The typical quarantine routine consists of overeating, sleeping, and skin care. I don’t know about you, but I’ve mastered the overeating and sleeping segments and am now ready to take on skin care. Since spa getaways are a no-go these days, the assumption is that we have to forgo certain luxuries, like facials. Luckily, that doesn’t have to be the case. Take it from Halle Berry—she’s doing the quarantine life just like the rest of us and hasn’t sacrificed a second of her skin care. Seriously, her glowing skin is what dreams are made of. (Just look at her.) But how does she do it?
Turns out she gets by with a little help from her esthetician. Berry recently treated us all to a special self-care Sunday with an inside look at her at-home facial routine. The 15-minute tutorial features a fresh-faced Berry applying face masks to her already flawless skin, guided by her go-to skin guru. Since we haven’t all become master estheticians in quarantine yet, I figured it was time to turn to a specialist—specifically, Halle Berry’s skin specialist—to get the insider secrets on everything skin care.
The woman behind Berry’s glowing complexion is celebrity esthetician Olga Lorencin. Olga, aka The Acid Queen, breaks down Berry’s skin care regimen, telling Betches, “Her standard routine is very simple, but it’s consistent.” If I’ve learned anything in all my years, it’s that simplicity is key in all aspects of life, especially when it comes to your skin. So is consistency (things I whisper in the mirror to force myself to wash off my makeup after a night out). Lorencin says, “She uses a rehydrating cleanser morning and night along with a rebalancing toner and a lactic acid hydrating serum.” She also adds that Berry is “very in tune with her skin”, something I hope to say about myself one day.
View this post on Instagram
This is an EXTRA special #SelfCareSunday, you know why? Because I’m finally introducing you to my ultimate skincare secret. Her name is @Olgalorencinskincare, and today? We’ll be showing a facial you can DIY with one of her at-home kits! During COVID I haven’t seen her in forever so I’m VERY excited. 😂 I definitely stand by the investment of Olga’s at home kits, BUT if you’re looking for a more affordable option? Olga loves a simple at-home recipe – 𝐈𝐍𝐆𝐑𝐄𝐃𝐈𝐄𝐍𝐓𝐒: 1 tsp Full-Fat Greek Yogurt (vegan option = coconut yogurt) 1 tsp Honey For Dry Skin – add a slice of avocado + a few drops of avocado oil For Acneic Skin – add a bit of powdered charcoal. Option – add a few drops of Chlorophyll to fight breakouts and reduce inflammation 𝐃𝐈𝐑𝐄𝐂𝐓𝐈𝐎𝐍𝐒: 1. Mix ingredients together into a bowl 2. Massage into clean skin (face AND neck) 3. Leave on for 15-20 minute Note: for best results, relax in the bath or in a steamy shower for 5-10 minutes before rinsing it off. This mask is rich in probiotics, which are very helpful with skin balancing and congestion. The honey is a natural humectant – it attracts water from the air to your skin. Enjoy and happy Sunday!! ☀️
While having a crazy amount of skin envy over celebrities is fine, it’s important to focus on and figure out your own skin needs. However, that’s often easier said than done, and according to Lorencin, figuring out what your skin needs is the most difficult part for most people. It can be especially tricky to nail down what your skin needs if you don’t have any particularly concerning issues. But whether you have clear skin or not, nobody is immune to the frustrations of establishing a successful skin care routine. So, like all those brand marketing emails we received in April, we’re all in this together! The Acid Queen recommends, “If the products that you are using are working, stick with it. However, if you have a skin condition or concern, see an esthetician so they can figure out what you need.” When in doubt, always seek out a specialist.
And the secret to flawless skin care is—drumroll please—it depends. (Sorry, that probably wasn’t worth a drumroll, but it was fun, wasn’t it?) On anti-aging, Lorencin says, “It can vary vastly from person to person, but de-aging ingredients are universally the same. It just depends on how we use them and in what combination.”
When it comes to how many products we should be stocking up on, Lorencin advises, “As little products as possible, anywhere from 4-10. Don’t overdo it! Layers upon layers will just cancel each other out or cause your skin to be confused.” Lorencin continues, “Buying random skin care products produces random results.” This probably means that the bucket of youth promising serums under my bathroom sink isn’t quite as effective as I had initially hoped.
