The Cosmécanique FacialWhere: Tan Solaire Day Spa, Miami
Time: 30 minutes
Owner Rebecca Greer calls this non-invasive facial treatment an "instant facelift." A popular treatment at this Miami day spa that caters to clients who are extremely image conscious and seek out anti-aging services, the Cosm¡nique treatment is performed with the Lift 6 machine, a compact, mobile, futuristic-looking contraption that features a handheld treatment head with a pliable, soft arm. The machine works by mechanically stimulating the underlying structure of the skin with small, multi-directional pulsations. This quick, no-mess treatment is often sought out by clients on their lunch breaks. A "dry facial," it's done on clean, dry skin, without any products. "Over the past six years, the esthetics industry has been focusing on resurfacing and muscle-stimulation using electricity," says Andrea Volz, national training manager for LPG One. "This picks up where those leave off. It's a complement to them because it works on the architecture of the skin. Imagine that the other two are the roof and foundation of a house; this is like the house's beams." The benefits include firming, toning, and excess fluid removal. There are three preset programs that target different issues (one is for loose, puffy skin; another for sagging skin that helps with all-around firming and toning; and a third for mature or toxic skin). The program that addresses firming and toning is the most-used. For best results, the spa recommends a series of 10 treatments twice a week.
The Vitamin C TreatmentWhere: H2O Salon & Spa, Old Metairie, LA
Time: 60 minutes
Products: Institut' DerMed
"A big issue in our part of the country is pigmentation," says Holly Gaspard, co-owner of The Skin Clinic at H2O Salon & Spa. Her typical client is 35 to 45 years old, and one of the most-requested facials she's asking for is The Vitamin C Treatment to combat dry skin and hyperpigmentation. The treatment also helps build up collagen in the skin, explains esthetician Jessica Klein, who says that it is just as popular with the guys. The first step is a vitamin C enzyme peel to exfoliate, next comes the application of a lightening serum and a vitamin C mask. This is followed with a basic moisturizer, sunscreen, and an eye cream. The spa offers a special "buy three, get one free" deal.
The Customized FacialWhere: Oasis on Park, New York City
Time: 90 minutes
We've all witnessed the trend toward really personalized treatments. At Oasis, clients who want the ultimate in customization opt for this. A 60-minute facial is performed, according to skin type and needs. But first, the client undergoes something entirely new called Face Mapping. This unique concept begins with a 15-minute consultation (the client first fills out a card and enjoys an elixir), then proceeds to the 60-minute treatment designed to target the specific areas of concern, and ends with a 15-minute follow-up. A face mapping analysis is first completed in order to get targeted results from the treatment and home-care program. "Face mapping takes normal Western skin analysis, where you're looking at skin types, conditions, and disorders, and combines it with Chinese diagnosis," explains Denise Mayer, an instructor for the International Dermal Institute and Dermalogica. The face, neck, and d¯lletáre divided into 14 separate sections. This not only allows the therapist to really target the problematic zones but also ensures great results. "For example," explains Mayer, "zones 11 and 13, the outer corner of the mouth and lower chin area, relate to the ovaries. Quite often female clients will suffer from breakouts in that area. What we can do during the treatment is concentrate on the professional aspects and follow it up with home care as well." At the end of the treatment, the client leaves with a face map the esthetician has drawn and a face-mapping prescription. "No client will ever feel misunderstood again," affirms Mayer.
The ChromaLift Facial Lifting TreatmentWhere: The Nile Institute, Beverly Hills, CA
Time: 75 to 90 minutes
This non-invasive, non-surgical treatment combines Swiss technology and the principles of Chinese energy medicine with chromatherapy. "I have a very demanding clientele who are constantly looking for the best that is offered to meet their always-changing personal care needs," says Nina Curtis, founder and director. The majority of her clients are seeking alternatives to cosmetic surgery-or they want treatments that complement any cosmetic surgical work they've had, she says. In this treatment, the appropriate color of light is coupled with lymphatic drainage and used on specific energy points of the face to achieve a lifting and toning effect. For best results, Curtis recommends three to five treatments.
