hydrafacial + advice from an esthetician

Right before Christmas, I had my first ever Hydrafacial from Shell Plastic Surgery in Oxford. The esthetician was amazing and gave me some great tips that I have been using the last few weeks.

I have been struggling with breakouts for a while now and have tried just about everything in the book.. dermatologists, medicine, Ulta’s facials, drugstore, high-end, Proactiv, Rodan and Fields, chemical peels, everything I can possibly think of. None of it worked.

My sorority sister’s mom works for Shell and suggested to my mother that I try a HydraFacial. So, of course, my mom surprised me with an appointment.

After the facial, the esthetician gave me some advice to help clear up my face.

1. Stop touching my face or use the back of my hand if absolutely necessary. This is because your palm holds the most oils (and germs) and transferring them to your face can cause breakouts. I always struggle with this because I stress-touch my face all the time. Everybody tries to keep me from it… and hasn’t worked yet. I am trying my hardest to stop, but not quite sure how successful I’ve been.

2. Pillowcase: clean tonight, flip tomorrow, clean the next night. This may be super unreasonable and a little extra for most people (including myself), but it does make sense when you think about it. The cleaner your pillow (and sheets), the fewer germs and bacteria on your skin while you’re sleeping.

I’ve found the easiest way to do this is by using two pillows, washing every 4 days, unless you have an extra pillowcase. I have a couple of extra ones in my closet which helps cut down on all of the washing. I try to make it last the full week and wash my sheets along with them.

3. In the shower: Shampoo and conditioner first, following with facial cleanser. I always clean my face first in the shower, so this has been a bit of an adjustment in my routine. However, I’ve noticed a difference in the dryness of my skin since switching. Now, I tend to not keep my face under the water as much which is ultimately better for the skin.

4. ZO Skin Health Products + exfoliating two times a week. She gave me samples of the ZO exfoliating cleanser and the dual action scrub along with a spot treatment to see if it will help clear things up. I have been using the scrub every Monday and Friday to start and end my week with the smoothest skin possible. This is also how I incorporate masks into my skincare routine. 

5. Getting a blue light treatment and/or facial up to every two weeks. This is something she said was a trial and error thing, not set in stone. Every two weeks is the earliest recommended to me by my esthetician. It depends mainly on how my face reacts to the treatment. 

The blue light was probably my favorite part of the facial and I need it back in my life!! It was a cool experience and something I definitely recommend trying. She did this at the end of my facial and it felt so good and warm on my freshly cleaned face!

For those of you who don’t know, the blue light treatment helps heal and prevent acne and scarring. You literally sit under a blue light and it penetrates the skin to kill unwanted bacteria. If you’re struggling with breakouts like I am, talk to your dermatologist or esthetician to see if it will work for you.

6. Stop using Neutrogena face wipes. My nighttime routine got VERY lazy this last semester and I kind of stopped all of the insane steps I had been doing. Unfortunately, I went from one extreme to the other and basically didn’t do anything to my skin each night except take off my makeup. She told me I definitely need to stop doing this and get an actual makeup remover and set skincare routine. (If you have any suggestions for a natural remover for sensitive skin, leave a comment below!)

7. Talk to my doctor about my hormones. Most of my breakouts are around my chin, which is hormone related. This is something that started when I went to college and have been battling since. (Raise your hand if your face has done this, too. Literally the struggle of being a woman.)

Overall, I had a great experience with the HydraFacial and will definitely be seeing Anna again in the future!

I am clearly not a professional when it comes to skincare, but wanted to share the tips she gave me just in case you wanted to try some of them out!

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