Benefits of Facials

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Are Clay Masks Effective?

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The human face is the primary focus of the beauty industry. It is generally the most distinguishing characteristic. Cosmetics obscure skin imperfections and enhance features. Derma peels (chemical peels) shed blemishes and Botox fills wrinkles. But taking good care of your skin minimizes the need for dramatic enhancements.

Good nutrition and face washing once or twice per day with a mild cleanser before patting it dry are basic ways cosmetology professionals suggest to keep skin healthy. Dermatologists recommend sunblock or moisturizer with UVA and UVB protection when outdoors. Your daily facial regimen depends on your age, gender, and skin type. It may be oily or dry; hairy, wrinkly, smooth, or have blemishes.

Pores can enlarge or swell as impurities attack follicles. A cosmetology facial usually includes cleansing, exfoliation, massage, extractions, and a clay mask. Discomfort from extractions and exfoliation is temporary with long lasting benefits. Did you think this article is solely for women? Men get facials too! If you have a lot of stubble, consider shaving the night before the facial.

Clay Mask Benefits

Clay masks can help draw out impurities, brighten the look of your skin, refine pores, hydrate and eliminate excess shine of oily skin. They are are also calming—often applied as part of a spa treatment—but you can apply them at home. There are three phases of a clay mask: Damp, semi-dry, and dry phase. Restrict treatment to three times a week.

Each clay offers different benefits. With its high mineral content and super absorbing capabilities, montmorillonite clay, when mixed with water, has a strong electric charge. This enables it to attract and bind to pore-clogging oil and bacteria. Kaolin is one of the mildest clays that is calming and an excellent acne-fighter. It gently exfoliates and unclogs pores while keeping your skin’s natural moisture intact. Red kaolinite penetrates deep into pores to soak up the excess sebum that causes acne breakouts.

Double masking is the use of different clay masks, one after the other—washing in between. Layering one mask directly over the other is trickier, and in most cases avoided.

With this primer in facials, are you ready to shop and try it at home? Perhaps it is best—at least for the first time—to have a facial done professionally by a cosme­to­lo­gist or esthetician. This way you receive an evalua­tion and product recommenda­tion for your skin type. You also get to compare how it should feel when done properly. Thereafter, you can decide if you wish to perform your own maintenance or schedule regular visits. When in doubt, consult a dermatology doctor prior to treatment. Your skin may not be perfect, but with a little pampering, you can feel A Bit More Healthy.

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Kevin Williams is a health advocate and writer of hundreds of articles for multiple websites, including: A Bit More Healthy, KevinMD, and Sue’s Nutrition Buzz.

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