So you’re stuck at home and feeling a bit blah—missing your skin therapist and waiting for the announcement that the COVID-19 ban on salons has finally been lifted so you can sprint on in for your monthly (now quarterly) facial or brow wax.
We’re sure your favourite salon is missing you too—in fact, we know so, because we asked them. With our make-up free skin growing dryer and more prone to breakouts by the minute, we asked skin therapists Meghan and Mali from Brisbane’s The Haven Skin And Body Shop how to get our skin back to its former self at home.
So lock the bathroom door, light a candle and prepare to treat yourself to a little skin therapy with their guide to re-creating the perfect facial at home.
Step 1: Create Your Zen Zone
Light a candle, put on some relaxation music and take a few deep breaths. This will help calm your body which in turn helps to lower those pesky stress hormones that cause so much damage to your skin and body. Now’s a good time to pop your hair back in a headband or hair tie to make sure you keep your products out of it.
Step 2: Cleanse Your Skin
Just because you haven’t worn make up in weeks doesn’t mean you can step this step, which is best to do with an oil or balm cleanser. Oil cleansers won’t strip your skin's protective layer and they help to draw out impurities. With dry hands, massage an almond-sized amount into your dry face using slow, circular motions, then dampen fingertips and massage into a milky consistency. If you’re wanting the full salon experience jump in the shower to wash the cleanser off your face whilst steaming the skin with warm water, ensuring that you remove all residue, dirt and excess oils whilst also nourishing and cleansing the surface and prepping for your next step.
Step 3: Exfoliate
Next up you’ll need an exfoliant. There are two different types of exfoliation, physical and chemical. If you’re concerned with sensitivity, ageing or breakouts, opt for a chemical exfoliant, which will feel more like a peel on the skin and quite smooth. If you’re more oily or dehydrated a physical exfoliation is more suited—this is more of a grainy, gritty type. Whichever you’re using, using small circular motions apply your product with small circular motions and massage into the skin for around 30 seconds to two minutes, then wash off.
Step 4: Mask It
Post-exfoliation is the perfect time to apply a mask as all of the dirt and dead skin has been removed and your skin is primed and ready to soak up all the goodness of a mask. These days we are spoiled by choice with what masks we can use but our all time favourites are sheet masks–they use a two-step layering mask to get your skin super hydrated. For this step, it’s highly recommended you sit back and have a glass of wine or three on the sofa, skin specialist orders.
Step 5: Give Your Skin A Drink
There are a lot of variations of skin drinks these days which replace the old day toners and mists. The effect they all have in common is helping to re-balance your PH levels (which is your skin’s protective layer), hydrate, calm and also help attach to your serums and moisturisers to pull them deeper into the skin. Skin drinks are the perfect step to add into your routine if you feel like your skin is just missing that extra burst of hydration.
Step 6: Pop On An Eye Cream
As early as your 20s you should be using eye cream to help prevent or age gracefully. You should always apply your eye creams before serums and moisturisers as sometimes these products can stop your eye creams from absorbing into the thin under eye area. It is essential you apply any eye creams with a feather light pressure to not over stretch the delicate area causing fine lines.
Step 7: Apply Serums
Serums contain very potent and active ingredients which due to their smaller molecule size can travel deeper into the skin targeting skin concerns from their source. We like to mix up our serums depending on our skin's needs. For a good all rounder, try The Ordinary’s Buffet is a good place to start.
Step 8: Moisturise, Moisturise, Moisturise
Depending on your preference or time of day we recommend you always finish with a burst of moisture to the skin. If during the day and you’re heading to the back yard to sunbake in isolation we recommend using an SPF, otherwise nourish and protect your skin with a normal moisturiser or oil. Oils are also great for your evening ritual as they help to regenerate your skin whilst you sleep. We're loving The Body Shop's Hemp Heavy-Duty Face Protector which intensively soothes and rehydrates very dry skin, and protects skin exposed to the elements.
So there you have it—stick to your normal skin care routine in isolation and glow your way through all those Zoom hangouts. It might not be the same as a salon visit but at least you’ve got something to look forward to when they all reopen.
If your brows also need some TLC, check out our guide to DIY brow shaping here.
Image credit: Aleksander Fajt