Fabulous Facials For All Faces
We go behind the masks, steaming, sloughing and pampering to find out which facials are best for all faces…
Facials are a luxury. For some women, they’re a luxury they ‘can’t live without’, to brighten dull and dingy skin – or to plump it up before an important event.
Fabulous Facials For All Faces
Right now, there’s a beauty salon boom in facials for younger as well as older women. In mid-life, we’re supposed to have more money – and (allegedly) more leisure – to indulge ourselves. And when we look in the mirror on a bad day and start to fret about lines that didn’t seem to be there last week, a time-defying salon treatment can be extremely seductive. But not all facials are created equal. And not every skin will benefit. So here’s what you should know before you put yourself in a beauty therapist’s hands.
First of all, remember that no once-in-a-while treatment can make a significant long-term impact – although it can whisk away drab-looking dead skin cells, leaving your skin looking brighter and (depending on the ingredients) temporarily ‘tighter’, or ‘lifted’. It’s what you do to your skin on a daily basis – religiously cleansing, very lightly exfoliating moisturizing and applying sun protection – which makes the long – term difference.
However, in a normal skincare regime, there is a place for facials, If people want a nice pampered experience and they have fairly normal skin, they will not be any problem if they undergo regular facials. But even people with normal skin are advised to wait six weeks between facials, simply because too much of anything like intense cleansing or even too vigorous massage- can irritate the skin.
Anyone with inflamed acne, rosacea or skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, should avoid facials, as they may aggravate the condition.
If you’re suffering an infection – such as impetigo or herpes – you should also forego a facial, for the time being.
Women with sensitive skin- which is often a problem for menopausal women – should also be very cautious about facials. For such persons, they should be ‘patch test’ done before facial. They can apply the products they’re going to use on your face to an out-of-the-way area behind your ear, to establish there is no reaction.
The vast majority of mature skins, should not be steamed – a procedure which is still integral to many facials. Ask before facial if there’s steaming involved and say you want to skip that step, Don’t let a beauty therapist try to persuade you; steaming can lead to broken capillaries. (And in women suffering hot flushes, it can be extremely uncomfortable.) The only mature skins which can be safely steamed, are the 2% of the population with sallow, tough, Mediterranean-type skin, which needs stimulation.
Most facials consist of cleansing, exfoliation, massage, extraction, a mask and a finishing dab of moisturizer before you go out into the world.
If you use Retin-A or Retinova, make sure to tell the therapist beforehand; these skins should not be exfoliated at all as they have already been thinned by these prescription creams.
Anyone with a tendency to broken capillaries should also ask for exfoliation to be skipped.
AHAs – alpha-hydroxy fruit acids – can also be used as chemical exfoliants, as an alternative to the ‘grainy’ kind of scrub; again, these should all be avoided by any woman with sensitive skin.
One step that makes many of us particularly uncomfortable is ‘extraction’, or squeezing of the pores to remove blackheads and clean out clogged pores.
This should only ever be done to the warmed skin, and manual squeezing, which is commonplace, makes dermatologists blanch. Sterilized implements are by far superior to the two-finger technique.
Dull skins almost always need a hydrating mask, except in rare cases of oily skin.
Above all, the expert’s tips, don’t be bossed around. So if, during any part of the treatment, you don’t like what’s being done to your face – or you feel claustrophobic – communicate that to the facialist and ask her to move right along to the next step. If you follow these guidelines you should emerge glowing beautifully.