The Perle de Caviar FacialWhere: Tiba de Nuhad Khoury, Nashville, TN
Time: 60 minutes to 90 minutes, depending on optional Caviar Collagen Mask
Price: $135 to $185, depending on optional Caviar Collagen Mask
Products: Ingrid Millet
"This is one of the most effective, regenerating facial treatments using products with natural ingredients from the bounty of the sea, where life begins," says day spa owner Nuhad Khoury. Mature, dry, sensitive and "temporarily unbalanced" skin types benefit the most; those with oily or problem skin are not advised to have a Perle de Caviar facial. First, the face, neck, and d¯llet are thoroughly cleansed, toned, and exfoliated. Next, while using steam, Bio Marine Caviar Extract is used to massage the face. After that, impurities are removed with a vacuum-like device and high frequency to combat bacteria. An appropriate Perle de Caviar mask is applied, as is an eye mask. The mask is removed and a toner, eye gel, and neck cream is applied. The facial ends with an appropriate caviar-based product.
The Bio Sculpt FacialWhere: Paul LaBrecque East, New York City
Time: 60 minutes
Products: Biologique Recherche
Spa director and co-owner Regina Viotto knows a cutting-edge treatment when she sees one. She has had great success with the Bio Sculpt Facial, and her savvy clients love it for its instant lifting effects. After cleansing and toning the skin, a mild, balancing exfoliation is done using P50 Lotion, chock-full of vitamins and lactic acid. A mask, depending upon the client's needs, is then applied. Once that's removed, an intense, super-active serum is applied prior to the use of the Remodeling Face Machine. "The machine works on three very soft currents that stimulate the facial muscles," explains Viotto. "That gives a deeper and better result from the serum." This facial is especially good for dull complexions as it brings a glow to the skin and evens out texture.
Plaisir des SensWhere: L'Espace, Los Angeles
Time: 70 minutes
The name of this new facial translates to "pleasure of the senses." An experiential treatment, it addresses the senses through the use of aromatherapy products. First, warm aromatic compresses are applied to the client's back to relax the nerve endings, explains Fe Bueno, director of education for Yon-Ka. Next comes a back massage that uses hot volcanic stones and addresses four lower points (chakras) on the back. The client is turned over and warm compresses are applied to the chest and face. Then, the upper chakras are massaged. The face is cleansed, a soft gel peel is applied, and an eye and lip contour treatment product is placed on eyes and lips. While that's working, a massage on the d¯lletés done using aromatic creams. Next comes a hot stone massage on the chest. The face is cleansed and again a massage using a warm volcanic stone is done, concentrating on the cheeks, forehead and jaw line. Small, cooled aqua jade pebble stones are placed around the eyes for firming and drainage benefits. A customized mask is applied and colored gem stones are placed directly on the skin. After the mask is removed a cream is applied. The treatment concludes with a gentle olfactory awakening in which a product high in rosemary content is applied lightly to small points on the neck and face. "We encourage the client to breathe," explains Bueno. The final step is the physical awakening where the therapist helps the client in a gentle stretch. Warm aromatic towels are then applied to the nape, shoulders, and back while the client sits up. "It's popular now because it's an experience where the client can just relax and go on a journey of sorts," says Bueno. "It's relaxing, psychologically and physically, and the client gets a good deep cleansing without the rigidity of a major exfoliation."
The Alpine Herbal FacialWhere: The Aspen Club & Spa, Aspen, CO
Time: 50 minutes
With an altitude of nearly nine thousand feet, clients get dehydrated almost instantly, explains esthetician Grace Roberts. Hence the popularity of this gentle signature facial. "It's great because it uses a lot of essential oils, pine in particular, and it has aromatherapy effects," says Tim Power Smith, spa director. "We try to use indigenous oils as much as possible." The facial begins with a thorough cleansing and warm aromatic compresses (rose, lavender, or chamomile, depending upon skin type) on the face. A deep-cleansing mask is applied, followed by extractions. A neck, shoulder, and facial massage follow. Next comes a Nurturing Hydrating Mask followed by an Herbal Recovery Gel with concentrates of vitamins, minerals, and herbs. A hydrating moisturizer is applied to the face. During the facial, lavender hand cream is massaged into hands that are then put into mitts.
