I Looked Wild During My “Hannibal Lecter” Facial, but the Results Were Worth It

Everett Collection/Photo Illustration: Aly Lim

How far are you willing to go in the name of good skin? For me, the answer is pretty f*cking far. In all honesty, some might say too far. The fact is, I love testing weird treatments and beauty tools that some might consider scary, so long as it delivers results. That’s why when I first got wind of the “Hannibal Lecter” facial on social media, offered by holistic aesthetician Marianne Kehoe, I immediately wanted to try it out.

Although the service itself looked like something out of a horror movie, it promised results that were exactly the opposite. (Bonus that no humans are ever harmed in the making of this facial.) Luckily for me, Kehoe is located in Los Angeles, where I currently reside. On her website, the treatment is described as “a painless mini facelift without the cost, pain, or downtime.” And let’s be real – who doesn’t want all of those things?

Keep reading for my full experience of the Hannibal Lecter facial.

Experts Featured in This Article

Marianne Kehoe is a holistic aesthetician and owner of Marianne Kehoe Skin Studio in Studio City, Los Angeles.

What is a Hannibal Lecter Facial?

To be clear, the Hannibal Lecter facial has nothing to do with the cannibalizing fictional character or film. It’s essentially a galvanic facial, which is a “non-invasive, professional skin-care treatment that uses low-voltage electrical currents to improve the appearance of skin,” Kehoe tells PS. (The specific mask used during the service is where it gets its name.)

Galvanic facials aren’t limited to Keno’s practice, either – you can book one at many spas and skin clinics around the country – but her service includes a 20 minute extraction process over clean skin, use of the galvanic current, and facial massage. “There are different galvanic methods,” Kehoe says. “I use the one where surgical cotton is placed over the entire face and neck area after it has been soaked in a vitamin and mineral solution. This current can deliver water soluble solutions deep into the tissues.”

Kehoe promised that post-treatment, I would notice an immediate improvement in skin firmness and elasticity, which would give my face a lifted and toned appearance. She also said my pore size would be visibility reduced, and that my skin would have a smoother texture. Plus, it would feel more hydrated and look brighter overall.

It should be noted that if you have a defibrillator or pacemaker, this treatment isn’t suitable for you. Kehoe also mentioned that if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding you should consult with your doctor before trying a galvanic facial.

My Experience Getting a Hannibal Lecter Facial

To start, Kehoe cleansed my skin, and then put damp cloths over the entirety of my face. From there, she put a heated dome over my face that had a tiny hole in the center; she used this in place of a steamer to help soften the pores to allow for easier extractions.

Next, Kehoe started the extraction process using a “rolling method,” which was something I had never experienced before. “I’m going to do every pore,” she says. “You’ll have oils and recent dirt deposits if you haven’t had a facial in a while, and that’s why I like this method. It takes it all out.”

Once that part was completed, Kehoe cleansed my skin with a damp wash cloth and applied a hydrating mask for a few minutes, which she later rubbed in during a facial massage (in addition to a brightening serum). Then it was time to start the wrapping – aka my “mummification.” She applied cotton strips soaked in mineral-infused water all over my face. Next came time to apply the Hannibal Lecter mask.

The Hannibal Lecter mask consists of mini electrodes that deliver a low-level electric current to the skin, and it looks nearly identical to what the character wears in the film.

After Kehoe situated the mask on my face, she applied osmosis water to the cotton wraps to make sure I was throughly damp. She also warned me that I would either feel a tingling sensation or taste something metallic in my mouth from the electrical current. I did notice the taste pretty soon after she turned the device on, but it quickly dissipated.

I felt a small amount of pulsating during the time when the mask was on me – which was around 20 minutes – but to my surprise, it wasn’t uncomfortable whatsoever.

When my time was up, she removed the mask and the cotton strips, then applied another facial mask, which she said I should leave on for at least 20 minutes, but I kept it on for the rest of the day. Post-treatment, Kehoe noted I should avoid anything that would cause excessive sweating or I could potentially push out the vitamins and minerals she pumped into my skin, which was a rule I was fine abiding by because I love any excuse to skip a work out.

After the treatment, my skin looked noticeably brighter, and while I couldn’t tell an immediate difference in my pore size, I did notice that the bumps on the left side of my face seemed to have diminished greatly.

At $175, this treatment is on the pricier side, but it’s one I’m considering adding into my routine monthly. It’s one of the more gentle facials I’ve had (despite how scary it looks in photos), and I think at this point in time, a gentle facial is exactly what I need.

Hannibal Lecter Facial Results

Renee Rodriguez is a staff writer and social producer for PS. She writes across all verticals, but her main areas of expertise focus on fashion and beauty content with an emphasis on reviews and editor experiments. She also produces social content for the PS TikTok and Instagram accounts.

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