5 posts tagged "Facial"
Anyone who has experienced a facial with Isabelle Bellis firsthand would likely agree that it’s a transformative experience. And a lengthy one, at that—her signature facial treatments, which incorporate plenty of circulation-stimulating massage, usually hover around the two-hour mark. Even her extractions somehow don’t seem as painful an ordeal. And Bellis herself is always full of helpful skincare advice, so we couldn’t think of anyone better to offer up some guidance on how our skin can best, ahem, weather the extreme changes in temperature that seem par for the course this winter. Here, five tips to abide by.
WASH WITH CARE
“The skin needs to be cleaned in a more gentle way during the winter. As the skin of the face and neck get finer, it is more vulnerable to the cold weather and the heat in our homes. It’s vital to retain the good elements that the skin produces in order to protect the complexion. An aggressive foaming gel can damage and dry the skin, so even if one has oily skin, it is better to clean with a mild formula in order to keep the delicate skin fabric intact. A milky cleanser and toner or an extremely gentle foam cleanser is preferred.”
SHELF THE ACIDS
“Limit the amount of acidic products and treatments the face and neck are exposed to. Those who have fragile skin should opt to use these kinds of products in the spring or fall instead.”
WATCH YOUR WATER
“Try to limit the use of tap water on your face. If you use product that needs to be rinsed off with water, I recommend finishing with a spray of thermal water—I prefer the La Roche-Posay Spray Thermal for its beneficial properties and wonderful dispersion—to rid the skin of hard elements like chlorine, calcareous deposits, etc. We also have a tendency to take longer and warmer showers in the winter, and it’s important to avoid directing too much of the shower’s spray directly on the décolletage, as it is a very sensitive area where capillaries can react easily. Be sure to dry your body in a gentle way and not to rub with your towel. If you take a bath, apply oil to your body before you soak or add a few drops of oil to your tub.”
WARM UP YOUR DIET
“Avoid too much raw food, as it has a tendency to create dryness in the system that shows up on the skin. Since the body needs more energy to break it down, you may feel tired and less energetic. If you juice, make sure you have warm, balanced, healthy meals to compensate.”
ADD SOME OIL
“Oil is for any age and any type of skin, from combination to extremely dry. Apply an oil-based product to create an extra barrier and protect the capillaries from the cold. L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Oil is fantastic for winter. It absorbs rapidly without leaving skin greasy. And if you’re very dry, top it with a moisturizing cream for extra protection and nourishment.”
Joanna Czech, a gifted aesthetician with a long roster of A-list clients like Cate Blanchett, Christy Turlington Burns, and Kate Winslet is bringing her passion for skincare to La Mer. The brand tapped Czech, who hails from Poland, to create an exclusive facial massage technique (that felt akin to a deep tissue massage for the complexion) to pair with its Lifting Contour Serum—the company’s newest antiaging product infused with perennial brown algae, blue algae, and marine peptides to lift and tighten. The treatment is available at the brand’s partner spas, such as La Réserve Ramatuelle in France, and all doors where La Mer has a treatment room (like Bergdorf Goodman in New York). At home, this facial translates into an application ritual in which you join your thumb and first two fingers together and gently press-and-release in a gravity-defying upward motion from the base of the neck to your forehead. “I have clients who do this for only 15 seconds on each side of the face, while some may linger for 10 minutes,” said Czech, who herself keeps the daily routine to less than a minute. She has decades of experience under her belt, but described the interview process with La Mer as “intense.” Czech must have put her best face forward, however, because she made the cut and now has the distinct honor of being the first such collaborator for the brand. The learning curve should be easy, though. “I’ve been using La Mer on my own skin for 18 years,” she said.
La Mer Lifting Contour Serum, $290, lamer.com
Microdermabrasion may be old hat for the hardened facial junkie hell-bent on a skin-perfecting fix every four weeks or so. But even the most jaded of skin-sloughers might just perk up at the promises backing the HydraFacial, a relatively new kid on the block in terms of treatments. HydraFacial’s technology uses a series of plastic “blades” (not nearly as frightening as it sounds) in place of the diamond-tipped tools traditionally used in dermabrasion. When the tool is placed against skin, a vacuum clears pores, scrapes away dead cells, and delivers a cocktail of complexion-reviving ingredients simultaneously.
