If you want to look a bit younger and fresher, a relaxing facial may be all you need to help restore smooth skin and a healthy, radiant glow.

“The primary goal of an anti-aging facial is to reverse and ease the appearance of lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tone,” says Dora Peters of dpEsthetics Skin and Wellness Studio. “Unfortunately, just one product ingredient will not repair the skin’s aging. Usually, a good facial will include masks, serums and treatment protocols to repair damage, increase collagen production, strengthen the skin barrier, and smooth and freshen the skin.”

A good anti-aging facial includes a variety of specific ingredients and may involve one or more techniques designed to help smooth skin and even tone. For instance, Allie Israelson, lead aesthetician at Avani Day Spa, notes that microdermabrasion, a gentle glycol peel, a hydrating or firming mask, dermaplaning, or a combination of these, may be part of Avani’s Essential Facial. “This facial gives your skin an intense exfoliation, without irritation,” she says. “Without exfoliating, your skin care cannot penetrate to give you the correction, hydration and prevention it needs.”

Peters agrees that exfoliation is important, and explains that microdermabrasion is one technique used during facials to slough away the skin’s topmost layer, revealing brighter skin beneath, and encouraging production of collagen and elastin.

“LED cold light therapy also can be used to gently and painlessly stimulate the cells in the dermis where collagen is located and synthesized,” Peters says. “The localized stimulation triggers a process that stimulates skin cells into producing new collagen. Collagen gradually reduces and softens wrinkles, and increases skin health.”

To help maintain the benefits of an anti-aging facial, Israelson recommends monthly facials "to get the continuous exfoliation for product enhancement and penetration." Those products depend on each individual’s skin type, and Israelson notes that clients are provided with consultation regarding the specific regimen that would be most beneficial.

Products used in anti-aging facials and available for home use often contain antioxidants, peptides and hyaluronic acid. “Antioxidants used in facial masks and serums will neutralize free radicals that kill skin cells,” Peters says. “Antioxidants stimulate collagen, boost cell repair, fade browns spots and help uneven skin tone. Many vitamins, such as A, C and E, have antioxidant properties. Peptides, a protein that stimulates collagen and elastin production, can act as an anti-oxidant and is very effective for skin regeneration. And hyaluronic acid absorbs water and plumps up your skin.”

Israelson adds an important caveat: “Eating the right kind of foods, regular exercise, getting enough sleep, proper hydration and wearing sunscreen are important ways to keep our skin healthy. But having a regular facial is a vital step towards healthy skin for both men and women.”

More Fashion & Living articles.