Vigorous applications of SPF 30 notwithstanding, upon turning the corner on my 30th trip around the sun, I thought it best to up the ante when it came to my preventative skincare arsenal. Drinking three liters of water each day, swallowing a host of medical grade and hippie vitamins and minerals, sleeping seven-plus hours per night, spending a small fortune weekly at Wholefoods, in addition to cleansing, toning, masking and moisturizing on the regular were doing their job, but could I be doing more? I decided to try out Skin Laundry’s 15 minute laser facials, and here is how it went:
About Skin Laundry
I wasn’t ready for anything drastic, so when I heard about Skin Laundry and their 15-minute laser facials that require zero downtime post-treatment, I gladly jumped on the express beauty bandwagon. At just $65 a pop (plus gratuity), I could get tangible results after just a few weekly or bi-weekly sessions. Their catchy tagline: “No downtime. Just results” sounded like music to my ears since after Labor Day I tend to morph into having this gray, ashen mid-January-and-I-need-a-Bahamavention complexion.
Skin Laundry’s laser facial isn’t for everyone and there are specific instructions regarding pre and post-treatment care. Read Skin Laundry’s full list of FAQs prior to booking to see if you are eligible for one of their signature treatments here.
The Actual Treatment Itself
My first treatment started with walking into their Midtown East location in New York City. The space itself is bright, modern and airy with pops of their signature turquoise blue, black and white branding and logos. The retail space is completed with an ample array of Skin Laundry retail products featuring punchy packaging lining against the walls. The minimalist décor reminded me of Dry Bar or Dream Dry in terms of overall look and feel.
At the reception desk I was greeted by the concierge who walked me through the release forms and gave me an overview of the treatment itself. While conducting research for this blog article, I came across a few interesting articles dating back to 2015, related to their intense insane ten-page waiver. After signing my life away, I learned that if I were to book additional treatments with Skin Laundry in the future, I could actually check myself in at the reception desk’s touch screen before heading to wait in the lounge for my treatment to start; another bonus for us busy New Yorkers who don’t want to deal with actual humans.
Once in the lounge, I am instructed to remove any makeup I’m wearing, and that false eye lashes and eye make-up are okay to keep on during the session since the goggles protect your entire eye area during the treatment. I am slightly bummed to learn that the laser won’t actually touch the skin around the eye area – I had been hoping to get a jump start on preventing dreaded crow’s feet! I suppose the lack of laser eye treatment is better than having my cornea fried…
Once my makeup is removed and my technician is ready, I am whisked into a private treatment room where I put my feet up and lie on a table like you would for a traditional spa treatment to have my skin examined followed by a patch test on my hand to ensure I didn’t have any serious reactions. Dehydrated in some spots, oily around my nose and chin—I possess the classic combination skin type.
The first laser the technician uses is a YAG laser. The YAG laser is said to penetrate 2.5mm below the skin’s surface to vaporize dirt, oil and bacteria while stimulating collagen and evening out skin tone. Knowing that Skin Laundry sets their lasers at a lower frequency than a traditional med spa, I am still startled by the smell of my burning flesh and the snapping sensation the laser produces against my skin. The technician goes over my face with the laser quickly (it is only a 15-minute treatment after all), however, I would not qualify the YAG laser portion of the treatment as entirely “painless.” I am happy to report that I was told that the burning smell was not my flesh but in fact “dirt and oil being vaporized from my pores”—phew!
The next portion of the treatment includes use of the IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) laser. My technician swaddles my face in a jelly and goes over my face quickly with the IPL laser. This part of the laser is truly pain-free and easy, I simply see a few flashes of light as she uses the laser across my face. Once complete, she removes the jelly and cleanses and moisturizes my skin.
After a brief discussion she recommends I incorporate a balancing toner into my skincare regimen. I haven’t used a toner since Sea Breeze Actives in junior high, but I decide to purchase Skin Laundry’s Balancing Antioxidant Toner ($22) that “calms, detoxifies and brings your skin back into balance. Antioxidants protect skin from free radical damage.” Anddd I haven’t looked back. Over the last month this toner has helped to calm my sometimes-irritated skin and cleared my occasionally clogged pores.
I also picked up one of Skin Laundry’s Hydrating Facial Sheet Masks ($10 each) to baby my skin post-facial. My aesthetician notified me that skin is sometimes dryer then usual after the treatment since the lasers draw out oil and impurities and this process can leave skin feeling a little dehydrated, especially in the winter months.
I’ve only had three consecutive treatments, but I am hooked! My skin has been luminescent and visibly fuller since my final treatment. I noticed just after each session that I had a pleasant blush to my complexion that required very little makeup to get through the rest of my day in back-to-back meetings. These results were reminiscent of when you come back from a weekend getaway and that little bit of sun gives you enough color to completely even out your skin tone for the time being.
Although I won’t be going to weekly appointments at Skin Laundry (honestly the YAG portion of the treatment was quick but borderline too painful for me) this express facial treatment is perfect for those who want to commit to major results with weekly treatments, OR for those of you (like me) who may go monthly or bi-monthly to add a boost to their preventative skincare routine. Skin Laundry has affordable monthly and discounted packages and you can also purchase add-on laser services for your neck and chest to be sure your entire visage is covered!