Beauty Black Book: Dana Hotel and Spa + Skin Authority Facial

A few Friday’s ago, I indulged in a facial, courtesy of Skin Authority, at the Dana Hotel and Spa in Chicago. It was the best way to spend a Friday evening — so relaxing after a busy week at work. While some may prefer a night on the town, this was just my speed. The Dana is one of Skin Authority’s spa partners, so I had a customized facial and glycolic peel using Skin Authority products.

After I donned my spa uniform – cozy bathrobe + sandals – I kicked back for a few with a glass of berry and cucumber spa water. I love the rituals involved with relaxing! After prepping my skin and removing all traces of makeup with Skin Authority’s Exfoliating Cleanser, the esthetician did a glycolic peel. The strength of the glycolic acid was 35%, and it was on my skin for just under three minutes.  The peel is an optional add-on to the Dana’s facial treatments.

I had a few extractions done as well, which I never dare do myself (no matter how tempting), but love when professionals do it for me. From there, she used a post-peel balm and massaged it into my skin for about seven minutes. It nearly put me to sleep. Next, she used a clay mask with avocado to further extract gunk out of my pores. While the mask sat, she rubbed an elixir on my neck, shoulders and upper arms. Almost fell asleep during that, too. Total mental relaxation does wonders for the body.

After removing the mask with a hot towel, she layered a series of Skin Authority products on to wrap everything up. Of note about Skin Authority products – they are about the most effective (e.g. highest concentration/lowest penetration pH levels) that you can get without a prescription.

  • Reviving Eye Brightener – Antioxidant-rich formula with co-enzyme 10 and green tea. The esthetician dabbed this under my eyes first.
  • Super-C Serum – A highly concentrated topical serum – with 20% L-Ascorbic Acid – that helps ensure maximum antioxidant absorption for more radiant skin. She used this next. I really like this serum. I’ve been using for the past ten days in the morning, under moisturizer and sunscreen.  It’s like preventative medicine for the skin, helping reduce environmental damage and photo aging.
  • Vitamin A Cell Renewal – She layered this on as a next step. Another product I’m really impressed with. It’s a retinol product (Retinyl Palmitate 7%) and like retinoid products, it helps encourage cell turnover,  firm skin and even out skin tone. It’s actually very gentle (has almond oil, chamomile and aloe in the formula), and is not greasy at all. It sinks into skin right away. I’ve been testing this out at night recently, under moisturizer. It’s more oomph than I usually use in skin care, but I kinda like what I’m seeing in my skin.
  • Calming Cream – Great for post-peel, as it helps reduce redness and inflammation. It contains shea butter, grape and cranberry seed oils and aloe leaf juice. This is such a simple product, but is quite lovely.

Also, for whatever reason, I had a short-lived skin freakoutabout 72 hours after the facial. I actually went back to the Dana to see an esthetician and they said I had some type of contact dermatitis likely from a product I used after the peel. I have no idea what it was, but it went away in a few days. I have small pores and it may be that something I used clogged them while my skin was healing. I credit the ladies at the Dana, as well as Skin Authority’s Calming Cream, for helping me in what was a major crisis for me!  Thankfully it didn’t last long, and once it was gone, my skin looked so smooth and revived. Has this happened to anyone else who had a glycolic peel?

Disclosure: Skin Authority and the Dana Hotel provided the services to me free of charge. All opinions remain  my own!

4 thoughts on “Beauty Black Book: Dana Hotel and Spa + Skin Authority Facial”

    1. It was! I totally need to make it a habit — perhaps a few times a year, even. I do a lot of DIY-spa-ing at home, but I love when other people do it for me;)

  1. What a wonderful experience! Just thinking that a spa-day or treatment would be great after Christmas. Wouldn’t that be a great gift?

    1. A perfect gift in my book! Sometimes we don’t splurge on these things or take the time to do it, so getting it as a gift is special. I always try to stalk Groupon for good finds, too!

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