Real skin rarely looks as flawless as those airbrushed ads; it’s often dehydrated, has fine lines or wrinkles, or is speckled with pigmentation and sun-damage (you know, those brown spots that suddenly appear out of nowhere!). 

If you’re thinking it’s time to do more than apply a bit of cream morning and night, then a facial at a spa or skin clinic is your next step. Modern facials combine potent creams with deeply penetrating treatments that can boost the quality of your skin from within. Yet with so many different treatments on offer, confusing terminology to decode and the significant financial cost to consider, it can be daunting deciding where to go and what to ask for. 

Doing a little bit of homework is a good place to start, advises Dr Adam Sheridan from the Australasian College of Dermatologists. Whether that’s hitting Google with a few questions or chatting over a coffee with friends who’ve had facials recently, gather as much information as you can. “Ideally attend [a clinic] for an assessment and treatment advice from an experienced professional,” Sheridan says. “A combination approach [of treatments and topical products] is best.”

Be guided also by your own knowledge of your skin’s strengths and weaknesses – you know best what you need – it might be that you want to remove redness, or it could be you’re concerned about the appearance of fine lines. 

“Carefully determine what your target concerns are, then work to discover the treatment specific to your primary concern. A good clinician or therapist will happily guide you in each step,” Sheridan advises. “Work from the outside in – start with textural issues, then work to clear pigment and redness, for example.”

 There are so many opportunities now to improve your skin without having to revert to surgical procedures. According to Sheridan, there is also a growing focus upon your total health as a driver of long term skin health. “For example, optimised diet, lifestyle and preventative and sustaining supplements,” Sheridan says. And, of course, applying sunscreen is a must. “Prevention through improved sunscreens that are pleasant to apply is your essential daily defence.” 

We trialled and tested a range of treatments that use the latest cutting-edge technology that go deep and offer real, visible benefits. You and your skin will feel fresher, more hydrated and absolutely blooming!

Guinot Hydradermie Facial 
from $190, 60 minutes 

What it does: Using a combination of heat, massage and electronic current, 
this facial ‘exercises’ the skin. Gel serums containing ingredients (such as hyaluronic acid) chosen to match your skin concerns are massaged into the skin using rollers to enable deep absorption.

The experience: If you were to buy your skin a gym membership this would be it.Your beauty therapist focuses on loss of tone and a facial massage relaxes the face and improves circulation. Afterwards, you’ll find your skin glows – for up to 30 days afterwards. 

Where to get it: Guinot spas, nationally;

Dermalogica ProSkin60 
$120, 60 minutes

What it does: Using 10-minute modules to target each of your skin concerns, ranging from uneven skin tone or texture to ageing, congestion, acne and dehydration. Treatment modules may include a deep massage, double cleansing, resurfacing, and an infrared light treatment. It’s like a choose-your-own-adventure for optimal skin health. 

The experience: After discussing your skin goals, you’ll sail off on a sensory journey. 
The so-called “Dermalogica Glow” may be the stuff of legend, but it’s exactly what you can expect in real life. 

Where to get it: Dermalogica clinics, nationally;

All Saints Rationale EpiNova Photosonic Facial
$270, 90 minutes

What it does: Targeting signs of environmental damage and pigmentation, this facial works at improving skin texture and smoothing fine lines. The treatment includes vitamin infusions and AHAs for optimum skin health and LED light therapy to stimulate cell renewal. 

The experience: Expect a luxurious combination of relaxation (great facial massage) and high performance so that when you open your eyes after 90 minutes and look at yourself in the mirror, you might have to blink a few times. Yes, that really is your skin, and it really does look that luminous.

Where to get it: All Saints Clinic, three locations in Sydney;

Pevonia Anti-Free Radical Facial 
from $200, 60 minutes

What it does: Specifically designed to target free radical damage (think stress, certain foods and air pollutants), which can all contribute to premature ageing. Protective vitamins A and E are massaged into the skin. A mint and lavender-infused thermal mask which heats up then cools down to stimulate circulation. The change in temperature opens the pores to increase the absorbency of the active ingredients, then seals in the benefits. 

What to expect: Your skin will feel smoother, tighter and brighter, pores will be refined and your natural radiance will be undeniable. 

Where to get it: Available in selected salons and day spas nationally;

Endota Spa Intense New Age Facial 
from $220, 75 minutes

What it does: Targets common skin problems from dehydration and hyper-pigmentation to fine lines and wrinkles. This treatment includes a glycolic peel, hydro-microdermabrasion, masks and light therapy. 

The experience: After cleansing skin, 25% glycolic acid is applied to remove any debris and stimulate cell renewal. Next hydromicro-dermabrasion resurfaces the outer layer of skin for a brighter complexion. A hydrating mask is applied and works its magic as you enjoy LED light therapy. Endota’s New Age High Performance Lifting Mask is applied to support collagen and elastin production.Products from Endota Spa’s New Age range are applied. You’ll just about float out of there and your skin will be noticeably smoother and brighter. 

Where to get it: Endota Spa, nationally;  

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