• Learn how to massage your face and neck the right way, and remember the three essential steps involved in an at-home facial
  • There’s nothing to stop you recreating most of the in-salon experience. Make it fun by Skyping or WhatsApping a friend and doing your facials together

A facial is one of life’s great pleasures. What can beat lying down with your eyes closed as someone pummels (in a good way) and massages your face while applying the right kinds of lotions and potions to ensure you come out glowing?

However, the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has meant beauty and nail salons in some countries shutting down temporarily. The impact of this on the professional beauty industry will be significant. As data company Poshly revealed in a report, beauty service workers (and cosmetics companies) are facing unprecedented challenges.

Poshly CEO Doreen Bloch told Insider: “From our vantage point, the biggest hit will come to the small-business owner and the freelancer who literally cannot do their craft at this moment in time.”

While it’s important that we support our favourite beauty providers and workers once it’s safe to do so, until then it’s possible to recreate at least some of the in-salon experiences in our own homes. Particularly when it comes to giving yourself an at-home facial.

Jocelyn Petroni, one of Australia’s top facialists, with a celebrity clientele that includes model Miranda Kerr, says facial massage is important when giving yourself an at-home facial.

“Start by massaging the décolletage near your heart area, as this is where lymph drains into the bloodstream. Then massage your neck in a gentle downwards motion,” she says. “Lastly massage the face working from the centre line of the face to the outer edges of the face near the ears. By massaging using this guide you are increasing lymphatic drainage, to treat puffiness, dark circles, congestion and boost overall skin health and cellular regeneration.”

For Petroni, a successful at-home facial means adhering to the “essential three” methods.

1. A thorough cleanse. You must double cleanse – the first to remove make-up, dirt and debris, the second to deep clean the pores and tissue. The first cleanse can be a micellar water, oil or cream cleaner. The second cleanser needs to be more deep cleaning, so use a foam, fruit acid or deep cleansing gel.

2. Exfoliation. To slough away surface dry, dead skin cells and decongest the skin. This will clear the pathway for optimal product absorption. Exfoliate for a good 30 seconds and don’t be afraid to use firm massage movements that will increase blood flow and lymphatic drainage as well as toning and relaxing facial muscles.

3. Treatment masking. Can be to deep clean the skin with a clay mask, hydrate the skin with a nourishing mask, firm with a vitamin C mask or treat breakouts with a fruit acid mask.

Personalise your mask by applying two masks to the skin and treating different areas with what they specifically require e.g. apply a clay mask to your nose to treat blackheads and a hydrating mask elsewhere to hydrate and nourish.

Her biggest at-home no-no?

“Be wary of extracting your own skin as this may be more harmful than good. If you squeeze at the wrong time or use incorrect pressure or technique you could create scarring.”

Manman Chong, Head of Education at Caudalie Asia, agrees with the rule of three too. She likes to balance the skin first by exfoliating and detoxing, then applying a functional serum and eye cream, and finishing by mixing and matching products depending on what you need.

Chong likes to make a moisturising mask extra hydrating by adding a few drops of Caudalie’s Precious Oil to it (you can remove excess mask after 10-15 minutes or leave it on overnight).

Her other tips? Give yourself a hand and nail massage while your mask is on to make it feel extra pampering.

Seven common at-home facial mistakes

1. Not tying back your hair

2. Over-exfoliation

3. Overly pressured movements

4. Focusing on the face and forgetting about the eyes and neck

5. Using hot water to cleanse the face

6. Using a home-made facial mask – be aware of the ingredients

7. Not creating a relaxing environment

Ultimately you should try to make an at-home facial as indulgent, and fun as you possibly can.

Petroni suggests to “make at-home facials fun and Skype (or WhatsApp) your bestie so you can do them together”.

Words by Annie Brown for South China Morning Post