"I love, love, love them," gushed Gemini-nominated actress Kristin Booth (Flashpoint) about Intraceuticals facials when I met her recently at a Cover FX/Actor's Fund event. "I'm doing a series of them to get ready for TIFF."
Intraceuticals Oxygen treatments are skin-rejuvenating facials that more and more A-listers depend on to get their game faces on. Unlike other facials, Intraceuticals aren't about exfoliation, extractions or goopy layers of cream. And although they make use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy – using oxygen at a higher level of pressure than normal – they're not exactly about oxygen, either.
"The Intraceuticals facial uses a cooling, forced stream of oxygen via a treatment wand to push a hyaluronic-acid serum from the epidermis [the skin's surface] to the dermis underneath," explains Dr. Sandy Skotnicki, medical director of the Bay Dermatology Centre where Booth goes for her appointments. Hyaluronic acid, a molecule the skin also makes, can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. "It hydrates the skin, immediately firms and plumps it up to smooth out fine lines, and gives the complexion a nice glow."
Eva Longoria, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kristen Davis have enjoyed treatments, and, according to Skotnicki, famed fashion photographer Steven Meisel has all his subjects book Intraceuticals treatments before shooting with him. Justin Timberlake is quoted on the Intraceuticals website as saying they make his skin "look dope," and Madonna is such a fan that she owns at least one Intraceuticals machine (fact confirmed by makeup pro Gina Brooke, who introduced the superstar to Intraceuticals treatments).
Starting at $225, the 40-minute treatment is "great for women in their late 30s, 40s and older," comments Skotnicki. "Maybe they travel all the time, smoke a little or party a lot. This makes their skin look refreshed and glowy." Effects are cumulative, so the recommendation is a series of appointments although results are evident after the first. Skotnicki says the benefits are actually more noticeable around day two or three, and can last up to three weeks. "For a while, I thought of it as just a facial," she confesses. "But I have patients who do it all the time -- they look good."
I'm a fan of them too. They're brilliant for brides-to-be, as well as for any other folks who have a face-time appointment with a camera. Not only does skin look smooth and serene afterward, it actually feels like it's breathing, the way you do when you step outside into cool, fresh, not-in-the-city air.
Intraceuticals don't replace other facials entirely however. Like any other treatment, they'll be more effective if skin's already clear of pesky dry patches.
Have you ever tried an Intraceuticals facial or anything like it?