Some people think facials are unnecessary and indulgent. These are not people we talk to. They are silly people who probably think going to a dentist is overrated. We are smarter than that. We know that while we must take care of our skin at home, sometimes we need outside help.
Facials do many things. A facial can cleanse, exfoliate, repair, hydrate, calm, and teach you canasta. Just making sure you are paying attention. A trained esthetician will analyze your skin and discuss your habits at home. Together you will determine your goals for your skin.
A standard facial can include any of the following:
1. Cleansing. If this is not the first step, be concerned. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but your face has to be clean for step 2.
2. Analysis. Your facialist is looking for discoloration, sun damage, loss of elasticity, fine lines, moles, blackheads, and Jimmy Hoffa.
3. Steam. After step 2, it is a free for all, but I like to steam. This allows the skin to relax and make exfoliation easier. Also you can pretend you are in Memphis in August. Close your eyes, and you’d swear you were there.
4. Massage. Mmmmmmm. Nice. Sure it helps exfoliate, move lymph, and stimulate collagen production. But so what? Massage is awesome.
5. Exfoliation. Some use a brush, some a scrub, some a peel. They all do the same thing in different ways. For reference, peels vary slightly. Glycolic is the most common peel. A 30-40% strength is plenty. It can be left on the skin for 2-5 minutes, sometimes with steam. Lactic acid is preferred for rosacea and sensitive skin. Light or no exfoliation is recommended for heavy acne and rosacea. See how smart I can be.
6. Extractions. Holy Blackhead, Batman! This is not for the faint-hearted. Bite the bullet and do it. You will never know a joy greater than the catharsis of blackhead removal.
7. Treatment. Here we do intense moisture, acne masks, peels, collagen, elastin, and DNA treatments, etc. Your esthetician may use freeze-dried masks or plant derived ampules. Thank her and tip well. Also do not be afraid of the electricity. Galvanic current is common. It is very low grade (1/1000 of an amp) and is helpful in deep penetration of product. Also if you have acne, ask about zapping. High frequency electrical current can zap problem areas before they become problems. Let us stop and give thanks for zapping.
8. Moisture. Even if you are oily, you need moisture. This is for everyone, no exceptions.
Don’t you want a facial now? All the cool kids are doing it. Go get one ASAP. Unless you are getting married this week. There is always a chance of a breakout the day or two after a facial. I do not want an angry bride on my lawn, screaming that I ruined her wedding pics. The Hollywood secret is to get your facial the day of the event. The micro swelling caused by a facial gives you the glow we all aspire to. Also your makeup will wear better.
I recommend facials every one to four weeks if you have specific goals to meet. For maintenance, every one to four months should suffice. Either way, get a facial now. You deserve to be pampered. You deserve to have the healthiest skin possible. You deserve to have the most beautiful skin you can. Your face is the first thing people see (usually), treat it well.