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WHY SHOULD I GET A FACIAL?

Esthetics is the application of various treatments to the skin, to maintain its health and vitality. Estheticians are trained in skin wellness, helping their clients balance oil and moisture content and achieve a healthy, youthful complexion. As well as various facial treatments (described in more detail below), they commonly also perform body treatments such as salt or sugar scrubs, moisturizing or slenderizing body wraps, hair removal techniques such as waxing or threading, and hand/foot treatments to rejuvenate the skin.

A variety of treatments and products are used to protect skin from environmental hazards and combat fine lines, wrinkles, and a dull, uneven skin tone. Estheticians are also skilled in managing conditions such as acne, rosacea, eczema, and dry skin, to name just a few. And finally, skin care treatments are wonderfully relaxing and rejuvenating. If smooth, healthy skin is your goal, visiting a skin care professional can benefit you.

WHY HAVE A FACIAL?

A facial can be considered a vital step towards healthy skin. Our skin is the largest organ in the body which performs functions such as protecting from invasion by foreign substances as well as a mechanism for excretion of toxins from the body. Facials typically include a cleansing procedure, a massage, the application of a facemask and moisturising.

Having a regular facial assists the circulatory system and stimulates the skin. Some argue that it may also help slow down premature aging by increasing awareness of skin care.Keeping your skin hydrated will help keep the skin moist and stop dehydration. Most of all facials are extremely relaxing and great (in combination with massage) for de-stressing.

The massage, which is an important part of a facial, helps blood circulation, which in turn aids lymphatic drainage (the removal of toxins and waste from the body). A massage also relaxes the facial muscles and is very important to delay the onset of wrinkles. The application of a facemask in the end helps tone and clarifies the skin. Facemasks are also used to treat dry skin.

What’s the difference between a dermatologist and an aesthetician?

Dermatology is a branch of the medical profession, practiced by licensed physicians who specialize in disorders of the skin. Aesthetic practice specifically excludes diagnosis, prescription, or any other service, procedure, or therapy that requires a medical license. If you’re being treated by a dermatologist, your aesthetician can provide complementary and support therapies. In addition, aestheticians are trained to recognize early signs of many medical conditions affecting the skin, and will refer you to a dermatologist in such a case.

Techniques and products

Techniques used by aestheticians include facial steaming, exfoliation, waxing, pore cleansing, extraction, and chemical peels.

Some common therapies:

Chemical peel: An exfoliation process, very effective in treating a large range of skin concerns such as aging, sun damage, acne, mild scarring, improving overall skin brightness and evening skin tone. Peels can be light, moderate or deep. Light peels require no down time from work or normal activities. Moderate peels may require a day or two of down time, and deep peels can require a week or more to allow the skin to fully heal. Estheticians who are not working in a medical setting perform light to moderate peels only. Deep peels are performed by a physican, or under a physician’s supervision, for your safety.

Exfoliation: The removal of dead skin cells manually (scrubbing, brushing, or using a system such as microdermabrasion), with a chemical peel (a product that causes dead skin cells to shed) or with an enzymatic product that digests dead skin cells.

Extraction: This is the process of deep cleansing the pores, either manually (using gloved hands and cotton or tissue around the fingers, with gentle pressure to remove the impacted pore) or using a metal extraction implement designed to clear blocked pores. This can also include the use of a lancet (a small sharp blade to lift the dead cells of the skin prior to extraction).

Facial: A facial is the most popular treatment performed by aestheticians. It is a good way for your therapist to get a good understanding of your skin prior to suggesting more aggressive treatments. A facial generally includes makeup removal and skin cleansing, exfoliation by mechanical, enzymatic or chemical means, steaming, extractions, facial massage, a treatment mask, serum/moisturizer and sunblock. For most people, facials can be scheduled every four weeks, although your therapist may recommend a different schedule based on your individual needs.

Waxing: Waxing removes unwanted hair at the root. There are two different types of waxes: hard and soft. Soft wax is for larger parts of the body like legs, back, chest and arms while hard wax is used for more sensitive areas like the face underarms and bikini.

Visiting an esthetician

During a consultation, your therapist will go over an extensive intake form, and most likely do a cleansing of the skin followed by a detailed skin analysis. This will give your therapist the information she/he needs to create an individualized treatment plan, both for a series of professional treatments and recommendations for products you can use at home.

What about home care?

Much of the success of maintaining a visible improvement after treatment depends on consistent, correct home care. Your esthetician is trained to select the products that will most benefit your skin, and to advise you on how to maintain your professional results between visits. Like medical or dental care, following the right daily regimen at home is essential if you are to get the most out of your visits to a professional.