I had an afternoon to kill and a hankering for a facial; I think the last time I had a facial was 2005 at the Association for Research and Enlightenment (ARE or Edgar Cayce Center) in Virginia Beach.
I didn’t book one before I came to Kripalu, because I wasn’t sure if I should really spend money on a facial; I also went back and forth debating about whether I wanted the famous honey facial at Ohm Spa in New York City (with its accompanying $149 price tag as of 2010) or the Ayurvedic facial at Kripalu in Lenox, Massachusetts (at a rate of $100.)
I ended up with neither. As it turns out, the only facial time slot available that didn’t interfere with my other planned activities at Kripalu was for the Dr. Hauschka Cleansing Facial treatment. I didn’t really have any idea what it was until I asked the Healing Arts receptionist, but I knew I wanted (and needed) a facial so for $105 and an hour I took the risk.
Boy, am I glad I did. Not only did I get a great facial, I also got unexpected shoulder, foot, calf, hand, and arm massages.
Cleansing Facial Basics
According to the Kripalu Healing Arts description, a Cleansing Facial “focuses on stimulating circulation and awakening the inherent healing forces of the skin.” Only pure botanicals of the Dr. Hauschka brand and certified estheticians can give such treatments.
Extractions Quality (5 out of 5)
Part of the reason I dreaded getting a facial was all the horror stories I heard about extractions; basically when the esthetician safely “pops” blemishes such as blackheads and whiteheads. If done correctly, it shouldn’t hurt horrifically. Wendy, who said during our session she has worked for Kripalu for five years, did countless extractions on my neglected skin without any horrific pain. There were times when even the steam didn’t loosen everything up enough for the extractions to be totally painfree, but Wendy’s skill with her fingers and tweezers did not leave me scarred physically or emotionally. In fact, some very stubborn cloggings were removed with her expert skill.
Relaxation Quality (5 out of 5)
A few aspects of even the most luxurious facial won’t be blissful, especially extractions. But having the face mask, moisturizers, and toners applied to my face in a calm environment was very healing in itself; not to mention the massages.
Skincare Product Quality (5 out of 5)
I have never had a facial at a place that uses “traditional” skincare products; Kripalu as well as the A.R.E. in Virginia Beach use only natural products certified by their selected skincare manufacturers. Lemon aromatherapy was used during my facial; I also received Dr. Hauschka brand clay mask, cleansing cream, and clarifying toner during my treatment. None of these had harsh chemical odors or irritants and should be suitable for sensitive skin.
Massage Quality (5 out of 5)
The massages Wendy delivered as part of the cleansing facial were simply blissful. My legs and feet especially needed tender loving care, and I got just that during my time on the table.
Dr. Hauschka Skin Care: https://www.drhauschka.com/information/estheticians/
Kripalu: For the Face: https://www.kripalu.org/healing_arts/690/
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