How to Give Yourself an Ultra-Moisturizing Facial At Home
The cold winter months are notorious for dehydrating our skin, leaving it feeling parched and dry. This is why we like to treat our complexions to hydrating facials once a week, complete with deep cleansing, moisturizing masks, and rich creams. There’s no better way to get rid of the Sunday Scaries than with a little in-bed pampering session, especially when it feels as good as the real thing. Below, we’re sharing a simple step-by-step tutorial to show you how to give yourself an ultra-moisturizing facial in the comfort of your own home.
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 1: CLEANSE YOUR SKIN
The first step in any facial—whether at the spa or at home—is cleansing. You'll want a clean canvas to ensure you get the best results from the skin care products you've chosen. Reach for your favorite hydrating cleanser and use it with a Clarisonic cleansing brush. These sonic cleansing devices cleanse the skin up to six times better than cleansing with hands alone. Reach for Clarisonic’s newest device, Mia Smart. It is compatible with the brand’s full range of cleansing brush heads. Have your pick depending on your skin type and concerns. To learn more about all the benefits of Mia Smart, check out our full device review, here!
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 2: CLEANSE YOUR SKIN…AGAIN
A Clarisonic does a great job of cleansing the skin, but if you don’t have a Clarisonic and are cleansing with your hands alone, it’s not a bad idea to follow up with another face wash to ensure all traces of dirt and impurities are effectively whisked away. Referred to as double-cleansing, this method was first popularized in South Korea and involves cleansing your skin twice—once with an oil-based cleanser and again with a water-based cleanser. To learn more about double-cleansing, click here!
An Oil-Based Cleanser to Try: Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser, $20 MSRP
A Water-Based Cleanser to Try: Kiehl's Herbal-Infused Micellar Cleansing Water, $28 MSRP
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 3: EXFOLIATE YOUR SKIN
The next step in your at-home facial is exfoliation. Just as you want a clean complexion, you also want one that’s not covered in dead skin cell buildup. One of our favorite ways to slough off dead skin cells lingering on skin’s surface is by using L’Oréal Paris’ RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Peel Pads. These peel pads can be used daily to help to peel away a dull, uneven tone to reveal brighter-looking skin. Since the pads are formulated with a 10 percent glycolic complex, you'll want to make sure you're also using a broad-spectrum SPF—something you should be doing every day regardless! If you prefer to exfoliate with a serum formulated with exfoliating agents, try SkinCeuticals Retexturing Activator. The formula can help to resurface and replenish surface lines while transforming skin from the chest up into a smoother, more radiant-looking complexion.
You can also exfoliate your skin mechanically with a face scrub. The key is to make sure the formula is gentle and not formulated with harsh or abrasive beads or grains. We recommend the La Roche-Posay Ultra-Fine Scrub. It can help to remove dead skin cells build up for skin that’s smooth and purified. All you have to do is splash some water on your face, apply the scrub to wet skin, gently massage in circular motions, and rinse.
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 4: STEAM YOUR FACE
Steaming has gained traction among a need breed of skincare enthusiasts, and those willing to take the time to include this old-school beauty ritual. The best part about at-home facial steaming is that you can customize your water and ingredients—think: lavender or chamomile oils—to your liking and skincare concerns. For the most effective results, keep a towel over your head, so as much steam as possible is directed toward your face. You don't need a fancy spa steam machine to enjoy the benefits of steaming your face. Using these simple steps, you can steam your face spa-style at home!
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 5: APPLY A FACE MASK
No facial is complete without face masks. For our at-home winter facial, we like to use eye patches—like Lancôme’s Absolue L'Extrait Ultimate Eye Patch—and sheet masks like Génifique Youth Activating Second Skin Mask. Not only are eye patches and sheet masks hydrating, but they also involve no cleanup, so instead of rinsing, rubbing, and potentially dehydrating your complexion, you can remove the sheets and then rub in the leftover serum for even more hydration.
But masks can do a lot more than just hydrate your skin. In fact, there are face masks out there geared towards a wide range of skin concerns. Plus, with the multi-masking trend in full effect, you can target different areas of your face for targeted results. Dealing with excess oil on your nose, dryness on your cheeks, and dullness on your forehead? You can address all of these concerns with different face masks. Talk about taking your masking session to the next level.