The first step to exponentially more fabulous skin is a cleansing/exfoliation hybrid, featuring the brand’s proprietary Activ-4 serum. Lactic acid banishes dead skin cells and brightens, while glucosamine helps to soften lines and whisk away hyperpigmentation. Next up is a glycolic-salicylic peel, aggressive enough to visibly brighten, but gentle enough that I wasn’t too red in the face to head straight back to the office post-treatment. Extractions are handled not by squeezing but by using suction, and the Beta-HD serum with salicylic acid and honey extract softens pore-clogging impurities and combats any resulting dryness. The pièce de résistance is Vortex-Fusion—not, in fact, related in any way to the Star Wars franchise, but a potent, antioxidant-packed serum that hydrates, plumps, and serves as a buffer against environmental foes. Optional add-ons include lymphatic drainage or LED light therapy, but after thirty minutes of standard HydraFacial magic, you may not even need them—or your foundation.
See hydrafacial.com for more information.
Thirty uninterrupted minutes? A precious commodity in my pre-fashion week world. So when faced with the choice of a fourth viewing of the 30 Rock pilot or the chance to repent for some of my summer-skin sins at the hands of a pro, I’m inclined to go with the latter.
Enter Cecilia Wong’s Rose Power Peel.
Wong, who opened her eponymous spa in New York’s Flatiron District in 2009, takes a strictly holistic tack to skincare that’s at once simple and luxurious. It’s earned both the salon and her all-natural skincare line a loyal following.
Upon arriving (faintly grimy and fatigued) at her Fifth Avenue space, I was greeted by the enviably dewy Wong, and soon settled into a quietly chic treatment room. After a gentle cleansing, she slathered on a luscious, freshly made rose yogurt peel with a heady (in the best way) scent. Her antioxidant-packed proprietary blend also boasts doses of vitamins A, C, D, and E. Post-peel, Wong used a cool jade roller to lightly massage my skin. I’ll confess to having drifted off during a few minutes of LED therapy. The brilliant light (also available as a solo treatment) spurs collagen production and cell regeneration, and generally leaves skin looking better. Next up? Used in conjunction with soothing aloe gel—a little oxygen therapy, delivered via a steady stream. As the final step, Wong applied a velvety, balmlike hyaluronic acid serum to plump and hydrate.
By the time I was off the table, my formerly sun-parched skin was clear and glowing in a way it hasn’t been in months, summer transgressions all but gone. And that sure trumps an umpteenth viewing of 30 Rock.
[If you can't make it to the salon for a treatment yourself, keep an eye out for Wong's rose toner, due out in late September.]
The Rose Power Peel Facial is available from October 1-November 30 at the Cecilia Wong Skincare Salon, 224 5th Avenue, New York, NY, www.ceciliawongskincare.com.
This column features weekly tips and advice from a revolving cast of industry leaders, on hand to discuss your beauty dilemmas, from blemishes to Botox. To submit a question, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
I feel like every time I go to a spa, I’m bombarded with add-ons that I don’t even know if I need and seem kind of bogus. Are “pure oxygen” and “electro-current” treatments worth the extra money?
I believe in a straightforward, basic facial, but as a pioneer in the medi-spa industry I also definitely believe in the benefits of new technologies. At our clinic, we frequently add LED lights to our facials, because the light can help calm inflammation after a client’s skin has been cleansed, extracted, and exfoliated. Also, certain technologies can combine and work together for even better results. We love to add microcurrent onto a facial when a client has a special event because while the facial alone can create an incredible glow and radiance, the microcurrent can achieve something entirely different, lifting the brow and plumping the cheeks. So, if it’s an add-on that your skin can benefit from, yes, it’s worth it. But if it seems bogus, then maybe it is. My advice is to ask questions and then make the decision.
The creator and director of her own medi-skin clinic in Los Angeles, Kate Somerville has spent over 15 years working with top dermatologists and cosmetic surgeons to promote the integration of skincare and medicine, helping to pioneer the field of paramedical aesthetics and lay the foundation for the medi-spa industry. A best-selling eponymous product line and cult celebrity following keep her one of the most trusted names in skincare today.