Solo Lisa Tries: Tata Harper Total Complexion Reset Treatment

Tata Harper products displayed on a marble board, in front of an orchid, on a white table

I've long been a fan of Tata Harper's effective, all-natural products and Kathryn Sawers's work at Collective Skincare, so when I was invited to try out Collective's new Tata Harper Total Complexion Reset Treatment a couple weeks ago it felt like kismet. Launching in June, this facial is a 100% natural multi-acid peel that promises no pain, no redness, and no downtime—just an insane glow and visible improvements in skin's overall brightness, tone, and texture. So did this treatment deliver on all of its dramatic claims? What did it feel like? And how did my skin react afterward? All the details after the jump!

Kathryn Sawers of Collective Skincare in Vancouver, BC, Canada
Kathryn Sawers of Collective Skincare; this photo was from my August 2013 review when Collective first opened.

The details

The key differences between the Total Complexion Reset Treatment and other Tata Harper facials are the Refining Solution and the Renewing Solution. Each one is a veritable cocktail of naturally sourced acids to be used during exfoliation. The Refining Solution contains Alpha Hydroxy Acid, which stimulates cell turnover and exfoliation and helps produce more moisturized, younger-looking skin, and Poly Hydroxy Acid, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. The Renewing Solution's Beta Hydroxy Acid penetrates oils and pores to clear out excess debris and is therefore supposed to be great for acne-prone skin.

This may be an all-natural multi-acid peel, but that doesn't make it any less effective than a traditional chemical peel. In fact, Kathryn recommends skipping manual and chemical exfoliation for at least 1-2 days leading up to the Total Complexion Reset Treatment, and for at least 4 days afterward.

Kathryn Sawers of Collective Skincare in Vancouver, BC, Canada, doing a facial on a client
This pic of Kathryn at work is from the pre-wedding skincare Q&A I did with her in May 2016.

The treatment

Like all Tata Harper facials, the Total Complexion Reset Treatment starts with a hit of the Aromatic Stress Treatment and a couple of deep breaths, followed by a thorough multi-step cleanse. So far none of this felt out of the ordinary, but things got really interesting when Kathryn pulled out the acid solutions. The Refining Solution went on first for 1-2 minutes, followed by the Renewing Solution for 1-2 minutes, and the process repeated for another cycle after that. During this entire time, Kathryn fanned my face so that a cooling breeze alleviated some of the acid peel's discomfort.

Kathryn warned me that I would feel some burning and stinging as the acids did their thing, but at no point did my discomfort rate higher than a 1 on a 10-point scale for pain. However, she also pointed out that the better shape your skin is in, the less the acid will sting, and as a group we beauty bloggers and editors tend to take better care of our skin than the general population. For someone whose skin is in worse condition the stinging might rate more like a 3-4.

Although the acids didn't sting as much as I thought they would, my discomfort did intensify during the extractions. My skin felt more sensitive and raw than it usually did—whether because of the acids or because I had some low-level inflammation going on from eating fried foods and red meat earlier in the week, I couldn't tell. As always, Kathryn's expertise and skill ensured the extractions never pushed my skin too far, and although there was some lingering redness after she was done it faded quickly and didn't get inflamed.

The treatment wrapped up with a soothing, cooling facial massage done with chilled rose quartz crystals (this felt so good!) and the layering-on of about a million brightening, moisturizing, and nourishing oils, serums, and essences. I tried to take a photo of all the products used during the treatment in sequential order, but as you can see from the photo below there was no way to fit them all in a single frame.

Some of the products used in a Tata Harper facial

The results

Full and somewhat humblebrag-y disclaimer here: I have relatively good skin that often gets compliments from friends, acquaintances, and makeup artists. And since this is one of those treatments where the worse your skin is to start with, the more dramatic the improvement, the before and after differences in these unedited no-makeup selfies seem minor at best.

This selfie (the "before" shot) was taken earlier in the day right after I'd voted in the provincial election. As you can see, my skin's tone and texture are okay, but there is some ruddiness on the forehead between the brows, on the cheeks, and on the nose and chin. There's a bit of pore congestion on the forehead as well.

Selfie taken before a Tata Harper facial

This selfie was taken immediately after the Total Complexion Reset Treatment. The ruddiness had intensified slightly as a reaction to the acids and because of my skin's sensitivity during the extractions. But check out that glow! My skin looks so much brighter here than in the first photo.

Selfie taken immediately after a Tata Harper facial

This selfie was taken the morning after the facial. (See that messy hair? I literally woke up like this.) As you can see, my skin appears calmer, brighter, and more even-toned with less redness. The little bumps on my forehead indicating congested pores were gone. My complexion looked and felt great and it continued to do so over the next 4 days or so even without scrubs or exfoliaants.

Selfie taken the day after a Tata Harper facial

Final verdict

If you're looking for a facial that packs a little more oomph, or you're skeptical that an all-natural treatment can deliver the sort of results you'd expect from a dermatologist's chemical peel, prepare to be pleasantly surprised by the Tata Harper Total Complexion Reset Treatment.

Special thanks to Tata Harper and Collective Skincare for inviting me to experience the treatment for review consideration. Starting in June, Collective Skincare will be offering 2 Tata Harper Total Complexion Reset Treatments: Complete Radiance Revive Treatment for 60 minutes ($195) & Radiance Uplift Treatment for 30 minutes ($70). For the most dramatic results, a series of 6 Radiance Uplift treatments is recommended. To book appointments, please visit

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