Last week I posted some excerpts from a rather long press release announcing Clarins's latest creation, Younger Longer Balm. Naturally, I'm a big Clarins fan and I can't wait to get my hot little hands on this new number. But something in the release's Q&A between a member of the PR team (I assume) and Lionel De Benetti, Clarins Global Director of Research and Development, caught my attention. When asked what else customers could do to improve their skin (besides using the new product, obvs), part of his answer was this:
Schedule regular facial treatments for yourself that do not include the use of steam and extractions.
Please sir, can you spare an elaboration? I emailed Clarins publicist Megan Dennen and begged her to humor me by asking Lionel to explain why he personally does not recommend facials.
Well, you facial junkies out there ain't gonna like it, but here, straight from the horse's mouth:
Steam is very damaging to the skin if it is applied for a long time and at a high temperature. Lionel uses a steak to help explain this. If you think of a piece of meat when it is raw, it is very firm and has a nice pink texture. If you take that same piece of meat and then apply hot water to it, it starts to turn brown and break apart. The same thing happens to your skin. It weakens your skin and makes it more susceptible to damage and wrinkles. He also says not to do extractions because you are breaking apart the top layer of the skin. It can increase the size of the pore and cause scarring. It can also lead to further infections if there is any bacteria on the top of the skin.
You know, I never thought of it before, but my face does slightly resemble an overcooked chunk of filet mignon today! Heavens! Now, it's not like I've never heard the age-old duel that usually occurs between estheticians and derms before: Just like "tastes great," "less filling!" the argument for and against facials is a battle that wages on. (Not to mention the whole extraction controversy, but that's another post my friends.) Yes, the scientists have a point and all, but facialists have changed the lives of so many people I know!
What's your take? To steam, or not to steam?
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