The daily stresses and fast-paced lifestyle often leave us feeling in need of a break. What better way to treat yourself to a well-deserved “me time” than to schedule a facial at a local salon? It’s understandable why skin experts recommend facial treatments – they have the ability to rejuvenate our skin and reduce our stress levels, ultimately leaving us feeling like new. While there’s little that can beat this feeling, many of us aren’t exactly sure what to do next. Post-facial care is very important for maintaining the intended results of the treatment, and the wrong kind of care can do more harm than good.

Here are our favorite post-facial care do’s and don’ts to help your skin maintain that glow as long as possible:

Do keep your skin well-hydrated…

The importance of proper skin hydration can not be emphasized enough, both through daily water intake and topical hydration. Use gentle, humectant-rich skincare products that hydrate your skin, and also contain natural oils and butters to help seal in moisture. Be careful with moisturizers that list certain types of alcohol on their ingredient lists as they can dry out your skin. High concentrations of bad alcohol can interfere with the skin’s barrier function, and prevent skin from keeping moisture in. On the other hand, good, fatty alcohols have the opposite effect – they help lock the moisture in, protect the skin, and don’t dry it out. By properly hydrating your skin, you’ll maximize the effects of your facial treatment and ensure a healthy, radiant post-facial glow.

Do steer clear of saunas and gyms

Do steer clear of saunas and gyms after a facial

If you’ve been planning on visiting the sauna as a part of your pamper routine, you’re better off doing it some other time. Your skin has already been steamed or warmed with a compress during the facial, and the heat from the sauna can do more harm than good. It may even cause broken capillaries and skin irritation, so your safe bet would be to avoid the sauna, hot yoga, and the steam room.

The same goes for physical activities at the gym. Freshly exfoliated skin may get irritated from sweat, which can lead to inflammation and redness. Save it for some other time, or do it before going for a facial.

Do book your next appointment right away!

Although it’s important to practice proper post-facial care and do all you can to keep it looking fresh and energized at home, the best results are achieved by combining professional facial treatments with at-home skincare. However, you want to make sure that you only book appointments with skilled, highly-trained licensed aestheticians to ensure you get a safe, high-quality service. Choose a reputable beauty clinic in your area so that you know you’re in good hands. A good aesthetician (preferably one with Nutritional Aesthetics® training!) will make sure that the treatment is appropriate for your skin and fits into your lifestyle, ensuring a beautiful, healthy, rejuvenated skin. Booking your next appointment at the time of your facial means you won’t forget due to life getting in the way.

Do avoid at-home peels and retinol

Use only gentle skincare products at home

After a facial, your skin may be sensitive for some time, so it’s best to leave it alone for a week and let it heal, using simple natural products. Steer clear of at-home peels, microdermabrasion treatments, spinning brushes, and harsh scrubs.

We also recommend avoiding retinol-based products during the first week post-facial (if you use them at all), because they could cause irritation and inflammation. Have in mind that less is more! Your aesthetician has already applied products that will protect your skin and help it regain balance, so follow their post-facial care instructions thoroughly.

Do be careful with exfoliation.

Here at the NAA, we have a conservative approach to exfoliation, and believe that less is more. We do not recommended exfoliating at home during the first week following your facial treatment, because it may harm your skin’s lipid barrier, and potentially cause inflammation. Opt instead for a gentle cleanser. If you choose to exfoliate after the first week, we recommend doing so only with non-abrasive exfoliants such as gommage, clay, or jojoba beads.

Don’t sunbathe, wax, or shave

Avoid sunbathing, waxing, or shaving after a facial.

While it might be tempting to schedule both hair removal and facial treatments for the same day, it’s best not to mix these two together. Your skin is delicate and sensitive after a facial. Waxing, dermaplaning, or other facial hair removal techniques may cause burns and over-exfoliation, which could lead to scarring and hyperpigmentation. Therefore, it’s best to make these appointments for at least a week to 10 days before or after your facial.

In case you were planning on spending time in the sun, or getting a facial on a cruise ship or resort spa, protecting your skin is a must. We love wide brim hats, big sunglasses, and religiously applied broad spectrum sunscreen. This will help protect your freshly treated skin and prevent sun damage.

Proper post-facial care keeps that skin glowing!

Use these post-facial care tips to prolong the effects of your facial, instead of reversing its benefits. This will ensure a healthy, radiant skin until your next facial treatment.

About the author:

This article was contributed by guest author, Sophia Smith. Sophia Smith is a beauty and style blogger, an eco-lifestyle lover, graphic designer, and food enthusiast. She is very passionate about natural skincare, minimalist wardrobe, yoga, and mindful living. Sophia writes mostly about beauty-related topics in her articles. She has contributed to a number of publications including Finer Minds, Blog Sivana Spirit, Bad Yogi, How to Simplify and Carousel. You can find out more about her writing by following her on: Facebook  Twitter  Google +