Red Carpet Beauty Royalty: Joanna Vargas
AS REPORTED BY OUR BEAUTY EXPERT, DANA WOOD
During awards season, my inbox is pelted with weekly updates about starry types celebrity facialist Joanna Vargas has coaxed into even more skin gorgeousness. Constance Wu, Debra Messing, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mandy Moore and the deeply cool Awkwafina are just a few of the lovelies Vargas has gotten her mitts on recently. And with the Oscars right around the corner, there will be oodles more, for sure.
Although Vargas mainly hangs her hat at her Fifth Avenue NYC salon, right now she’s firmly parked on the West coast, performing her magic from her light-filled Sunset Tower spa.
Happily, The Bridal Council was able to steal a few minutes of Vargas’s time to find out which treatments she’s got in heavy rotation at the moment, and just how much she loves her job. Spoiler alert: we should all be so lucky...
Because this isn’t a “one and done” time of year, Vargas works from a menu that includes two celeb-caliber facials (the exfoliating and hydrating Super Nova, and the jawline-tightening Triple Crown) and two body treatments (the collagen-boosting RevitaLight Bed and the de-puffing Lymphatic Drainage Full Body Massage).
While many clients get multiple treatments, Vargas is careful not to overdo it, and possibly risk irritation. “People come to me because my treatments are safe and effective, without leaving the skin red,” she says. “You look perfect afterward.”
Ideally, Vargas starts beautifying her star clients at least 30 days before a major event. “Usually, for red carpets we take a month to prepare the skin,” she notes. “Obviously nominations don’t come out six months ahead of the event, but if we have a regular client with a film premiering, then we do like to prep months ahead for the press they’ll be doing to promote it.”
Though most celebs opt for full-length frocks for the season’s biggest outings, that doesn’t mean they aren’t putting their bodies through the look-great wringer too. “Light therapy body treatments are known for reversing the signs of aging and damaged skin, so they’re a growing category for us,” Vargas notes. “And the Lymphatic massage drains the body of excess puffiness caused by stress, lack of sleep and travel. It helps the lymphatic system carry away waste and deliver fresh nutrients to the cells to make the skin glow.”
Despite the intensity – and the hours! all those hours! – of awards season, Vargas wouldn’t swap her gig for anything in the world. “I love doing things that will make people more confident when they need it most,” she says. “It’s an honor to be asked to make someone feel like the best version of herself. I’m very lucky to be part of it.”