Facial expert maps out the most popular facials and pinpoints the benefits (if any) of each one. A firm believer in the power of a good facial, that all facials are not created equal. “Some are nice and feel good, but they don’t do much,” he says.
“A traditional cleansing facial is perfect for people with numerous whiteheads and blackheads, also known as blocked pores. The facialist warms the skin, either by steaming or applying warm towels to the face. This opens the pores so that extraction tools can be used to gently, and safely, remove dirt and oil trapped below the skin’s surface. After the cleansing, an antibacterial solution is often applied to prevent skin infections, along with a moisturizer. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, avoid all heavy creams containing mineral oil or petrolatum—these exacerbate acne. But regular facials can actually enhance the efficacy of common acne treatments, such as Retin-A and salicylic acid products, by keeping the pores clean.