Lorencin also breaks down the different products that we should be using in the morning versus at night. “At night, it’s a good time to use retinols and exfoliating products that contain AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) and BHA (beta hydroxy acid). In the morning, it’s a good time to use antioxidants like Vitamin C, whereas hydrating and collagen building products can be used both day and night, such as peptides, ceramides, and hyaluronic acids, etc.”
In addition to applying the proper blend of serums and lotions, your face can also benefit from an occasional massage. Facial massages are an effective measure for pampering yourself with some much needed TLC. Lorencin explains that, when done properly, facial massages can reduce puffiness and help prevent wrinkles.
Move over, cucumbers—the at-home facial has received a serious upgrade. From professional kits to DIY recipes, there are endless possibilities to soothe your skin and turn any day into a self-care day. According to Lorencin, step one of doing a facial at home is “making sure you are using facial masks on exfoliated skin, or they won’t do very much.” Help yourself get the best results by allowing the mask to easily find its way to your clean skin. Once your skin is prepped, you can then opt for either a homemade or professional facial mix, depending on your budget.
Weighing the pros and cons of each method, Lorencin says, “Homemade masks are nice and won’t cause side effects, but they also most likely won’t produce very transformational results.” For more noticeable results, you may want to consider investing in a professional facial kit. It may be more pricey, but getting skin like Halle Berry? Priceless. (Actually, it’s more like $98, but you get the idea.)
While Lorencin has created facial kits for Halle Berry-level results, she also favors an easy and delicious at-home recipe that you can make with ingredients found in your kitchen (or borrowed from your hot neighbor). All you need is 1 teaspoon of full-fat Greek yogurt (substitute coconut yogurt for a vegan option), and 1 teaspoon of honey. If you’re feeling really fancy, you can also add in a slice of avocado and a few drops of avocado oil to soothe dry skin or a dash of powdered charcoal for acneic skin. According to Berry and Lorencin’s IGTV video, adding a few drops of chlorophyll to either mix can help fight breakouts and reduce inflammation. The next step is to apply the mask (obvi) to your face and neck—don’t neglect your neck!—and leave on for the standard 15 to 20 minutes. Lorencin also advises limiting homestyle facials to once or twice a week. Treat yourself, but don’t overdo it. Balance, baby.
Honestly, when it comes to skin care, just do whatever Halle Berry does.
Images: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com; halleberry / Instagram
I am 24 years old, and up until recently, I thought I knew how to wash my face. Like, I thought the face wash I was using was AMAZING. And it was, it really was. I was obsessed. But after a lovely facial at Massage Envy, I found out from my esthetician that the face wash I was using is not right for my skin type, and it was actually making my skin really irritated. I didn’t even notice. You may think you’re using the right face wash, but you could be wrong. *Gretchen Wieners voice* I always knew my skin was sensitive but had no idea face wash could possibly be harmful to me. Especially because it’s not like I felt it stinging or ripping my face off. So she told me exactly which type of face wash I needed. I got it, and it DOES feel so much gentler on my skin. My mind was blown, and I decided I needed to ask about the correct face washes for each skin type on behalf of y’all. You’re welcome.
Do not waste any more time using a product that is making your skin worse. I asked a few simple questions for each skin type: What type of face wash you should be using, which face products you should be avoiding, other easy steps you can take to make your skin better, what you’re doing that’s making your skin worse, and which facial is best for your skin type. And to make sure I got an expert opinion, I consulted Diana Morrison, the lead esthetician of Massage Envy. She’s the HBIC who told us 3 easy things we can do for healthier skin.
Skin Type: Well-Balanced Or ‘Normal’ Skin
What type of face wash should I use: Look for a middle of the road cleanser that doesn’t contain harsh exfoliants or too many moisturizing ingredients. A person with normal skin should look for a gentle foamy cleanser. This will allow them to cleanse their skin and remove impurities without stripping the skin of its natural moisture. To take the skin to the next level, I recommend a hydrating toner. This will add additional nourishment and vitamins to keep the skin as healthy as possible.
What types of face products should I avoid: For normal skin, the key is to be gentle. Avoid using aggressive scrubs that will over exfoliate the skin and leave it irritated and dry. The goal is to maintain balance.
Is there anything easy I could be doing that could make my skin better?: The ABC method is essential for people with normal skin. The A, is a vitamin A, like a retinol for use at night. This can help promote cellular rejuvenation while we sleep and keep skin youthful. The B is a broad-spectrum sunscreen. Everyone should be wearing an SPF 30 every day. Even if you are not spending a lot of time outside, it is important to protect your skin. Try to look for a sunscreen that has extra benefits like hydration, or a moisturizer that has SPF. C is for Vitamin C, which is essential for healthy skin. I recommend using a Vitamin C day serum. Vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, which is the building block of our skin.