To start your multi-masking routine, here’s what you should do:
1. Cleanse Your Skin: You can do so with your favorite face wash. If you’d like to take a full shower to get clean, you can do so.
2. Exfoliate Your Skin: Remove dead skin cell buildup to promote adequate penetration of your face masks.
3. Pick Your Products: Take a look at your skin and assess its needs. Pick the best masks to address these areas and concerns.
4. Apply Your Masks: Begin applying your face masks of choice to the areas of concern they can help address. For instance, apply a mattifying mask onto your shiny t-zone, a hydrating mask on your cheeks, and a clarifying or brightening mask onto your forehead. Pay attention to how long each mask needs to stay on your skin so you remove them at the right time. You don’t want to keep a face mask on longer than the instructions state.
To learn more about how to build a multi-masking routine, click here!
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 6: SPOT TREAT BLEMISHES
After washing off your face mask(s), it’s time to address any existing blemishes with a spot treatment. Most spot treatments contain varying percentages of acne-fighting ingredients benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or sulfur. If you aren’t sure which zit-zapping spot treatment to try, check out a few of our recommendations below.
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Acne Spot Treatment
This acne spot treatment curtails the number and severity of blemishes while helping to clear blackheads and whiteheads. It contains 5.5% benzoyl peroxide and exfoliating lipo-hydroxy acid, to provide fast, visible results.
Kiehl’s Breakout Control Targeted Acne Spot Treatment
This sulfur acne treatment from Kiehl’s is the perfect solution for those looking to reduce the appearance of acne. This spot treatment blends evenly into the skin, helping to reduce redness. Limit the number of applications if you notice drying or peeling occurring during your at-home facial.
Kiehl’s Blue Herbal Spot Treatment
This spot treatment is formulated with salicylic acid, extracts of ginger root, and frankincense, and can help clear the look of acne blemishes, blackheads, and whiteheads.
Kiehl’s Blue Herbal Spot Treatment, $18 MSRP
AT-HOME FACIAL STEP 7: MOISTURIZE YOUR SKIN
As a last step to your at-home facial, you'll want to lock in hydration. To do so, start with a serum and layer a moisturizer over top. After all your skin has been through during your at-home facial, it needs to be nourished with essential moisture. And whenever we think of hydration, our minds immediately travel to powerhouse hydrating ingredient hyaluronic acid. Able to hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, hyaluronic acid is great addition to any serum or moisturizer in your arsenal. To add hyaluronic acid to your routine, reach for CeraVe’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum. In addition to hyaluronic acid, this serum contains vitamin B5 and essential ceramides help bind water to the skin's surface and protect its moisture barrier. To learn more about the benefits of CeraVe’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum, read our full review here.
After applying a serum, follow with a rich moisturizer. SkinCeuticals Emollience is an excellent option for dry skin in need of nourishment. Formulated with algae extracts and essential oils of grape seed, rose hip, and macadamia nut, this rich moisturizer helps to lock in and maintain hydration. Got oily skin? That’s no excuse to skip on hydrating. Just use an oil-free moisturizer, such as Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel-Cream. This gel moisturizer—for normal to oily skin types—is lightweight and formulated to give you all-day hydration benefits. It's non-greasy and provides an instant cooling effect that'll feel great after a facial. It's also non-comedogenic and allergy-tested.
BONUS AT-HOME FACIAL TIPS:
- Set the Mood: Giving yourself an at-home facial is arguably more enjoyable when you take the time to set up your surroundings. Set the mood for your at-home spa ritual by lighting scented candles and dimming the lights.
- Bring Out Your Jade Roller: If you have a jade roller handy, whip it out during your facial to help de-puff puffy areas and assist with circulation. Store yours in the fridge for cooling benefits.
- Take a Bath: Once your at-home facial routine has wrapped up, hop into a warm bath. Add some hydrating bath oils for the ultimate aromatic experience. Follow with an application of scented body cream or butter onto damp skin.
- Wear a Robe: Who doesn't want to feel a little extra luxurious? During your at-home facial, cozy up in your favorite bathrobe as you go through all the aforementioned steps.