The Facial Showdown: Medi vs Salon

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Facials are the bread and butter of beauty salons. But they are facing tough competition from Medi facials. We dig beyond the surface to bring you both sides of the coin.

Medi facials have seen a rapid surge in adoption – thanks to lifestyle ambassadors like Kim Kardashian giving this industry trend a thumbs-up. Medi facials are quickly taking credit for celebrities’ signature glow with a special set of treatments that range from OxyGlow to InstaBright and Vampire facials. The good news is that they are available at your nearest derma clinic.

On the other hand, salon facials come with a complete experience, with additional features like a relaxing massage or a cleanse. That brings us to the big question. Medi Facials vs Salon Facials – which is more popular in demand and why?

Specialised care

Medi facials need expert handling as quite a few machines are involved in these treatments, which is best operated by the experienced hands of a certified dermatology professional.

We sat down with Dr B L Jangid, MD, SkinQure, to understand the nuances of this new trend in the skincare market. When asked about the difference between medi and salon facial procedures, he says, “Medi-facials are specific treatments for facial skin done under medical supervision. The purpose and effect is definitely beyond just a temporary cleaning or scrubbing and goes deeper than the superficial layers of the skin and targets the roots causes of issues such as acne, blemishes, tanning etc. because they work on a cellular level to improve the constitution and integrity of the skin. This means a medical facial intervenes in and encompasses the full cycle of skin regeneration that includes shedding and the regeneration of skin cells. The best and most common examples of medical facials are dermabrasion and chemical peels. These are done by qualified dermatologists.”

A salon or spa facial, on the other hand, focuses more on how you feel. They may temporarily alter the appearance of the skin but the results do not last too long. The only thing is that the massages and relaxation offered by this facial tend to make you feel energised. It is for this reason that medical facials are more effective, while spa facials may be more popular.”

The price factor

According to the experts, medical facials are ‘expertise-based’ facials that are tailor-made to suit the exact needs of individual skin. So, the price may vary as per your skin needs and type — on an average medi-facials start from INR 2,500-3,500, which is on the higher end, as compared to a salon facial. “Medical facials may seem expensive because you may have to get the treatment every 4-6 weeks. But they are more cost-effective in the long run because they are treating the cause, not just the symptoms,” shares Dr Jangid.

Trending treatments

Besides the popular dermabrasion and chemical peels, photo facials with lasers and LEDs have gained momentum, too. Sharing some key facts Dr Jagid says, “I was recently at Cosmoprof in Hong Kong and everyone was talking about micro-filler injections and plasma-based medical facials. I think in 2019, the base principle of stimulating our own cells to naturally reverse some of the signs of ageing will definitely become popular. But I also like to combine microdermabrasion with nourishment – using hyaluronic acid or retinol etc depending on skin concerns. This is also a trend that will be popular – not just treating a skin concern but also nourishing the skin from within. The ratio of men to women is nearly equal. I have 60% women and 40% men coming into my clinic SkinQure. This goes to show that more and more men are gradually becoming aware of the importance of skincare and maintenance.”

Recovery time

Your skin takes 3-4 weeks to complete a full ‘life-cycle’ of shedding and regenerating skin cells. The experts recommend scheduling a medical facial, microdermabrasion, or chemical peel treatment every 4-6 weeks for maximum benefits. Sometimes even a fortnight is fine but your dermatologist is the best judge to decide the frequency. Proper precautions as advised by the skin specialist should be followed. You will begin to notice improvements to your skin tone, texture and appearance instantly.

The salon perspective

Analyzing the growth of medi-facials, Richa Aggarwal, Owner of Cleopatra Salon ,says, “In the past few years, the demand of medi-facials has increased sharply, resulting in increase in the number of medi-skin clinics or media spas. Many salons have also added such treatments on their menu, such as 20-30% peels, dermabrasion, photo facial, etc. which can be only done by a certified aesthetician.”

She adds, “Yes, medi-facials can be included in salon services, too, if they are performed by certified experts. Some of the prerequisites are clinical setup, approved tool and machines along with the certified and trained staff.”

The bottom line is clear. While medi-facials, as the name suggests, are almost like medical procedures that are tuned to your individual skin, salon/spa facials are more to do with unwinding and having yourself pampered. If you seriously want to repair your skin and are willing to spend a little extra, medi-facials is the hot new trend you shouldn’t miss.

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