One of the biggest things I love about going to an medical aesthetic clinic is that everything is exactly tailored for your skin, at any point in your life. Yes, we do have a ‘skin-type’ – but as we all know, life happens, and our skin is constantly changing as a result of our ever shifting lifestyles. Lack of sleep one week. Lack of water another week. Way too much sun thanks to that holiday we went on. Stress from work. The list goes on. As a photographer, my life includes ALL of that. And that is before we throw in the russian roulette of hormones that our bodies like to whirl us into at least once a month (for ladies :P) which brings an inevitable new wave of acne to battle!
Recently, my skin, despite my best efforts, had reached an emergency situation in terms of clogged pores, and pimples. I cam usually leave my home without the need for foundation or cover up because my skin is usually clear, but this particular recent period was so bad I was wearing cover up almost every day I had to be out of the house. I blame that annoying combination of hormones, as well as working an extremely busy peak season that meant I was under the sun almost every single week for hours and hours on end – it meant that cleansing and wearing sunscreen just wasn’t enough. I needed help. So I switched from my usual hydration facial, to Astute Clinic’s acne facial (thanks to the advice of Dr Jason and the staff at Astute) for a really deep clean, so my skin could faster recover and get back to a cleaner state to fight another season of work and life :)
I was told the acne facial session would be about 60-90 minutes, but it ended up being almost 2 hours long. That’s how gross and dirty my face was. It needed THAT much cleaning. But I’m also glad because it showed me that is how thorough and detailed the girls are working at my skin. There are alot of places out there who literally count the minutes, and will compromise on quality for the sake of time. I am definitely someone who prefers to leave a facial with a job well done, rather than a session that is only 70% there due to time.
Below is how the acne facial works:
Step 1 – Double Cleanse
Not one round of cleansing, but two! I do this every day at home, but its really nice to have it done professionally – and using cleansers that are tailored to your skin needs of course! :)
Step 2 – Hydro Jet
The next step utilises a water jet to basically blast away as many dead skin cells out from your skin as possible (basically, they are trying to clean and clear your skin as much as possible so that your therapist can have the best and cleanest canvas to work on before physical extractions begin at the next step following this).
Step 3 – Extraction
Next is the physical extraction. This process for me took the longest as they really took their time to thoroughly empty all the pores that were clogged with dirt, oil, grime, and bacteria. For some reason, I ALWAYS ALWAYS fall asleep at this point. While the first few minutes I will feel the extraction going on, I inevitably drift off and the next thing I know we are onto the next step! Just goes to show how good the therapists here are!! :)
Step 4 – Serum Application
This step is where my therapist applied a vitamin C serum all over my face. We all know that vitamin C is one of the KING ingredients in anti-aging, helps promote collagen production, brightens and evens out skin tone, and fights against free radicals!
Step 5 – LED Light
The last step, which is so cool, is LED light therapy. You basically will wear a mask that resembles something out of star wars haha, and it will emit LED light to help calm and soothe and heal your skin. I’ve spoken about this mask before, but in case any of you are new here, here is what LED light therapy is like! There will be a red light and blue light, and it alternates back and forth for varying periods to calm redness, rejuvenate the skin, and works to reduce wrinkles/fine lines. I have seen a lot of celebrities using these masks and have been told it also helps in calming down sun damage too (yay for me, since I’m a photographer who works outdoors a lot!). Again, there is zero pain, and you will feel absolutely nothing when its on your face.
The immediate result was a significant reduction in acne bumps. However, it would take my skin another 1-2 weeks before it fully got back to its original clear state. To those who may be eye-rolling at me and saying – thats too long. Trust me it is not. I was battling my awful acne state for a good 4-5 weeks and nothing improved til I went in and got this facial done. Plus, the consult with the Dr and having product application tips from the staff were all part of the quick healing process that followed my acne facial session.
I was told to:
- use more hydration masks (not moisturizing mind you – that adds oil to your face. Hydration adds water. And they told me that is what my skin was needing)
- stop using certain exfoliating products (as they dry and strip your skin) during my healing process
And that really helped for home maintenance of what they had already done in the clinic for me.
Here’s a shot of my face a few days after one of my sessions. I am only wearing a little bit of astute clinic’s tinted sunscreen. As you can see, the acne scars are still there… but trust me when I say its truly ALOT better than what it was before. The spots and bumps were EVERYWHERE before.
And here is my face, 2 weeks later. Again wearing the same tinted sunscreen (no other cover up) plus some eye liner, and some blush. You’ll notice the texture of the skin is alot smoother compared to the previous photo. And as always, you’ll be able to see my pores in the photo for the sake of proving this is an unfiltered and unedited photo :)
NOTE: While this post was sponsored, all opinions are my own and are a completely transparent and honest representation of my thoughts towards the treatment/products used.