Can cocktails enhance the treatment room experience?
No. It’s not a trick question and most of you reading this likely know the cocktails we’re referring to are of the serum variety. These potent mixtures along with enzymes and masks are wonderful additions to any facial as a way to further customize the treatment, enhance the results, and elevate the client experience. But how do you create the right combination for your client’s specific skin and when is the best time to apply it? This post will cover a few skin challenges and the cocktails that best support it.
How cocktails enhance treatments
Serum cocktails, when used following the enzyme application, infuse the skin with nutrients, antioxidants, and hydration. Depending on the ingredients used, they can also enhance rejuvenation, cell turnover and healing. Now let’s talk technique. Generally, you’ll apply one serum or more depending on the skin type and desired results, followed by another serum with a good amount of “slip” for the massage portion. Our preferences are, the Infuse 7, Omega 6, Pumpkin E Serum, Hydrating Grape Seed Serum, and/or the Balancing Grape Seed Serum as the best choices for massaging the cocktail into the skin. Infuse 7 and Omega 6 EFA will also help the other ingredients to better penetrate while hydrating and healing the skin. One note, however, is these will both create a barrier on the skin, not allowing the mask to fully penetrate. In some scenarios you may want this barrier, but if not, simply use a steam towel to melt serums and allow for mask penetration. Now that we’ve got the technique, let’s look at a few specific cocktails by skin type.
Pro Youth (Dry): For dry/aging skins, begin with a layer of Mandelic Arginine Peel and then spray the skin with Cucumber Spritz. Now, cocktail a hydrating combination of Hyaluronic Serum and Sea Gems. Complete the cocktail by massaging with Pumpkin E Serum or a combination of Growth Factor Serum Plus and Infuse 7. This cocktail delivers moisture to both the aqueous and lipid aspects of the cell while strengthening and repairing the skin.
Pro Youth (Normal): For normal aging skins, the goal is to infuse nutrients, antioxidants and peptides, which also help with firming the skin and increasing collagen activity. Options include, beginning with C-Peptide Complex layered with the Antioxidant Complex Serum to stimulate collagen and deliver antioxidants to the skin. Another option is to start with the AGE less and Peptide 38. Follow either of these with a combination of Pumpkin E Serum, Growth Factor Serum and Infuse 7.
For thicker, more oily skin: If you’re needing to go a little further with your cocktails you can start with the Skin Smoothing Gel followed by the AGE less Serum or Antioxidant Complex Serum. This will help further breakdown the cells and create a smoother texture and glowing appearance. Massage in the Hydrating Grape Seed Serum.
For healing/cracking: For skin that needs extra nurturing and healing or complexions exposed to a lot of harsh environmental factors, we love a cocktail of Growth Factor Serum, Regenerating Cream, Pumpkin E Serum, and Post Balm. Mix all together and apply a semi-thick layer, massage into the skin and then apply a hot towel for several minutes to encourage deep penetration of the nutrient-rich combination.
Brightening: Pigmented skin or skin that needs brightening will benefit from starting with a spot treat of Naturale’ Mega Brightening Serum and/or a full layer of Mandelic Arginine Peel and then cocktail C-Peptide Complex, Growth Factor Serum, Brightening Cream Enhanced or AGE less Serum, sealed in with Hydrating Grape Seed Serum.
Acne and acne scarring: Cocktailing for acne or scarred skin is particularly beneficial as this skin type is typically thicker and needs more antibacterial support. BHA Refine Gel followed by a cocktail of Growth Factor Serum and Balancing Grape Seed Serum. Another option is to apply a layer of Mandelic Arginine Peel and then cocktail Salicylic "A" Serum and Growth Factor Serum. You can set this in with a hot compress. Blemish Serum can be used to spot treat. (See our our 2018 signature treatment, the Acne Remedies Facial, for a superior method for treating acne skin.) Keep in mind, we develop our cocktail “recipes” in a range of intensities, so you’ll have to assess the best combinations for each skin and desired outcome. If working with a new client, it may be best to start with a gentler approach and add stronger cocktails in future treatments. Finally, the mask step of the facial helps to balance, purify, strengthen and moisturize the skin while providing clients with a luxurious experience.
Masking: The mask step of any facial helps to balance, purify, strengthen and moisturize the skin while providing clients with a luxurious experience. Whether it’s the classic Milk Mask, the Grape Seed Parfait Mask, Chocolate Antioxidant Mask or any one of the myriad choices, clients can get whisked away with aromatherapy while active ingredients clear, soothe, heal, plump and protect.
For more details on recommended cocktails, serums and masks for each skin type and condition, watch this free recorded webinar with Rhonda Allison CEO Shannon Esau. There’s a lot to know with cocktails and near endless combinations, so remember RA educators are here to help. Don’t be afraid to use our forums or reach out with any questions you may have.
Question: How are you using serums, cocktails and masks to enhance your clients’ facial experiences?