A few months ago, I was happy that Kyoku announced North America distribution as I believe it’s quite a special line. I was pretty excited about the special ingredients they use (like volcanic ash, bamboo, rice bran) that have a “Japanese” theme running through them and I tried out the new Lava Masque to see how effective it was on my skin. Kyoku means “epiphany” and it proved through with the moisturizing lotion SPF 15 I tried.

The beauty of Kyoku Lava Masque is that it uses volcanic mud, volcanic black sand and 73 sea minerals from the coastline of Japan (I hope you’re seeing why I was excited about this brand coming to America!). The brand was created especially for men through the experience of its creator, who went to Japan to “fix” his skin problems. Kyoku doesn’t target just the epidermis but has the dermis mostly in mind, considering men have 20% thicker skin than women. The interesting thing about the lava masque is that it doesn’t solve problems by adding (like its micro-particle technology) to the skin but doing the opposite by extracting, although penetration is fully recognized.

While I was initially interested in Kyoku due to their use of natural ingredients, I was a little disappointed that was not what I was going to find in the Kyoku Lava Masque. However, it is rich in minerals and the combination of volcanic mud, black sand and ash is incredibly purifying. The mask will draw forth excess oils and any impurities while also removing dead skin cells. Kaolin, one of the top ingredients, has been effective as a mask for hundreds of years so we know its safe. Furthermore, the sorbitol (which occurs naturally in many types of berries) is good for cleansing and peeling. The mask has a gritty feeling thanks to the sand and pumice, which helps the exfoliation process.

Kyoku Lava Masque reminded me of Eminence Organics Hungarian Herbal Mud Treatment as it had a less-than-subtle tingling sensation. The sea salts (73 essential minerals to be exact) help increase the blood circulation and oxygen levels to promote cellular renewal, which is fine but made me question the titanium dioxide, which is known to block and clog pores. DMDM Hydantoin is also a downer, which is known to be a major skin irritant. I also wasn’t a big fan of the fragrance… they could have thrown some great essential oils in there or even just left it out altogether.

So there’s the good and the bad. Luckily, as directions indicate, you only leave the mask on your face for five to ten minutes and it gets the job done with that little time. I personally felt that my skin did benefit from the mask and it was a relaxing experience. It didn’t get too tight on my face or dry out quickly.



Water, Kaolin, Sorbitol, Titanium Oxide, Glycerin, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Calcium Carbonate (Volcanic Black sand), Pumice, Tropiaca Starch, Hydroxypropylmethyl Cellulose, Sea salt (Atoligomer-73 minerals), Hydrolyzed Algin & Zinc Sulfate (Phyko-AC), Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol Ethylhexylglycerin, Hexylene Glycol, Fragrance, DMDM Hydantoin, Iron Oxide Black, Mica, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone