The Problem Solver
warming correcting masque
250ml / $100.00
a radically different powder-to-mousse formula
hero. overachiever. superstar.
The Problem Solver
warming correcting masque
250ml / $100.00
A jet-black fusion of indulgent and antioxidant-rich raw cacao, activated bamboo charcoal, salts, and exotic spices go deep on a mission to reveal your most radiant self.
The unique formula brightens, heals inflammation and irritation, fades hyperpigmentation, stimulates collagen production, and treats and prevents breakouts.
The Problem Solver is a real miracle worker, earning its name, and its superhero reputation, by delivering extraordinary results from use one.
This dynamic formula is intense, and you may feel the warming ingredients going to work. A notable skin beautifier here is the mighty cayenne pepper. Cayenne stimulates circulation, enabling fresh blood, oxygen, and vital nutrients to reach the cells. The Problem Solver delivers antioxidant carotenes, flavonoids, and high concentrations of vitamins A, C, and E.
While amazingly potent, this black beauty works to stimulate your internal healing response, restoring balance to even the most delicate complexions. It is especially beneficial for clients that struggle with severe acne, rosacea, psoriasis and all types of inflammatory disorders.
Clear and luminous skin that will have people asking for your secret.
Activate one tablespoon powder with just shy of equal parts water to form a soft, rich mousse. Smooth over skin and relax 30-45 minutes. Expect tingling heat sensation. When your treatment is complete, step into a warm shower, allowing the steam and running water to rehydrate the masque before rinsing away easily as you massage gently with your fingertips.
"This might be the best skincare product I have ever used. I have been battling adult acne for the past few years. I've tried it all. Used this mask once per the directions, followed with some oil, and the next morning, my acne was almost totally cleared. Spots that have been lingering for quite some time cleared up like they never existed. I've never seen anything like it. Truly a game changer for me."
"It got rid of blackheads in my t-zone that I have struggled with since adolescence after ONE use. It was so beautiful and pleasant to use."
"Dear May, can you please create a product that solves my life problems the way The Problem Solver solves my skin problems? Also, can you make it have the same warm and calming smell? Thank you in advance!"
"The Reviews Don't Lie. This may be my favorite mask EVER. I have the kind of skin care collection that makes my friends envious and would make a financial advisor tremble. To say I have way too many products would be an understatement. It's a compulsion...what can I say? And yet, despite the dozens of masks I cycle through, this is the only one I am really, truly in love with, 'til death do us part. Finding a mask that I want to repurchase is a momentous occasion by itself. Finding one that I plan to repurchase repeatedly is...well, it's never happened until now.
I don't know what sorcery is in this mask, but the somewhat fiery combination of ingredients (your skin will burn, but...you know...in like a really pleasant way) leaves my very dry, very finicky, often sensitive skin so bright and balanced. My face glows. The same effect has been replicated with every single person who comes into my house and accepts my aggressive invitation to try it. Normal skin, oily skin, dry skin, sensitive skin (yes, sensitive skin!)--this mask is for you. This is the Bernie Sanders of masks. A mask that is truly for the people.
Add it to your cart right now. Try it as soon as it arrives. Thank me later."
"The Problem Solver - man what a surprise of how effective it is!! I couldn't believe it! After first application, stubborn black heads have disappeared and my skin was so soft and cleansed. The tingling while using and the whole experience was perfect to my skin."
"Miracle in a jar!!! As someone that has been struggling with acne and hyperpigmentation for over 4 years, I can honestly tell you that I have not come across a mask that works nearly as well as this one. First of all, this mask is so much fun to make. It's like conducting a little science experiment in your bathroom. Secondly, the smell is DIVINE. The mask is an aromatherapy session in itself. Last but not least, IT WORKS. Immediately after washing this mask off, my skin looked radiant, my pores were undeniably smaller, my hyper pigmentation spots looked much lighter, and my skin overall felt more firm and lifted. The price point may be a little steep, but trust me, it is WORTH IT."
