Treating your complexion to a facial by a top esthetician is one of the ultimate acts of self-care, but finding the best facial in New York, LA, Miami, or other areas of the country isn’t always as simple as a quick Google search. After all, it’s important to visit a licensed estheticians who is able to assess your skin type and apply products to suit its needs. Not mention, there are an array of professional-grade treatments and tools that can tailor the experience and achieve results that aren’t feasible at home (but they do require a certain degree of skill for safety and efficacy) — all the more reason to go to the best of the best facialists, no matter where you’re located.
So where do you begin to choose where to go for a facial? First, it helps to identify what kind of treatment is best for your skin concerns at the present moment. Lymphatic massage is one such technique that is far more than just soothing for your complexion. This type of facial massage helps to promote detoxification via the lymph nodes (aka lymphatic drainage), which results in a less puffy and more sculpted face.
Microcurrent devices are another popular tool during facials, delivering gentle electric currents that stimulate the face’s underlying musculature for a “non-invasive facelift” for weeks at a time. (While these devices are sold for at-home use, the professional-grade, in-office devices are much more powerful.)
Depending on your esthetician’s preference, you might also receive a brightening oxygen infusion, some anti-inflammatory cryotherapy, or a session beneath a clinical-grade LED device — from full LightStim beds to Celluma panels. (Remember — red light boosts collagen and heals; anti-bacterial blue light mitigates acne and breakouts; and the rare green device, like the one at Carasoin below, is said to help improve hyperpigmentation.)
So, in the name of post-holiday self-care, here are some of the top recommended facial studios and estheticians from coast to coast to help keep your skin healthy and glowing.
Known for her love of applying cryogenically frozen stem cells to the skin, Lena Bratschi and her studio, Carasoin, is a hidden gem of West Hollywood. The Swiss-born, London-trained founder works with cutting-edge technology for her treatments, such as lifting microcurrent, toning ultrasound, and sessions under the cellular-chaging green LED lamp by Omnilux, but also achieves impressive results using luxury, clean skin care products. No matter which facial you choose, add on the cryo stem cell treatment for $75, or opt for the anti-inflammatory CBD facial using luxury skin care products by Saint Jane. Celeb fans include Sofia Vergara, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, and Rooney Mara, among others.
The Ricari Method combines techniques to facilitate lymphatic drainage, boost circulation, and address skin tone and elasticity for a holistic experience that addresses the face and body. After a massage from head to toe, you will walk away with more sculpted features of the face and body. Their most popular treatment is the Signature, which begins with the ICOONE devices for lymphatic drainage and incorporates various forms of massage, LED therapy using anti-inflammatory infrared light, CBD relief balm, and calming aromatherapy.
Halo Skin & Body
A Harisienne facial with Jenylyn Ball will leave you supremely relaxed — more so than you would expect from a facial massage. The preferred facialist of Freida Pinto, Ball is an under-the-radar esthetician whose holistic treatments are truly unique. Using a facial technique from a master esthetician and acupuncturist in Japan, Ball utilizes select acupressure points on the face and scalp to improve circulation, sculpt, detox, and promote lymphatic drainage in the neck. She opts for skin care brands like Ranavat and Epicuren, and the experience is truly rejuvenating and gently detoxing.
Esthetician Jordan LaFragola created a facial so popular at the Beverly Hills Hotel that she has since branched off to start her own practice and signature oil blend. In a 60-minute Flora Mirabilis facial, you’ll receive a double-cleanse to loosen any residual debris from the skin and pores, a gentle exfoliation, optional extractions, a rejuvenating masque, and facial massage. In the 90-minute option, the additional half-hour provides the opportunity for ultrasonic cleansing, facial cupping, microcurrent, and gua sha. The experience is made even more enchanting by her Renaissance-inspired studio — located at Charlie Chaplin’s former compound — and music featuring binaural beats that settle the nervous system for a 360-degree therapeutic experience.
111 Skin at Waldorf Astoria Spa at Monarch Beach
Just outside of Los Angeles, in coastal Orange County, the Waldorf Astoria Spa at Monarch Beach now offers facials featuring the skin care line, 111 Skin. Developed by the plastic surgeon Dr. Yannis Alexandrides, his signature ingredient is N-Acetyl Cysteine — the bodily precursor to the so-called master antioxidant, Glutathione. The facial offerings also incorporate popular modalities like the Hydrafacial, cryotherapy, and LED, but for the ultimate luxury skin care splurge, consider the Black Diamond Non-Surgical Facelift.
