Professional Facial Treatments – Should you or shouldn’t you?

In some parts of the world, notably France, East and West coast America, a regular monthly or bi monthly professional facial treatment is a grooming essential.

Here in the UK however, facials are generally seen more as a treat for the majority of women – something to indulge in if you have a spa weekend away or a birthday celebration. Anecdotally, the percentage of women who have a regular monthly facial is tiny and there are various reasons for this – time, cost, access, knowledge and previous experiences. So whenever a new clients walk through my door, I will always question the purpose of their visit and whether they are looking for a long term commitment as this will influence the treatment and the advice I provide.

When should I have a facial treatment?

You can always tell the difference in the skin of someone who has regular  facial treatments and someone who doesn’t. 

If you can commit to a facial monthly, then do! 

Sometimes if there is an on-going issue you may need weekly or fortnightly treatments so bear that in mind. In the same breath, there are certain skin conditions that you need to leave 4 – 6 weeks in between treatments so that they skin can heal and strengthen between each treatment.

If monthly is too high a commitment but you still want to see the results of healthy skin, then quarterly is a good option, in addition to using high quality homecare products too. Sadly, a six monthly or yearly facial won’t make much difference to your skin health. Results come from consistency.

Which facial treatment should I have?

This is something I am able to determine following a skin and lifestyle consultation and actually seeing your skin in person, without make up. The aim is to give you the best treatment and advice each time you visit, so the actual facial treatment may also be different on each visit. At times, the intensity of the treatment can change – you may need to step up a gear perhaps to achieve better results. Other times, we may have achieved the current goal, so we need to switch to a maintenance programme. Either way, the aim is to positively progress your skin health journey taking into account changes to your skin and lifestyle as we go along.

How much will a facial treatment cost me?

When you see a professional skin therapist, you are making an investment in your skin health.

The answer to this question goes hand in hand with how often should I get a facial? What can YOU personally afford?

It is best to be clear from the onset so that you don’t have to end your treatment course half way through. It is better to have a quarterly facial treatment and put some money on great homecare products than to have a treatment every month without any thought for at home products, so don’t separate the two when budgeting. Also some clinics offer packages that work out cheaper than if you book separate appointments, so it’s worth asking about.

Be clear about what you can afford. I will always ask you about your budget as it helps when designing both the treatment and aftercare programme for you. I have clients who have a full whack top dollar treatment every quarter, and have express treatments in between to stay on top of things. The last thing I want is for anyone to walk away feeling embarrassed that they can’t afford their homecare or they’ve spent their rent money and are now in a panic!

Who should I go to for my facial treatment?

It goes without saying that you should see a professional at all times. They have taken the time and money to invest in training and continuous professional development to ensure they are at the forefront of skin health therapies. Importantly, they are happy to show you those credentials.

Some therapists focus a lot on machine work e.g. lasers, microdermabrasion, some focus on metabolic and chemical peels – using a variety of natural and enhanced acids to exfoliate and stimulate the skin, others are very much more hands on focusing a lot on massage and lymphatic drainage. My treatments focus on rejuvenating and stimulating the skin using metabolic chemical peels.  

Also what type of products do you want used on your skin? Do you want products that are certified organic and more naturally led? Or are you not too fussed about ingredients, so long as you see results? There are therapists who sit on different sides of the fence so it’s worth asking questions around the product for treatment.

In the age of social media, it is worthy to note that just because a therapist has a glossy online persona doesn’t make them immediately qualified to treat your skin. Spend time choosing a therapist wisely. If you are a woman of colour, asks questions about the their experience in treating dark skin.

Should I have a quick fix facial treatment?

Healthy skin takes time. You will not get healthy skin after one facial treatment so it is important to be realistic. Any therapist worth their salt will manage your expectations and explain to you that you are on a step-by-step partnership journey where they will do their bit in clinic and you keep up your end of the bargain at home with good skincare habits and products.

You may see a good result after one treatment but to get your skin always feeling and looking healthy and radiant for longer in between treatments, you will need to have consistency to your appointments. Going in for a one off aggressive treatment is more likely to cause harm than do your skin any good.

Beware of online offers and clinic promotions that sound to good to be true. There’s usually a catch somewhere and you don’t want the evidence displayed all over you face with a botched job or being left disappointment as your dreams of flawless skin didn’t come true after one treatment.

Dija Ayodele