I am at that exciting age where I no longer have to worry about breakouts. Nope, I get to worry about breakouts and fine lines at the same time. Despite these looming imperfections, I’m fairly low-maintenance when it comes to my beauty routine, which generally consists of showering, brushing my teeth and throwing on some mascara if I’m feeling fancy.
Having never experienced a facial treatment before, following my recent birthday, I hit up the Woodhouse Day Spa (4030 Canal St., 482-6652, NewOrleans.WoodhouseSpas.com) in Mid-City for a belated present to myself.
I booked a morning appointment for a 50-minute “Hydrafacial” a few days in advance (there are also 80-minute and 25-minute sessions available for this particular treatment) and when I arrived I was led into a salon area with a few other ladies, clad in cozy white bathrobes and sandals provided by the spa. After I changed into my robe, I lounged comfortably on a couch, flipping through a magazine for a few minutes until it was my turn. Regrettably, I turned down the offering of a glass of champagne (someone piped in that it’s never too early for champagne, which I tend to agree with, unless I’m about to go to the office for eight hours), but I did indulge in some spiced tea during the brief wait period.
My appointment was with Tara Thomas, who has been with the spa since its local opening in 2012 (Woodhouse has numerous locations around the country). Thomas has a glowing, ageless complexion and she cheerfully answered all of my many questions. The “Hydrafacial,” according to the website, is a “non-invasive, anti-aging solution with real results.” This had appealed to me because the cold weather dried out my skin this year and I was in need of a boost.
The first step of the Hydrafacial is a cleanser and exfoliant. A quiet machine vacuums while pushing out a cleansing solution, and it feels good. The next step is a glycolic peel, which helps with hyperpigmentation, blemishes and light scarring. The third step of the process consists of a Beta extraction (essentially, this tiny vacuum sucks out the junk from your pores, and it isn’t the least bit uncomfortable). The treatment culminates with a hydrating mask by Skinceuticals, and a relaxing hand and neck massage. (For older patrons, a Vitamin C firming mask is available.)
Woodhouse offers more specialized facial services that suit a variety of skin tones and issues. The Hydrafacial, though, is suitable for most skin tones and people of all ages, says Thomas. Giselle McBee, the spa manager, says it helps with “everything” – sun damage, dryness or oily skin – and it’s Woodhouse’s most popular menu item.
When I left, my skin did feel smoother and brighter, and when I got to work my view was validated, as a coworker commented on my glow.