Friday, March 13, 2015

Is steam good for my skin?

Steam constitutes heat, and heat dilates capillaries—the delicate and susceptible blood network of your face. Throughout our lives, due to weather, lifestyle habits like drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes, pollution, and even certain foods, our capillaries are challenged to stay strong. Subjecting them to heat unnecessarily can weaken them over time.

At-home facial steamers. These machines may seem like a great item to have around the house, but my recommendations are this: If you have to use it, put a clay mask on your face, and then steam. Never steam your bare face.

Since you don’t ever want clay to dry on your skin, using a steamer can actually be a good way to keep the mask moist and avoid damaging your capillaries. I wouldn’t run out and buy a home steam machine, but if you have one lying around using it with a clay mask would be beneficial.

My main problem with these at-home steamers is they require your face to be fairly close to the machine, similar to steaming over a hot pot of water. Because of this close proximity mixed with the heat of the steam, you can cause capillary damage very easily. 

Salon steaming. Many, if not most facial treatments in a professional salon include facial steaming. I am probably in the one percentile of aestheticians who don’t use steam. If you find yourself in a treatment and steam is being used, be sure that you can’t feel real heat on your face from the steam. If you do, that means the machine is too close to your face. Don’t be afraid to ask your aesthetician to either move the steamer farther away from your face, or just do away with this step altogether.