Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Calidora review, for those of you who are interested in such things....

My experience: not terrible, but not perfect, either. Here's why...

Before you get services, you have to do an "complexion analysis" session where they take close-up photos of your skin, show them to you, and then basically sales-pitch you on buying packages of services. I am a very educated skin-care-services consumer, so I was quite prepared to be clear about what I wanted from them and what I didn't. And it wasn't a super-hard sell or anything, they didn't push me when I said, "No, I'll just try the one regular facial today."

I was at the University Village location, and it's a very pretty space. The staff were all very friendly and pleasant.

The facial itself was fine, mainly a pretty standard spa facial. My only problem was that I told the girl giving it to me, "Don't do anything that's going to made me red." (One's skin is often a bit flushed and red for a few hours after a regular facial, that's normal. But I didn't want to do anything that would make me more red than that.)

But then she suggested a treatment with lactic acid. Now, I have not ever had any kind of acid peels. But I know they usually make you red.

So I said, "Is it going to make me red afterwards?"

"No, it's very mild," she replied.

"All right, I'll try it."

Well, guess what? Yeah. I was red. Not like people-staring-at-me-in-the-street sort of thing. But I looked like I had a mild sunburn for about 2 days. Makeup took care of some of it, and it didn't ruin my world or anything, but still - I asked, she said no. I understand that people respond differently, but I think she should have given me a better answer. She either didn't know it could happen, which isn't great, or she just wanted to sell the treatment, which also isn't great.

My skin looks fine now - in fact, it looks nice. So it wasn't a bad treatment. Just bad communication.

I love and adore the people at my dermatologist's office, but that's a M-F, 9-5 situation, and scheduling stuff is often challenging. I tried Calidora mainly because they're open evenings and weekends. I'm not saying I'd never go back, but I don't think I'd trust them to do anything new and different. And based on this imperfect communication about what could happen, I would definitely not advise getting anything serious, like injectables, there. Go there strictly for simple maintenance.

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