Along with brilliant cuisine, a futuristic public transport system and impeccable attention to detail in just about everything, Japan is also known for its range of effective beauty treatments. On our radar is Japanese beauty salon Facia Ginza, which employs a unique facial slimming massage technique that promises to help customers correct bones, improve facial symmetry and contour the face. Does it really live up to those claims? We dropped by the cosy salon for a visit; here’s what we thought!
Leanda Rathmell, Regional Production & Client Services Manager
Premium Facial Care (Whitening Treatment)
Lying face-up, my treatment begins with a massage that largely focuses on my décolleté and back. I often find that my sinuses are quick to clog with a conventional face-down massage, so this is a technique I much prefer. My therapist’s hands weave in and out from underneath my back using her fingers to hit all the right pressure points and relax my muscles for the next phase. Shifting focus to my face, she firmly kneads my facial muscles and jawline to enable the slight bone adjustments that, I’m told, will ultimately restore symmetry and help circulation. The pressure is slightly uncomfortable but bearable and short-lived.
After cleansing and steaming, my pores are prepared for the next phase. Using an electroporation machine, my skin is cleared of dead skin and put in an optimum state to receive the Japan-sourced Wove Style whitening essence and subsequent face mask that is applied – at this point I am back to my “zen” state of slowly drifting off.
The before and after pictures show slight improvements, so I believe that full effects can be achieved with consistent treatments. Additionally, my tension headaches that I experience on an almost daily basis seemed to decrease significantly in the following week. Likewise, my skin appeared much more supple and bright.
Anthia Chng, Hair & Beauty Editor
Premium Facial Care (Whitening Treatment)
The session began with an in-depth analysis of my face shape and structure to determine the areas that needed the most “work”. The goal was to correct facial asymmetry, as the right side of my face was a little wider and droopier. Thereafter, I was treated to a heavenly 10-minute shoulder and neck massage – an important step for complete muscle relaxation. Carol then worked on loosening my skull and face muscles by pressing down on my facial muscles, then very quickly moving on to making bone adjustments on my jaw and cheekbones. It sounds strange, but it actually felt like my bones were adjusting according to the touch of her fingers!
As the saying goes: no pain, no gain. This was hands down the most painful massage I’ve ever tried! Ask your therapist to go easy if you’re not good with pain; I got Carol to reduce her pressure even though she was only using 30 percent of her full strength. Yet, the result truly speaks for itself. My puffy face did look slimmer and my jawline sharper as soon as the treatment had ended. After the pain came the pampering part of the facial: double cleansing, exfoliation using a fancy electroporation machine, followed by essence and mask application.
I experienced immediate results on my face: a slimmer, more symmetrical and brighter-looking canvas. The tension on my shoulders and neck had dissipated, and my head felt lighter, too.
Amy Brook-Partridge, Home & Property Editor
Premium Facial Care (Moisturising Treatment)
More than just a beauty treatment, this facial is purported to manipulate the shape, size or structure of your face using a combination of osteopathic and aesthetic techniques. Having been warned at least twice by my therapist Andrea that this would be a relatively painful procedure, I was prepped and ready.
As I lay on my back, Andrea started with a deep, strong neck and shoulder massage, moving up towards my face. She warned me as she was about to start the “manipulation”, and proceeded to massage and push my jawline, cheekbones and temples. Part of this process was fairly non-painful, part of it was pretty intense. This lasted for around half an hour, and she then proceeded to prep me for the moisturising portion of the treatment. This consists of electroporation using a device originating from a well-known anti-ageing clinic in Japan. This treatment uses electroporation technology to move substance deeper into your skin, with little pain, and it also cleanses deeply. Following this, I had a lovely relaxing face and neck massage, and managed to drift off.
My skin felt softer, lifted and more nourished for at least a week post-treatment.
A little background
Founded in September 2016 in Ginza, Tokyo, Facia Ginza’s main outlet is ranked first on TripAdvisor for Spa & Wellness in the region. After just six months, the salon had successfully opened its second outlet in Taipei, Taiwan. The Singapore branch, which has been ranked on TripAdvisor as the top 15th spa across the island, is the most recent opening. Tucked in a quiet room on the ninth floor of The Central Soho 1 (look out for the office building right next to Burger King), the salon features three spacious treatment rooms.
The premium facial-care treatment ($248, 90 minutes) consists of a small face-care massage and clinical-grade skincare treatment of your choice (Whitening, Moisturising or Pore Cleansing Care). Although visible results can be seen after the first facial, it’s recommended to have weekly treatments for the first six weeks for long-term benefits. Following that, you can come in once every two to three weeks. For a limited time only, try it at a first-timer price of $128! Quote “Expat Living” when you’re booking to enjoy a free Japanese handpack (bergamot, lavender or rose) during your treatment.
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