Beauty add-ons: are facials, massages and aesthetic surgery necessary?

Beauty add-ons: are facials, massages and aesthetic surgery necessary?

Change is inevitable, as they say.


People view beauty differently these days. What used to be deemed unacceptable or ‘taboo’ back in the day has become increasingly common. Take Botox, for example. So many of the younger generation internet personalities (especially those under 30, or 25 even) have had botox, nose fillers, and lip fillers, often sponsored by a doctor in exchange for online publicity. The braver ones go for aesthetic surgery, fully-sponsored of course.


Facials, massages and other non-invasive wellness treatments have become more accessible. It’s no longer as intimidating to step into a beauty salon and ask about their services. But even so, this doesn’t mean that these services have become cheaper; for the most part, people are just more willing to part with their money if (and only if) they find that the value that they’re getting surpasses the price they’re paying for.


But it all boils down to this: do you really need a facial/massage/aesthetic surgery/whatnot?





The truth about facials is that it all depends on the skills of the beautician. You could have the best products in the world, but to have them applied on your skin haphazardly – this does you no good. A good beautician doesn’t try to sell you something you don’t need just so that she can fulfill her monthly sales quota. It’s different from buying products from a counter. At a beauty salon, when your eyes are closed and you’re lying on the facial bed, your skin’s fate lies in the hands of the beautician. Everything she does will influence your decision whether to come back, or whether to make this the first and last time.


“Maintain and improve with products that work for you + beauticians who know what your skin needs”


This is the most important thing that you should look for in a facial. Every trip to the beauty salon should have you returning home with extra knowledge on caring for your skin. I used to love trying new facials as long as they were cheap, but soon after, found that my skin wasn’t up for the challenge. So, I decided to stick to one brand only. That was, I dare say, one of the best decisions I’ve made. I’ve known my facialists long enough for them to get to know my skin’s whims, and I trust them to do what is best for my skin. My job, in between facials, is to maintain the effects until my next visit.





First, ask yourself – are you in it for total relaxation/bliss, or do you need your massage to work a certain way? Spas offer a day of escapism for the tired soul, but often come at a price. Be prepared to pay up to RM500 for 3 hours, depending on what type of treatment you choose.


There are also other no-fuss options like Thai or Chinese massage places, often found abundantly in places like Kuchai Lama, Kota Damansara and SS2. Just show up (no bookings needed, even), get settled down, and be out the door in 1.5 hours. No background music, no unnecessary service, no small talk. Despite the flak that these places get, many of them actually don’t partake in ‘happy ending’ services.


“Relax your mind, loosen your muscles, and get extra detox or skin-toning benefits at the same time”


Personally, I feel that massages are a good way to loosen up muscles that have been tightly wound, especially if you lead a relatively sedentary lifestyle. Depending on the type of massage like slimming or lymphatic, you also get added benefits on top of promoting blood circulation. Often, the masseuse will ask you to drink lots of water post-massage; this helps to flush the toxins out easier. Therefore, it all really boils down to what you’re looking for – RM50 for a 1-hour no-frills massage, or RM300 for a 3-hour session of complete indulgence.



Aesthetic surgery

I’ll readily admit, 5 years ago I seriously considered going for double eyelid surgery. I even started saving up and doing a bit of research to find the best clinic to have it done. But I procrastinated (and procrastinated) and eventually felt that I didn’t want/need it that much anymore. I’ve noticed, though, that since the rise of social media, aesthetic surgery isn’t as taboo a subject as it used to be. Young women are incredibly open about going under the knife (often sponsored due to the nature of their profession as KOLs). Botox is an everyday thing, as are nose fillers, chin implants, jaw-slimming surgery – you name it, it can be done, and someone has had it done.


But the thing about aesthetic surgery is that you need to have a really good doctor who will still allow you to look like yourself, only better. It’s not about trying to change one’s appearance, but to make subtle tweaks so that it looks more pleasing to the eye. It’s a huge commitment as well – most women go for full-face adjustments because when you fix one facial feature, it often throws the other features off-balance in terms of proportion. Which also means, you’d better not lose or gain any weight. Any changes to your facial shape, and the surgically-enhanced area of the face risks looking disproportionate.


“Find a doctor who won’t try to alter your face, but try to tweak it for an overall more pleasing look instead”


I’m not against the idea of aesthetic surgery (I’m fully aware that when I’m in my 40s, I might want to have Botox or something similar), but I’m all for making sure it looks natural and is sustainable. Side effects are still something we worry about when it comes to aesthetic surgery, and hopefully in the next 10 years, there will be more scientifically-proven statistics to put our concerns at ease.



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