"I read all the reviews and thought this mask was too good to be true. After using it once a week for the past month, I'm a convert. My skin is mature but oily. I use an older clean brush and a small glass bowl to prepare the mask and I leave it on around an hour. It's pulled out and healed my skin from blackheads, my large pores have diminished and blocked sebaceous glands are no more. My skin glows, is smooth and I don't have to wear foundation! I call it serious skin care because it is expensive, takes a little effort to prepare and apply, and does warm up upon application. It's a worthwhile investment in yourself."
"It brought my black heads to the surface after using once. I have used it once and I noticed today that all the little tiny dots that I would have to use a strip for were now easy to remove by washing my face! I just pulled back on my nose and they were easy to wipe off. That is amazing and unexpected. My 34 year old sister was looking at my 44 year old skin and commented that my skin looked smooth, firm, tight and that she couldn't find any black heads. I'm very excited that I found this! I figured that if I ever wanted to really get rid of my skin issues I would have to go to a dermatologist. Not anymore. It's expensive and it's worth it."
"Absolute love! It does sting once it's on but that dissipates after a few minute. Helps with my eczema and pigmentation!"
"Solved problems I didn't know I had. I bought this as part of a deal and was not especially optimistic: I am 62 years old and The Problem Solver sounded potentially drying and irritating, and not particularly anti-ageing. I fully expected to pass it on to my two twenty something children (combination skins with the odd breakout) whilst keeping the Honey Mud for myself. I was wrong. This mask is great; great for me and great for twenty somethings. It doesn't make my face red at all and I hardly feel a tingle.
I tried mixing it with water first, which was fine, but the real eye opener was when I made my own mix using argan oil and raw honey (May suggests mixing it with the Honey Mud on her site, this was my cheaper alternative). Mixed like this, with enough water to liquify and make the mask spreadable, the end result doesn't dry completely, but after 45 mins you have a glossy glaze that wipes off with lukewarm water and a taupe flannel (use white and you will have to chuck it, the stain never washes out completely). We all love it: skin is smoother, less blotchy, more luminous; if you have blackheads and/or milia, it helps and in my case, some redder patches in my cheeks disappear for about 24 hrs. The only drawback is that it is quite messy and time-consuming and be warned, without a mask brush I don't see how you would mix and apply this successfully."
"This is one of the best masks I have ever used. I don't use it for regular maintenance, rather when I have issues like rashes or eczema. I use it continuously at night for 3-5 days and I can start to feel the skin heal. It isn't the more easy mask to wear since there is a significant amount of stinging when you first apply it, but honestly, it is worth the results. Be sure to follow the mask with a soothing oil or serum."
"Effective, luxurious, FUN! There are few things in this life I enjoy more than a quality mask. When I saw the price tag, my eyebrow lifted significantly. Don't let that jar you too much -- the ingredients truly speak for themselves! I suggest applying this product with a brush as depicted in the video tutorial. Applying with fingers moves the product too much and it doesn't sit in a clean layer the way it needs to. I used one of my old synthetic foundation paddle brushes (not good quality, kind of a knockaround) and it did the job fabulously. I let it sit for a long time. I think it said 45 minutes (or until dry) but I went over a hair. When you apply the mask, you feel it "activate" right away.
That's one of my favorite concepts with this mask: it remains inactive and as a result, maintains a more stable shelf life, which is invaluable since masks aren't an EVERYDAY thing. You can smell the different elements of this gorgeous earthy mask and it's SO satisfying. You pick up the bamboo-ey nature of the charcoal as a wave of cacao hits you, all the while this lovely tingly sensation sets in as the mask begins to sink into the skin and dry. At the end of it, I washed with water and a very slight touch of castile soap. My skin felt COMPLETELY recharged. This diverse blend of herbs, cacao and charcoal is a TRUE treat for your skin. Oh, and the best part? (at least for me) This mask OPENS up your skin so it can drink in all the nutrition you feed it after. If you have an extra penny and love healthy skin, this is the ticket, girl!"