The Active FacialWhere: Sandra Caron European Spa, San Mateo, CA
Time: 90 minutes
Products: Sandra Caron
"This is our most popular facial because we do a very nice neck, face, and d¯lletíassage using pressure points and Shiatsu," says owner Sandra Caron. After the client is relaxed, an enzyme scrub is applied under steam with aromatic oils and herbs. While the client is under the steam, hands are massaged with oil and placed in mitts. Then comes the cleaning, exfoliating, and extracting. The facial incudes the application of a special rubbery seaweed mask. "We see very nice results," says Caron, who notes that those with acne shouldn't receive The Active Facial. She also sells it as a program of six and requests that clients come in every two weeks for six months for superior results.
The French Caviar FacialWhere: The Mandara Spa at the Paris Hotel, Las Vegas
Time: 50 minutes
What better place to offer an over-the-top facial than Vegas? Why is this one so popular with guests? It's the addition of caviar, says lead esthetician Laurie Sherman, who sings the anti-aging praises of the pricey ingredient. "Because it's called caviar, everyone wants it," she states. First, an herbal-lemon enzyme peel from Germany is applied. Next comes an ampoule of caviar in a liposome delivery system, then a collagen veil mask that also contains caviar. According to Sherman, there's a visible difference immediately. "We sell a lot of these facials because people see a remarkable difference in their fine lines and wrinkles with just one treatment." During the facial the client's hands and feet are encased in heated mitts and booties, and a relaxing neck, shoulder, and d¯lletíassage is given.
The European Deep-Cleansing FacialWhere: Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa, Palm Springs, CA
Time: 60 minutes
Products: Kerstin Florian
"Although this is good for all skin types, it's most beneficial for those with congested, combination, or oily skin," says Jennifer Overton, spa director. Overton chose this facial because it's very relaxing as well as deep cleansing and can be done in combination with any other spa treatment. First, the skin is analyzed and an appropriate cleanser is chosen. Eye makeup is removed, skin is cleansed and toned. An appropriate exfoliator (such as the Blitz-Peel) or mask (such as the Deep Cleansing Black Mud Masque) is then applied. After that's removed, a 10 to 20 minute deep cleansing massage with steam is performed. Extractions are next, followed by a mask, followed by a spritz with Neroli Water. The facial ends with the application of a vitamin C ampoule, day cream, and eye cream. A heated hand treatment is also included.
The Fountain of Youth FacialWhere: The Healing Waters Spa at the Lake Austin Spa Resort, Austin, TX
Time: 80 minutes
This signature facial boasts the benefits of marine spring water, an active ingredient in the line's products that's said to replenish and prolong the life of cells. An anti-aging facial, it begins with the application of oil and a self-heating mud to the spine to promote relaxation, explains Lynne Vertrees, spa director. Next comes the cleansing, toning, exfoliating, and steaming steps. While the client is under the steam, the hands are massaged. The face is cleansed and extractions are done. Then, the d¯lletés massaged with a cream for 25 minutes. A replenishing oil is applied and gently patted on the skin. A firming peel-off mask that helps smooth wrinkles and fine lines, as well as stimulate cell life, is mixed and applied. While it is drying, the client receives a scalp massage. The mask is lifted off and toner is applied. A toning serum is then applied from the neck up followed by an eye cream and day or night cream.
The Ayurvedic FacialWhere: The Lodge at Skylonda
Time: 90 minutes
Products: Tara Ayurveda
The treatment room is first transformed into a healing environment based on the client's Ayurvedic body type, explains Tracy Herk, general manager. This facial is part of the Elemental Ritual which includes an herb-infused oil massage. The client first fills out a questionnaire to assess the dosha. The facial involves a steam, deep cleansing, moisturizing, and an essential oil, marma-point facial massage. The finishing touch is a dosha-specific spritz containing ayurvedic essential oils. "It's popular because everyone is a little curious these days about Ayurveda," says Herk. "Our treatments are very restorative and healing. Everything we do here has some type of ancient tradition to it, and people come here knowing we have integrity behind our treatments."