Are Facials good for your skin? Everything you need to know

Facials are the oldest and best beauty treatment. Today, many facial treatments are out there, promising people to rejuvenate, moisturize their skin like no other. But the question still stands, “Are facials good for your skin?”. Before we can answer that, we’ll need to look at a few other aspects of the question itself. What […]

Facials are the oldest and best beauty treatment. Today, many facial treatments are out there, promising people to rejuvenate, moisturize their skin like no other. But the question still stands, “Are facials good for your skin?”. Before we can answer that, we’ll need to look at a few other aspects of the question itself.

What is a facial?

A facial is any technique that aims to improve the health and overall appearance of the skin on your face. Facials tackle many issues, including acne, scarring, hyperpigmentation, hypopigmentation, uneven skin tone, uneven skin texture, clogged pores, and many more. They can accomplish this via several different means. To quote a few different types of facial treatment, there are:

  • Classic facials
  • Acupuncture facials
  • Aromatherapy facials
  • Dermaplaning facials
  • PRP facials
  • Microneedling facials
  • Electric Current facials
  • Chemical Peels
  • Oxygen facials
  • Lymphatic Massage
  • Laser Resurfacing facials
  • The HydraFacial
  • Ultrasound facials
  • Microdermabrasion

Each of these treatments tackles a different set of problems. While all of them help with skin damage of some sort, each one will do so based on the chemicals, equipment, and procedures involved in the treatment, and no two treatments are the same. Some will be simple processes with very specific benefits, like electric facials, targeted towards aging signs such as wrinkles and skin lines. Others will be complex procedures with widespread benefits, like the Hydrafacial, which is a patented multistep process that positively impacts everything from skin damage to pigmentation issues.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at 3 of the most trending and commonly known items on the above list and discuss the sort of benefits associated with each of them.

Classic Facials

What are they?

The Classic facial, also known as a European facial, is a staple of beauty routines that goes back decades if not centuries. While what exactly constitutes a classical facial will change from salon to salon, the basic components of the process boil down to the same individual components. The process will generally start with steaming, followed by exfoliation, extraction, a facial massage, the application of a mask, and finally applying a cream or serum to soothe the skin unearthed by the procedure.

Since there are so many steps involved and so many different methods to accomplish each step, a classic facial can be fine-tuned to focus on the most relevant issues. For example, for a person with extensive signs of photoaging, the treatment may focus on using a mask that’s formulated to minimize the appearance of wrinkes and an extensive exfoliation procedure that excavates them, allowing for the introduction of fresh collagen.

The Pros:

Classic Facials sport many benefits;

  • The treatment gives instant results. By the time you leave the salon, you should already notice a visible improvement in the tone and tightness of your skin.
  • There’s no associated downtime. Drawing on the last point, not only do you look better immediately, but there’s no period of purging involved. You can schedule a European facial on the day of an event and wear out your best makeup without having to think twice.
  • The procedure isn’t invasive. Even the most extensive classical facial sticks to the surface of your skin, so you don’t have to worry about adverse effects or damage to the overall health of your skin.
  • It’s safe for just about everyone. While certain skin conditions are counter-indicated towards even basic facials, the average consumer bears no risk when undergoing one. They’re also a viable option for pregnant women and people with sensitive skin.
  • They tackle a wide variety of issues. We already discussed the multitude of skin issues that classic facials treat, so they’re a good bet for people looking for a “one size fits all” treatment to improve the appearance of their skin.

The Downside:

Classic facials are a very generalized treatment and one that is mostly superficial. This means that they might not offer the same results to different people and that some people may not notice much of an improvement if they’re going into one based on the results they’ve seen around them.

While your esthetician will use creams and mask that suit your skin type, the facial itself is essentially the same for everyone and thus can only promise slight improvements to more visible skin defects like deep acne scars. Furthermore, the typical post-facial glow (along with the other positive effects of a classic) doesn’t usually last longer than a week or so, so they offer no real long-term value (at least not as an isolated treatment).

Chemical Peels

What are they?

A Chemical Peel is a skin resurfacing procedure that utilizes acidic solutions to burn away layers of dead skin and clear obstructions in your pores. The potential benefits and the risks involved depend upon the seriousness of the issue you’re trying to tackle, with superficial peels only dealing with light scarring and uneven pigmentation. In contrast, deeper peels cater to people with serious signs of photoaging and can potentially take years of age and sun damage off your face. The downtime and recovery period also increases as you consider stronger peels. Superficial peels are often referred to as “lunchtime peels” for being able to show near-immediate results. In contrast, deep peels are followed by a 3 – 6 month recovery period (or potentially even more). The process of recovery itself can be painful.

As deep peels also use very strong chemicals, they also bear the most risk of an adverse reaction and can’t typically be conducted in a non-clinical environment. On the other hand, some superficial peels can even be applied at home in what amounts to a 15-minute procedure.

