Does your spa keep good records on your visits? Do they know if you have any allergies? What medications and vitamins are you taking? It is very important that your facialist  knows if you are using any Retinoids, for example. I’ll explain why later.  I know these days we tend to be a little suspicious about divulging too much personal information but for you to have a really beneficial result with each facial it is essential that your facialist is well informed.

Obviously some of the data contained on these forms is solely for marketing purposes and you have the right to withhold those particular details. Bear in mind, that by doing this you may miss out on some great specials. For the more essential information, however, here is a list of the key categories that you should look for and feel comfortable about filling out.

1. Pre-existing medical conditions. e.g. Acne, Diabetes, Epilepsy, Asthma, HIV Positive, Excema..  All these conditions effect the skin’s appearance and its response to specific facial protocols. NO electrical procedures should be performed on epileptic clients, for example. It could trigger a seizure.

2. Allergies. e.g. Food, Pollens, Animals, Product ingredients, Medications etc. A reaction can range in appearance from a rash to full blown hives.

3. Medications – with the aging baby boomer population and the plethora of medications taken for preventative reasons, chronic illness, insomnia, anxiety and depression, it is essential to tell your facialist all that you are currently taking. Many medications effect results because they tend to make the skin more sensitive, cause dryness and at the other end of the spectrum, they can also cause acne.

4. Prescription skin care products taken or used  regularly. e.g. Retin-A, Differin, Tazarac, are all part of the Retinoid family that cause skin proliferation. It is essential for this reason that any client using these topicals not be waxed. Accutane, an oral acne medication, carries the same contra-indication. This is because the waxing process will remove the skin in the areas being waxed as well as the hair. It is also important to tell your facialist if you have a history of microdermabrasion, chemical peels or plastic surgery. These procedures raise the skin’s sensitivity to other protocols

5. Lifestyle. Stress can cause general skin crankiness but a healthy lifestyle can really make a difference to how severely it affects you. Let’s break it down;

Fluids – drink at least half your body weight in ounces every day. For example, if you are 130 lbs., drink at least 65 ounces of water daily. It will keep the skin clear and hydrated. Avoid

Sodas – too much sugar, and minimize coffee and alcohol – both can dehydrate and sensitize the skin.

Smoking – decreases 50% of the oxygen content in your blood, quite apart from the cancer and other health risks it poses to the body. This can make the skin look dull and yellowish.

Exercise – stimulates the circulatory and lymphatic system, keeps you toned and agile, and releases important hormones and chemicals into the blood stream that keep your mental outlook healthy. Physical exertion also helps you to sleep better.

Sleep – while you sleep your skin goes to work so get enough hours. The benefits of a good night’s sleep can not be over stated. And remember, missed sleep can never be caught up on.

6. Hormones – because the hormonal break-out zone on the face is the chin and lower jaw, breakouts generally occur there during period time, pregnancy and menopause. Very stressful times and irregular cycles can also cause acne to appear on the chin as well. When using or changing birth control pills, it can also take the body 3-6 months to adapt, and break-outs can also appear at this time. Tell your facialist if you are dealing with any hormonal issues.

7. Home care routine – what you are using at home and how consistently can have a huge impact on how you age. What you spend on skin care these days too, both in time and money, because cosmetic chemistry has made so many advances in the last twenty years, can really make a difference. The absolute basic routine for at home care should include cleansing and toning morning and night, eye cream twice daily, a moisturizer with SPF 30 during the day and a treatment cream with anti-oxidants and other anti-aging ingredients at night.

8. Skin care concerns and expectations – finally, after you have given all this data to the technician, state clearly what you would like to change about your skin and what results you are looking for. Ask questions about the protocols and products that are being recommended and always remember to inform the facialist of any changes in your skin or lifestyle between visits.

A good facialist, high quality skin care line and a consistent daily home care routine can knock years off your appearance! Call or e-mail us with any questions.