STEP ONE: Double cleanse
Just as your aesthetician would, I start my at-home facial with a good deep clean. I double-cleanse starting with an oil-based formula such as La Roche-Posay Lipikar Cleansing Oil ($33.95; at chemistwarehouse.come.au) which works to gently lift any make-up, sunscreen, pollution build-up from the skin’s surface. I make use of the oil’s silky texture and use slow, sweeping movements with my fingertips and palms giving myself a massage as I cleanse, then I wipe off the oil with a warm damp cloth. I repeat the cleanse, going slow and massaging my facial muscles, but this time with a more heavy-duty cleanser (think foam-cleansers). I love Ultraceuticals Ultra Brighten Foaming Cleanser because it really perks up my complexion with niacinamide while cucumber extract soothes and cools. Then rinse off with warm water.
STEP TWO: Exfoliate
This is where the magic happens. A good exfoliator has the power to not only purge pores, but even out skin tone, increase brightness and hydrate - all at once. Bingo! I prefer chemical exfoliants such as Dr Dennis Gross’ Alpha Beta Universal Daily Peel (no, your skin won’t “peel off”). The peel comes in a pack with two swipes, one the active component which I apply all-over and leave to work for two minutes, then follow with the other swipe, the neutraliser which stops the actives from going too gung-ho on your skin.
STEP THREE: Mist
Pause to mist. A lovely hydrating mist such as Murad’s Prebiotic 3-in-1 Multi Mist will keep the skin’s water levels.
STEP FOUR: Mask
Now all the dead cells and surface debris have been sloughed away, it’s time to drench that dermis in all of the good things. Let’s talk masks. I dream about hydrating masks. Dehydrated skin is a precursor for signs of ageing, meaning those fine lines around your eyes are generally dehydration lines and if left parched, they will form into wrinkles. I like Dr Barbara Sturm’s Deep Hydrating Mask (or more budget-friendly Avene Soothing Moisture Mask) which I slather on thick and gloopy and leave to work while I read my book for 20 minutes, then rinse off with warm water.
STEP FIVE: Massage
Quite possibly my favourite step at my aesthetician’s and at-home: the massage! Hopefully, by now you’ve heard all the reasons why facial oils are beauty’s current star-pupil. They’re moisturising, boost luminosity, plump fine lines and they don’t have to cost a fortune to do the job. No matter how many oils I try (shout out to Hunter Lipid Vitamin Face Oil), I always return to my old favourite, Rose Hip Oil and specifically, Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+. I apply a couple of drops to my hands to warm the formula then smooth it over my face. Here, you can layer as many oils as you like. Or, apply your favourite serum first, then an oil over the top. Taking either a rose quartz or jade roller, or my tool of choice is the Skin Gym face Sculptor, massage the oils into the skin. Starting at the chin, I roll from the centre outwards and upwards in each section of my face along the contours of my cheeks and across my forehead, kneading out the tension and firming the muscles. Believe me, this feels so good. Do it for as long as you like - at least five minutes.
STEP SIX: Mist, again.
Spritz, spritz, spritz. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.
STEP SEVEN: Moisturise
While you may have reached the end of your facial, the products you’ve applied will continue to work their wonders, you just need to lock in all the ingredients with a moisturiser. I’ll finish with Chanel’s Hydra Protection (or my budget-friendly fave CeraVe Moisturising Cream) for a dewy, glowy result. Here you can also apply a swipe of lip balm and your go-to eye cream. If you’re going outside, don’t forget an SPF, especially after using a skin peel or hefty exfoliants.