may not be safe and could lead to skin irritation.

Where to buy watermelon fruit powder extract

I suggest using watermelon powder made specifically for cosmetics, which can be purchased from a cosmetic ingredients supplier such as Formulator Sample Shop.

Alternatively, you can also use liquid watermelon extract. But this will require measuring out the right percentage using a cosmetic scale.

If you can’t find cosmetic watermelon powder, food-grade watermelon powder is also available. However, I’ve never used it, so I can’t make any recommendations about its effectiveness. Whichever watermelon powder you choose, just make sure it has no extra ingredients or added sugars.

Of course, there is always the option to make this mask without the watermelon. It still makes for a very hydrating jelly mask by itself.

Glucomannan powder

Glucomannan powder, also known as konjac powder, is a polysaccharide derived from the konjac plant.

Konjac is native to Asia, but it’s commonly known in the West for its use as a diet aid, thickener, or as the main ingredient of Japanese shirataki noodles. However, its uses go beyond food and supplements.

What makes glucomannan powder so special is that it can absorb a lot of water – up to 50 times its weight, in fact. This makes it one of the most viscous fibres known in nature.

Glucomannan is known for its excellent gelation properties. And when used in skin care, its water-absorbing capacity makes it intensely moisturizing. It imparts hydrating properties and a beautiful jelly texture, qualities which make it the perfect gelling agent for a gel face mask.

Homemade watermelon jelly face mask

It’s hard to describe glucomannan’s texture to those who haven’t experienced it, as it’s nothing like pectin, gelatin, agar, or xanthan gum. Its affinity for water makes it very slippery and silky, but not the least bit sticky or gooey.

I played with various formulas, and used the highest possible percentage of glucomannan possible without making this mask lumpy or cloudy. The result is a smooth, bouncy jelly.

One more thing worth noting – glucomannan acts as a prebiotic that can help feed good bacteria on the skin. And maintaining a good bacterial balance can help crowd out the kind of bacteria that cause acne.

According to a 2013 study, topical glucomannan hydrolysates were found to reduce acne and induce a glow in the skin. Now that’s a glowing review!

Vegetable glycerin

Glucomannan may hold a lot water, but while testing this face mask, I found that it needed another humectant to help keep the water there.

That’s where vegetable glycerin comes in. It’s a powerful humectant that, like glucomannan, helps bind moisture. It’s also inexpensive, natural, and a very good moisturizer.

Glycerin slows the mask’s evaporation rate, so it stays moist on your face for longer. This allows your skin more time to drink up the benefits, so to speak!

Distilled water

Boiled or bottled water isn’t enough – it’s important to use distilled water when formulating skincare products at home.

This is because the distillation process removes harmful micro-organisms that could otherwise multiply in your final product.

And even though this watermelon face pack is meant to be kept in the refrigerator, using distilled water lengthens its shelf life further.

Luckily, distilled water is inexpensive and easy to find.

I originally wanted to use watermelon hydrosol as the base for this recipe, but unfortunately it’s not widely available. If this ever changes, I’ll come back and update this article.

Natural food colouring powder

I used a small amount of natural pink food colouring powder to enhance this mask’s colour.

Of course, this is completely optional. You can add as much as you want, depending on how bright you’d like your mask.

This particular brand makes a beet powder-based colouring that creates pretty, cool-toned pinks. It’s the only beet powder I’ve found that turns pink, not red.

DIY watermelon face pack

How to make a DIY watermelon face mask

Ingredients

93.5ml distilled water (see recipe notes)
1/16 tsp watermelon powder fruit extract, tightly packed (see recipe notes)
1/4 tsp glucomannan powder (konjac powder)
1 tsp vegetable glycerin
Pinch of natural food colouring powder

Equipment

Heat-safe glass beaker
Glass stirring rod
Shallow pan for water bath
1/16 tsp measuring spoon
Electronic mixer or mini whisk
Glass container for storage, such as a small mason jar

Instructions

  1. Before beginning, be sure to properly clean and sterilize your tools and equipment. Then, prepare a water bath by filling a shallow pan full of water on medium heat.
  2. In a heat-safe glass beaker, measure 93.5ml of distilled water.
  3. Slowly add the glucomannan powder to the beaker and stir well to combine. Be sure not to add the glucomannan too quickly as it will clump. At this point, it’s normal for the liquid to be cloudy and slightly grainy.
  4. Place the beaker into the water bath. Heat until the glucomannan is dissolved and the mixture has thickened. You’ll know it’s ready when it turns into into a viscous, clear gel with a uniform texture.

