We get a lot of questions from our spa-ers. And I’ve noticed a theme the past few days regarding skin woes: How can you rid your face of skin imperfections? These haphazards of the face include pesky blemishes from acne past, dark spots from sun damage (beaching for 9 hours seemed like a good idea at the time) and the normal wear and tear that comes with that whole “getting older” thing. So let’s get to it and nip the blemish in the face this Spa Week. Here are the three best treatments you should do to buff, peel and flash off flaws. We’ve included some of the $50 spa treatments that you can sign up for now to get the job done. More where those came from on spaweek.com. Face off!
Option 1: Microdermabrasion
Microdermabrasion is sometimes coined the “instant facelift.” It is a painless and non-invasive procedure with little recovery time. (And by recovery we mean for swelling and redness to fade.) Microdermabrasion is a broad term for the application of tiny rough grains to buff away the surface layer of skin. All of the action in microdermabrasion takes place on the stratum corneum (this is your face’s protective shield). When you remove or break up this layer, the ever-so-smart body signals this as a mild injury and the troops rush in to replace the lost skin cells with new and healthy ones. Out with the old and in with the new!
With the often unattractive stratum corneum gone, the skin’s surface is improved. The newer skin cells look and feel smoother. Skin’s imperfections, like sun damage, blemishes and fine lines, are removed. Also, without that barrier medicinal creams and lotions are more effective because the thirsty lower skin layers can soak up the active ingredients.
The $50 treatments:
- 50 Min Serum Infusing HydraSweep Microdermabrasion at Epi Center MedSpa in San Francisco, CA
- 60 Min Microdermabrasion with Intensive Deep Cleansing Facial at Essential Skin Care Day Spa – 14th Street in New York, NY
- Microdermabrasion Treatment at VITAHL Medical Aesthetics in Denver, CO
- 50 Min Diamond Microdermabrasion Facial with Organic Oxygen Mask and Lip Plumping Leaf at Water Holistic Skincare in Seattle, WA
- 60 Min Microdermabrasion with Oxygen Treatment at Skin Care by Klara in Scottsdale, AZ
Option 2: Chemical Peels
While most chemicals we use are to clean or are something with warnings, Glycolic, salicylic and lactic are types of acids that are commonly used on the face as chemical peels. During the treatment, the specific chemical is applied to small areas on the skin. These applications produce a controlled wound (sounds scarier than it is!), enabling new skin to appear. After the treatment, a reaction similar to a sunburn occurs (the severity depends on the type of peel). The new skin will show it’s face once the skin blisters and peels. Just make sure to plan accordingly so you can bring you’re A-face to that special occasion. The post chemical peel look doesn’t photograph well.
The new and regenerated skin will have an improved texture and tone than the old skin. Glycolic acid exfoliates the skin and is a great anti-aging treatment. Salicylic acid improves the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes and scarring. And the more friendly lactic peel is gentler and is good for first time users or people with sensitive skin. But don’t be afraid of the chemical peel; the pain is worth the gain.
The $50 treatments:
- Mild Chemical Peel at Flawless MedSpa in Stoneham, MA
- Alpha Hydroxy Fruit Acid Peel at at George Bacchus Salon and Spa in Potomac, MD
- Choice of Customized Peel: “Peel Away the Years” Facial Peel, Enzyme Fusion Peel, Youth Surge Glycolic Acid Peel, Lactic Acid Peel for Pre-Mature Skin or Salicylic Acid Peel for Acne Prone Oily Skin at Lazur La Vie in Nyack, NY
- 50 Min Lunchtime Chemical Peel with Discounted Upgraded Option at Princeton Center for Plastic Surgery & Medi Spa in Princeton, NJ
- Choice of Customized Chemical Peel with Hand and Neck Massage: Salicylic, Glycolic, Lactic Acid at The International Skin Care Institute in Scottsdale, AZ
Option 3: Photo Facials
Try the new wave of light waves. There are two types of photo facials with different results and different pain tolerance requirements. An IPL (intense pulsed light) treatment is a photo facial that delivers a bright blast of light at very high energy levels through a hand-held device. Warning: these can be painful. On the other end of the pain spectrum, LED (light-emitting diode) photo facials are painless, cool and relaxing. Make sure you choose the light that’s right for you.
The extreme light of IPL’s yields extreme results. The IPL photo facial is the better chose for treating brown spots, broken capillaries, spider veins, and facial redness. LED photo facials are a good choice for people who want to boost collagen or treat acne. Your skin will look better in a flash! (May require a series of flashes for best results.)
The $50 treatments:
- Complexion Brightening IPL Laser Fotofacial at Anatomy Day Spa in San Diego, CA
- IPL FotoFacial at Blue Medi Spa in Sherman Oaks, CA
- Omni Lux Photofacial at L’Essentiel Spa in Belmont, MA
- IPL Photorejuvenation for Face, Neck, Chest or Hands at Dr. Q Cosmetics in Decatur, GA
- Photo Facial at multiple Laser Cosmetica locations in New York – Read more and watch the Laser Cosmetica Photo Facial Video
Need an at-home hold-over till Spa Week? This FYSY (fix your skin yourself) skin lightening cream recipe will do your face good. Combine the juice of one lemon with one tablespoon of honey and one teaspoon of powdered milk. Heat the mixture up and stir until milk is dissolved. When cool, apply liberally to your face and neck, leaving it on for 20 minutes before rinsing off. Use daily for a month for a lightened and conditioned glow!