Well hello, hello! Long time no see, right? I know. I’ve totally been MIA.
I wanted to get back into the swing of things with something light and fun–what better than facials?!
So, a little background. First of all, I am not a doctor, esthetician, or expert in anything we are about to discuss. I’m relatively new to the facial scene–and have no intention of stopping. I got my first facial around 6 months ago, since then, I’ve found my groove and am officially an addict, now scheduling one every four weeks, on the dot.
First, let’s talk basic: Where to go, who to see, and what treatment to book.
Ultimately, this is all personal preference. If you’ve have no idea where to even begin, I’d recommend a few things:
Once you’ve got the basics down pat, you can start to explore more treatments and services.
I have three personal favorite services: Hydrafacial, Dermal Infusion, and Yonka Facial. And always, always, always, an add-on dermaplane.
Let me break these down for ya, as they’ll likely be called different things everywhere you go.
Okay this one will be called the same thing across the board, as Hydrafacials are a name-brand service. Not all spa’s offer them as they require a super expensive, shinny machine. The price-tag on the service matches. But its WORTH EVERY PENNY.
The Hydrafacial, in my own words, is where they use this fancy little pen that’s hooked up to a big machine with a screen on it to suck every bit of nasty, funky, pore-clogging junk out of your skin. It’s miraculous. The coolest part to me, is that the pen simultaneously supplies the serum, AND sucks it off. Almost like a wet-vac. (Except for this is on your face.) If you’d like to read a more “official” explanation of this service, check it out here!
This is not the most relaxing service as one can imagine. They use a variety of serums to lubricate your skin and attract the junk, so that the pen can effectively suck it all out. The machine also has different levels of suction power. Your esthetician will decide based on your skin-type and what you want to focus on, which serums & power to use. Some of which can be, as Tisha likes to call, a little “spicey”. Personally, I don’t mind the “spice”, it makes me feel like the service is doing what it’s supposed to.
Overall, this is by far one of my favorite services. While most of the appointment feels more medical than “spa”, my place always ends it on a relaxing note with turning the lights down, massaging my neck, and applying other products in delightful face massage.
Note: I did read online that you should NOT wash your face the night of receiving a Hydrafacial as some cleansers may hurt your skin. Remember, you’ve stripped away all of the bad shit, but your skin is now more susceptible until it has a chance to heal overnight. Again, I did read this online, so ask your esthetician for specific after-care recommendations.
So this one is relatively new to me. I booked it at the recommendation of sweet Tisha. This facial involves what’s called a “Nano Pen”–which is what attracted me most. The Nano Pen is another cool little device that produces wonders. The pen has these tiny little triangle shaped basically needles. It punctures the skin and creates hundreds of teensy tiny micro-injuries. Why would someone what to injure their skin you ask? Because the healing process stimulates collagen production! The micro-injuries are so small and shallow in the skin that you can’t tell with your own eyes that anything has occurred. If you’re familiar with microneedling, this is essentially a less-invasive version that has no down time!
With any facial service, your skin may react with redness, etc. Typically those side-effects go away within a few hours or up to one day. My skin gets super red during services, then is back to normal by time I get in the car. This one in particular may cause redness to last longer, as you are injuring the skin. Still, the side-effects should be gone within a few hours or after a day. The goal with this one is to baby the heck out of your skin for the few days following, ie. use only gentle cleansers & serums, no exfoliation, avoid makeup and masks (#2021). Hence, another reason why I love facials on Fridays.
This is the facial that may be called something else depending on where you go. Yon-Ka is a botanical skincare brand with naturally derived ingredients. Other spas may offer something similar but use a different brand of products. Essentially, I would describe this as the VERY luxurious and relaxing facial. Yon-Ka products all smell just absolutely heavenly, they’re so gentle and refreshing, and the whole experience is very *zen*. This service in particular does involve double exfoliating–which is the only part that I felt some sensitivity, although it only lasted for maybe 30 seconds.
Ultimately, if you want a full “spa” relaxing experience in your facial service, this one rocked my socks off.
A few other services that are widly common and loved include:
Okay, now this is a very important part of the conversation. Most spa’s will offer “add-on’s” or “enhancements” to their services. This can be anything from a foot rub to a dermaplane. Offerings will vary. BUT, everywhere should offer what’s called a “dermaplane”. You can do this by itself or in addition to a facial service.
As far as I’m concerned, the dermaplane is a non-negotiable. Dermaplaning is where they use a medical grade scalpel to remove (shave off) any peach fuzz and dead skin that sits on the surface of your face and neck. Now, do not let this intimidate you. 1) It’s not painful, at worst, you feel some slight irritation in certain areas, but it’s gone within minutes. 2) Despite what some have come to believe, your hair DOES NOT grow back darker. When hair is shaved, it grows back the exact same color it was before. This is a wide misconception. Dermaplanes are essential from where I stand.
Aside from that, I personally don’t opt for any other additions. But if you see something that sounds fab, request it!
In an effort to show you the power of medical-grade skincare (a conversation for another day) and regular facial treatments, here are a few pictures of my own skin journey over just the past six months. In general, I’ve never had too high-maintenance of skin. I get occasional break-outs, have some fine lines around my eyes, and a lot of dryness. So far, my skin has had its ups and downs, but overall, I am so happy with how much it has improved. And it’s only going to get better with time.
You’ll notice at first my skin had a lot of redness, somewhat dull sheen, and sporadic break-outs. Then, I had a random allergic reaction to something–what it was? No clue. But I wanted to illustrate how even if things are out of control, you can course-correct with quality skincare. Next are photos of my skin *immediately* after first the Hydrafacial, then the Yon-Ka facial. And when I say immediately, I mean, the second I got to my car after the service. That’s why you’ll notice some mild redness from irritation–all of which clears up within an hour for me. Then photos of my skin on a regular day now–it’s so much more hydrated, my redness is under control, and breakouts are few and far between these days. Lastly, and my personal favorite, what my makeup looks like after a dermaplane. Smooth as a baby’s bum!
As always, thanks for being here and I look forward to seeing each other more frequently! And if you try a facial and have input, I’d love to hear how your experience went.