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It’s been a hectic few months for a lot of us, and unfortunately, our skin has definitely felt the brunt of that. Now, while I was lucky not to have to deal with stress-related breakouts, the new forever-accessory that has become our face mask left me with the dreaded case of maskne. As such, my days are filled with clay masks and niacinamide-laced products, all in an effort to control the breakout happening on my face. But, what if there was a treatment that could not only help me tame the maskne monster, but could also provide my skin with a much-needed boost? Enter the Hydrafacial treatment.

What is a HydraFacial?

“The hydrafacial is a semi-relaxing facial whereby everything is done automatically by the machine” explains Dr. Deepa Parbhoo, an aesthetician and the first and currently the only doctor to offer the Hydrafical in Johannesburg, “It’s a microdermabrasion with tips that help to provide a deep clean.”

Dr. Parbhoo adds that the treatment is results-driven, thanks in particular to its staple ingredients of hyaluronic acid, glycolic and salicylic acid as well as antioxidants.

Dr. Parbhoo also mentioned that the Hydrafacial isn’t just limited to the skin, as there are also Hydrfacial treatments for the do body and hair

“For the hair, the treatment helps to clean out the scalp, particularly for patients with alopecia. It extracts and infuses antioxidants, and it would be a great treatment, especially before PRP

How does a HydraFacial work?

Inside A Treatment Room At Dr. Deepa Parbhoo’s Clinic

In life, what better way to understand a treatment than to experience it? Courtesy of Dr. Parbhoo, I made my way to her aesthetic clinic located in Bryanston so that I could experience the amazingness that is the HydraFacial.

Step 1: Detox With Lymph Drainage

Once I made myself comfortable in the treatment room, and after being introduced to my therapist Linda, we began the first step of the Hydrafacial, with is the lymph drainage.

“As doctors, we don’t really do lymph drainage, but it’s part of the Hydrafacial because it helps to address saggyness and puffiness” explains Dr. Parbhoo. Linda added that it also helps to detox the body, as well as stimulate blood circulation.

If you’re worried about the pain, fret not as the entire experience was gentle, and I had to stop myself from falling asleep – which Dr. Parbhoo mentioned was common among patients during this stage of the hydrofacial treatment.

Step 2: Deep Cleansing With Lactic Acid

Exfoliation helps provide that much-needed deep cleanse, so Dr. Parbhoo says that this step serves to gently exfoliate the skin by removing any dead skin cells. What is lactic acid, you ask? Well, it’s a milk-based face acid that not only helps to boost the skin’s hydration levels, but also encourages collagen stimulation (which is something skin junkies love to hear). It also targets dull skin and hyperpigmentation (goodbye acne scars!)

My Therapist Linda Saving My Skin

Step 3: It’s Peel Time

“The peel contains different percentages of  glycolic and salicylic acids, with glycolic acid brightening the skin and salicylic acid works on the nose area by softening the pores” explains Dr. Parbhoo, “By softening the pores, the vortex technology can better target the pores, softening the debris and pull out those blackheads.”

Considering the fact that I’ve been dealing with maskne, the combination of glycolic and salicylic acid is the ultimate gift to my skin. The two face acids aren’t just great for acne woes, as glycolic acid can also help the skin retain moisture, while salicylic acid works to reduce inflammation.

Step 4: The Extraction

It’s exactly as it sounds.

During this step, Linda focused on the areas of my skin where there was congestion (particularly my cheek area and nose) and the vortex technology literally sucked out my blackheads and any other nasties that were lingering in my pores. If you’re worried about discomfort, don’t be.

However, if you think this is simply a theatrics performance to enhance the treatment, you might be surprised to find out that a cup is attached to the end of the machine so that you can actually see what’s been pulled out of your pores,

“We call it the gunky jar – you actually see all the sebum and the blackheads floating around, and we show it to you at the end of your treatment,” says Dr. Parbhoo, and show me they did. At the end of my treatment, I got to see my own gunky jar and…Yes, it was gross, but it was just so satisfying (and relieving to know that my pores were free of all that poison).

Step 5: Antioxidant boost

“Antioxidants protect against free radical damage, so the mixture includes vitamin C, peptides, and a lot of hyaluronic acid” explains Dr. Parbhoo, “Hyaluronic acid works well for dry and dehydrated skin, so you get that instant boost.”

