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Here’s Why You Need To Do a Monthly Facial
There are many reasons why you should go for a professional facial once a month.
If you ask anyone who has a hectic lifestyle 24/7, the most basic reason (and this isn’t even related to your skin health!) is you get to hide away in a dimly lit room for one to two hours, and have someone else deep cleanse your face, knead your achy jaw muscles and take care of all the sebum-clogged pores, fine lines and sunspots that have somehow found their way onto your face.
Oh, and you get to doze off to the soft strains of piped-in spa music and, if you’re really lucky, the relaxing scent of your favourite aromatherapy oils. You’re in your own world, far away from demanding bosses, bawling kids, Whatsapp chat group alerts…
But, of course, facials are more than about letting you rest in your own heated, padded cocoon with a plush terry headband around your head.
They have been around since the 1900s – though in more OMG forms. We’re talking about dodgy treatments that used scary radioactive radium masks which claimed to smooth out and brighten up skin, uncomfortable tightening wraps that promised to give sagging skin a lift, and the use of carbon monoxide and needles to remove freckles.
Today, luckily for us, facials are more professionally and safely administered and can target a host of skin concerns, from acne-prone skin to a sallow complexion (no dangerous chemicals or gases involved!).
Done once a month – also how often your skin cells go through their natural turnover cycle – they are the expert (and sometimes, even medical-standard) upgrade to your daily skincare routine because you won’t be doing as thorough a job as professional facialists with their high-tech tools and machines can. For instance, you could use your trusty pore strip every night but some stubborn plugs can only be treated with a non-invasive peel. Or you may be applying a moisturiser every day but your ultra-dehydrated skin needs a proper moisture boost from a salon-grade ampoule.
Also, the right application techniques and massage strokes can help skincare ingredients to penetrate better into skin. But let’s face it: how many of us actually have the know-how or patience to practise half an hour’s worth of upward lifting, gentle kneading and light pinching? You’ll get these (and a really good scalp and shoulder massage thrown in) with the right facialist. With some treatments, the massaging part of the facial is even administered on a more precise scale by tools like guasha “spoons” or by heated radiofrequency rollers.
In fact, facials that make use of microneedling have been proven to help drive skincare actives deeper into skin. On the contrary, when you apply a serum or moisturiser at home, the product tends to sit on the skin surface without sinking in quickly enough for certain ingredients like vitamin C and retinoids to work effectively before they are exposed to air and lose their efficacy.
And if you think about it, while you can spend just 10 minutes (okay, maybe 20 minutes if you are hardcore) on your face every day, a facial makes sure that your skin gets at least an hour of full pampering, from cleansing and extraction to masking and the infusion of anything like five to even 12 products. When you consider the sheer number of skincare products, tools and machines used, your $200 facial is really value for money.
Former women's magazine editor Pearlyn Tham bought her first foam cleanser and liquid foundation at the age of 13. More than 20 years later, she has since moved on to eye creams, liquid lipsticks and – her security blanket – sunscreens.
Not a fan of machine-aided face treatments but you prefer something more intense than your therapist’s hands? Look no further than facials that incorporate guasha techniques to promote skin radiance and firmness.
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Not keen on invasive face procedures like surgical facelifts or minimally invasive thread lifts? How about a non-invasive, needleless face-lifting treatment.