"Can't Live Without It. Well, I can live without it, but I wouldn't want to. This is the mask that made me believe in using masks frequently - I use this twice a week, every week, and it's been a major love of mine since I discovered it six months ago. I even have a backup, despite the fact this product will last months and months (the jar is huge).
You mix the mask with water & apply in circular motions, then leave it on for 45 min - an hour. I almost always leave it on for the hour. It warms in the first 15 min of use (from cayenne & other spices), and over the course of the hour that I keep it on, it mellows and the warming sensation subsides. I was worried the first time I used it, but my extremely sensitive skin has never once suffered an adverse reaction from ingredients in the mask. Of course, check ingredients list & proceed with caution if you have sensitivities.
The feeling I get the morning after using this mask makes it so addictive - my skin is clear, bright, and insanely soft. I cannot recommend this mask enough to those who want a deep clean or suffer from congested skin."
"I spent my Saturday evening with a luxurious coating of manuka honey and The Problem Solver on my face and chest, I felt like an Amazonian goddess!"
"So expensive- but so worth it!! This product is hands down the best mask I have ever used. Wearing makeup every day can be very rough on your skin and this is the first product that has ever actually worked.
It's very easy to use and mixing it up to that 'brownie batter like consistency' is actually kind of cool. You have to keep it on your skin for a while - longer than most masks- but you could easily be doing other stuff when wearing it. It doesn't drip or run so you can do your laundry or dishes. Or just relax, which is what I usually do!
Being able to actually SEE a difference is amazing. If you suffer from congested skin this mask is for you- hands down. This product is a splurge. But your skin is definitely worth it."
"Love at first mask...Without a doubt in my mind, the problem solver is the best thing to grace my skin. The problem solver is magic, it is the healing hand of some higher power. Let me start off by saying this: my skin is oily and acne prone so when I came across the problem solver, my eyes just about fell out of my head reading the description. Is it too good to be true? UMM NO and here's why:
The packaging, like all of May's products, is consistent with dark glass jar and matching lid. The amount of product in the jar is generous. You get a lot considering you need 1 TSP!! mix in equal parts water and add more water carefully, you want the final result to be thick, not liquid. When creating the mask use a teacup or bowl and a clean foundation brush, you can use your fingers but trust me the application with a brush is much better and uniform. The dry powder turns into a rich, dark mousse. Once applied the true magic starts…
The magic of this mask is that you can feel and see results happen within the first week of its use. When the mask begins to dry it has a slight tingly effect, not painful or annoying at all - it's barely noticeable unless you have crazy sensitive skin but even then the feel is more like a vacuum effect sucking out all the bad stuff (think of it that way). I recommend leaving this mask on until fully dry which means you get "me-time" or whatever-time to relax for about 45 mins. When the mask is dry and ready to rinse off you can use it as a mini exfoliator.
Obviously, you don't see results right away but your skin does feel different, and in that moment you will know that there is a possibility of love at first use :) Right away, skin feels like a delicate flower petal, smooth and fresh. I notice the change in my skin every time I use the problem solver more frequently, no if's, and's, or but's for this miracle worker. It instantly clears blemishes the next day which makes it a great go-to for some emergency skin care for an event or occasion. If your skin is in need of a tune-up the problem solver is your new go-to. So what are you waiting for??"
"I usually multitask when I have a mask on but the quality of your products really pushed me to take the time to enjoy the experience of using them which is very rare for me."
"This mask is amazing, I use it every Sunday to deeply cleanse and refresh my skin. It also smells so good. My skin has been weird lately - dry, oily, acne-prone - basically all the things and this mask just balances out my skin and brightens it. The cayenne pepper in this mask definitely gives my skin a kick and warms it up but at the same time, doesn't feel abrasive or harsh. It leaves my skin feeling nourished afterward and I love following it up with some blue cocoon to give my skin that extra moisture. Absolutely love this :)"
"Everything about it felt special, the texture while mixing, the changing sensations on my skin, the SMELL (it made me want to take up baking or something so that I can smell it more often), the glow afterward!"
