To combat harsh winters and city pollution, I've had micro-dermabrasion and deep cleaning facials about twice a year for the past 8+ years - usually paying anywhere from $125 to $200 per session. In my opinion, money well spent keeping my skin youthful and decreasing the appearance of old acne scars.
I have dark skin prone to scarring and discoloration so I tend to be extra careful when it comes to skin care, which is why I make and use my own products. But when my favorite facialist left her job and I couldn't get a hold of her no matter how much I tried, my skin was looking just too rough! I was feeling a bit brave (and desperate) and thought 'What the heck, Let me try doing it myself!'
The Appolus Diamond Microdermabrasion Device Kit with Suction, $59 on Amazon
First, let me say very clearly - I would NOT recommend this machine to anyone who has not had professional facials + microdermabrasion before because you can really damage your skin.
It is very important that you know what this is supposed to feel like before you try it on yourself. Secondly, I watched several instructional videos on microdermabrasion technique before trying this -- absolutely DO NOT skip this step.
Finally, it's very important to follow a full facial procedure to clean and prepare the skin properly. I'm not a profession esthetician and don't pretend to be. I stayed very humble and took it slow.
Now with all that being said, Oh Em GEEEE I love this machine!
It comes with great three different levels of diamond tips and suction tips ranging for small to large for all areas of your face and next. The directions that come with the product suck, so I researched online and watch several videos instead (thanks YouTube!)
After a week of testing the product on my arm I used it for the first time on my face with the lightest diamond head, I like the strongest suction. Results were pretty good. My skin was really dry and peeled a little bit after 4-5 days. Extreme moisturizing is required for a at least one week afterwards but I was OK with that.
The 2nd session was two weeks later and WOW!! I did my neck too and loved how I was able to smooth the skin - such beautiful results!!
If you're thinking you might like this, I've outlined my process below. In total, it takes about 90 minutes. Perfect for a #SelfCareSunday
Step 1: Use a facial cleaning system like the Clairsonic with a gentle detoxifying soap, like Cecile's Detoxifying Charcoal Soap (our #1 best seller). Non drying and never harsh, charcoal pulls impurities out of your pores.
Step 2: Next, I used my new facial steamer which I absolutely love. In addition to blowing both hot and cool steam, there is a compartment to add herbs, essential oils or even fruit to infuse the steam.
Mudder 3 in 1 Facial Steamer Hot Mist for Face Sauna, $34 on Amazon
Cecile's New Herbal Sachets include organic roses, chamomile, calendula and lavender sealed in a tea bag. Steaming opens your pores so you can start releasing toxins and absorb natural healing benefits.
Step 3: I wash my face quickly with my the charcoal soap and pat dry. Then I start my microderm very carefully. Now I've got my technique down pat using short horizontal strokes across the forehead and chin, with longer upward strokes along the cheeks, jawline and between the eyes.
I took my time around my nose to expose those yucky blackheads (magnifying mirrors are scary LOL) This takes about 20 min. total. Your face will be covered in a fine powder so rinse with plain water.
Step 4: I don't feel skilled enough to try extractions on my own because of my likelihood to scar, so I use a clay or charcoal mask to do a deep pore cleansing. I steam for 2-3 minutes to open pores and then apply a thick coating of a mask that dries and pulls out blackheads as you feel it off (FYI, if you have fine hairs on your face it can sting).
Masks with French Green clay and Charcoal are wonderful for absorbing excess oil and deep cleaning pores. With this type of mask, I always do my face, entire neck and my chest. This is the skin most often exposed to wind, harsh weather, perfumes and more, and it deserves just as much care as your face.
Step 5: As I get older, my skin is really drying out so I follow up with a 2nd mask just for hydration. My new favorites are the individual paper masks as they are single use, sterile and inexpensive.
Any water based hydration make will work well - keep on for about 10 minutes, rinse away residue and apply a good toner to balance the skin's mantle.
Step 6: LAST + MOST IMPORTANT STEP ongoing hydration is crucial. Use a generous helping of cream or hypoallergenic lotion, and seal with an natural oil on top. Cecile's New Facial Oil contains Grape seed, Argan, Evening Primrose and a touch of Moringa-Infused Castor oil -- working together to protect your skin while it heals.
Slowly but surely, your skin will look better and better each day! For the next week, slather your face with moisturizer before bed and after your morning shower, taking time to rinse and reapply moisturizer during the day. Do not use any abrasive substance or facial brush for the week.
Now, this isn't a quick fix or a process to be taken lightly, so take your time to do it right! Your skin will feel smoother look brighter and feel so so soft! Good Luck!!