    It’s important to stir frequently to keep the glucomannan from clumping. Do not leave it unattended, as it will form a big clump on the bottom and you’ll have to start again.
  5. Remove the beaker from the water bath and immediately add your food colouring powder, if desired. The heat will make it easier to incorporate, but you can also opt to add it at the end.
  6. Once you’ve mixed in your colourant and achieved your desired shade of pink, allow the jelly to cool for about 10 minutes. It will thicken even more as it cools.
  7. Add the glycerin and watermelon powder and stir to dissolve. Watermelon powder is water soluble and should incorporate easily. But if you notice any clumps in your mask, a tiny electronic mixer or a mini whisk can help. Just take care not to chip the side of your beaker. (Note: a milk frother won’t work as its motor isn’t powerful enough to mix the thick jelly.)
  8. Once your watermelon mask is a silky, uniform texture, transfer it into your desired storage container, such as a glass jar. Store in the refrigerator.

Recipe Notes

Volume vs weight measurements

This recipe makes 100ml of watermelon gel mask.

It’s better to measure cosmetic ingredients by weight and not by volume, as this ensures the most accuracy. However, measuring by weight requires a cosmetic scale.

I used a scale while formulating this mask, but I understand most people don’t have one on hand. So I did my best to provide accurate volume measurements that anyone can follow.

Obviously, measuring exactly 93.5ml of distilled water is difficult without a scale. Just do your best. I suggest using a 100ml glass beaker with printed measurements.

As well, the closest measurement I could find for the watermelon powder was 1/16 tsp, otherwise known as 1 pinch. This will require a special measuring spoon.

1/16 tsp still ended up being slightly less than the weight measurement of 0.5 grams, so you can tightly pack the powder into your spoon without worrying about using too much watermelon powder.

The weight measurements are as follows:

93.5ml distilled water
0.5g watermelon powder fruit extract
1g glucomannan
5g glycerin

Health & safety

As always, be sure to start with clean and fully sanitized supplies. Failure to properly sanitize can cause bacterial growth in your product.

This recipe does not contain a preservative, so be sure to store your mask in the refrigerator at all times.

How to use your watermelon jelly face mask

This watermelon mask is best used on a freshly washed face, so start with clean skin. As well, you should use a clean spoon to scoop out your mask, not your fingers.

Apply a generous layer of jelly mask all over your face, taking care not to get the mask into your eyes.

Leave your mask on for 10-20 minutes or as desired. There’s no time limit for how long you can leave it on, but it will eventually start to dry out, at which point you can either rehydrate it or wash it off.

To rehydrate your mask, simply spritz it with a toner or face mist. My rosewater face mist works well for this purpose.

(I also have a watermelon face mist recipe in the works that’s the perfect complement to this recipe, so stay tuned for that.)

Once your skin has been sufficiently hydrated, simply wash off the mask with tepid water. No cleanser is required, as the mask is water soluble and rinses away easily.

Homemade watermelon face mask

Storage and shelf life

Since this mask is meant to be kept in the fridge, I opted not to include a preservative. Much like with food, storing beauty products at cold temperatures helps stop harmful bacteria from growing.

However, you should still take care to keep things sanitary. Be sure to clean and sterilize your storage container as well as the tools you use to make your mask.

And when you go to use it, use a clean spoon, not your fingers. As well, be sure to return your mask to the fridge promptly between uses. I like to store mine in my skincare fridge.

I can’t give an accurate shelf life for this mask, as it depends on many variables, such as the cleanliness of your equipment. To be on the safe side, I suggest using your mask within 2 weeks.

Questions about watermelon face mask

Can I use watermelon juice in this face mask?

Yes, you can use watermelon juice to make this face mask. In fact, watermelon juice and watermelon rinds have been used for generations in Korea to soothe irritated skin.