"I hated it at first. When I first tried this mask I really hated it, it gave me new spots every time I used it. However, the rest of my face felt really nice and that made me continue using it. I later realized these spots were the deep impurities within my skin brought up to the surface by the mask. And after a month of using it I HAVEN'T BROKEN OUT SINCE! I've been using this for 5 months now; and use it once to twice a week in combination with the Clean Dirt and Honey Mud and it became my favorite weekly ritual. I really feel the difference when I skip it and use other masks. This does REALLY WORK.
The initial price point might be a little steep but when you look at the amount of product you're getting it's really not. Also the fact the ingredients are in dry form it means it has a really long shelf life which is always a plus."
The Problem Solver
MINE ISN'T A MOUSSE CONSISTENCY, WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?
Deep breaths - first know that you really can't mess it up as the ingredients will work their magic one way or another. There are simply some tips to enhance your experience and results.
It is important with The Problem Solver to be generous in your portioning - using a measuring spoon, blend one full Tablespoon of the powder formula with just shy of equal parts water with our treatment brush or a flat foundation brush to bring to a soft mousse consistency. A little thin? Sprinkle on a bit more power. Too pasty? Add a few drops water. I promise in time, this becomes intuitive. If you aggressively stir, you might be pushing the air out, which takes away from the "mousse" quality but is in no way reducing the result you will achieve. Play and explore textures, but don't stress if it's not "perfect."
I'VE HEARD THAT THE PROBLEM SOLVER CAN GET HOT, WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT?
Variations on how you feel the warming experience of this special formula is perfectly normal. For some of our clients, this is experienced as a mild tingle; in others, it's more of a cooling sensation (even cold!) or neutral. For some, it is intensely hot to the degree they need to breathe through it. This is similar to how two individuals may respond to the very same spicy meal - having entirely different impressions of the heat factor.
Note also that this can vary depending on the state of your skin on this particular day, what other products are being used, where you are in your hormonal cycle, if you are healthy or feeling unwell, if you exfoliated beforehand or were in a hot bath, having a glass of wine, etc. Whether you are at a heat level one or ten, the process is intentional - embrace the flow of fresh blood and oxygen to your cells and the natural healing process that is being stimulated truly from the inside out. This is where serious results are born and what makes this formula so very special and effective. Breathe deep and enjoy your unique process.
CAN YOU SHARE SOME "RECIPES" OF ALTERNATIVE WAYS TO EXPERIENCE THE PROBLEM SOLVER? I HEARD THERE ARE ADAPTATIONS FOR DIFFERENT SKIN TYPES.
There are sooooo many ways to play! Below are my favorites, broken down in detail.
The Problem Solver - the traditional method:
Blend one tablespoon powder with just shy of one tablespoon water with our brush to form a soft mousse - or more for extra coverage. I absolutely love to treat my full back and shoulders! It is vital not to skimp on powder with this formula - there is a reason I packaged this beauty in a jar 5x bigger than standard! :) Be sure to watch the video to see the rich texture you are aiming for.
For some of our most sensitive clients (and even for those who aren't, since this is so delicious!), we recommend blending The Problem Solver with The Honey Mud to form a rich, pudding-like treatment - this may be my favorite of all time! The addition of nourishing Honey Mud to powerhouse Problem Solver allows for all the power and results you crave, but in a much cushier package that more delicate complexions can easily embrace. My sensitive (but also acne-prone) skin loves this duo and I tend to enjoy The Problem Solver twice a week - once at full potency, with a second treatment as a blend.
The Problem Solver + The Honey Mud:
Start with a full teaspoon of each, and about a half teaspoon of water, blending with our brush to achieve a soft mousse texture. If I'm feeling sensitive or dehydrated, I increase The Honey Mud. More inflamed, broken out or in need of a serious detox? Up the Problem Solver. This will soon become intuitive. You can allow this to sit from 10-60 minutes before rinsing away to reveal gorgeous, radiant skin.
