There’s nothing quite like the anticipation of going in to get a facial. If you’re anything like me, you spend the hours leading up to the big event staring into your selfie camera like a parakeet in front of a mirror, imaging how positively radiant you’re going to look when your treatment is over.
But in addition to checking yourself out and imagining all of the ways a facial is going to better your skin, there are a few other things you need to do—or more importantly not do—before you hop on the table and get your glow on. “With the rise of technology, facial treatments have gotten so much more advanced—gone are the days of simple step treatments where you just, ‘lay back and relax,'” says Saime Demirovic, founder of GLO Spa NY, adding that the days leading up to your facial are just as important as the treatment itself. “When you’re getting a facial at a high tech spa, what you do in the days before can have an affect on your skin.”
Here, she lays out four things you should never, ever do before a facial. But snapping a “before” photo (to compare with the after shot, natch), is highly encouraged.
1. Get injections: If injectables like Botox and filler are a part of your beauty routine (#itme!), it’s important that you space out the appointment with your cosmetic derm from the one with your esthetician. Demirovic advises waiting a full two weeks between Botox and a facial to ensure that everything settles properly… because the literal last thing you want to do is mess up the Botox in your face. No thanks.
2. Treat your skin: If you’re dealing with breakouts or some other type of skin situation, it may be tempting to go at it with full force in an attempt to deal with it on your own. Don’t. “Sometimes people smother their skin in tea tree oil or glycolic acid and come in with red inflamed skin,” says Demirovic. “But doing a facial over that is very difficult because your skin literally cannot handle any more exfoliation.” Resist the urge to try and fix things, and leave that work to the professionals.
3. Put on makeup: The cleaner your skin is when you come in for your facial, the better an esthetician can treat it. When you let your blemishes breathe, it gives them a chance to see what they’re working with before you get started, and that way they can plan their course of action accordingly. Plus, since a facial will literally wash your makeup off within the first five minutes, you may as well save yourself the time and stay in bed for an extra few snoozes.
4. Go in blind: If you’re unsure of exactly what you need, schedule a time ahead of the treatment to chat with your facialist to figure it out. “There are so many options out there and there may be multiple ones that could be right for you,” says When in doubt, always book a consultation first with your esthetician and they’ll be able to guide you in the right direction.
And one thing you should never do after a facial? Hang out in the sun. “If you’re getting a deep exfoliating facial, do not go to the beach the next day,” says Demirovic. “It can cause hyperpigmentation and trigger a breakout from sweating all over a fresh face.”
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