You want to improve your skin but dread the thought of trying to book a facial. With so many sophisticated options available, how do you know which treatment will get you to your glass skin goals? Don't fret — our skin expert Gené is here to dish the details. She administers facials in London at our exclusive Knightsbridge skin destination, theHOUSE. She's here to answer your FAQs, so you can find out which facial is best for you.
What does a facial do?
"The idea of a facial is to help skin concerns," says Gené. "Facials can solve certain skin problems and can also help relax the muscles of the face, especially treatments like lymphatic drainage — draining away the toxins in the skin."The outcome of a facial will depend on the kind of treatment you book (and there are dozens to choose from!). Gené recommends visiting your facialist for a consultation so you can get tailored recommendations before booking a treatment.
What are the benefits of a facial?
"Facials remove dead skin cells, so your at-home treatments are absorbed better," says Gené. "You'll see an improvement in skin tone and texture; fine lines and wrinkles are improved; hydration is improved, texture and tightness as well. Having regular facials improves all that over time."
On a fundamental level, facials are essential for keeping your skin clean and your pores clear. Although you can buy cleansing and exfoliating products in stores, they won't be able to give the same deep, thorough cleanse as a professional facialist!
"Shop-bought products have many of the same ingredients as our professional ranges, but they're not as active — the percentage of the ingredients we use is much higher," Gené says. "The fact is, you wouldn't know how to use those products effectively, and you may not see results. You need to get first-hand bespoke knowledge from a qualified aesthetician, and from there, you can work with them and yourself at home."
How many types of facial are there?
There are dozens of facials and facial treatments to choose from — and that's just at our own London salons! They range from deep pore cleanses, which clarify the skin, to more advanced treatments like acid facial peels
"Each facial is bespoke to what the client needs. We'd ask what you want to achieve during your consultation — reduced scarring, pigmentation, acne, et cetera. Then we'd bespoke the treatment plan over time, introducing the different types of treatments gradually."To help get you started, here are some of the facials you can get at Paul Edmonds London, depending on your skin type.
Facials for sensitive skin
"I'd suggest a facial from the Éminence Organics Skincare range for sensitive skin. I would aim to calm and hydrate," she says. Sensitive clients could choose treatments like the Moisture Nourish Facial, Eight Greens Facial, and the Organic Arctic Berry Rejuvenating Facial.
"Combination skin is where the T-zone is more oily, but the rest of the skin is dryer," Gené says. "In most cases, I'd focus on clearing excess oil from the pores while hydrating the dryness."
Fine lines and wrinkles
Paul Edmonds London has several antioxidant-rich facials designed to help tackle the signs of premature ageing and accelerate skin cell renewal. The SkinCeuticals Anti-Aging Facial and the Paul Edmonds Signature City Radiance Facial are just a few examples of how we can help care for ageing skin.
"Decree facials are good for all skin types," says Gené. "They're organic, vegan, and are loaded with potent botanicals and active ingredients." Decree facials are also part of a concise line-up of 9 products that are easy to use at home.
Gené says: "We also do microcurrent treatments, lymphatic facial massage, microdermabrasion, micro-needling, peels, LED light therapy — there's a lot of different treatments that we can do, depending on what the client wants to achieve, but the first stage is always a consultation."
How can you tell which facial is best for you?
"When a client first comes to me, the first facial I'll do is a SkinCeuticals Deep Pore Cleanse," says Gené. "The skin needs to be thoroughly cleansed and assessed before we can do anything more advanced. Whether you're sensitive, combination, acne-prone, doesn't matter — a deep cleanse is an essential foundational treatment."By starting with a simple consultation followed by a clarifying treatment, Gené and the team can get a better picture of what you want to achieve and how your skin might react to future treatments.
"A deep cleanse is vital to start with because I'm touching the skin and seeing how it reacts to steam and extractions. After that, I can tailor what types of facials a client might need for their next treatment," Gené says.
How often should you get a facial?
Facials are best when done in tune with your skin cycle. Every three to four weeks, new skin cells travel up through the epidermis to form a fresh layer on the surface while shedding the old layer. Facials can help to remove this old layer thoroughly, so your skin is free to absorb all the beneficial ingredients in your at-home skincare.
"If you can't make it to the salon regularly, at least try to go once every few months and follow the programmes prescribed by your facialist. It'll make a huge difference to your skin instead of just using shop-bought products," Gené says.
How to prep for a facial: before and after your treatment
Okay, so you've chosen your facial, and you're ready to go. How do you prep ahead of your appointment, and how can you maintain the results afterwards?
"In almost all cases, there's no preparation needed," says Gené. "My clients could be coming from work, from a sweaty gym session, or have come in for a consultation. It doesn't matter because I'll be cleansing their skin before we start."
The only time a client needs to prep ahead of a facial with Gené and the team is if they're regular Paul Edmonds London salon clients who have peels and use retinol. "You have to have at least a week's break from retinol before you can have a peel. Once you've had your peel, you can resume using retinol a week later."
Depending on the facial, Gené will advise her clients to avoid very hot showers and baths for up to 24 hours after the treatment. She also advises them to avoid exercising that day or night, to avoid swimming, and to keep their skin makeup-free.
"Your pores are clear and wide open, so wearing makeup reverts the work we've just done. We need to let the pores close and feel good before we wear makeup," says Gené.
Your facialist will follow your treatment with a bespoke home-care protocol, so you can continue to improve your skin while maintaining your salon glow!