The Pros:

  • The benefits are there to last. When you get a medium peel, you’re looking at one procedure that can help you permanently improve the appearance of your skin. Whether it’s scarring, acne breakouts, pigment issues, or anything else, the damage you’re undoing won’t come back on its own. Even superficial peels, which are generally not considered a long-term solution to most skin problems, can be repeated to achieve long-lasting results.
  • The procedure can be tailored to the needs of your skin. Some people may be at excess risk of post-inflammatory pigmentation or pigment damage from a chem peel. However, your esthetician or skin care professional can formulate a mixture that relies upon weaker acids, thereby reducing the risks while maintaining the same prospect of reward.
  • The procedure is non-invasive. Chemical peels don’t involve any needles or cutting, so they’re still an easier option to consider for people who are new to aesthetic medicine and treatments.
  • The results speak for themselves. A chemical peel can provide deep exfoliation and cleansing, which penetrate deep and promote the growth of fresh, flawless skin free from keratin build-ups, bumps, and rough patches. They tackle many different kinds of imperfections and damage and do so more effectively than just your average facial.

The Downside:

Chemical Peels sport some great benefits for consumers, but at the same time, they’re also one of the finickier forms of facial treatment. They’re not suitable for darker skin types (Fitzpatrick Skin types I – III), and the darker a patient’s skin tone, the more risk they carry with regards to post-op pigmentation issues. Chemical Peels are also not an option for people with various skin conditions. In the worst cases, they can exacerbate preexisting problems, such as an active acne breakout.

Deep Peels are a particularly risky procedure that utilizes strongly reactive substances like a phenol-castor oil solution to completely penetrate the epidermis. As this can potentially release phenol into the bloodstream, the risk of cardiac arrhythmia is high. This is why deep peel procedures usually require cardiac monitoring equipment.

Because of the nature of chemical exfoliation and the emergence of new skin, your skin may also react harshly to a chemical within the peel formulation, resulting in redness, swelling, and other issues that can potentially persist for weeks.

Dermaplaning

What is it?

Dermaplaning is a procedure that utilizes a razor-like tool to effectively scrapes away dead and excess skin particles. This resulted in even skin and cleared pores. Dermaplaning even doubles as an effective hair-removal technique, one that can potentially reduce the visibility of face and neck hair over time.

The Pros:

  • It’s a manual process. Unlike chemical peels, which burn away impurities and imperfections, dermaplaning physically scrapes them away, meaning there’s no risk of an adverse chemical reaction or a rash.
  • There’s no downtime or recovery period. As a minimally invasive procedure that is quick and painless, dermaplaning doesn’t have much of an impact on your skin, meaning you can go about your day as usual afterward. The process itself takes no more than an hour or so on just the face, meaning you can schedule it anytime.
  • It pairs well with other forms of treatment. Because it smooths out the skin’s surface, getting rid of even the tiny hairs, or “peach fuzz”, that line your face, dermaplaning can improve the results you get from your makeup, as well as those of other skincare techniques. This is what helps make dermaplaning so popular as part of other treatments.
  • It does not lead to thicker hair growth. The problem with most hair removal techniques that don’t directly target the follicles is that they can actually stimulate the follicles, leading to the hair coming back thicker and more prominently visible than before. While dermaplaning is counter-indicative towards conditions like hirsutism and PCOS that cause excessive hair growth, it does not promote hair regrowth in candidates without these conditions.
  • It’s suited to all skin types. Dermaplaning bears no risk of pigmentation damage and is suitable for all skin types.

The Downside:

Dermaplaning is a short-lived procedure, and the benefits only last you anywhere up to a week or 10 days, if that. The effectiveness of the procedure can also depend heavily on your individual hair growth cycle, and results may vary between multiple trips to the salon.

All of these factors make it so that dermaplaning is an expensive alternative to other manual exfoliation and hair removal techniques, especially ones that may be more expensive for a single procedure but produce longer lasting results. And while you can repeat the procedure to maintain your results, excessive dermaplaning can be damaging towards the skin.

Lastly, just because the procedure doesn’t excessively damage the skin’s surface, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t a need for caution after your op. Dermaplaning leaves you more vulnerable to irritants and harmful particles in the air, as well as to sunlight.

In conclusion

Different facial treatments offer you different benefits, and your esthetician or skin care professional can help you fine-tune your process to deliver better results for your case. That having been said, they’re not a miracle treatment, and they can’t fix more serious skin issues.

Each facial treatment comes with its own drawbacks or disadvantages, so consulting with a dermatologist beforehand is a must before you opt for a certain treatment (especially if it’s something like micro-needling or a chemical peel).

If you’d like to know more about the different kinds of facials available commercially, consider dropping by our location if you’re local to Texas or in town for a visit. Not only do we offer some of the best facials in the Dallas-Rockwall area, but we’re also dedicated to helping people make the right skincare decisions with all the information made available to them beforehand.