Add a pump or two of The Youth Dew, a blueberry sized portion of The Blue Cocoon or 4-6 pumps of The Pendulum Potion to any of the blends above for even more goodness!
The Problem Solver is also beautiful mixed with The Jasmine Garden, fresh tea, raw honey, yogurt or any number of other skin-friendly goodies. Don't be afraid to play.
CAN I SPOT TREAT WITH THE PROBLEM SOLVER?
Absolutely! When experiencing an active breakout, or when you feel a pimple beginning to make its way to the surface, spot treat immediately with The Problem Solver to stop it in its tracks. You can simply blend a small amount of the powder formula with water or The Jasmine Garden to form a paste, smoothing over just the area needed. Leave on for 5-60 minutes, up to three times weekly, in addition to your full facial treatments.
You can also customize your spot treatment to even further target your specific concern:
The Problem Solver + The Youth Dew is perfect for wet, active pimples that are just coming to a head or that have already come to a head.
The Problem Solver + The Blue Cocoon works magic on painful cystic acne and areas of inflammation - including flare-ups of eczema, perioral dermatitis or other inflammatory conditions. These blends really get to the core of the breakout and help distressed skin to calm quickly without contributing to dryness or scarring, causing additional trauma to your complexion.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I MASQUE WITH THE PROBLEM SOLVER?
My first advice is to always listen to your own intuition and tune into the needs of your individual skin. The Problem Solver can be incorporated into every person's beauty ritual. We generally recommend a full treatment once or twice per week. For more sensitive types, just once or twice a month will make a great impact. If you have an active outbreak you are looking to clear or have sturdier skin that requires more intensive treatment, 2-3x/week will suit you perfectly. You can even treat yourself up to three days in a row prior to big events or occasions when you are seeking an especially radiant complexion.
IS THE PROBLEM SOLVER SAFE FOR SENSITIVE SKIN?
Perhaps surprisingly, The Problem Solver is often at the very top of my recommendations for extremely sensitive, inflamed and reactive skin. While amazingly potent, this black beauty works from a nourishing place to stimulate your own internal healing response, restoring balance to even the most delicate complexions. We've seen the most extraordinary results in our clients with rosacea, allergic dermatitis, eczema and all types of inflammation that goes far beyond its reputation for conquering severe and cystic acne.
The level of healing you can reach with this concentrated blend is unparalleled. The only precaution we will share is one of common sense - be kind to your skin. If you have an acute condition, truly over-reactive skin or an active outbreak with open sores, you will need to be extra gentle in your care. The Problem Solver can help you to clear this surge of activity in your skin, but you must brush it on gently. Do not rub. Do not scrub. Allow the power of the ingredients to work on their own without manual stimulation until your skin has begun to heal. You may feel intense heat and tingling as your circulation increases and blood rushes to your problem areas. This is good - allow the oxygen to naturally heal you from the inside while the nutrients penetrate your skin from the outside. Breathe, be calm, and envision your skin returning to its natural rhythm and state of perfect health.
WILL THE PROBLEM SOLVER DRY MY SKIN OUT?
The Problem Solver will not dry out your skin, rather it will help to restore its balance and the rhythm of your own natural oil production. The powder formula is activated by water, causing it to bubble and fizz and puff up to a mousse-like texture. The power of this treatment comes from the anti-inflammatory and warming action of the clays, salts, spices and active vitamin c, and is buffered by the healing, mellow nature of marshmallow, bamboo carbon charcoal powder, frankincense, gotu kola and turmeric. Be sure that you are pairing The Problem Solver with thorough and gentle daily cleansing and balancing hydration with compatible products in order to ensure your best success.
HOW DO I REMOVE THE PROBLEM SOLVER?
When your treatment is complete, splash with warm water or step into a warm shower (my favorite method), allowing the steam and running water to soften the masque before rinsing away (this is key). No need to rub and scrub, be gentle with your skin and let the water and light fingertip massage do the work for you. Skip your face cloth - the two together will provide too much exfoliation, and can lead to overstimulation in sensitive complexions.
