Your ultimate at-home FACIAL
Make the most of your time at home by giving your skin a treat worthy of any salon..
At-home facials are one of those activities that most of us intend to do regularly, then somehow it slips down the to-do list. Even when beauty doesn’t feel like a top priority, taking the time to do something nice for your skin can be a soothing balm for the soul, or at least a fun distraction. Just follow this four-step formula.
4 easy steps for every skin type
CLEANSE: Balm cleansers nourish as they dissolve grime. Work into your skin in small circles with lukewarm water – hot can be drying – then remove with a soft cloth.
EXFOLIATE: Glycolic acid suits dry skin as it loosens dead cells and promotes collagen for plumpness. It’s often in products labelled as peels (don’t worry you won’t actually peel). Try an acid toner with nourishing ingredients.
TREAT: Sheet masks are divisive, but the good ones feel amazing on parched skin. Look for proven hydrators like hyaluronic acid.
FINISHING TRICK: The skin around the eyes is thin and lacks sebaceous glands, so if dryness is an issue it’ll be doubly so here. Tap an active eye cream around your eye, from inner corner up to the brow bone.
CLEANSE: Avoid anything fragranced or containing essential oils, which can be irritating. Go for a simple cream, gently massaged with lukewarm water and splashed off with clean hands.
EXFOLIATE: It’s a myth that sensitive types have to avoid acids, but you should pick carefully. Poly Hydroxy Acids (PHA) are a good bet as they have a larger molecules that don’t penetrate as deeply, so usually don’t irritate.
TREAT: Avoid strong actives like retinols or high-dose acids and instead go for masks including peptides. These versatile, skin-energising ingredients gently work on everything from lines to firmness.
FINISHING TRICK: Grab your moisturiser and try Elizabeth Arden Training Manager Anja Skytte Mosbaek’s DIY massage. ‘Apply product with upwards and outwards movements. Then using little flicks with your thumb, start at the jawline and move upwards. This will stimulate your circulation.‘
CLEANSE: Work in some initial exfoliation by using a cleanser with fruit enzymes. These often come in powder form, simply add water and massage then leave it on for a minute to nibble away dead skin before removing with a flannel.
EXFOLIATE: For real bangfor-your-buck glow, combine Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids to shift dead cells and clear pores. If you’re not sensitive, face masks designed to be rinsed off usually have stronger formulations for deep exfoliation.
TREAT: Now soothe and soften with a mask. Emollients like shea butter will soften while humectants like hyaluronic acid or glycerine draw moisture into the skin.
TRICK: FaceGym founder Inge Theron’s facial workout will tone and boost radiance – repeat each move 10 times. ‘Make a V with your hand and rest your chin in the V. Pull your lips over your top teeth hold for 5 seconds. Move the hand to either side of the chin with the length of your fingers covering your ears, make the sound Eeeee with your mouth.’
CLEANSE: Gel-to-oil cleansers are brilliant at dissolving grime. Ensure it’s free of sodium laureth sulphate (SLS) a foaming agent that can strip skin and trigger sebum over-production.
EXFOLIATE: Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs) like salicylic acid are your best bet for clearing congestion. Look for antibacterial ingredients like witch hazel or clary sage too.
TREAT: Clay is a great natural ingredient to take on congestion, but use something that also hydrates so skin doesn’t feel and dry.
FINISHING TRICK: As a refreshing and de-puffing extra, try facial massage with something cold. Ice cubes wrapped in a cloth will do nicely, or a facial roller, kept in the fridge.