In her charming, Soho-based studio, esthetician Taylor Worden offers an array of bespoke facials that are customized for your skin type. With the option of buzzy dermaplaning (aka removing the delicate peach fuzz, or vellus hair), her treatments offer massage, LED light therapy, microcurrent, chemical peels, and brightening oxygen. For the full experience, ask for the Taylormade LTMD, which stands for Lift, Tone, Massage, and Dermaplane, and for a truly nourishing experience for the whole body, book a session in her full-body LED bed.
Aida Bicaj offers a menu of delights for the skin care enthusiast, with facials comprised of the prestigious Biologique Recherche skin care line. In addition to the skin-transforming facials from the brand institute in Paris, her Upper East Side location also offers firming radiofrequency treatments, the buzzy, collagen-boosting procedure that will leave your skin looking impossibly lifted and firm. For more invasive facial rejuvenation, she can also perform series of microneedling and the minimally-invasive Clear + Brilliant (“Mini Fraxel”) fractionated laser.
Sofie Pavitt Skincare Studio
Located in Chinatown, Sofie Pavitt offers everything from laser treatments and laser hair removal to treatment plans for glowing skin or managing acne. A deep clean facial offers the classic cleansing, steaming, extractions, a high frequency wand to kill bacteria, and then a calming mask. But you can also add on treatments like a cooling hydro jelly mask, LED and microcurrent, a chemical peel, dermaplaning, or brightening oxygen to boot. If you are interested in the complexion-evening results offered by the cosmeceutical line iS Clinical, consider the iS Clinical Fire and Ice Facial instead, which features a professional grade peel for seriously smooth and bright skin.
Renowned facialist Teresa Tarmey is based out of both New York and London, making her exclusive treatments all-the-more precious. Known for her love of the most cutting-edge offerings — as in, a collection of lasers to rival most dermatologists — she delivers her laser facials alongside signature facials featuring add-ons like cryo-ball sculpting, a bespoke lactic acid peel, LED, and lymphatic drainage. That being said, her clinics also offer injectables, the collagen-boosting Profhilo (which is not available Stateside), and even PRP, offering the full array of what rejuvenating skin care has to offer.
For a facial experience that is expertly “stacked” with the anti-aging expertise of a renowned plastic surgeon, look no further than BIÂN. Kind of like a SoHo house for the wellness-loving elite, the Stackable Trio Facial is like a love affair for your skin. It incorporates cleansing, radiofrequency (for skin tightening), a purifying Hydrafacial complete with exfoliation, a peel, extractions, and a cooling marine algae-based mask, and finishes up the powerful experience with a session of LED, a spritz of a CBD face mist, and some lymph-moving massage. What more could you ask for?
After working on the Oprah Show for 20 years, makeup artist and esthetician Mirielle Hamon opened Mirielle’s Studio in Chicago. In addition to makeup and brow services, she offers an array of skin care offerings, as well. Depending on your preferences and what is deemed appropriate for your skin, you can pick between offerings such as microdermabrasion, ProCell Therapy, the Diamond Glow treatment, and PCA peels. There is even a Back Treatment Facial that provides extractions and a mask in the most hard-to-reach area, and an age-appropriate teen facial should you choose to bring a younger guest.
The Ritz Carlton Chicago
Sometimes luxury is the name of your game, and times like these call for a moment of pampering at a five-star hotel. At the Spa at the Ritz Carlton Chicago , the most popular facial treatment is the Advanced O2 Facial. It includes a triple cleanse, exfoliation, toning massage, oxygen infusion, and sends antioxidants and peptides (courtesy of Luzern Skincare) into the skin beneath a bio-cellulose mask. The experience is then topped off by a scalp massage. Pro tip: They include 20% gratuity in the pricing.
Ageless Medspa by Dr. Sypien
If you are less interested in lavish surroundings, and are more interested in a broad menu of aesthetic options, MedSpas might be your best bet. Ageless Medspa by Dr. Sypien is one such destination in Chicago where you can just as easily book Botox and fillers as you can choose from a menu of services by an esthetician. While microneedling, radiofrequency microneedling, and peels require numbing and/or downtime, gentle facial treatments like the Geneo 3-in-1 Super Facial — an exfoliating, oxygenating, and nourishing delivery system — relay glow instantly. Customizable oxypods are affixed to the end of the device depending on your skin type with active ingredient options for detox, hydration, balance, illumination, and more.