While my antioxidant boost didn’t include other skin-loving ingredients like retinol, Dr. Parbhoo does reveal that the Hydrafacial can be personalized for patients, so those who require a little retinol or vitamin E can ask for it.

Step 6: Hit the LED Lights

The last and, probably my favorite part of the treatment, is the use of LED lights. Now, why would I want to bask under LED lights as if I’m at a rave?

Well, that’s because these lights have skin-boosting benefits. Blue light helps to kill off any acne bacteria, whereas red light provides an anti-aging effect, all while reducing any redness.

Hit The LED Lights

Did my skin love it?

My skin was bright and glowing as soon as I stepped off the treatment bed. In fact, I almost got lost in how smooth my skin felt. Not only did I have no redness or puffiness, but the congestion on my nose and around my cheek area was not only gone but my pores – what pores?

Hydrafacial: Hype or Hope?

Hope – definitely hope. I’m still enjoying the glowing effects of the treatment a few weeks later. I’d recommend this treatment to anyone who’s looking for a much-needed boost for their skin.

While Dr. Parbhoo admits that a monthly treatment would be ideal, she adds that a treatment every second or third month works just as well.

This treatment shouldn’t replace your other regular peels and treatments,” she says, “I believe skincare is holistic – let’s work on the skin as they look at you in entirety so it’s important to treat the skin and that’s exactly what this does”

For more information on the treatment, click here.

Who is Dr. Deepa Parbhoo?

Dr. Deepa Parbhoo (MbBch, Adv Dipl in Aesthetic Medicine)
Dr. Deepa has over 10 years of experience in the medical aesthetics industry and is at the forefront of the practice, Aesthetics by Dr. Deepa Parbhoo. She graduated from the University of Witwatersrand in 2007 with a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery degree. In 2012, she earned her Advanced Diploma in Aesthetic Medicine (FPD).
Dr. Deepa is an ultra-professional who provides personal Medicare with a personal touch to all her patients. She subscribes to the highest level of care and precision to deliver the best-desired results for her patients to look good, and feel even better.
Aesthetics by Dr. Deepa Parbhoo offers minimally invasive procedures to benefit each patient who values looking young and beautiful.
Her participation in the national Mrs. SA 2017 pageant posed a new challenge as she incorporated her professional knowledge of aesthetics and beauty into a movement for the uplifting of women in the community, using the pageant as a platform.
That same year, she went on being crowned as the 1st Princess in the Empress India SA 2017 pageant. During her reign with the title, Dr. Deepa became involved in fundraising events for the betterment of the community.
Entering the world of pageantry was a stepping stone towards mobilizing Dr. Deepa’s philosophy of being “Unapologetically You”. This powerful message pioneered the way for the past 2 years, resulting in Dr. Deepa being appointed as a member of the Galderma Thought Leaders group and as an executive committee member of the AAMSSA (The Aesthetic and Anti-aging Medicine Society of South Africa).
Dr. Deepa is currently a print fashion model based in Johannesburg and is available for bookings. As a mum of a 5-year-old, the dynamics of work-life balance as a working mother is a concept that Dr. Deepa is familiar with. As such, her charitable interests have always been in support of empowering women, such as modeling for the V3 (Vintage Vegan Fashion) show which is a cruelty-free initiative raising awareness in support of fashion.
An eternal student, Dr. Deepa is on a constant journey of personal mastery and shares learnings with those around her.

Want to know more?

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all just get away from the stressors of the world? Thankfully, there are a few ways I can let go and destress. I recently visited the newly opened AltBeauty Clinic, located in Sandton, Johannesburg, and created by Dr. Nicole Kanaris, and I was fortunate enough to experience the de-stressing benefits promised by their CBD medical massage treatment.

Pie Mulumba

Pie Mulumba

Pie Mulumba is a beauty and wellness writer who has a passion for poetry, equality, natural hair, and skin-care. With a journalism degree from Pearson's Institute of Higher Education, and identifiable by either her large afro or colorful locks, Pie aspires to continuously provide the latest information, be it beauty or wellness, on how one can adopt a healthy lifestyle on a day-to-day basis.

The content in this editorial is for general information only and is not intended to provide medical or other professional advice. For more information on your medical condition and treatment options, speak to your healthcare professional.