All About Extractions
Extractions are such an integral part of the facial process because they clear out pores that have become clogged with excess sebum and dead skin cells. Most clients require at least a few extractions during the facial, more if this is their first treatment.
Extractions clear out pores that have become clogged with excess sebum and dead skin cells. Most clients are tempted to pick their face at home, which is highly discouraged, and can cause capillary damage, as well as scarring and the spread of bacteria. When extractions are performed by a licensed professional, there is no risk of infection and inflammation, and all the correct steps are taken prior to and post extractions to prepare the skin, and soothe it afterwards.
The most common forms of extractions are manual and mechanical. Manual extractions are performed by the esthetician always wearing gloves, fingers wrapped in cotton or tissues to apply gentle pressure around the pore, and to extract the contents. Mechanical extractions include metal implements designed for this purpose such as comedone extractors.
For the easiest extractions, I prefer using enzymes with steam, as well as my handheld ultrasonic spatula. After cleansing the face, apply an enzymatic mask with the steam for 7-10 minutes, and after removing it, work with an ultrasound spatula on wet skin for the next 3 minutes. The pores will be open and ready for extractions.
Usually clients are concerned with their skin being red after extractions, and that the pain will be too much for them to tolerate. This is especially true for someone who has never had a facial treatment. Speak to your clients before the facial, and put them at ease by walking them through the process. In some acne cases, the first few extractions may be unpleasant, but you will need to communicate to the client that you’re now a team, and if he/she follows the homecare routine, the next extractions should be easier, and less painful. There are a number of ways to reduce redness and slight inflammation after extractions – I love using cold globes, and refrigerated masks.
Enzymatic masks and light salicylic peels are wonderful before extraction process. I like to steam my enzymes, since they work best with heat and moisture. I also like to use an ultrasonic skin scrubber spatula prior to extractions, and a high frequency machine afterwards.