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A woman with her hair pulled back demonstrates the new Artistry Labs Retexturing System as part of an at-home facial.

How to do a facial at home

Chemical peels, enzyme peels, hydrodermabrasions: What are the options for at-home facials?

October 11, 2023

A woman with her hair pulled back demonstrates the new Artistry Labs Retexturing System as part of an at-home facial.

How to do a facial at home

Chemical peels, enzyme peels, hydrodermabrasions: What are the options for at-home facials?

October 11, 2023

A woman with her hair pulled back demonstrates the new Artistry Labs Retexturing System as part of an at-home facial.

How to do a facial at home

Chemical peels, enzyme peels, hydrodermabrasions: What are the options for at-home facials?

October 11, 2023

What is a facial?

A facial is often listed among massages, manis and pedis when people think about a full self-care beauty routine, as it should be – especially for those concerned about healthy-looking skin. But a facial can mean different things to different people.

For some, it may be an at-home facial using a store-bought exfoliation mask and a little extra TLC for their skin. For others a facial can be a multistep professional anti-aging treatment at a spa or dermatologist’s office that can include any number of procedures including chemical peels and enzyme peels to hydrodermabrasion and red light therapy.

If you don’t have a regular esthetician or dermatologist, some of these terms may seem foreign to you. (Peeling enzymes? Hydra what now?) Thanks to continued innovation in skin care treatments and products, however, you don’t always have to go to a professional to give your skin some of that special spa treatment.

No at-home facial can exactly replicate surgical or dermatological procedures, but skin care scientists and product developers are creating the next best thing. Let’s look at some of the services offered by professionals and then we’ll look at how to do a facial at home.

What is a chemical peel?

A chemical peel is exactly what it sounds like: Using a chemical solution to remove the outer layers of dead skin to improve its appearance or treat a condition. The substance, a mild acid, is applied to the skin and left on for a few minutes or up to an hour before being removed.

“Through the process of chemical exfoliation, chemical peels can stimulate cell turnover, which in turn unclogs pores and corrects skin discoloration, giving the skin a vibrant glow,” said Louise Schneider, a senior principal research scientist and lead formulator for Artistry™ skin care products.

The peeling portion of the procedure happens in the days or weeks after application, when the targeted layers become scaly and slough off. Professionals typically offer three types of chemical peels: light, medium or deep. They differ based on the strength of the chemical peel and how deeply the layers of skin are affected.

Light chemical peels have an exfoliating chemical solution that only affects the top layer of the skin, or the epidermis. They can help to reduce the appearance of very fine lines, dry skin, minor acne and mild pigment or uneven skin tone. A medium chemical peel targets the epidermis and top layer of the dermis to improve the appearance of wrinkles, rough skin, age spots or other minor skin discolorations.

A deep peel penetrates the lower layer of the dermis and is sometimes recommended for deeper wrinkles, excessive sun damage, precancerous growths or scars. Deep peels can only be performed by a licensed physician.

“For medium and deep chemical peels, it’s important to consult a dermatologist to determine if your skin type and the skin condition you’re trying to address are appropriate for the procedure,” Schneider said.

What is an enzyme peel?

An enzyme peel is like a chemical peel, but instead of using chemicals like acids, they use enzymes. These enzymes can come from mushrooms, pumpkins, pineapples, pomegranates, papayas and plenty of other fruits or vegetables. Dead skin cells are made almost entirely of protein. Because these enzymes break down proteins, they help to remove dead skin cells at the surface of your skin.

The enzymes are applied to the skin and left on for anywhere from 7 minutes to 45 minutes, depending on the product. The result is a complexion that is brighter and smoother looking. The enzyme peel is typically a much gentler alternative to a chemical peel, which doesn’t discriminate between healthy skin cells and dead skin cells. Because it’s only removing dead skin cells, an enzyme peel should leave your skin glowing rather than red.

What is hydrodermabrasion?

Have you heard of a Hydrafacial® machine†? That is one of the popular brands of equipment used by many spas or dermatologists to offer hydrodermabrasion (sometimes spelled hydradermabrasion) or facial extractions. This procedure combines suction with water or another solution to remove dead skin cells and clear out pores, leaving it plumper and healthier looking.

