Face treatments are not only a relaxing experience that many men are just now beginning to admit they enjoy, but they improve the health and appearance of skin. Long relegated to the list of things not manly enough for men to enjoy or benefit from, skin treatments are now being recognized as particularly beneficial to men because of the abuse our skin goes through a result of daily shaving. Facial treatments have many practical benefits; not least of which is the fact that exfoliation and the use of moisturizers make for a smoother, cleaner shave.
Face treatments are pretty new territory for barbershops. Traditionally viewed as a spa or salon type treatment, high-end barbershops recently began offering facial treatments for men because of the many benefits they provide. Men’s skin tends to be oilier, to have larger pores (which are more likely to get clogged), and to be susceptible to sun damage. Face treatments can help clear up oily skin, unclog pores, and repair sun damage.
Getting a facial treatment at a barbershop probably won’t involve cucumber water or soft music playing in the background. However, men might be more comfortable getting a facial at a barbershop because it’s a familiar place. Whether you call them facials or face treatments or skin clarifying masks, offering facial treatments can be a classy addition to the suite of services you offer in your barbering practice.
Offering Skin Care Treatments Within the Scope of Your Barber License
In most states, offering facial treatments falls within the scope of a barbering license, but there are lots of restrictions. So long as the services you provide are non invasive, involve no chemical exfoliants or peels, and involve only topical applications of mud masks, moisturizers and other natural agents, you are welcome to offer your clients face treatments without any additional licensing.
Most standard barbering schools will cover courses such as properties and disorders of the skin, properties and disorders of the hair and scalp, treatments of the hair and scalp, and facial massage and treatments.
If you’d like more advanced training in skin care and how to apply facials, you might pursue advanced courses for licensed barbers through the barbering academies or even schools of esthetics located in your area. Through these courses and workshops, you’ll be able to learn more about how to treat different types of skin, effective facial treatments, and how to use herbs and oils to improve the appearance and health of your clients’ skin.
Special Considerations When Giving Face Treatments to Men
Face treatments can brighten the skin, remove blemishes, help avoid acne, unclog pores, reduce the appearance of aging, help fight sun damage, reduce razor burn and moisturize the face, avoiding cracked, dry, or flaky skin. With such a myriad of benefits, it’s a wonder that facials aren’t part of every man’s grooming routine.
You might consider offering packages that include a face mask with a shave in order to help clients try something new. Moisturizing facials after a shave are also wonderful to help the skin.
Start any facial with a steam or a hot towel.
You can use steam to open up the pores with a steam machine, or do it the old fashioned way with a hot towel. There are many benefits to using steam—steam helps to unclog pores and bring impurities to the surface so that a clarifying mask can strip them away from the skin.
However, the traditional method of wrapping the face in a hot towel also helps to soften the skin and open pores. This method is often something men feel more comfortable with since it’s the same prep you’d do for a hot towel shave. It’s really a matter of your own personal preference, and that of your client. You can even add essential oils to the towel when it’s still dry and then use your towel steamer to activate the oils.
The next step usually involves exfoliation through a scrub. You’ll apply the scrub to the face with your fingertips and remove it in a circular motion—the scrub will help remove dead skin cells from the surface. This step may be skipped if your client has sensitive skin or skin conditions.
Next, you’ll use more steam or a hot towel to remove the scrub completely from the face.
The next step is to apply the mask that your client has chosen. There are many different types of masks, from moisturizing to cleansing to anti-aging to acne removal masks. You’ll take the mask that they have chosen and either apply it with your fingertips or with a brush—it’s a matter of preference.
The mask will need to sit on the skin for up to fifteen minutes in order to maximize the effect, but the time will vary depending on the type of mask. After letting the mask sit on the skin for the appropriate amount of time, you’ll remove the mask and apply another hot towel.
Once the mask has been removed, you’ll apply moisturizer for a finishing layer. This is sometimes accompanied by a facial massage to loosen the tension in the facial muscles.
Finish the treatment with a cold towel, which will close the pores, tighten the skin and give it a healthy glow.
Using a Facial Steamer for Face Treatments
If you want to market face treatments as a standard part of the services you offer, you might consider purchasing a salon facial steamer rather than using hot towels to moisturize and soften the skin. Steamers run from $50 for basic consumer tabletop models on up to $300 or more for high quality free-standing commercial machines with castors.
Using steam during face treatments is one of the trendiest methods of relaxation. Steam softens the skin, making it easier to unclog pores. It also revitalizes the skin by allowing it to absorb the vitamins and minerals in the facial treatment product that you use.
Facial steaming with a dedicated device is also an experience that clients may keep coming back to your barbershop to enjoy, and will help to make the facial treatments you offer more exclusive.
Some of the steaming systems used in profession settings include:
- Nano Steamer
- Conair Facial Sauna System
- KINGA Facial Steamer
- Esthology Salon Facial Steamer
Choosing the Right Facial Products for Different Skin Types
Some high end facial treatment products offered by barbers around the country include:
- Express Skin Fitness Facial
- Indian Clay Mask
- Eye Revitalizing Facial
- Essential Skin Treatment
- Anti-Aging Facial
- Detox Facial
These different masks are developed with a variety of ingredients and with different results in mind. You can purchase mask products wholesale from high-end manufactures, or even develop your own formulas.
Some highly ranked brands that make facial masks intended for men include:
- Men Science
- Malin + Goetz
- Kyoku for men
- Peter Thomas Roth
Anti-aging facials often include collagen, chlorophyll, vitamin A, vitamin C, or green tea extract. All of these elements help fight the appearance of wrinkles and sagging skin.
Sun-damage repairing facials include hydroquinone, which fades sun blemishes.
Detox facials include ingredients like coconut oil, avocado, activated charcoal, or a number of herbs and essential oils that help to detoxify the skin.
Eye revitalizing facials include moisturizers, oat protein, and algae extract to lift the eye area and reduce puffiness.
In addition, Indian Clay masks and Dead Sea mud are helpful for unclogging pores and infusing vitamins and minerals into the skin.
If your client has existing skin conditions, like eczema, you’ll need to be careful of what treatments you use.
If you’re using hot towels and want to add essential oils, you might consider the following oils:
- Tea Tree Oil
Men tend to favor these scents since they are masculine and similar to popular male colognes.