1. Travel
Send to a Friend via Email

Extractions

The Part of A Facial That Can Hurt!

By

Extractions are the part of the facial where an esthetician removes blackheads and whiteheads. Extractions take place after the skin has been thoroughly cleansed, exfoliated and sometimes steamed, which helps soften up the plug of hardened sebum that makes up a blackhead (also called a comedone).

Extractions are one of the most important part of a facial if you have blackheads or whiteheads, because a skilled esthetician can remove them more safely than you can. But it's important you find a good esthetician to work with. Watch a video of extractions.

Here's What You Need To Know About Extractions

  • Look For The Gloves. The esthetician should always wear gloves when performing extractions. The esthetician is dealing with body fluids, and if she doesn't wear gloves, it means she's not that clean or careful in her work.

  • Fingers Or Extraction Tool? Estheticians can remove blackheads with their index fingers, covered in cotton, by applying pressure to either side of the blackhead and gently coaxing it from the follicle. Some estheticians prefer to use a stainless steel tool that has a loop at one end. It's faster and can get into awkward places, but some clients find it hurts more.

  • Whiteheads Are Harder To Remove. Whiteheads have a layer of dead skin cells that have grown over the plug of sebum. The esthetician has to make an opening in the skin with a lancet, a small, sharp, surgical blade that comes in a sterile packet. These are harder to remove and take more time. The use of lancets is illegal in some states, and some resort and hotel spas don't allow their estheticians to use them.

  • Extractions Can Hurt. Different people have different pain thresholds. People with thicker, oiler skin are usually less sensitive, while people with thinner skin are usually more sensitive. Estheticians also vary in how aggressive they are. Speak up if it hurts too much.

  • Extractions Can Cause Damage If Not Done Correctly. Too much pressure can cause broken capillaries on people with sensitive, reddened skin (called couperouse). It can cause dark spots called hyperpigmentation on people with black skin. And inflamed areas should not be extracted, because the infection might spread.

  • Don't Have An Extraction Marathon. Extractions shouldn't last more than ten minutes. If you have a lot of blackheads and whiteheads, don't expect to get rid of them in one session. Too many extractions at one time can be traumatic to the skin.

  • Extractions Are Important! If you have acne or blemishes, extractions are the most important part of the facial for you. Once the follicles are cleared out, your skin should start to improve. You may want to get facials every two weeks until your skin is clear. It's also important to follow up with the right products and a good home skin care routine.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.