Interview With Celebrity Facialist, Joanna Vargas

#GGTakes5 is a new series that features those men and women who are associated with the beauty industry. In this series, you will find a host of insider tips, product recommendations and incredible advice from the best of the best.

Our next interviewee is celebrity facialist, Joanna Vargas. Often spotted on the Instagram Stories of many of our favourite stars, Joanna is who everyone turns to before an important occasion. Her roster includes the likes of Mandy Moore, Elisabeth Moss, Dakota Johnson, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Brad Goreski, to name a few. Scroll ahead to see our interview with her.

Joanna Vargas | Source: Joanna Vargas

Team GG: What is your personal skincare ritual? Do you have any products that you use on a daily basis?


I always wash my face at night, so in the morning I simply rinse my face with tepid water. I don't like using extreme temperatures on my skin because this tends to dry it out.  I apply my Rejuvenating Serum to my face and neck and follow with the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer. I don't wear much makeup for work – I think it's nicer to see clean, fresh skin. I apply a bit of mascara and a Laura Mercier lip color.


I never go to bed without washing my face! I use my Vitamin C Face Wash, which is a foaming exfoliating cleanser. I take my makeup off with that as well because I hate fussing with tons of products.  I follow with my Daily Serum – the skin needs greens, and my formula is packed with vital greens. I apply it all over, even to the eye area. It makes the skin hydrated and lightens and brightens my face for the morning. If I have a big event the next day, I will sometimes go to sleep with my Exfoliating Mask on my face. It really brightens and exfoliates for a nice clean palette in the morning for makeup!

Vitamin C Face Wash | Source: Joanna Vargas

Team GG: Recently, there’s been a lot of debate on retinols. Some claim that it reverses their fine lines, whilst others complain of breakouts. How necessary is it to incorporate such a product into our skincare routines?

I think retinols are important, but the skin needs a lot of nourishment and to be calm in order to balance out the dryness and sensitivity that can occur.

Team GG: Considering your line of work, you and your clients must have to travel often. How do you prevent the dryness and zits that inevitably occur after a flight?

Travelers generally get dehydrated, starting on the airplane. I encourage my clients to take my Rejuvenating Serum on board. Using it mid-flight will rehydrate the skin with skin softening Olive Oil, Rosehips Oil and Neroli Oil for increasing circulation. The Jojoba Oil in it will ensure that your pores won't be clogged once you arrive at your destination.  I also have clients pack rosewater toner in a spray bottle.  Rosewater is incredibly hydrating, so if you spray it directly on your face, it gets moisture into the skin immediately.  If you’re traveling overseas, I recommend doing it twice mid-flight and your skin will be refreshed when you get off the airplane. 

Rejuvenating Serum | Source: Joanna Vargas

Team GG: We have to ask! What are the pre-red carpet skincare treatments you prescribe to your celebrity clientele? They all have such gorgeous, glowing skin!

First I do my radio frequency Forever Facial and LED Light Bed and then I’ll do the Triple Crown Facial the morning of or the day before the red carpet. It's de-puffing, toning and tightening. I also do my Full Body Microdermabrasion for glowing skin all over, followed by a raw coconut rub to infuse the skin with omega-3 fatty acids and calm it down. 

The Forever Facial is intensely stimulating in terms of collagen production and very tightening for the skin. I like to have a few days to do it prior because then you get the benefit of all that collagen production afterwards. 

The Triple Crown Facial is an awesome pre-red carpet because I don't use tons of products and it really contours the face by draining out the excess water and lifting the muscle. It is great even for someone with super sensitive skin and it's my go-to awards show prep treatment.

Vitamin C Face Wash | Source: Joanna Vargas

Team GG: What’s been the most exciting moment for you career-wise?

The most rewarding part of the job by far is when I develop a trusting relationship with a client. I love that people turn to me for advice and trust my opinions on decisions in their life. It's truly an honor. I have clients that have been coming to me for years and come to me for every major event they have had – weddings, children's birthdays, graduations, and red carpet moments! 

Ed. note: This interview has been edited for clarity.

P.S. Read our interviews with world-renowned makeup artists here!