Anything I might be doing that could be making my skin worse?: The most important thing is to find balance in your skincare. Have fun with your regimen, but don’t over do it. At home, face masks can be beneficial, but over exfoliating will leave the skin dry and flakey. It’s also important to not pick at breakouts and spread bacteria. You should also avoid tanning. There are many disadvantages to tanning but what most people don’t know is that the UVA and UVB rays activate enzymes that eat away at the collagen in the skin. Collagen is the building block of the skin and essential for maintaining a youthful, plump, healthy complexion.
What type of facial is best for me: Someone with normal skin should look for a vitamin-rich facial to rejuvenate, nourish, and refresh skin. At Massage Envy, our Healthy Skin Facials incorporate Murad’s Multi-Vitamin Infusion Oil to give skin a dose of vitamins A-F.
Skin Type: Dry
What type of face wash should I use: Someone with dry skin should stick to a creamy cleanser. It is important to gently cleanse the skin without stripping away oils. Infusing hydration with a cleanser will also help keep the skin nourished. Micellar water can be used as an alternative cleanser for dry skin.
What types of face products should I avoid: It is best to avoid mattifying products that are meant to dry out the skin. Salicylic acid has a lot of benefits but is simply too harsh for someone with dry skin. Stay away from anything that will accentuate dryness. Even when using makeup, heavy powders will dull out the skin. For the best results, use products that add luminosity and give a healthy glow.
Is there anything easy I could be doing that could make my skin better?: Facial oils can be a lifesaver for people with dry skin. Using the right amount in the morning will allow the oil to absorb into the skin, giving a plumping and luminous glow. It is also important to moisturize often and drink a lot of water. Healthy skin can start from the inside out.
Anything I might be doing that could be making my skin worse?: Over-exfoliating is dry skin’s worst nightmare. A lot of people with dry and flaky skin try to over exfoliate it to get rid of dead skin cells. But in reality, they should be moisturizing and hydrating internally and externally.
What type of facial is best for me: A healthy skin facial works best for people with dry skin. Enzyme facials yield amazing results. The enzymes act like pacman and gently digest the old, dead surface cells on the skin. This allows moisturizers to absorb better and help with an overall healthy glow.
Skin Type: Oily
What type of face wash should I use: Foam cleansers work best for people with oily skin to remove oil, makeup, and sunscreen. Look for foam cleansers with lactic acid and salicylic acid. They remove impurities and tend to be a bit more drying, which helps control oil production while leaving the skin feeling clean.
What types of face products should I avoid: When it comes to oily skin, it is all about finding a balance in oil production. Anything too occlusive will not let your skin breathe and can lead to clogged pores and acne.
Is there anything easy I could be doing that could make my skin better?: For oily skin, I recommend a corrective serum. Topical products with AHAs like glycolic acid or lactic acid work throughout the day to help dissolve buildup and impurities in the skin. Salicylic acid also has many benefits. It helps balance the skin while acting as an anti-bacterial to effectively kill breakouts.
Anything I might be doing that could be making my skin worse?: The worst thing for oily, acne prone skin is to pick at breakouts. Most of the time, our bodies detoxify the breakout internally and can clear it up on its own. However, if you do decide to manually extract a breakout, make sure the skin is soft. It is important to be as safe and clean as possible when extracting breakouts. A misconception about oily skin is that you do not need a moisturizer. However, people with oily skin need the balance of a squeaky-clean feel and moisture. I recommend a lightweight, water-based moisturizer that will leave the skin looking balanced and healthy.
What type of facial is best for me: Massage Envy’s Microderm Infusion treatment is effective for people with oily skin who do not have active breakouts.
Skin Type: Combination Skin
What type of face wash should I use: For combination skin, it is important to treat the dry and oily parts of the skin differently. I recommend a double cleanse. First, use a light, foamy cleanser that is not too drying. Then, use a corrective cleanser with a benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid to treat oily and congested areas. The cleansers are most effective when paired with a corrective toner.
What types of face products should I avoid: With combination skin, it is important to find a balance. I do not recommend using anything that is too drying or too moisturizing.
Is there anything easy I could be doing that could make my skin better?: I recommend using a corrective serum. Anything with glycolic acid AHA works well with combination skin. I would pair this with a light moisturizer that is water-based and nourishing.
