Thursday, December 17, 2015

A 30-something client with sun damage, looking for products and a good facial: Q & A

I am writing from Florida. I have received many facials over the years, but I don’t really know my skin well enough to choose products myself. I have sun-damaged skin with large pores and premature aging. I am 32 years old and look much older. I want to start getting facials again but don’t know how to go about finding one locally. Also, how do I start using products when I don’t know what my skin needs?

One thing I want to say is next time you get a facial, and every time you get one from a different aesthetician, ask them about your skin. If you are getting or have had a lot of facials, you really should know a little bit about your skin. Perhaps at the time you were in treatment, you didn’t really care—but now you do. Asking the professional working on your skin, especially if the same person is giving you facials over time, will give you the information you need to choose products. Every aesthetician may say something a little different from the next, but overall you should get the same general analysis.

I have written several articles on where to find a good facial treatment and what to look for. Below are just a few of the questions you can ask to get a general feel for the salon you are thinking about going to. Without asking questions, you are taking a risk going in somewhere you know nothing about. Here are some questions to ask:
  • What type of business is it? Mostly hair, a large spa, or skin care only?
  • Which products does the salon use? Are samples available? (This is very important!) 
  • How long has the aesthetician worked there? How long has she been an aesthetician? 
  • Does she use the product herself? 
  • How long is the facial? 
  • Does the salon use machines? Which ones? What about extractions?
  • How much does the facial cost? Is the price all inclusive or can extras be added? 
  • What will my skin look like afterwards? 
  • Will makeup be applied after the facial?

This emailer mentioned sun damage and enlarged pores, but said nothing about oiliness or dryness. Knowing the oil content of her skin will help determine which products she should use. She first needs to determine her skin type, which she can successfully do on her own or with the help of an aesthetician. She needs to assess the oil or lack of oil in her skin by checking in the mirror to see if there is any congestion like blackheads or whiteheads in her pores, along with flakiness on the surface of her skin. All of these are factors in choosing the right products.

Coming from Florida, she no doubt has, does, and will continue to get a lot of sun and therefore sun damage. Premature aging is a common occurrence in year-round sunny climates like Florida, so obviously her first defense against accelerated aging is to protect her skin (face and body) while in the sun. Getting regular facials and consistently using products for her skin type will be the best ways to keep her skin in good shape. If she truly is aging prematurely, topical products aren’t going to give her the youth she has lost through overexposure to the sun. However, I’ll bet she enjoyed all the activities and time spent in the sun, and that has to mean something.

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