Do you love to go to the spa for a facial? I know I do. It’s one of my all-time favorite things ever. In fact, I go as often as possible, but sometimes my wallet gets very unhappy at the cost. Also, this time of year my aging skin definitely needs weekly, if not daily, TLC, which ends up being way, way more than I can afford. So why not compromise–go to the spa as often as possible for monthly facials or microdermabrasion (thanks to my monthly membership at Massage Envy) and perfect my at-home facial for the weeks in between. This way my wallet stays happy (and the hubby) and my skin looks great throughout the drying winter months. So today I wanted to share with you some of the products that I’ve been loving and give you a few options (from moderate to inexpensive) under each step of a home facial.
(So I definitely want to remind you that I am in no way any type of skin expert, such as an Esthetician, but I am a skin enthusiast and get facials very often. These recommendations are just my opinion after participating in many facials over the years. Also, my skin type is normal to dry and these are the products that work best on my skin.)
As we age, our skin tends to get dryer, duller, and thinner. We start to lose collagen. Collagen is what gives your skin its thick, plump appearance. We also lose elastin, which makes it snap back quickly. Exposure to natural elements and our facial expressions creates lines and creases increasing our appearance of aging.
The first step of an at-home facial is Cleansing. My esthetician recommends cleansing twice to remove any impurities. She also recommends using a cream or oil cleanser for maximum hydration. My favorite oil cleansers are Tatcha Pure One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil and Kopari Coconut Cleansing Oil. When cleansing always use your fingertips for massaging in a circular motion, try not to scrub your face, and rinse with luke-warm water, not hot.
The next step in the facial process is one of the most important, Exfoliation, or removing the dead cells from the top layer of your skin. Exfoliation can either be mechanical or chemical. Mechanical exfoliation would involve the use of a brush like the Clarisonic, or a face scrub such as Dr. Brandt’s Pore Perfecting Exfoliator. Both of these work great.
Chemical exfoliation use products like glycolic acid or salicylic acid. My two favorite chemical exfoliators right now are Drunk Elephant TLC Sukari Babyfacial or Yeouth Glycolic Acid Facial Peel (use code Social 20 for 20% off right now) Chemical exfoliation helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, improves collagen production, and helps to even skin tone and improve skin texture.
According to Women’s Health, how often you exfoliate depends on your skin type:
For sensitive skin: You should be extra gentle and exfoliate with a warm, wet washcloth or a mild chemical exfoliant with lower active ingredient percentages once or twice a week, max. Scrubs with beady parts usually just irritate this skin type and should be skipped.
For oily skin: Your skin has a higher tolerance for the heavy-duty stuff, says Shah, and you can exfoliate up to five times a week. Try a cleansing tool like Clarisonic by morning, and an exfoliating peel or serum by night.
For normal to combination skin: You can use either of these methods with optimal results up to three times a week.
After exfoliation, it is so important to drench your skin in hydration. For the at home step, I recommend using a Face Mask (either a sheet mask or a cream mask). I really think these are just about the greatest things ever. So at this step in your facial, pour yourself a great glass of wine, apply your face mask, and go and lie down on your bed. You are going to want to let the mask sit for at least 20 minutes. My favorite face masks at this time are Tatcha Violet C Radiant Mask or Mamonde Calendula Hydrating Mask.
Lastly, Toners, serums, and protective creams are applied. Definitely, don’t skip this step. The use of toners, serums, and moisturizers are so important following exfoliation.
Oh, how I love a good serum. A serum is a lightweight moisturizer that absorbs into the skin. You would apply a serum prior to a moisturizer to boost the hydrating effects of your moisturizer. Two of my favorites are Caudalie Vinosource SOS Thirst Quenching Serum and Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Serum.
The sky is the limit with moisturizers and there are so many out there that are great. Moisturizers are important to help your skin maintain its balance. When applying moisturizer, take a quarter-sized amount on your fingertips and gently rub the product upwards, which aids in lifting and plumping the skin. Work from the outer face inward. A few of my favorites are Tatcha The Water Cream and Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Glow Moisturizer.
Last but not least, do not forget the holy grail–eye cream. My all-time favorite eye creams are La Mer The Eye Concentrate and Murad Renewing Eye Cream. It’s very important to use a light touch when applying eye cream. Avoid pulling or tugging motions on the delicate undereye area, and instead, pick up a small amount and dab it on with a light tapping motion.
I hope you enjoy giving yourself an at-home facial as much as I do. I also hope that this gives you a guideline as to how to pamper your skin without ever leaving the comfort of your own home. Remember, these are just the products that I really like and the products you might select should be based on your skin type (my skin type is normal to dry).
(This post contains affiliate links, meaning that at no extra cost to you I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. None of this is sponsored and these products were purchased by me. I just love beauty products and love to talk about what I like. To read LouLouSucre’s full disclosure policy please click here.)