Whether it’s your very first facial or the 100th, it never hurts to get to know your esthetician and ask them some intelligent questions that can make the entire process more enjoyable, educational and satisfying. Here are ten must-ask questions for your esthetician that will ensure you have a great experience.
What is your training or experience?
While licensed estheticians are all required to fulfill certain educational and hands-on experience, they all haven’t had the same training or experience. It’s important to know exactly how your esthetician is qualified to treat you. Some might have taken additional courses on top of their basic training or have been mentored under more seasoned professionals.
A good esthetician will ask lots of questions. Like a detective – they will ‘read’ your skin and look for clues as to what it needs. They’ll gather specific information to determine the most effective treatments and protocols based on your needs. No facial should be one-size-fits-all, it should be personal, tailored to your skin type and condition.
How often should I get a facial?
In general, estheticians recommend a facial every three to four weeks—which is how long your skin’s life cycle is. Younger skin rejuvenates quicker than mature skin, so the younger you are, the less often you’ll need a facial. That said, whether you’re looking for an effective acne treatment or you need help for rosacea, it’s beneficial to receive mild facials more frequently to keep skin balanced.
How should I prepare for my facial?
To achieve the best results, facial treatment preparation is essential. At least one week before, discontinue use of alpha hydroxy acids (like glycolic or lactic acid), beta hydroxy acids (such as salicylic acid), benzoyl peroxide and retinol. Last, do not shave, wax or undergo hair removal the day of treatment.
How do you determine what facial treatments are best for my skin?
An experienced esthetician will closely examine your skin and ask questions to determine what facial type is best. Be honest about how you take care of it at home. Your facialist should be equipped with a range of products and instruments to suit different skin types, tones, ethnicities, and conditions. Let your esthetician know if you have allergies or are taking medications. Sharing this knowledge upfront will help them determine the most effective type of treatment for you.
What skincare treatments do you offer?
Your skin type, skin condition, and where you are in your skincare journey will help determine the most effective skincare treatment for you. Beginners may start off with a gentler, enzyme-based peel.
For intermediate cases, a gel-based acid peel will provide enhanced results. Skin requiring deeper penetration will benefit from clinical treatments with higher-strength solutions. Oxygen facials have rejuvenating benefits that work for every skin condition.
Although there is no one-size-fits-all miracle solution, we do believe there’s a treatment for everyone. Your esthetician may recommend a peel as your sole treatment, or in conjunction with your facial. Facials and peels have different purposes, so ask your esthetician what the best solution is for you.
How will my skin look today, tomorrow, and next week?
Ask how your skin will look after the treatment. With gentler treatments, you may fine to go about your day immediately, but more aggressive treatments could have you homebound for up to a week. Further, acidic exfoliants may require you to avoid the sun altogether. Ask about the skincare ingredients contained in your treatments. A good esthetician should warn you of potential downtime beforehand, but erring on the safe side is best—which brings us to our next important question…
What is your extraction method?
Not all estheticians use the same extraction method. Some will use a tool to extract blackheads; others will use gloves and their own fingers. Some extraction methods are more aggressive than others, so if you have sensitive skin, some methods could lead to irritation or cause damage like scarring, broken capillaries or discoloration—so it’s important to know the extraction method upfront. If you have sensitive skin, ask your esthetician about redness solutions to calm the skin and minimize irritation post treatment.
What do you recommend for facial aftercare?
After your facial, your skin has just undergone a deep cleanse, so give it a break. Allow your skin to breathe and refrain from applying makeup. Your pores will be more open and therefore more susceptible to bacteria. Allow time for serums, creams and peels to do their work.
If you underwent a chemical peel, follow your esthetician’s advice for chemical peel aftercare to protect your skin from irritation. Stay away from exfoliating treatments and be diligent about sun protection. Finally, no picking or pulling! Be patient and allow for natural exfoliation to occur.
How can I maintain the results of my facial?
While the effects of a facial aren’t permanent, extending that post-facial glow is possible with the right habits. Here are a few tips to keep your skin looking fresh for days to come.
- Maintain a regular skincare routine. At the most basic level, cleanse, moisturize and protect your face with mild products that will not irritate fresh skin. Since your face underwent a specialized treatment, avoid products like alcohol-based toners, scrubs and deep exfoliators.
- Hydration is key. Choose products containing hyaluronic acid to help bind water to the skin and protects its moisture barrier.
- Protect your fresh new face. Your skin will be extra sensitive after undergoing a facial. Fresh skin is more susceptible to damage caused by UVA and UVB rays. Wear a hat outdoors and use sun care products containing SPF of 30 or higher every day, rain or shine.
What take-home products do you recommend?
After your session, ask your esthetician for product recommendations to keep your skin in optimum condition between facials. At Image, our estheticians recommend a ‘Core 4’ approach—a cleanser, serum, moisturizer and sunscreen tailored to your skin type—to use every day. Beyond the basics, your esthetician may recommend add-on treatments such as masks and exfoliators to keep your skin looking it’s best.
In conclusion, no two faces are alike, so when it comes the ideal facial treatments will vary. That said, your facial can be tailored to your unique needs if you ask the right questions. Whether you are looking for brightening, exfoliation, extractions, or oxygenation, your esthetician is there to help you achieve your skincare goals, and your glowing skin reflects their expertise—so don't be afraid to speak up. The more informed you are before, during, and after your facial, the more effective your treatments will be.