Esthetician and Holistic Practitioner Jill Black
For a true mind-body-beauty experience, the “Microcurrent Queen of Miami” is your best bet. At Jill Black Holistic, you can not only receive the uplifting (literally) facial effects of a microcurrent facial, but you can benefit from her attuned, wellness-first approach — and maybe even an energy healing, if you’re in the mood. Perhaps this is why she is such a fan of the crow’s feet-defying microcurrent device — in addition to strengthening the underlying musculature of the face, providing ample lift, it also moves sluggish lymph, aiding the body with detox.
Tierra Santa Healing House at the Faena Hotel
On the third floor of one of Miami’s chicest hotels, the award-winning Tiera Santa Healing House is a 22,000 square foot spa with one of the East Coast’s largest hammams. In addition to shaman-developed healing rituals, you can choose between facials featuring beauty editor-beloved Biologique Recherche products, or for the green-leaning connoisseur, Naturopathica. The Soin Micro-Stimulation, for instance, allows for the deep penetration of Biologique Recherche’s potent serums courtesy of the brand’s Micro-Puncture Lab, leaving you with a plumper, revitalized look. On the other end of the spectrum, a customizable Naturopathica facial is even pregnancy-safe, offering a calendula mask, glycolic peel, and gentle massage.
The Gee Beauty Studio in Miami boasts skin care treatments that range from the Intraceuticals Infusion facial featuring pressurized, hyperbaric oxygen, to the Lift + Illuminate Anti-Aging Facial, which is complete with microcurrent, microdermabrasion, LED light, and pressurized oxygen. If you’re pressed for time, opt for the Mini Medi Hydra — an hourlong Hydrafacial treatment that cleanses the pores, infuses the skin with serums, and sends you on your way with a glow. Plus, after your treatment you can have a ball shopping their array of curated brands, from Augustinus Bader to Vintner’s Daughter.
At Sana Skin Studio, you can experience a completely customized experience to suit your skin type, skin goals, and schedule. Base facials start at just 30 minutes, but go all the way up to 70-minute treatments. Then, you can pick-and-choose your add-ons (i.e., microcurrent, gua sha, lymphatic massage, LED, ultrasonic pore cleanses and extractions) that will increase your service time by 10 minutes.
Located approximately 45 minutes outside of Miami, the Elina Organics Pompano Beach location is certainly worth the trek. One of the two most popular facials is the Mermaid Face Rejuvenating Treatment, which gently cleanses, hydrates, and sends marine collagen crushed with sea water pearls into the skin with electrophoresis (for better absorption). The other is the Bio Response Face Firming Anti-Wrinkle Treatment which includes facial cupping, microcurrent, and a Scenar Cosmodic Neurofeedback Skin Firming Treatment that will score you the snatched jawline of your dreams.
The Post Oak Hotel Spa
The Post Oak Hotel Spa is the city’s only five-star hotel spa, set in a 20,000 square foot destination for relaxation on the fifth floor. Their glow-inducing Luminescence facial includes a patented form of kombucha (AKA fermented tea), which is antioxidant-packed and rich in pre- and probiotics that nourish the skin barrier, tend to the skin’s microbiome of good bacteria, and also imparts major glow. Tip: Make it a whole spa day and enjoy the hotel’s spa amenities.
For the full offerings of a MedSpa, rest assured that SkinSpirit Houston at Rice Village offers what you seek — with over 20 locations across the country, they have their offerings down to an art. If you are into injectables, lasers, or even body contouring, they have got you covered. But the location also boasts two estheticians delivering an array of physician-designed facials featuring chemical peels (which are especially popular in the winter), dermaplaning, and microdermabrasion. Tip: For immediate plumping and glow, ask about Aquagold.
Milk + Honey
Houston also offers a charming day spa called Milk + Honey, which has other MedSpa locations you might recognize in Los Angeles, Austin, and Fort Worth. In addition to a nail salon, massages, and spa amenities, the facial offerings include classic facials using their own line, the Deep Sea or Timeless chemical peels, and HydraFacials with various customized serums like RegenGF™ growth factors or peptide-rich DermaBuilder for anti-aging, or the lightening Alpha Arbutin and vitamin C Lightening Treatment for dark spots.