Bayer, Castro in unscripted Massage Envy campaign

Today, there are more masks, peels, serums and beauty influencers than ever before and it’s overwhelming to know where to start. A new campaign from Massage Envy wants people to know that no matter where you are in your skin care journey, a facial is a good place to start. Only an esthetician, a real person looking and touching your face, can know what you need for your face.

The Scottsdale, Arizona-based provider of professional skincare has launched a new unscripted campaign “Start with a Facial” by Fallon focusing on skincare. The new work features comedic celebrities Vanessa Bayer of SNL fame and a just-released spot featuring Arturo Castro, known for his work on Broad City and Narcos.

The four spots (2 :30’s and 2 :15’s) shot mostly unscripted, rely on the comedians’ trademark improvisational skills. The down-to-earth actors appear up close and personal getting a complete facial with the camera rolling as they deliver honest reactions to the work of a Massage Envy licensed esthetician.

Breaking from the convention of soothing music and cucumber eyes, the comedy reinforces the everyday normality of skincare as these unexpected actors, not known as beauty influencers, show how approachable skincare can be.

According to Massage Envy, the company wants the campaign to encourage us to think of facials as smart, routine skin maintenance. The campaign flips luxury on its face to normalize skincare as less of a treat and more of a recurring self-care routine like getting a haircut. 

The creative, helmed by SNL digital shorts and Caviar director Dave McCary , breaks down the perception that facials are for the privileged few, and ladders up to Massage Envy’s “Keep Your Body Working” brand idea.

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“We are so excited about our new facial campaign, ‘Start with a Facial.’ Massage Envy is the largest provider of skin care services in the U.S., offering facials and advanced skin care services,” said Kathy Collins, Chief Marketing Officer of Massage Envy. “This memorable campaign will undoubtedly help increase consumer interest and trial.”

“Skin care is highly personal but also extremely confusing when it comes to routine, products and what to expect,” said Patrick Figueroa, executive creative director at Fallon. “So we brought in people who have absolutely nothing to do with skincare – Vanessa Bayer and Arturo Castro — to make facials feel as approachable as they are at Massage Envy. The result is a highly unique perspective to the skin care journey and accessible world of professional facials, whether you’re an experienced pro or it’s your first time.”

“Start with a Facial” will appear on national and connected television, OLV and social. Additional campaign content will distribute on radio, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.

Massage Envy, known for its nationwide network of massage therapy locations, is increasing its marketing spend for facial ads to 50% in 2020, up from 20% last year.


  • Client: Massage Envy
  • Kathy Collins, CMO
  • Jeanna Corley, VP Digital Strategy & Analytics
  • Phillip McKee, Director of Marketing Strategy & Media

AGENCY: Fallon

  • Patrick Figueroa, Executive Creative Director
  • Joe Johnson, Creative Director
  • Kelsey O’Briant, Art Director
  • Christine Taffe, Copywriter
  • Pat Sidoti, Head of Production
  • Patrick Gantert, Producer
  • Erin Tait, Group Strategy Director
  • Marc Mason, Group Account Director
  • Kelly Holley, Account Director
  • Julia Frayne, Account Manager
  • Greg Swan, Director of Social
  • Mara Keller, Social Media Strategist
  • Sadie Hedge, Social Media Strategist


  • Director: Dave McCary
  • Executive producers: Michael Sagol, Jasper Thomlinson, Kim Dellara, Casey Wooden
  • Line producer: Maggie McLean

EDIT: Whitehouse

  • Editor: Brian Gannon
  • Edit assistants: Joe Cull and Nelson Mustain
  • Senior producer: Annie Maldonado
  • Producer: Jordan Stricklin


  • Colorist: Kris Smale
  • Executive Producer: Meghan Lang
  • Producer: Sasha Pace


  • Flame artist: Alex Kolasinski
  • Executive Producer: Elexis Stearn
  • Producer: Ciaran Birks

MIX: Eleven Sound

  • Mixer and sound designer: Ben Freer
  • Assistant mixer: Andrew Smith
  • Executive producer: Melissa Elston
  • Producer: Imani Franklin

SOURCE: Fallon