Hollywood’s Best Kept Secret Revealed
Last weekend I spent a busy, yet comfortably recumbent afternoon uncovering “Hollywood’s best kept secret,” which involved a visit to the newly opened Fairfax location of Thibiant Beverly Hills, the renowned skin care institute.
In 1972 Paris-trained aesthetician Aida Thibiant introduced the European concept of a skin care clinic with the establishment of her spa in Beverly Hills, Calif. Madame Thibiant’s customized approach to skin care — she tailored her treatments and developed products for her client’s individual skin care requirements — soon won her a loyal following in Hollywood, earning her the sobriquet “Face Saver to the Stars.”
Hoping that the aestheticians at Thibiant Beverly Hills could save my face, I booked an appointment to experience a treatment. The Fairfax spa has been open for five weeks and the final finishing touches are still being made to the elegant space designed by interior designer Paul Schatz.
I was greeted by aesthetician Tiffany Markarian, who gave me a quick tour. There are four treatment rooms and a beauty bar area, where clients can get their makeup and hair done — either for an event or simply a post-facial touch-up.
After my tour I was conducted to one of the elegant treatment rooms, where Markarian analyzed my skin and recommended the Beverly Hills Signature Hydration Treatment for my dehydrated complexion.
This facial is described as an “exceptionally hydrating treatment that uses galvanic technology to drive skin-specific serums deep into the skin, resulting in extreme moisture and balance.” In a galvanic facial, the aesthetician slowly moves a galvanic wand across your face to gently massage your skin. It operates on the basic laws of electricity: the positive and negative forces pull together like a magnet to push the serums deeper into the dermis. The galvanic ion increases the penetration of treatment products, while the negative force pushes the impurities trapped in the pores to the surface. The positive ion acts to plump the skin, imparting a fresh look and reducing wrinkles. Aside from a slight tingle and creating a faint metallic taste in my mouth, the galvanic treatment was quite pleasant.
Markarian began the facial with a gentle cleansing. She carefully explained each step and gave skin-saving advice throughout the treatment. I must confess that the treatment room was so comfortable and the facial itself so relaxing that I had to battle somnolence throughout. However, here are the steps I do remember:
- Cleansing with a mild cleansing lotion and steam to open pores.
- In-depth skin analysis — my issues are dehydration and hyperpigmentation caused by sun damage.
- Exfoliating mask — a fruit acid blend with brightening properties.
- Galvanic treatment (deep hydration) — application of moisturizing serum containing skin hydrating ingredients, followed by a thorough facial massage with the galvanic wand.
- Gentle extractions of any residual pore contents.
- Facial massage with high frequency wand — ultra violet light kills bacteria, stimulates the lymphatic system and oxygenates skin. It also has strong anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. This was followed with a soothing cream with lavender essence.
- Manual facial massage, with hydrating treatment mask and a final application of serum.
At the end of the facial, my skin was incredibly dewy, smooth and impressively glowing. Even those of us with generally good complexions could use a boost in skin radiance, which Markarian has made a specialty in her facials. There was also a bit of pinkness, which was the result of the exfoliation; the extractions were so gentle that there was almost none of the redness I usually experience after the procedure. Markarian impressed me with her knowledge, and I found this facial to be particularly edifying as she shared skin care tips and explained the benefits of the various ingredients in the Thibiant products. Note to self: try the Thibiant skin care line ASAP!
Thibiant Beverly Hills gets high marks for its knowledgeable and friendly staff, attractive interior and posh treatment rooms. The prices are reasonable — comparable to other higher-end spas. I like their individualized approach to skin care — they design skin care treatment plans to address your specific skin care concerns, e.g., hyperpigmentation, acne, aging, etc. There’s also an extensive menu of upgrades, including microdermabrasion, eye lifting treatment, etc., that can be added to your basic facial. Other spa services include makeup application and lessons, and waxing.
Thibiant Beverly Hills is located at 3903 Fair Ridge Drive, Fairfax, Va.