beauty

TRIED & TESTED: 'I got the 'red carpet facial' all the celebs swear by. Here's my verdict.'

I love a good facial! So much so that I advocate for them regularly as part of your skin maintenance, rather than just something to be saved for special occasions. 

I read a study once that for the life of me I can’t find to properly reference now, but the gist of it was that the ‘average woman’ (excuse me? We’re all ‘f***ing spectacular’ thanks) had approximately three facials in her lifetime - with her engagement and wedding stealing most of them.

I have two main requirements when it comes to getting a facial, with the first being "Pls don’t try to sell me stuff". I’m not shy about showing up, explaining that this is the first scrap of 'me' time away from the ratbag kids I’ve had in months and politely requesting no sales pitch.

Watch: What does a 'Carbon Facial' look like? Amy Clark finds out. Post continues below.


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The second is: "Come on love, get in there". I want to be abraded, extracted, basted with acid. If it involves needles, numbing agents, and pore-squeezes so sharp they bring a tear to my eye, GOOD. Fanny-ing around with gentle puffs of steam and a jade roller while Enya plays quietly in the background - can do that at home. Minus the Enya, obviously.

So when I heard about this new facial called 'Fire and Ice' the masochist in me perked right up. It sounded both painful and exhilarating. Like an over-chilled beer in a scalding hot bath. Heaven! 

Listen: Kelly finds out why everyone is getting Buccal facials on Mamamia's You Beauty podcast. Post continues below.

Showing up to Self (by The Parlour Room in Clovelly) for my appointment, I was a teeny bit trepidatious, but mainly pumped. Let’s do this. 

This treatment had some big talk. Words like "powerful" and "age-defying" had been thrown around and the website "guaranteed some of the most effective results" including "noticeably hydrated, soft and smooth looking skin" plus "reduced pigmentation, dark spots and blemishes, leaving a healthy, radiant glow".

I love nothing more than a good 'before' and 'after' so I quickly snapped this in the bloody BEAUTIFUL reception area just before I went in!

Image: Supplied 

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Now, I don’t know if this is just one of the more luxe places I’ve been to but this treatment room had a bed. Like… soft fluffy towels beneath a weighty white quilt with a proper posh pillow bed. I was urged to undress and snuggle on in, and look - you don’t need to ask me twice. 

So comfortable was I that I briefly entertained the idea of a nap, however getting the full lowdown on the origins of the treatment was just too juicy to miss. 

What is the 'red carpet facial'?

Turns out that while the iS Clinical ‘Fire and Ice’ facial is new to Australia, it’s actually been the best-selling treatment at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Day Spa for over a decade. Go on… it’s also nicknamed the ‘Red Carpet Facial’ due to its popularity with Hollywood A-listers before big events.

Apparently movie stars literally step out of a ‘Red Carpet Facial’ and into their dress! Bridging the gap between a facial and a peel, it has zero downtime, you can put make-up straight over it and it gives a glow so luminous that the paps probably don’t even need to pack their camera flash. 

What's involved?

After a lovely cleanse, the first phase of the treatment is the 'fire' - which wasn’t actually flaming at all. Using an intensive resurfacing masque that included 18 per cent glycolic acid it really didn’t need to, though. 

I naturally wasted no time in cashing in all my tough-tickets when the facialist asked if I’d prefer it left on for ‘two minutes or five’. The masque also contained sugar cane extracts, green tea leaf extract and vitamins A and B3 but it smelt STRONGLY of cinnamon and reminded me of a few nights I’d been way too liberal shooting Fireball. 

My face instantly felt warm and tingly, getting warmer and tinglier still. By the time my five minutes was up, I was seriously doubting the 'no downtime' part and snapped this bad boy to assess the damage. 

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I look like a piece of gammon!

Image: Supplied 

Unsurprisingly, the next phase was the “Ice” in the form of the iS CLINICAL Rejuvenating Masque. This was pretty magic actually. 

The combination of hyaluronic acid, aloe barbadensis leaf juice and extracts of green tea, liquorice root, grape seed and rosemary leaf INSTANTLY cooled and soothed. All warmth in my skin vanished and my complexion felt calm and restored. 

Lastly, applications of iS CLINICAL Youth Eye Complex, Pro-Heal Serum and Hydra-Cool Serum were massaged into my skin using frosty ice globes, and once absorbed I was lavished with a delicious moisturiser and sent on my way to my VIP dressing room...

Ha, if only! I actually got into my car, took a billion selfies BECAUSE LOOK AT THE GLOW and then went home to clean pee out of my twin toddler's car seats. 

The A-list lyfe this is not, but for 45 minutes at least, it felt like it! 

Image: Supplied 

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Jumping back to what I said at the start about only enjoying a facial in the lead-up to a big event - while this treatment is literally PERFECT for that - don’t forget you ARE the big event. Don’t waste your prime facial years waiting for a reason. Just ditch them kids and do itttt.

Also, at the time of writing - I had this treatment a month ago, and I’m STILL getting told how radiant I look. There’s plenty of time to invite me to a red carpet event, everyone! Just sayin’.

Image: Supplied 

See more from Carly on her Instagram.  

iS Clinical Fire & Ice Facial, $280 (45 minutes), is available at Self by The Parlour Room.

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Feature image: Supplied 

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