Sunday, September 17, 2006


Confronted with the obvious signs of aging: crows feet, wrinkles, laugh lines, sun damage and (gasp!) age spots...I decided it was time to go the way of all Los Angeleno women, and get me some spiffy micro-dermabrasion.

V and I went to the haute salon in San Elijo Hills (near Encinitas/San Diego) for our treatments. Having never been to a salon, let alone a haute one, we were both unprepared for the strangeness to follow.

Frauline Helga, my esthetician, was rough, abrupt, and yet complimentary. She told me I had beautiful skin, and when I told her my age, she had the kindness to fake a gasp in surprise. I also got a very positive thumbs up for staying out of the sun, something only my mother has complimented me on before. Sort of like chewing the colored pill at the dentists office and not having many spots you missed while brushing. Yay me!

Forced to get nekkid, shoeless and towel-wrapped was the first in the line of horrors - why a facial treatment needed to involve my feet - I'm not sure. V, rebellious, refused to take off her clothes. She put her wrap over her dress, and stomped off with her esthetician, indignant. We were separated - feeling like sisters at Birkenau, marching off to endure horrors, never to see each other again.

After laying alone in a sickly purple room the size of an optometrists' office, I was then treated to the explanation of the micro-dermabrasion machine. 'This is sand. It will come out this hole, and be sucked up by this hole'. That's it. She flipped on the human vacuum, and sandpapered and sucked my face. It felt much like being pet with sandpaper. It was soft. I expected more of a rough 'ow' kind of experience, as I'm paying good money for this pain. As V later said - "we know it's good only if it hurts."

After the sandpapering, she then slathered my face with creams smelling of roses, and gave me a foot massage. See - feet are important to the whole facial rejuvenation experience. Also, the creams were massaged into my neck and shoulders - thus explaining the clothes removing. It was very uncomfortable, and I clenched the table the whole time. Not that I feared Helga was going to violate me, but you never know. I AM young and cute.

V got the Glycolic mask instead, and I heard her screaming from my room. Of course, she looked better. Pain really does make a difference. But with her clothes on, she didn't get the massage or foot I at least had prettier feet for a few hours.

Helga told me that I did not need to come back again except for 'maintenance' which was monthly of course. If I continued to go, I'd have to live in a hovel and eat top ramen. The price we pay for beauty. We looked at some products...the best was a cream made of cow udder something...I believe it was cow secretions. I'm trying hard to block it out, since it was not only disturbing, but it also cost more than my car.

My face looked the same, but shinier, so I washed it as soon as I got home. With makeup on, I looked like I just went for a run - redder, shinier, but the same. Oh well.

Maybe when I start looking like Jessica Tandy, I'll head on out there again. And get the painful one.


Neil said...

I was wondering why it was so bright in LA in LA today -- it was your skin glowing...

Egan said...

What, no pirate tribute post yet? I'm disappointed.

tiff said...

Ah, the pain. Ask your aesthetician to use the 80 grit next time. That ought to give you the lingering discomfort for beauty thing which makes it all worthwhile.