The Basic Steps of a Facial
People get facials for different reasons. A facial is essentially a multi-step skin treatment that is one of the best ways to nourish and pamper your skin. A facial is the second most popular spa treatment after a massage. Here are the basic steps to a facial:
1. Cleansing. Usually the best esthetician starts by wrapping your hair to keep product off of it. The first step is thorough cleansing using cotton pads.
2. Skin Analysis. Depending on whether you have make-up on, the esthetician might look at your skin under a bright lamp first, or covers your eyes and looks at your skin through a brightly lit magnifying lamp. She is determining your basic skin type (dry, oily, combination, sensitive or normal) and skin conditions (acne, blackheads, whiteheads, aging, sun-damage, dehydration, etc.) The esthetician then chooses the appropriate products and treatments.
3. Steam. The best facials use a machine that directs a thin vapor of warm steam to your face. This is relaxing and helps softens up any blackheads and whiteheads to be extracted. If you have very sensitive skin, the esthetician may not use steam. The sweat it produces will clear your pores.
4. Exfoliation using a mechanical or chemical exfoliant. Mechanical exfoliants have a gritty texture that rubs away the surface dead skin cells. This type of exfoliation usually happens during the steam treatment step. Chemical exfoliation uses enzymes and acids to loosen the bond between skin cells. A gentle enzyme treatment can be done during the steam.
5. Extraction. This is the removal of blackheads or whiteheads. People have different pain tolerance for extractions. To receive the best result of your facial, you may want to tough through the discomfort.
6. Facial massage. This in my opinion is the best part of any facial, using classic strokes like effleurage to both relax you and stimulate your skin and facial muscles.
7. Facial Mask is targeted to your skin type (dry, oily, combination, sensitive, mature) and condition. During the facial, the esthetician will likely stay in the room and give you a scalp massage or some other service.
8. Final application of toner, serums, moisturizer, and sunscreen.