Microdermabrasion is nothing new but its original incarnation was too harsh for some people. Hydrafacials take microdermabrasion to a new level. According to the Dermatology Institute, hydrafacials are the “only hydradermabrasion procedure that combines cleansing, exfoliation, extraction, hydration and antioxidant protection simultaneously, resulting in clearer, more beautiful skin with no discomfort or downtime. The treatment is soothing, moisturizing, non-invasive and non-irritating.”
Basically, it’s a kinder, gentler microdermabrasion procedure also called a ‘wet dermabrasion’ since everything is liquid-based.
Thanks to spa manager Lanez Perry at The Logan Philadelphia hotel, I experienced my first one – a half an hour process. (There is also an hour option.) If you’ve ever gotten a facial, it’s pretty much the same thing – you lay down on a comfortable masseuse bed, while someone, in this case, Lanez, applies all manner of cool potions to your skin. The procedure itself was soothing and relaxing and all the products used had an inoffensive sea-like scent. I vacillated between being fully awake and half asleep as Lanez capable hands soothed my skin.
Although it was just a half-hour treatment, my skin looked and felt amazing afterward. I could see getting a “refresh” facial every quarter.) If you have any skin issues or sensitive skin, you may want to check with your dermatologist to make sure it’s OK to get one, and you should also tell your aesthetician about any skin conditions. Like anything else, hydrafacials aren’t for everyone.
Hydrafacials run anywhere from $120-$175 and are available in many places around the country, but keep in mind that hotel spas are always higher-priced. (However, sitting in the quiet, peaceful meditation style room before and after and getting access to the spa’s beautiful indoor pool, may make the extra cost worthwhile).
CLARISONIC SKIN BRUSH
I’ve always wondered how skin brushes can help your skin. While a lot of folks swear by Korean skin treatments these days, Clarisonic brushes have been around for a while. Chiefly, they exfoliate skin, which is one of the things that is recommended to keep your skin looking glowy and youthful as you age. (Pharell Williams swears by exfoliation, and you know how young he looks).
Unfortunately for me, the brush aggravated an existing skin condition, even with the most sensitive brush head. I can see how, though, if I could use it regularly, that it could be a great tool for exfoliation because it did make my skin look smooth and glowing when I did use it. You can also use it to smooth the décolletage area and there’s even a body head that you can use to smooth skin everywhere. I’d try it every other day to see if it works for you. There is both a sensitive skin head and a delicate brush head so there may be one that works for you.
NEUTROGENA Hydro Boost Water Gel
One of my most surprising accidental skin care finds was this moisturizer, which turned out to be one of the best ones I’ve ever used. It’s not a zillion dollars but like other Neutrogena products, it’s belies its cost because of its effectiveness. Hyalronic acid is, according to Webmd.com, “a substance that is naturally present in the human body. It is found in the highest concentrations in fluids in the eyes and joints.” It is often used as an injection to treat osteoarthritis, and to “heal wounds, burns and skin ulcers.”
The gel itself is so light it almost feel like you’re just adding water to your skin, but believe me, its one of the most effective moisturizers I’ve ever used. I saw a difference in the first week. And mind you, this was just an impulse pickup because I saw it at Costco for 2 jars for $24 and I had run out of the moisturizer I was using. Once again, you should try it sparingly on your own skin to make sure you don’t have any reaction, but hopefully your only reaction will be ‘Damn, my skin looks great.” And saving a few bucks on what is almost always the most expensive skincare product should make you feel great as well.
Silked is a pretty simple concept – it’s a pillowcase cover that turns your pillow into a silky space to lay your head on. I once admired a woman’s flawless skin and once she told me slept on a silk pillowcase, I was sold. While Silked is advertised to help women keep their hair from losing moisture through cotton pillowcases, because I’m loc’ed, I just couldn’t not wrap up my hair at night – my locs are long and it’s way too much.
But I can see how it would keep cotton from leeching moisture from hair, especially natural hair, which can both look and be dry. As it turned out, Silk’s value to me was that my skin seemed noticeably smoother when sleeping on it nightly as opposed to my usual cotton pillowcase. It fits over a standard pillowcase and has different designs to match your décor, if you choose to keep it on the bed when you make it up. Otherwise, it’s easily stored in the nice bag it comes in. I definitely recommend it if you want to keep your skin (and hair) looking pretty. Silked is also a Black-owned company created by two women who were looking to keep their ‘do’s straight at night.
FENTY BEAUTY PRO FIL’TR FOUNDATION and INVISAMATTE BLOTTING POWDER
If you thought that Rihanna’s cosmetic line was just another vanity celebrity product of dubious quality, well, you’d be deadass wrong. After seeing the multitude of Fenty beauty reviews from just about every popular YouTube makeup blogger, I thought I’d try it out. Since just about every color past 300 (naturally the darker colors) was sold out, I tried a tester in the store on a blazingly hot and humid day.
No fancy makeup brushes or applicators – I just smoothed it on with my fingers, added the Invisamatte blotting powder and walked outside. I tend to be on the oily side and in intense heat, foundation basically melts off my face. Fenty beauty goes on very liquid, but it dries down to a coverage that seems to tighten up on your face, keeping your oily parts from becoming gasoline slick.
It may not work for very dry skin, but if you tend towards oily, its formulation lasts hours longer than anything else I can remember using. It’s not super heavy coverage, but I only put on one pump that day. I loved that it almost perfectly matched my complexion at 390 which is among the ‘warm’ shades. It kept going strong throughout a lengthy travel day with a full makeup application, too. If you want application tips, just head to YouTube and search it and 30,000 videos will show up. Well maybe not exactly that many. But a lot. Check out one from popular U.K blogger Patricia Bright below:
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