It’s a quick dose of IGTV for your morning yoga session; Zoom for your lunchtime meetings and Facebook for a John Legend gig. Strange times call for more interesting, inventive measures and it’s no different in the wonderful world of beauty. Instead of forgoing our monthly facials entirely, now we can tap into tech to learn how to give our own faces a facial, instead of relying on others to do it for us.
Top facialists and skin destinations are taking to the internet to diagnose, consult and teach their clients how to look after their skin in the absence of their regular services. “With us all cocooning in our homes, this allows us to connect with our clients to continue their care while we are unable to see them in person – something that is so important at a time like this – as well as meet new faces that are looking to begin their skin health journey,” says Andrea Pfeffer, founder of chic skincare clinic, Pfeffer Sal, which is well placed for online skin sessions, having recently launched a digital platform and store to connect with clients worldwide.
Pfeffer sees skincare and ritualistic facials as an important element of self care during a trying period for our mental health, and has encouraged the clinic’s therapists to infuse that notion into their online treatments: “Without the physical touch, we have refocused our treatments on stimulating the brain via education and relaxation, giving you the tools to take better care of your skin at home. This time has created such a shift with everyone’s self care habits and it means individuals need to connect with themselves.”
The elements of facials that we love – the intricate skin analysis, the expertly chosen products, the facial massage and, of course, that post-facial afterglow – can still be performed from the comfort of our own homes and make for an enjoyable facial that, despite clearly being a second-best to the real thing, still yields results, thanks to pro guidance.
In fact, facialist and skin expert Michaella Bolder is enthusiastic about her new venture into virtual facial treatments: “My clients can do their own treatment, in their own suitable time, in pyjamas, with a glass of wine, plus use all these amazing products they’ve been buying over the years. It’s a bit of a win-win,” she says, acknowledging that this might be a pivotal point in how we approach our facial treatments in the future. “Virtual treatments will open doors to many people that are too busy or out of reach for travelling, and help us make the most of what we have in our own homes, with the treat of a hands-on session in between at-home times,” she says.
From Zoom to Skype and all the FaceTimes in between, here are the British Vogue-approved virtual facial experiences worth indulging in now.
Those who have gone for an IRL facial with Michaella Bolder will know her “thing” is deep facial massage – her hands work wonders on tense jawlines, furrowed brows and you walk out of a treatment with her with popping cheekbones. During her virtual video consultations, she’ll start by assessing your skin type and concerns, follow you in a tour of your existing skincare products and help you find the products that work for you, while streamlining your routine. “Then we’ll get to the tutorial where I’ll teach you how to create your own facial – tailored to you – and how to massage your face,” she says. “This will be done in a mirrored format, so I’ll perform the treatment with you.”
Offering four virtual treatments with their team of expert skin therapists, there is something for everyone at Pfeffer Sal. First-time clients or those who haven’t had a facial in a while might like to try the Online Skin MOT, in which your therapist will prescribe you a home routine after analysing your skin over a video call; others will love the Guided Facial, for which you’ll use a curated assortment of products that have been sent to you in the post, to perform an at-home mini-facial with guidance from a therapist. “Just like our in-clinic treatments, all our notes from the online treatments will be recorded, and you’ll also receive a detailed report via email from our team with your tailored treatment programme, home routine recommendations, and some skin tips that can be easily incorporated into your life at home,” says Pfeffer.
For a dermatologist’s touch, look no further than Eudelo, which provides you with the products and tools you need to do an at-home facial via one-to-one video sessions. Following an online planning consultation to diagnose the skin and figure out the best products and techniques to treat it, the clinic will post the products and tools directly to your home. Then, during a live video call with a Eudelo medical aesthetician, you’ll be guided through every last second of your home facial. Expect to understand exactly what your products do, plus how and when to use them – invaluable knowledge for the future.
D. Thomas Clinic
A specialist in laser treatments and knowing exactly what the skin needs to function at its best, Debbie Thomas is moving her bespoke consultations online; she will assess your skin’s condition, working to understand its weaknesses, and prescribe you a skincare routine as curated as her in-clinic treatments (which really are second-to-none). And while she can’t offer laser virtually, she can get your skin in its finest shape yet before they can re-open.
Mortar & Milk
Struggling to find the right products for your skin type – ones that actually do what they’re supposed to? You’re really not alone. Pamela Marshall, aesthetician and founder of Mortar & Milk knows all there is to know about the skin, which makes her online consultation a must-try during long isolation days. She works with some excellent medical-grade skincare brands, like Exuviance, and will recommend a morning and night skincare routine (which you can purchase afterwards) to alleviate many of your skincare concerns. She’ll also look at your lifestyle, including your diet, gut health and bowel health, to recommend ways in which you can optimise your skin.
With virtual consultations up to an hour in length, skin health expert Joanne Evans is offering her knowledge to those who want to remedy particular skin issues, whether that’s acne, fine lines or uneven texture, or those who want advice on how to formulate a clever skincare routine. Touting the benefits of spring cleaning your skincare routine, she’ll also be on virtual hand to explore your bathroom cupboard and help you take stock of what it is you really need in your routine, and what isn’t working so well for you.
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