Anything I might be doing that could be making my skin worse?: Using any product that treats one extreme or another can have negative results on the skin.
What type of facial is best for me: A chemical exfoliation helps yield the best results for combination skin. Massage Envy offers Healthy Skin Facials that are personalized for the client’s skincare needs. Microderm Infusions also work to give a gentle exfoliation and clear the surface of dead skin cells.
About Diana Morrison (Lead Esthetician of Massage Envy):
Diana Morrison is the Lead Esthetician of Massage Envy. She has been a dual licensed massage therapist and esthetician for over 10 years. Diana has practiced in multiple modalities, including both spa and clinical treatments, such as highly experiential facial and body wrap treatments, advanced skin care such as microdermabrasion with a chemical peel, dermaplaning, high frequency.
Summer is finally on its way, and that means two things: 1. I will start wearing less and going out more 2. This will bring to light the war zone this winter has left upon my skin. Now, I’m running around CVS picking up every sheet mask and new face wash I can try in order to clean up this mess before Memorial Day. I’ve been doing a lot of research on skin care, facials, and chemical peels to figure out if they’re even worth it. Who really has time for that? And a chemical peel kind of sounds like acid dissolving my face off, idk. Lucky for me, I got in touch with Diana Morrison, the lead esthetician of Massage Envy. Ever heard of it? I blew up her inbox with questions that I, and probs most people my age, have about facials and skin care in general. Now I am an ever-flowing fountain of wisdom on how to prevent your face from looking like shit, and you can be, too.
How important are facials, really? I feel like I take good care of my skin at home, so am I really missing out on some miracle by not getting regular facials?
Facials are absolutely critical. You are going to see much better results if you make regular facials a consistent part of your skincare routine. Treatments done by licensed estheticians use professional-grade products with active ingredients at much higher concentrations than you can get at home, and we use techniques that allow those products to better penetrate your skin. Think of facials as a once-a-month deep cleaning for your skin, while your at-home skincare regimen is regular maintenance to keep skin in the best condition possible. Really, both are essential for healthy, strong, and glowing skin.
We like to tell people to think of it like going to the gym—and it’s probably a lot more enjoyable. It’s important to make appointments with your own wellness, and that includes the skin.
I have really sensitive skin and have had bad experiences with facials—how do I know I’m not going to walk out of there with a bright red face and end up breaking out because of it?
If you have sensitive skin and someone gives you an aggressive treatment, you could wind up having an adverse reaction. At Massage Envy, we do a thorough skin analysis before your treatment. This allows us to give you a completely customized facial, so your skin gets exactly what it needs. If you are prone to redness, you might want to consider something like a chemical peel. Most people think peels and facials are strictly for exfoliation; however, these treatments also work to strengthen the skin, which in turn helps to calm redness.
We also like to let clients know that there is some stimulation that happens during a facial. This could potentially make impurities come to the surface, but they typically just come up and off of the skin. During a facial your esthetician will also apply products to balance, correct, and treat your skin, which will help your skin better heal itself.
On Healthy Skin
What’s the deal with evening out skin tone? How does our skin tone become uneven in the first place, and how do we get it back?
When we talk about discoloration, or uneven skin tone, there are a few factors at play. First, as our skin rejuvenates, it produces newer, healthier cells in the lower layer. But without regular exfoliation, dead cells will build up in certain areas on the surface, causing rough texture and discoloration.
Next, when melanin (the pigment that causes our skin to tan) builds up in the skin, it can leave us splotchy and with hyperpigmentation. Melanin is only produced by our skin when it feels like it needs to protect itself from a harsh environment. For example, constant exposure to the sun, or even overly warm conditions, such as the ones you find in hot yoga classes, can cause the skin to produce melanin.
Lastly, inflammation in the body can also discoloration. Inflammation is caused by a number of factors, including shifts in hormones.
To treat discoloration, it is essential to exfoliate away the old skin cells and protect your skin with things like SPF and quality skin care products. Peels are great, and we also recommended our microdermabrasion infusion treatment, which exfoliates and, at the same time, infuses serums we mix for you directly into the skin. Everyone’s skin is different, so when people come in concerned about uneven skin tone, we make recommendations about the best treatments and at-home products for them.
If I can do three easy things every day that will keep my skin healthy, what would they be?
A cleanser that balances the skin and is not over drying is an essential. You should ask your esthetician for a product that’s right for your skin type.
