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French fried: Galvanic currents give you a natural face-lift for 72 hours


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There are good reasons for wanting to look great. If only briefly. Especially if this reason is going to be documented and available forever. High-school reunions would be one reason. An appearance on the Today Show another. Heck, maybe also a wedding. These occasions make a person who understands her own vanity buckle and pay $350 for something that, unlike a hot pair of shoes, she can’t trot around in all year. I’m talking about a temporary—as in 72 hours—face-lift.

When I met Aida Bicaj a handful of years ago for an article in Luxury SpaFinder Magazine, and tried her skin-firming facial, a treatment that uses gentle galvanic currents to tone facial muscles, I was too young to think I was researching it for myself. Times have changed. Well, time has changed me. Now her red-carpet treatment I keep as an Ace up my sleeve, if only because it worked. (And because it didn’t cross into scary medical-spa territory.)

While facial acupuncture is part of my natural anti-aging repertoire, its effects are subtler. In fact, I’m not sure when I first notice its results. But I need to get needled every two or three weeks, since that’s about the length of time I look well-rested. The acupuncture sessions definitely improve my skin wellness, while galvanic-current treatments with Bicaj just make me look great. And they do it fast.

The galvanic stimulation feels a bit like your physical therapist’s TENS unit (not uncomfortable, just tingly), only the applicator is a sponge soaked in Biologique Recherche skin-care products. (They’re quite good, and truly fragrance-free, which is a mixed blessing.) Bicaj systematically moves the sponges around your face.

As the first facialist to bring the machine over from France, she knows how to get you results. Indeed, at halftime, she holds up a mirror so you can see the effects yourself—a toned, taut jawline; a youthful apple-shaped cheek; an eyebrow perched back on the brow bone—on one side of your face. The other still untouched half droops in assent of her job well done.

Bicaj says the Biologique Recherche Remodeling Face Machine is a workout for the skin, since the muscles are activated. But for me, it’s really more of a butt kicking when I need to step it up a notch. “After the treatment your complexion is glowing, firmer, and looks great naturally. There’s no need for makeup,” says Bicaj. And because I know what she says is true, it’s a treatment that, from time to time, is totally worth paying for.

Aida Bicaj, $350 for the remodeling facial, Institut de Beauté, 61 East 75th Street, Suite 1F, aidabicaj.com

Would you pay for a natural face-lift (or similar treatment) that lasted three days? Tell us, here!