A Guide To Great Facials

portrait of a young woman getting a facial

(BlackDoctor.org) — No matter how well you take care of your skin at home, there’s always a benefit to be had from getting the full facial treatment at a professional beauty spa. These days, keeping your skin in top shape with frequent facials doesn’t mean spending big bucks on a regular basis.

The Perfect Facial
You know when you’ve had a first-rate facial: your skin is radiant, your complexion is blemish-free, and should feel and look clean. Unfortunately, not all facials have such happy endings. In general, your first step to a fabulous facial is to get one from a licensed esthetician with special training in skin care.

Consultation
Before a treatment, an esthetician should ask you detailed questions about skin, about your diet, exercise regimen, and any medication you might be on. You’ll also be asked what products you’re currently using, and what results you would like from the facial.

Choose your facial
You can choose from many different facial treatments including masks, peels and toners. Once the facial is complete, the esthetician offers a treatment to moisturize and protect your skin.

Variations on the European facial include the “mini-facial” – cleansing without extractions. Add vitamin C, and you have an “age defense” facial, “oxygen facial” is a mist of pure oxygen and when special collagen sheets are placed on the skin, it’s an “collagen facial.”

Steam
A good esthetician will spend only five minutes extracting blackheads and/or whiteheads, and will spend some time steaming your skin. Why? This helps soften the skin. It’s important to remember, though, that steaming should never last longer than 5-10 minutes.

Cleanse, exfoliate, massage
Next comes a cleansing process and analysis of your skin. Then the esthetician will refine and exfoliate your skin and give you a massage. Exfoliation is the removal of dead skin cells that cling to the skin’s outermost surface. When done correctly, exfoliation leaves the skin smoother and fresher looking.

Look good, feel great
A facial should never hurt! You should never leave with inflamed or blotchy skin. After getting a facial you should feel rejuvenated and relaxed. Your skin will look and feel great.

Note: Ideally, get a facial every four weeks because that’s how long it takes the skin to regenerate. You may need it more frequently if you have acne problems. A facial usually starts around $80 at a day spa, though, at exclusive spas or hotels they may cost much more.

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