A Hot Stone Facial... in a Sheet Mask:
Why and How we did it.
History of the Hot Stone
Most of us are familiar with Hot Stone massages (if you haven’t tried one, you NEED to try). It’s an ancient tradition with roots in Ayurvedic Indian wellness remedies, which uses the placement of warmed lava stones on certain parts of the body to boost circulation, heat compress and relax sore muscles. Hot Stone Facial massages also exist, but are less common as the facial area is a lot more fragile to work with in comparison to other body parts. On the face, the heated stones used are a lot smaller, lighter and focus more on pinpointing typically stressed areas like the temple, jawline and forehead.
Direct contact with hot stones to facial skin is more risky, especially for those with sensitive skin or Rosacea, as heat can cause flushing or in extreme cases, burns. However, if done right; the hot stone massage serves multiple benefits that normal facial treatments don’t usually offer unless other equipment is involved. The hot compress mechanism of the stone against facial skin helps open up pores, relax facial muscles deeply to allow smoother massaging and can help press serum deeper.
Now add a Sheet Mask to that and it’s double compression and extra occlusive benefits, allowing for maximized product absorption. But the advantages don’t stop there, Sheet Masks have another perk - they can hold serum.
Typically Hot Stone Facials are separated into two parts: Facial Massage and Facial Skin Treatment. Therapists first focus on cleansing, exfoliation, prepping the skin, applying a clay or cream mask, cleansing and then oiling the skin for the hot stone massage. Then the massage is applied, meaning that a typical Hot Stone Facial treatment can take quite a while and therefore cost a lot more than your average facial - rightly so, for its treatment complexity. This also requires dual modality trained therapists, meaning: a trained hot stone facialist must be able to massage properly with the use of heated stones as well as provide full service facial care, without over heating or under utilizing the stone components. Sound difficult? Yes indeed.
So what we’ve done here at Snow Fox, is combine both the skin care facial treatment and facial massage components into one cost-effective, results-driven yet easy application which can be done at home by yourself.
1. THE SHEET
2. THE SERUM
3. THE STONE
The Sheet - 100% premium organic unbleached cotton (as always with Snow Fox). Pure high quality cotton is extremely absorbent, so it can soak and hold in a good amount of serum liquid. Cotton fibers are also hypoallergenic and very gentle on skin, whereas microfibers tend to leak excess serum onto the bottom of the mask pouch or cause irritations for those who are sensitive to acrylic. Of course, cotton is 100% biodegradable or easily incinerated, but plastic microfibers are a real problem in our oceans and landfills. Bleach is another item we avoid; stark white cotton sheet masks are usually that colour from bleach, which is a major water pollutant. While it gives fabric sheets a beautiful linen white appearance, sheet masks are meant to be used as an intensive occlusive delivery tool and the last thing you want to press into your skin is any bleach residue.
The Serum - The Hot Stone Facial serum is based on the True Luminosity Serum and meant to be used together in a skin care routine for those who want to brighten up their skin tone, fade discolorations, minimize the look of pores and rebalance oil production. Mask serums are always more intensive than every day serums as they are meant to deliver maximum results after one use. The difference between the Hot Stone Serum versus the daily Luminosity Serum is that the Hot Stone Serum includes high concentrations of niacinamide and copper peptides to further boost serum activity during the masking process. The formula base contains Egyptian Blue Lotus, Zinc and Caffeine to brighten, soothe and firm up skin tone.
The Hot Stone - This comes in the form of a Black Obsidian Gua Sha. The Gua Sha is a fantastic “hot stone” for the face and we prefer it over the traditional round “hot stones” for the body. This is because while round stones are great for massaging larger body areas like the back and shoulders, the Gua Sha’s unique shape allows for pinpointed accuracy and a more intricate massage on facial lymphatic drainage acupressure points. The flat base of the Gua Sha also serves as an easy to use hot compress, so it’s perfect for people who are new to Gua Shas.
*Massaging over a sheet mask is different from massaging over skin. When using on top of a sheet mask, use light pressure so as not to tug at the sheet and focus on stimulating facial points with the combed edges instead of long scrapes as this can "squeeze" the serum out of the mask.
With all three core benefits of a hot stone facial packed into an easy-to-use pouch, this is the ultimate Self Care pampering session that’s both cost and time efficient with maximized results. We suggest using the True Luminosity Serum twice daily, followed by the Hot Stone Facial Mask twice a week to speed up visible results.