When I was recently introduced to Jane Iredale’s BB Cream, it was at the Soho Sanctuary Spa in NYC where the esthetician (the magic fingered Natalie) pronounced my skin to be very sensitive and immediately slathered my face with Dr. Haushka’s Soothing Mask ($52.95). It smelled and felt delightful and worked wonders at making my complexion look calm and even, taking down my natural tendency to be red and ruddy.

In general, I feel that Dr Haushka’s skincare is best suited for younger skins ( topping out at 30-somethings) – their guns just aren’t heavy enough for my 50-something aging issues. However, this Soothing Mask is a really good product that sensitive skins of every age will benefit from.

There are a couple of standouts amongst the mostly botanical ingredients. I am very intrigued by buckwheat extract. Not only is it an antioxidant, but I get to add it to my list of potential natural sunscreens (along with strawberry, for example). According to German researchers, buckwheat is better at protecting from UV damage than a “commercial UV absorber.” It also seems to help prevent allergic reactions by inhibiting histamine release. Alchemilla (lady’s mantle) is also an antioxidant that has the ability to absorb UV.

Quince seed is a source of vitamin C, nicotinamide and fatty acids. Research has shown that it can reduce sensitivity, heal lesions (although only at a high, 15%, concentration) and has more antioxidant activity than vitamin C, although less than apples (source). Anthyllis vulneraria is a great favorite of Dr. H, one of the common names for the plant used to be woundwort, which gives you some idea of its healing properties.

These soothing and protective botanicals are rounded out with anti-inflammatory witch hazel and moisturizing shea and various oils including macadamia, coconut and peanut. If your skin is out of sorts, Dr. Hauschka’s Soothing Mask is worth seeking out.

Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Pyrus Cydonia Seed Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Alcohol, Glycerin, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Beeswax (Cera Alba), Anthyllis Vulneraria Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Arachis Hypogaea (Peanut) Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Bentonite, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Alchemilla Vulgaris Extract, Borago Officinalis Extract, Polygonum Fagopyrum (Buckwheat) Leaf Extract, Verbascum Thapsus Extract, Fragrance (Parfum), Citronellol*, Linalool*, Geraniol*, Limonene*, Farnesol*, Benzyl Benzoate*, Eugenol*, Citral*, Benzyl Salicylate*, Coumarin*, Xanthan Gum, Lysolecithin *Component of natural essential oils