It sounds too good to be a true: a facial that not only promises to visibly improve the look of skin after just a single treatment, but one that deeply cleans; helps improve the look of pigmentation and fine lines and revitalises dry and dehydrated skin. I give you, the HydraFacial.
Now I’m not here to pull the wool over your eyes because really, having baby-soft, clean-as-a-whistle skin was just a secondary bonus in comparison to the actual (and slightly gross) reason of why the HydraFacial had caught my eye. Instead, it was the process used to extract those pesky pores – something that I’d very technically describe as the ‘sucky contraption’. Now I don’t know about you, but I can’t think of anything more satisfying than seeing the remnants of one’s face floating around in water.
So on that basis, I found myself at AQUA in Truro about to break my facial virginity. This is how it went…
Step One (Cleanse & Exfoliate):
The ‘cleanse’ is basically the prepping step and also the step which is the most similar to a more traditional facial. Lots of hand-to-face rubbing, massaging, cleansing and just basically removing any makeup and impurities from the face.
Now the ‘exfoliation’ on the other hand was much more exciting. The HydraFacial is a machine that uses four different Hydropeel tips and the exfoliation tip ‘vacuums’ away up to a whopping 15, yes FIFTEEN, layers of dead skin cells.
Step Two (Acid Peel):
AQUA, the skincare clinic that I was being pampered in, offered a number of different variations of the facial. Essentially, the more costly the price of the facial, the more products and steps were included. One of these variations was the ‘acid peel’ step which you can choose to include or forgo altogether.
Now if you’re new to skincare then the idea of having acid smothered in one’s face doesn’t sound appealing, but this acid is actually a combination of Glycolic and Retinol – and extremely beneficial in not only ridding those dead skin cells that prevent us from having a radiant complexion, but for reducing fine lines. It’s not scary either, just a little tingle, if that!
Step Three (Extractions):
Basically, the spiral headed extraction tip combined with the HydraFacial vacuum (aka ‘sucky contraption’) creates a vortex effect that dislodges and removes those irritating impurities – the very same impurities that end up floating around in the water that we later get to gaze at in disgusting amazement.
Here, Amy is slowly running the HydraFacial tip across my face, concentrating on the most porous areas for maximum results – and don’t I look sexy…
Step Four (Serum Application and Dermalux® LED Phototherapy):
The last step of the Hydrafacial cosists of a serum application – a combination of collagen and antioxidants to deeply hydrate the skin – and a short Dermalux ® LED Phototherapy session. This nifty technology which has been voted ‘Treatment of the Year’ for four years running, ‘stimulates the skin’s natural rejuvenation and repair processes to promote healthy looking skin, accelerate cell renewal and resolve a range of skin concerns’, according to the Dermalux® website. And makes you look like a part from Back to the Future, may I add.
The Results (and let’s face it, what you’re all here for…):
Let’s just allow the grubby water to speak for itself. Granted, my therapist, Amy, said that she was pretty impressed with the actual colour of the water (gold star for me) but mentioned that typically, the clarity of the water is much more murky — yum. But I didn’t care about the colour of the water, I was more concerned/ satisfied/horrified about the floaty bits that just an hour ago, were stuck in or on my face.