It is literally vacuuming away dirt, debris, dead skin and other impurities from your skin while cleaning and hydrating it.

What is red light therapy?

We’ve been hearing about the dangers of blue light for years as it pertains to all the screens in our life. Red light, on the other hand, is being touted as our friend, especially when it comes to skin care. Studies are ongoing, but spas or dermatologists who offer red light therapy use it to target the reduction of wrinkles, scars, redness or acne. It could also be used to enhance the performance of certain skin care products. The low-wavelength red light (620-750 nanometers) can be delivered with a wand, a full face mask, a large light panel or a full light booth.

The components of the Artistry Labs Retexturizing System are displayed on a bathroom counter. The components of the Artistry Labs Retexturizing System are displayed on a bathroom counter.

How to do a facial at home

You can learn more about all these procedures and treatments by talking to your dermatologist or skin care professional at your favorite spa. But you can also look to the many products on the market that allow you to do an enzyme or chemical peel at home or any of the other treatments to create your own at-home facial experience.

There are a plethora of peels and masks available, as well as machines that offer hydrodermabrasion. Make sure to shop around and read labels carefully before making a selection. You want to look for products suitable to your skin type and developed by companies with qualified researchers and experts.

The Artistry™ brand of skin care and cosmetics, which is rooted in 85 years of botanical research and extensive molecular science, offers the Artistry Labs™ Retexturizing System, a four-week regimen intended to be used every three months. The system features a combination of the treatments mentioned above: a chemical peel, enzyme peel, hydrodermabrasion and a serum to deliver smoother, rejuvenated skin in four weeks.

“The products were designed in collaboration with a dermatologist to improve skin’s appearance and encourage natural skin cell renewal,” Schneider said. “They work together as a system to provide powerful results right at home.”

The Artistry Labs Retexturizing Peel, designed to be used two times a week, is a combination of a light chemical peel and an enzyme peel. It contains a Triple Exfoliating Complex of pomegranate and mushroom enzymes as well as mandelic acid, which is a gentle alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), to exfoliate dull, dead skin cells on the top layer of the epidermis.

“In vitro testing showed that mandelic acid enhanced the protein-breaking activity of the mushroom enzyme by 25 percent, so the combination of these ingredients can help deliver increased exfoliation activity,” Schneider said.

The Artistry Labs Aquabrasion Device is a hydrodermabrasion tool providing mechanical exfoliation. It should be used two times a week after the Retexturizing Peel.

“It pairs vacuum suction with water jetting to help retexturize skin,” Schneider said. “The combination helps remove the loosened skin cells and extracts pores for deep cleaning, preparing the skin for the next step.”

The final step of the system, to be used each morning and evening of the 28-day regimen, is the Artistry Labs Retexturizing Serum. It includes multiple complexes that are formulated to reinforce and protect the skin’s natural moisture barrier, encourage natural cell regrowth, reduce the appearance of pores and be a soothing finish to your retexturizing routine.

At night the serum should be followed up with a red light technology available on the Aquabrasion Device. “This technology is not comparable to what is offered professionally,” Schneider said. “Our red light was designed to work synergistically with our Retexturing System. It helps boost the serum’s antioxidant protection of lentil seed by 10 times.”

While the system is formulated to be used over the course of four weeks, Schneider said skin will feel smoother and tighter and look brighter after the first day of treatments.

“Pores appear tightened, roughness and appearance of fine lines are reduced as well as redness,” she said. “Clinical results show that at the end of four weeks, however, the system helps the appearance of skin’s texture look 8 years younger. It looks rejuvenated, like time is erased to reveal more youthful looking skin.”

How often should you get a facial

The recommended frequency for facials depends on what type of procedures you choose. Some procedures or products can be administered daily, some weekly or monthly. It all depends on the product’s instructions and your skin type.

Do you want to learn more about your skin type and what skin care treatments or supplements you might benefit from? Download the Artistry™ Virtual Beauty app on your iOS®† or Android®† device to get a personal skin care analysis and see which skin care products might be right for you!

†Hydrafacial® is a registered trademark of Hydrafacial LLC. iOS® is a registered trademark of Cisco Technology, Inc. Android® is a registered trademark of Google LLC.