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We’re two days away from the Oscars, a.k.a. the Super Bowl of awards season. It’s important to keep in mind, though, that when we see celebrities on the red carpet on Sunday, weeks of prep will have led up to their camera-ready looks. The key to great makeup is great skin, after all—and stars know that it can’t be ignored.

“From the moment of nomination, to really prepare the skin properly, we have about six weeks for prep,” shares Joanna Czech, celebrity esthetician and founder of her eponymous skin care line. For the six-week process, Czech rattles off a prescription for red carpet-ready skin, with clients seeing her weekly leading up to the event: skin analysis; custom peels; extractions, if necessary; microneedling; and microcurrent. “In the final week or two, we are really only shaping the face and hydrating the skin,” says Czech, referencing her firm facial massages. In fact, when she walks into the room to give me a sample of what she offers celebs, she looks me dead in the eye and says, “Are you ready for your face to get beat up?”


Czech doesn’t recommend facials on the day of an award show or any important event—like a graduation, interview, or wedding. “The skin is kind of hot [and] very stimulated. Getting red on the red carpet is not ideal,” she says. If you do need some facial TLC on the day of your important occasion, Czech recommends a sheet mask in the morning and eye patches in the afternoon, before getting your makeup done. However, if you are a planner (and probably a Virgo), you’d have several facials like mine, customized to your skin.

We’re at Czech’s studio in New York City (she recently opened a Los Angeles location too). After cleansing my face and applying her own toner, Czech gets to work: For 15 minutes, she firmly massages my face, slapping my cheeks in an upward motion. It kind of hurts, but in a good way. She explains how she’s bringing oxygen to my skin. “Manipulating facial muscles brings all those nutrients to the skin [via serums]. Hemoglobin carries a lot of oxygen, so the skin gets brighter,” she says as she sculpts around my cheekbones. She performs lymphatic drainage techniques to slim and shape my face.

The first product she pulls out is the Chanel Sublimage L’Huile-En-Gel Démaquillage, a gel-to-oil cleanser. Czech trusts Chanel Beauty, remarking how the brand has been perfecting skin care for almost 100 years. She uses multiple Chanel products throughout the treatment, including a Chanel body cream, eye cream, and lip balm. With her trained hand of more than 35 years of experience, the treatment is glorious.

While you can acquire almost all of the products in the Ultimate Facial, a 90-minute experience with Czech for $1,250, it’s her tools of choice that interest me. For exfoliation, she uses diamond microdermabrasion to remove dead skin cells. She swears by the Lyma laser—using two, in fact, at night for the ultimate skin rejuvenation and spot-treating skin issues, like hyperpigmentation and fine lines. “Ten minutes on each side of the face, maybe 10 minutes on the neck—you can even treat your hands with it,” she says on how to use the device. “It’s travel-friendly; Netflix-friendly. So, there are not many excuses not to do it at home.” Afterward, she uses microcurrent gloves and stimulates my skin with Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) energy to “allow my treatment to last longer.”

She then wraps my custom facial with cryogenic air. “It’s like cryotherapy. It’s below zero degrees, depending on the temperature we choose. I feel like everything we were applying and introducing into your skin, it locks it in.”

Upon completion, I look at my face. It’s glowy and hydrated. It’s slimmer, to the point where I didn’t even realize it was bloated before. Bottom line: my skin looks so good. I blurt out, “I’m not going to wear makeup for the next two days!” Czech nods in agreement.

Her six-week regimen to get “Oscar-ready” doesn’t just stop at the facials, either. Czech discusses diet and lifestyle with her clients to help their skin reach optimal results. I ask about the newest technologies. She steers me to the tried and true: microcurrent devices, LED lights (i.e. red light therapy), ceramides, and peptides. “There are no trends in skin care. There is no latest,” she states. She encourages me to look at treatments that have been around for decades with proven efficacy. “The skin needs the basics,” Czech states—and then some, if you’re going to the Oscars.