After, be sure to hydrate and nourish your skin. Immediately upon rinsing, while skin is still soaking wet and at its most receptive (skip your towel entirely), follow with The Youth Dew (benefits all types from oily and acneic to mature skin) or The Blue Cocoon (beautiful for delicate types prone to inflammation, redness and irritation as well as a gorgeous treatment for normal and balanced skin). Transition right from rinsing to oil, with no stop in between. These beautiful plant oils will blend beautifully into the water, making for a gorgeous and pleasant application and massage, and the water will also facilitate the delivery of these delicious ingredients, allowing for ultimate absorption and effectiveness. This in turn increases compatibility and reduces breakouts. You can follow with The Jasmine Garden to further enhance penetration, while continuing massage.
Solum Fullonum (Fuller’s Earth) Clay, Red Moroccan Rhassoul Clay, **Theobroma Cacao (Raw Cacao), Red Alaea Sea Salt (Sea Salt and Red Alaea), L-Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Sodium Bicarbonate, Charcoal Powder (Activated Bamboo Carbon), *Vanilla Planifolia Bean, *Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower, *Althaea Officinalis (Marshmallow) Root, *** Boswellia Serrate Gum (Frankincense) powder, *Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola), *Archangelica (Angelica) Root, **Cinnamomum Zealanicum Blum (Ceylon Cinnamon), *Myristica Fragans (Nutmeg), *Syzygium Aromaticum (Clove), *Curcuma Longa (Turmeric), *Capsicum Annuum (Cayenne) Pepper, +Eugenol.
*Certified Organic **Certified Fair Trade ***Wild Harvested +Component of Essential Oil
A Closer Look
My dear friends,
Over the years, you’ve all gotten to know me for my obsession with quality and service, and my dedication to our beautiful, life-filled, truly natural ingredients. It is an honor and a privilege to be entrusted with your care and I do not take this responsibility lightly.
Today, I’m writing to let you know we are temporarily ceasing sale of The Honey Mud.
Recently, we've found ourselves confronted very directly with the challenging side of what it means to be an uncompromisingly plant-based, natural brand. Working with the world’s freshest, direct-sourced, food-grade ingredients in their least processed and most potent state is our foundation and with this comes both the benefit of these live enzymes and rich nutrient activity, as well as the potential for this "activity" to result in rare instances of bloom or mild fermentation - the same as that can happen in any fresh, organic food. We have now observed this occurrence within certain batches of The Honey Mud in our lab, which brings us to this conversation.
We are investigating a theory that previously undetected, dormant microbes within clay can be brought to life when fed with the nourishment of our raw honey. We are implementing additional pre-screens on “inert” individual ingredients like clay to further expand our visibility into the invisible. Further, I am exploring subtle variations on this unique formula, dreaming of ways to make it not only more stable, but even more extraordinary and beautiful for the skin.
I realize that for many of you, The Honey Mud is a part of your treasured daily ritual, as it is for me. It breaks my heart to not be able to share this for some undefined period of time and I know some will be upset as there is no opportunity to stock up. As much as I want you to have this special treat in your world, I want more to be always worthy of your trust.
Stability, the "nature of nature", and what happens when something goes wrong is an important conversation that is often skipped over, but is vital to this community's understanding around natural formulation and the ongoing trials that come with it. My commitment to always embrace an open conversation with you has never been stronger and this moment will no doubt provide a catalyst for even greater innovation within our in-house production team and the work we do. The Honey Mud will be back and will be more glorious than ever before! :)
I'll be in touch as we progress and have news on an updated version of The Honey Mud's availability, but know that my responsibility and priority is to proceed with my research, reformulation, and testing with thoughtfulness and thoroughness, and not necessarily speed.
I welcome any questions. It is always important to me to be an open book, and no subject is dearer to my heart than that of our precious fresh ingredients and the dedicated loving care of YOU.
With love always,