Our facial expert Laura talks with guest writer Katie Guinn about the importance of skin care, long term skin love, and why her services go beyond a one-time pampering experience.
I’ve had but one facial in my 32 years of existence, yes just one until recently. It’s been 7 1/2 years since that first one and it wasn’t the most pleasant experience Ive had, the term “fast and furious” comes to mind. This spa no longer exists, and only did for less than a year.
Since this “make-my-eyes-big-when-asked-about-my-one-facial-in-life-encounter ” I’ve been determined to get a more…genuine one.
I met Laura last week at Venus Allure Salon and Spa mid-morning at the beginning of a busy day (which is common for this female entrepreneur and many can relate, right?) and the immediate vibes I got from her made me realize that this was going to be my first bona-fide facial. She’s relaxed, informative and kind by nature, smiles a lot (but not in a weird non-genuine way) and made me feel comfortable about entering a dark room with her.
The “arrive 15 minutes early” request is set in place so clients can fill out a form explaining their needs, concerns and what they expect from the session, which is taken seriously. My problems have been recent break-outs that in my adult years are frustrating.
The beginning of my intimate interaction with Laura ( in the aforementioned legitimately dark-ish room) included discussing this problem, more questions and educated suggestions sans judgement. This progressed into an extremely soothing facial with the most memorable part being her delicate fingers caressing my face while applying each layer of carefully curated products that addressed my complexion’s requisite. I’m not exaggerating when I say, this lady is a facial artist. It was as if she were painting my features, with the sense that she was actually getting relaxation herself while fulfilling this assignment. At first I was thinking about that, as well as how I could justify future visits into my life and then…calm, non-thinking, which is on par with meditation; full on bliss. M A G I C.
This ensued a need to connect with her more, find out what makes her tick and why she does what she does because, s h e i s a m a s t e r when it comes to skin care. No lie.
Katie: Do you have a favorite facial that you give or a favorite you receive?
Laura: My specialty is actually customizing facials for each individual client to address their skins needs. I love doing facial massage so much because I believe that relaxation is key in bringing health and healing to the skin. Our lives are so fast paced these days and it’s hard for people to slow down and do something special for themselves, so it’s important to me that my clients are able to relax and disconnect from their busy minds. My favorite advanced treatment is Microdermabrasion; It has such a fantastic list of benefits including brightening and evening of skin tone, reduction of fine lines and wrinkles, improves skin’s texture, keeps pores clear with regular treatments, improves dry skin, increases circulation and collagen production… and the list keeps going! But it can also be customized to be gentle or deeper so that’s what I like about it so much.
What are the most important things a first time client needs to know?
I think that clients who have never had a facial assume that an esthetician is going to tell them how horrible their skin is and judge what might be going on with their skin, and that is so not the case. I see lots of clients that apologize for their skin, or they pinch and scratch at their face before coming to see me because they want to get rid of the breakouts before coming, but honestly, that’s my job! I want clients to come exactly as they are and to know that they are safe with me and in good hands. I am well equipped to treat any level of breakouts, pigmentation, aging skin and even reduce sun burns in the summer time.
Can you explain why this service at Venus Allure goes beyond just treating yourself, and what you do to extend this experience into a long term plan for your clients?
Your skin is the largest organ in your body and it’s an organ of elimination. This means that there are bound to be things that go on at the surface that require some help from a trained professional, and that’s exactly where my treatments differ. I never give clients a basic treatment and none of my treatments are ever the same, because everyone’s skin is different and everyone’s skin changes throughout the year. I educate my clients on how they can keep their skin healthy between treatments by prescribing them the correct products to keep their skin healthy. Treatment plans can vary so much, so I always try to find out what people’s lifestyles are like and what their commitment level to having healthy beautiful skin is, so I can give them a treatment plan that works for them.
What’s your favorite thing to do to take care of yourself and relieve stress?
My favorite stress reliever is working out. I am always cold so I love to get moving and break a sweat. It reduces stress and also detoxifies and keeps me healthy. My personal trainer is FABULOUS… everyone needs to have Luke at Sweet Momentum Fitness in their lives!
What’s your favorite food?
Well, if we’re being honest with each other, I have been cutting out as much excess sugars from my diet as possible because they are a major contributor to premature aging and loss of skin elasticity…. so my vegan chocolate protein shake has been my favorite thing to eat because it tastes sweet but it doesn’t have a ton of added sugars in it.
Immediately after the facial, we discussed what she suggests I might do to improve my skin and keep it on the right track. A few of the recommendations I must admit inspired concern, but I thought what the heck? So I agreed, and wow! Her advice was 100% legit and I now know is based on experience. She herself has a history of acne, so she’s a legitimate source for expertise, but at the same time she truly realizes that each individual has their own source problems, we’re not all the same. What might make one person break-out can be a completely different reason why another does, and she takes the time to determine the cause and thus, assist in treating it.
I can honestly say that my complexion hasn’t felt or looked this wonderful in years! My problem areas started diminishing the very next day and continue to do so with no new jerk pimples popping out, (this is epic!) and the overall radiance of my skin tone is certainly noticeable.
Our faces represent who we are upon first impressions and how we feel about ourselves. Laura not only addresses this, she also connects to her clients on a level of authenticity that is essential to this experience that can for some of us, be very vulnerable.
I said it before and I’ll say it again, S H E I S M A G I C.
Another service Laura offers at the salon is lash extensions, which is worth checking out if you’re among those who wishes what applying eye makeup benefits without the daily routine of doing so.
Venus Allure Salon and Spa is offering $20 off any service for new clients, 1/2 off any service for returning clients that they haven’t yet experienced, as well as Mother’s Day specials on lovely packages.