The best brightening facial I got all year long took only 30 seconds


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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’m all for taking ample time out of the day to take care of myself. I love a good long run on the weekends. And, for heaven’s sake, I say take all the hours-long eucalyptus-sprigged showers you want. (I mean, derms would say keep it to 15 minutes, but you do you, girl!) But one of my favorite indulgences of all is getting a really great facial, which is why I was bowled over when I looked back at the year-gone-by and realized that the best one I got in 2018 took a mere 30 seconds, and was performed from the comfort of my own sink. Save the “that’s what she said” jokes, my friends, this is serious business: Finally, after years of beauty editing, I found out how to do a facial at home!

As with most DIYs, it starts with the supplies, so if you want to replicate this blissful blink-of-an-eye facial, you’re going to want to procure a box of the skin-brightening Fresh Vitamin Nectar Vitamin C Glow Powder, which comes with 12 sachets. At $40 for the set, that brings the total cost for each of your individual facials down to a $3 and some change, which IMO, isn’t too shabby considering that at fancy spas they can cost upwards of 100 times more.

Right away, you’ll likely notice that your skin looks a little more awake, shall we say. Its tone is refreshed, and your overall complexion looks more invigorated. If you brush your hand across your cheeks, they feel ever so slightly softer.

The aim of this particular facial is to brighten up the complexion, so if you’re looking for hydrating or acne-refining options, @me, because I’ve got those, too. But these days, pigmentation is my number-one enemy, so I like to look for ingredients that work to chip away at dark spots while gently exfoliating at the same time. This facial has all my favorites: a super-potent dose of 20 percent (!) vitamin C to brighten, alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) to exfoliate, and vitamin B5 to keep my complexion from becoming parched.

Each packet has two sides of powder (the vitamin C is separated from everything else so that its efficacy isn’t compromised before it hits your complexion), which you fold over and dump into your palm. Then, you add a teaspoon of water, which basically makes a frothy, fizzy Emergen-C elixir that you whoosh around your face for half a minute. On skin, the concoction feels revitalizing and fresh: Most of it is liquid but there are a couple of powdery bits that remain and feel like a physical exfoliant.

When your timer dings, you’re ready to rinse the excess away. Right away, you’ll likely notice that your skin looks a little more awake, shall we say. Its tone is refreshed, and your overall complexion looks more invigorated. If you brush your hand across your cheeks, they feel ever so slightly softer. I follow with my usual skin-care routine: a hydrating serum, a moisturizer, and sunscreen. All in all, I’m hundreds of dollars richer, and coming in at a minute-fifteen (yes, I set my Apple Watch), I have spa-level results and hours back in my day, which, listen: I don’t hate.

If you’re looking for something less DIY (and I guess I get why), here’s what happened when one writer got a CBD facial and this is the $3,000 facial, reviewed.

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