However, there is one caveat. As watermelon juice is high in sugar, using it in place of distilled water will further decrease your face mask’s shelf life.

To make this face mask with watermelon juice, simply replace the distilled water with fresh juice. Use promptly within 3 days.

Can I use this watermelon mask as an overnight face mask?

If you wish, you can use this mask as a moisturizing overnight mask or sleeping mask.

However, I only recommend trying this if making the recipe as intended, with distilled water and cosmetic watermelon powder. It’s not a good idea to let sugary watermelon juice sit on your face all night. Plus, it could stain your bedding.

To use the watermelon overnight mask, apply a thin layer to clean skin. I recommended following it up with a few drops of facial oil to help seal in moisture.

Yield: 1 face mask

DIY Watermelon Jelly Face Mask

DIY Watermelon Jelly Face Mask

Learn how to make a DIY watermelon face mask. This hydrating jelly face mask recipe will make your skin glow! It contains real watermelon powder for a lush and fruity watermelon scent. Plus, it has a bouncy gel texture that instantly re-hydrates and revitalizes dry skin.

Active Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost $5

Materials

Tools

Instructions

    1. Before beginning, be sure to properly clean and sterilize your tools and equipment. Then, prepare a water bath by filling a shallow pan full of water on medium heat.
    2. In a heat-safe glass beaker, measure 93.5ml of distilled water.
    3. Slowly add the glucomannan powder to the beaker and stir well to combine. Be sure not to add the glucomannan too quickly as it will clump. At this point, it's normal for the liquid to be cloudy and grainy.
    4. Place the beaker into the water bath. Heat until the glucomannan is dissolved and the mixture has thickened. You'll know it's ready when it turns into into a viscous, clear gel with a uniform texture.

      It's important to stir frequently to keep the glucomannan from clumping. Do not leave it unattended, as it will form a big clump on the bottom and you'll have to start again.
    5. Remove the beaker from the water bath and immediately add your food colouring powder, if desired. The heat will make it easier to incorporate, but you can also opt to add it at the end.
    6. Once you've mixed in your colourant and achieved your desired shade of pink, allow the jelly to cool for about 10 minutes. It will thicken even more as it cools.
    7. Add the glycerin and watermelon powder and stir to dissolve. Watermelon powder is water soluble and should incorporate easily. But if you notice any clumps in your mask, a tiny electronic mixer or a mini whisk can help. Just take care not to chip the side of your beaker. (Note: a milk frother won't work as its motor isn't powerful enough to mix the thick jelly.)
    8. Once your watermelon mask is a silky, uniform texture, transfer it into your desired storage container, such as a glass jar. Store in the refrigerator.

Notes

Volume vs weight measurements

This recipe makes 100ml of watermelon gel mask.

It's better to measure cosmetic ingredients by weight and not by volume, as this ensures the most accuracy. However, measuring by weight requires a cosmetic scale.

I used a scale while formulating this mask, but I understand most people don't have one on hand. So I did my best to provide accurate volume measurements that anyone can follow.

Obviously, measuring exactly 93.5ml of distilled water is difficult without a scale. Just do your best. I suggest using a 100ml glass beaker with printed measurements.

As well, the closest measurement I could find for the watermelon powder was 1/16 tsp, otherwise known as 1 pinch. This will require a special measuring spoon, which is linked above.

1/16 tsp still ended up being slightly less than the weight measurement of 0.5 grams, so you can tightly pack the powder into your spoon without worrying about using too much watermelon powder.

The weight measurements are as follows:

93.5ml distilled water
0.5g watermelon powder fruit extract
1g glucomannan
5g glycerin

Health & safety tips

As always, be sure to start with clean and fully sanitized supplies. Failure to properly sanitize can cause bacterial growth in your product.

This recipe does not contain a preservative, so be sure to store your mask in the refrigerator at all times.

Did you make this DIY?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

More face mask recipes

If you enjoyed this DIY, you might also be interested in these face mask recipes:

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Michelle

Saturday 29th of August 2020

This sounds amazing! A perfect face refresher after a hot summer day.

Kim & Kyla

Saturday 29th of August 2020

Thanks so much, Michelle! It really is the perfect refresher! ?