I also always recommend a vitamin C serum as a brightening and strengthening treatment. Vitamin C is a really potent antioxidant that will protect your skin from environmental factors that cause inflammation and the production of melanin. Vitamin C is also essential for the production of collagen, which is the building block of our skin. Collagen is what keeps our skin firm and plump; however, it degrades as we age. Stimulating collagen production topically with vitamin C will help to keep your skin strong and healthy.
Finally, an SPF of at least 30 is a must have. UV rays come from the sun and florescent lighting, and without the proper protection they can cause immense damage to skin.
What foods can I eat for better skin? Which ones should I avoid?
Experts recommend that you “eat your water,” meaning you should adopt a diet that consists of water rich foods, like fruits and vegetables, which help with the metabolism of cells in the body, including skin cells, and let them to function better.
On Skin Care Regimens
I’ve read a lot about different types of skin care regimens. What is actually the simplest skin care regimen that truly works?
It’s all about the three must-haves I mentioned above: a cleanser to balance and clean pores, vitamin C serum to strengthen, and SPF to protect are all essentials in every skin care routine.
Beyond that, I would definitely recommend adding in a vitamin A, or a retinol. There are different percentages of retinol, and your esthetician can help you to pick the strength that is best for your skin type. No matter what percentage you use, retinol is always a nighttime treatment because of the way it resurfaces your skin and helps it to shed the lining of your pores. This resurfacing and shedding helps treat acne, get rid of old skin cells the make your complexion look dull, and makes your cells act younger. Retinol essentially builds up and strengthens skin from underneath.
Also, as we sleep we lose a lot of moisture in our skin. To keep your complexion dewy and hydrated, it’s great to add a nighttime moisturizer into your routine.
But the bottom line is that you are going to get the best results if you work with a professional to choose the right products for your skin and, just as important, make a monthly facial, peel or microdermabrasion part of your routine.
Have you heard of face yoga? If so, do you think it’s legit?
I don’t have any experience with it, so I can’t make a recommendation one way or another, but there is definitely something to be said about stimulating the muscles in your body. Anything you do to increase circulation will bring fresh blood to the area and stimulate cells.
What are your thoughts on the sheet masks everyone is doing at home? Are they pointless, or are there ones that you would recommend?
We are all about sheet masks! They’re a big focus of Massage Envy’s first skin care line, called CyMe, which includes of sheet masks for your face, feet, and eyes. These masks are not only nourishing for the skin, but also corrective. They treat skin with a variety of nutrients that address your skin care concerns, and provide hydration while leaving a serum on your skin.
My favorite mask is the CyMe Oxygen Sheet Mask, which gives skin a glow and is effervescent; so it stimulates your skin cells while you wear it. It works to purify skin and address any congestion. I also love the CyMe bio-cellulose sheet masks, which are made from coconut and hold 100 times their weight in water, allowing them to deliver intense hydration.
Are there any products you would tell us to definitely avoid putting on our skin at all costs?
You should definitely avoid any harsh scrub that doesn’t use rounded beads as an exfoliator. Granular exfoliators can actually cause small cuts and tears on the surface of your skin. Exfoliation is definitely something that we need, as long as it is gentle. Exfoliation not only helps to get rid of old cells, but also encourages the production of healthy new skin.
If there’s one treatment you would strongly recommend for a woman in her 20’s-30’s, what would it be?
Massage Envy chemical peels are great for women in their 20’s and 30’s. We use PCA peels, which are self-neutralizing and customizable for your skin type and concern. They are not scary at all, and safe for even the most sensitive skin types. They work by getting rid of old skin while replenishing and rebuilding from within for stronger, healthier skin. They also help you to get better results from your at-home regimen and by making the products you use daily even more effective.
About Diana Morrison (Lead Esthetician of Massage Envy)
Diana Morrison is the Lead Esthetician of Massage Envy. She has been a dual licensed massage therapist and esthetician for over 10 years. Diana has practiced in multiple modalities, including both spa and clinical treatments such as highly experiential facial and body wrap treatments, advanced skin care such as microdermabrasion with chemical peel, dermaplaning, high frequency.
Diana’s vast experience in the industry led her to become the Lead Esthetician and skin care subject matter expert at Massage Envy Franchising in 2014. In this role she test and evaluates all potential skin care products and services, curates the skin care service offerings, and advises on the development of service protocols and technical training.
Images: Giphy (3); Unsplash (1)