As a skincare enthusiast, I’m ready and willing to try just about anything and everything in the name of beauty. I’ve done it all from chemical peels to dermaplaning and many other trendy skincare treatments you hear about on the web. When I first heard about the HydraFacial, I was immediately intrigued because a) I had never heard of it before, and b) it claims to give you the same glow celebrities have on the red carpet (Charlize Theron, Kate Winslet, and Amy Poehler are all huge fans of the treatment), and who am I to say no to event-worthy skin?
I took this facial on a test drive at Ochoa Salon & Spa in East Longmeadow, MA, and the experience was one I will definitely be going back for again. Here’s everything you need to know.
What is a HydraFacial?
A HydraFacial can be given in as little as 30 minutes and delivers results that last up to a month. The invigorating treatment combines the power of a microdermabrasion and a vacuum machine all in one. Essentially, your esthetician or dermatologist will swipe a suction device along your skin in stripe-like motions and during that time potent serums and treatments are being infused deep into your skin while the machine is sucking out all the pore-clogging, breakout-causing material simultaneously.
Step 1: Cleanse + Exfoliate
During this first step, your esthetician uses lactic acid for a gentle exfoliation to slough away dead skin cells. For each step, you’ll feel the same sensation: a painless suction of the handheld device behind swiped along your skin. The device is gently pressed onto the skin in stippling motions to release the powerful solution and then it is swiped away with the same suctioning device.
Step 2: Glycel Peel
This incredibly gentle peel combines salicylic acid and glycolic acid to gently exfoliating and peeling simultaneously to soften your sebum and rid the skin of impurities. It is applied and removed the same way as the first step!
Step 3: Machine Extractions
This step uses the treatment’s “BetaHD”—which was specifically created for oily and congested skin, but can be used on any skin type — contains salicylic acid to painlessly extract pores and remove impurities. Your esthetician uses a slower movement with the device and with that, pores gently open to release impurities leaving skin clean and clear. For someone who is drier than normal or doesn’t need extractions all over, this step can be performed only in the t-zone.
This step uses a powerful blend of antioxidants and peptides to help seal and protect your skin from free radicals. On top of antioxidant protection, this step also hits your skin with serious hydration, dark spot lightening power, and blurs the appearance of fine lines.
What was the experience like?
Quick and painless—literally. After your facial, you may see your skin “purging” a bit thanks to the suction machine bringing unwanted materials like dirt and oil to the surface to keep them from causing breakouts, but that is normal and actually good.
Who can get a HydraFacial?
One thing I really enjoyed about this treatment was that it can be catered to anyone’s skin needs. I am and have always been breakout-prone so my esthetician made sure to target my acne specifically. The facial treatment offers different “boosts”, as they call them, that can tailor the treatment to fit your needs. Their Dermabuilder Boost will help to “minimize signs of aging and recharge skin with a combination of peptides,” the Growth Factor Boost works to “minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles to restore skin health and vitality,” (I had this one) and lastly, the Britenol Boost will “minimize the appearance of dark spots and sun spots for an even complexion.”
What are the results?
In my normal monthly facial, I usually leave red and somewhat inflamed after 60 minutes of manual extractions, massage, and masking. With the HydraFacial, I left with incredibly glowy skin, absolutely no redness, and a more clear and radiant complexion.
Also with my routine facial, I normally experience breakouts in the next few days due to the steam for bringing them to the surface, but the HydraFacial experience didn’t let that happen until a few days later which to me says that this type of facial is perfect to get the day before an event where you need perfectly glowy skin and an effective treatment, but can’t risk having inflammation or spots from manual extractions.
Overall, yes, the experience is pricey compared to your typical facial (in my area, the Signature Treatment starts at $150), but to experience the near-perfect skin I did right after my facial, I’d pay it again and again.