I love getting a facial, but rarely do I ever come out feeling like it’s actually done something. I feel relaxed and look glowy, but for the most part that’s down to the ritual, rather than any major change to the skin.
When I went in for my HydraFacial (in a truck outside the Future Beauty Show at the RDS, usually the settings are a little more glam), it was the Saturday after Electric Picnic. My body and mind were still in recovery, and my skin looked dull and congested, which was heavily deserved after almost a week of takeaways and curry cheese chips.
The treatment is designed to address a number of skin concerns, from dry patches, to fine lines, to large pores and blackheads. It’s been described as a kind of ‘reset button’ for the renewal cycle of your skin, allowing your skin cells to regenerate healthily.
The idea of getting all the crap sucked out of my face, as the HydraFacial promised, was very tempting. But how does it work? Well, it all centres around the above machine, which has what is basically a tiny hoover attached to it.
This ‘wand’ is used to massage skincare into your face across three phases. First, your skin is cleansed and exfoliated with a gentle glycolic peel, which removes dead skin cells and loosens up the gunk in your pores.
Then, the impurities are literally sucked out with that lil hoover, and your skin is treated to a big dose of hydrating hyaluronic acid. Pore extractions are usually quite a painful process, but all you feel during a HydraFacial is a scratchy sensation from the wand being dragged across your skin.
Finally, your face is massaged with potent serum of antioxidants and peptides, designed to protect the skin in the weeks after the facial. My therapist gave me some SPF to apply after, but this isn’t guaranteed so bring some along with you – your skin will be especially susceptible to UVA/UVB rays after that glycolic peel.
Would you like to see what was hoovered out of my skin during the treatment? Because I’m going to show you.
That right there is a mixture of the oil and bacteria that was living in my pores. There’s something very satisfying about that.
My face was left a little bit pink by all the hoovering, but calmed down in no time, and I was left looking quite literally radiant. My skin was baby-butt soft, and the pores on my nose? Virtually invisible.
As with any treatment that brings impurities in the skin to the surface, I did notice some little bumps of congestion around my chin after my facial, but nothing I was too worried about. If anything, it was a sign that it had – gasp – done something. Four days later, I’m still enjoying a glow.
The HydraFacial is available in clinics all around Ireland. It’s pricey (hour-long treatments tend to cost about €120), but for brides-to-be or anyone with an event they want to look particularly lovely for, it’s worth it for those instant results. Would you give it a go?