Friday, February 12, 2010

A New Experience

Today I had my very first facial.

I have always thought it sounded so luxurious to have someone take care of your skin for an hour, and I confess that my complexion is something that I often wish was more... hmm... perfect. So for Christmas Andy got me a gift certificate and today I redeemed it.

Side note:
I've been getting myself
all dolled up for
I realize that my due date is still
three weeks off,
but it would be a shame to be caught off guard
and go into labor with shaggy hair
or chipped toenail polish.
Actually, that wouldn't be a shame at all
since it would mean Joey was coming
and as I've already said, I'm eagerly waiting
that day...
All that to say, I've had a pampering
couple of weekends: haircut, pedicure,
new hair color and now
a facial!

The experience was slightly different than I anticipated.

It was odd.

But what may have been odd was not that the actual facial was different from my expectations, it was that it was so close to something I think I may have seen in a movie, that it felt totally staged. Like I was part of a comedy show or like there was a surprising plot twist awaiting me as I left the spa.

For starters, the woman who greeted me had a very heavy accent. I couldn't place it, but do you remember the heavy-set woman from The Fifth Element that was supposed to accompany Bruce Willis on his adventure to save the world? She sounded like that.

Actually, I don't think that woman had any lines in the movie, but she sounded exactly like you would think the Major would sound.

At least she sounded like that until she started poking at my face.

Then she started to sound like a gypsy fortune teller.

After getting me comfortably situated on the warmed table and wrapping my hair in a terry cloth turban, all the lights went out. I closed my eyes and I prepared to relax as Marie (the name of my esthetician) began massaging my face. She gently began in circular motions and I thought, "Oh! This is nice."

Then all of a sudden Marie switched into her gypsy voice. My eyes were closed, so I couldn't see her face, but the lights were all off, so I can't imagine how much of my skin she could see. I also couldn't tell if she was talking to herself or to me. Her voice was so soft and low.

"Hmmm... yesssss..." *Imagine a trance-like voice please*
"I feel the bumps." *Flattering, no?*
"I feel the blackheads." *Gah! You can feel blackheads?!*


After those mystic-voiced comments the next few minutes proceeded in silence. She took off my make-up and kept smoothing my skin so gently. I started to relax again. She placed warm cotton pads over my eyes and then...


With no warning, the brightest light I have ever had pointed at my face was flipped on and felt like it was mere inches from my forehead.

Marie switched from mystic voice back to Major Fifth Element and said, "Are you ready to begin the extraction?"

"Uh, yep." *I hope that is the right answer!*

It is exactly what you think it is. She started to prod my face and attend to all those bothersome bumps and blackheads. I knew I had a few. But my goodness! People! I lost count.

I probably lost count because I was distracted by the return of the are-you-talking-to-me-or-to-yourself voice that kept making me think of crystal balls and hoop earrings.

"Oh, yes."
"There is more there." Push, pinch. "Ah, yes."

Each mumble was so satisfied. Like it was a true delight to see the little dirt particles make their way out of my dermis. At one point, after a particularly pleased grunt, she pealed the cotton from my eye and held up a mirror so that I could admire her handiwork. Oh dear.

We are teetering on the edge of way too much information, so I will spare you continued details of what apparently came from my face.

After many other pinches and minutes more of her muttering to herself, the lights went back out and she slathered a series of unknown products over my face.

After she had cleaned me up, she several times reminded me that "the redness" would be gone by tomorrow. She mentioned it so many times that I was a little frightened to look in the mirror. I anticipated a lobster-red face and disheveled hair... but instead, I was pleased to discover, that I mostly just looked like I do every morning before putting on my make up.

She advised a clay masque twice a week to maintain her hard work, and I obediently purchased it.

The experience may have been different than I had imagined (or exactly like I imagined - it is hard to tell which) but whatever it was, it has sure made me smile.

Merry Christmas to me!

And come on baby Joey, I'm all fresh faced and newly coiffed, so you can make your appearance ANY TIME!

And really, has anyone had a facial before? Was that normal?


Rosemary said...

When I had a facial, she "extracted" loads from my face too. Not to worry. :) Although, my lady didn't have a gypsy accent, she had a Korean accent.

Sarah said...

I had a normal white girl but I was in Texas. Yeah, the extraction is normal, I guess they do it the "right way" with the little tool. The talking sounds weird. I would have been weirded out too. :)

Glenn said...

Em, I was behind in reading and just now got to this entry. The imagery you painted was hilarious! Makes me want to get a facial just for the experience...