There are certain things that are helpful to know about the HydraFacial regardless of where you get one. I’ve had several at my favorite hotels and at San Diego spas and understand why HydraFacial reviews are fantastic.

What Is HydraFacial?

The Hydrafacial is a breakthrough, non-laser skin resurfacing technology. It’s non-invasive with no (almost no downtime, in my case) downtime after the treatment.

HydraFacial treatments provide deep pore cleansing, exfoliation, extraction, and hydration all at the same time. The developers of the HydraFacial system take great pains to point out that the facial takes its name from the root word hydrate, and believe the ability to moisturize the skin separates the HydraFacial from all other skin resurfacing procedures.

The HydraFacial procedure is suitable for most skin types, including thin or aging skin, ethnic skin, and dry skin or oily skin. You need to make sure that you have a good technician because they can customize the facial to your skin type.

Exfoliate Prior to HydraFacial With Microdermabrasion

The spa I visited performs a diamond microdermabrasion treatment prior to the HydraFacial. Not all spas do this, but they believe it’s necessary because the microdermabrasion preps the skin to receive the moisture and antioxidant serums delivered by the HydraFacial.

It makes sense if you think about it because microdermabrasion smooths your skin’s texture by gently exfoliating the damaged outermost layer, revealing young rejuvenated skin underneath. This is also without pain or downtime.

The diamond microdermabrasion tip looks like a large Lifesaver candy and has thousands of tiny, uniformly-sized diamond particle. These diamonds can be natural or synthetic for cost reasons. The diamond particles combined with suction exfoliates your skin.

Diamond Versus Crystal Microdermabrasion

If you book a microdermabrasion facial, you have to make sure that you know the difference between diamond and crystal microdermabrasion.

Crystal microdermabrasion facials CAN have downtime. Aluminum oxide or sodium bicarbonate crystals are blasted on to your skin to perform the exfoliation and then suctioned away.

I’ve read that there is some concern about long term effects that aluminum oxide crystals might have. Crystal microdermabrasion is being phased out because diamond microdermabrasion is more popular and also more accurate. You can exfoliate closer to your lip lines, for instance, with a diamond microdermabrasion tip, then you can when blasting crystals.

A lot of people suggest that it’s a matter of preference, but for me, there is no question. I choose diamond microdermabrasion.

If you’re going to book a HydraFacial, you will get better results if you get a microdermabrasion treatment prior.

My HydraFacial Review

The HydraFacial felt like someone was literally vacuuming all the dirt out of my pores! There’s a “hose” with an “attachment” that applies serums and suctions away debris.

It’s not a completely zen-like spa experience but, to be honest, the facials that WORK in my experience have been all about “business” and not “pleasure”. I’m totally ok with that.

Hydrafacial is definitely not the slightest bit uncomfortable and is oddly pleasant. Maybe I just felt liberated after been vacuumed clean. The treatment took about 20 minutes.

I have sensitive skin so I was a little bit red for an hour or so, but it wasn’t a big deal. You can’t do this if you plan to go in the sun for several days afterward.

The next day, I had my first ever TV interview. My skin was soft and there was not a blemish or splotch in sight. Makeup went on easily and I was very pleased overall.

A few days after that (two full days post-treatment) my skin began to peel all over like I’d had a mild sunburn. A few pimples appeared (that happens to me after extractions) but by day 5 they were totally gone. I think this is all normal, but it would be inconvenient if you had to go somewhere that you wanted to look your best.

I would say that the biggest difference that I notice after a Hydrafacial is that the lines around my eyes and pores are certainly smaller. My entire face is hydrated.

My therapist recommended using an Alpha Hydroxy Acid one week after the treatment, which helps get rid of the peeling if there’s any left.

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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  1. Sounds fab, makes me want to hop on a plane and get to it!
    .-= Jill´s last blog ..3-D TV in your home and the ATL recap. =-.

  2. It’s great treatment with out use of Laser. Microdermabrasion involved these basic things in its treatments such as, an Enhance skin tone Treat minor acne scars, enlarged pores, wrinkles, fine lines, blackheads, uneven and granular skin. Over All, Great Article, I really appreciated.

  3. Pingback: HydraFacial: It’s What the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills Do
  4. Thank you for sharing the information on the hydrafacial. I am new to town and am looking for a skin care salon specifically one that offers hydrafacials. Can you tell me the name of the spa you went to? Thanks!

    1. The one I went to is now closed but I have heard good things about Skincare by Gabrielle in La Jolla. She does hydrafacials – a friend of mine received one from her and raved about it. I am sure you could also go to the hydrafacial website for a local provider.

  5. Thanks so much for the information. I went to the website and they do have locations of all their providers of the service:)

  6. I am looking for long-term effects of hydrafacial. I’ve been doing them for a year and my acne scars and complexion are improving. I’m wondering what happens if I stop. It can be expensive.

    I was visiting La Jolla last week and just returned to Canada. Love San Diego area!