Having a facial can be a wonderful experience, leaving your skin refreshed and rejuvenated. However, not all facials are created equal, and a bad facial can not only be unpleasant but also harmful to your skin. To help you avoid such experiences, we interviewed several aestheticians who shared their insights on the warning signs to watch out for before, during, and after a facial. Here are the red flags straight from the mouths of the experts.
- Only one skin care line is being used.
If your aesthetician is only using products from a single skincare line, it may indicate a lack of options within your treatment. This limitation might lead to the aesthetician pushing those specific products on you, potentially selling you more than you actually need. Dali Gandara, a SkinSpirit aesthetician, suggests that a variety of products should be used to provide a more comprehensive and customized treatment.
- The studio has poor (or no) hygiene standards.
Hygiene is of utmost importance when it comes to facials. Take notice of the cleanliness of the studio or spa. If sanitation systems like Barbicide containers, autoclave machines, and individual disposables are not visible, it could be a sign that strict protocols are not being followed. Also, observe if the aesthetician washes their hands before the treatment, as this is a critical step to avoid contaminating your skin.
- The aesthetician uses over-the-counter products.
One of the advantages of visiting an aesthetician is the access to professional products with higher concentrations of active ingredients. Essence Moore, owner of Lineage Studio, explains that aestheticians can provide treatments that penetrate deeper layers of the skin for quicker and more efficient results. If the aesthetician is only using over-the-counter products, you might not be getting the full benefits of professional-grade skincare.
- The aesthetician has long fingernails.
Long fingernails can be problematic during facials, as they are more likely to scratch and damage the skin, especially during extractions. This can lead to scarring and the potential transfer of bacteria from multiple clients. It’s advisable to choose an aesthetician with clean, short nails to ensure a safer and more comfortable experience.
- The prices are too cheap.
While affordability is important, extremely low prices for facials may indicate a compromise in quality and safety. Natalie Aguilar, an aesthetician, warns against technicians who reuse tools or equipment, which can pose serious health risks. Quality treatments require appropriate pricing to ensure safety and effectiveness.
- The aesthetician doesn’t offer after-care instructions.
A crucial part of an aesthetician’s job is to educate clients on post-facial care. Janna Ronert, founder of Image Skincare, emphasizes the importance of knowing how to continue taking care of your skin at home. Recommendations for building a proper skincare regimen, product layering, and understanding exfoliation and night/day care should be provided by your aesthetician.
- You’re experiencing deeply uncomfortable extractions.
While some discomfort during extractions is normal, it should not feel like the aesthetician is pushing gunk further into your skin. This could lead to adverse effects. A skilled aesthetician should be gentle and prioritize the well-being of your skin throughout the treatment.
- You’re not asked to fill out any intake forms.
If you’re not asked to provide any medical or skin-related information, it’s a major red flag. A thorough understanding of your medical history is essential for the aesthetician to determine the appropriate treatments and products. Failure to consider individual factors like medications or medical conditions can lead to complications and adverse reactions.
- Your facial involves extreme heat.
Extreme heat during a facial can cause damage to the skin, such as broken blood vessels, tissue inflammation, and dryness. It is crucial that the water, towels, and steam used in the treatment are kept at a cool to lukewarm temperature. This is especially important for individuals with sensitive or reactive skin.
- Your facial begins with extractions.
Proper facial procedures should start with a double cleanse to remove makeup and sunblock, followed by a second cleanse to prepare the skin for extractions. If extractions are performed without adequate cleansing, dirt and debris can be pushed back into the pores, potentially causing further issues. Adequate preparation is key to a successful and safe facial.
- Efforts aren’t made to keep you comfortable.
Attention to detail and client comfort are essential elements of a good facial. If water is splashing into your eyes, ears, or scalp during the cleansing process, it could indicate a lack of overall quality in the treatment. Additionally, a clean and comfortable environment, including a well-prepared table with warmers and cozy sheets, contributes to a relaxed experience.
- Your aesthetician is wearing jewelry.
The presence of rings and bracelets on an aesthetician raises concerns about their professionalism. Such jewelry can potentially harm your skin during treatment and harbor bacteria, increasing the risk of infection. It is advisable to choose an aesthetician who prioritizes cleanliness and avoids wearing excessive jewelry.
By being aware of these warning signs, you can make informed decisions when choosing an aesthetician for your facial. Prioritizing hygiene, expertise, and client comfort will help ensure a safe and satisfying experience that leaves your skin feeling and looking its best.