Beauticians always have glowing skin. It's par for the course. What we want to know is how can we get the same flawless, radiant look without having to fork out for an expensive facial every few weeks. We spoke to some of the country's top beauty therapists and this is what we learnt...
1. Go for the tone. This was by far the most popular tip: after you wash your face, before you moisturise, tone. ‘Often people don’t know what toner is, and they think it will strip the skin,’ says Stacey Mason, Beauty Therapist at Glassworks Gym and Spa, who tones every day. She notes that a good toner actually removes remaining impurities while restoring your skin’s pH balance.
2. Always take off make-up in the evenings
‘Leaving make-up on overnight leaves your skin clogged, tired, and dull,’ explains Sian Jones, Manager of Claridge’s Health Club and Spa. ‘I always ensure I do a thorough double cleanse every night using a warm cloth.’
Stacey does at-home facials on herself once a week and regularly exfoliates. ‘If you don’t exfoliate, you might just be putting moisturiser on dead skin!’
4. Start your day off right
Sharlene Goode, a beautician at Ashdown Park Hotel and Country Club, can’t stress this enough. ‘I am rigid about cleansing and toning morning and night,’ she explains. ‘I apply an eye gel and moisturiser with an SPF of at least 30. I then apply a hydrating spray to seal in the moisture.’
5. Know the difference between dry and dehydrated skin
Sian explains people assume skin is dry when it’s actually dehydrated. ‘Dehydrated skin produces more oil, which might encourage use of harsh oil-removing products. This strips the skin and leads to even more oil,’ says Sian. The solution? Use a hydrating moisturiser and drink plenty of water, which will ‘leave skin protected, flawless and glowing!’
6. Keep things simple
‘Everyone expects me to have a crazy routine, but if you use the right products with great ingredients you don’t need it to be complicated,’ explains Debbie Thomas, an advanced skin specialist. Debbie cleanses in the shower, followed by SkinCeuticals antioxidant serum, a light hydrating serum, and then a tinted SPF.
7. Try some muslin
‘I always exfoliate with muslin cloth,’ says Georgia Louise, a celebrity facialist who works with some big names. She recommends rubbing the cloth over your face and then spending two minutes massaging your skin upwards and outwards.
8. Or just give yourself a little massage
‘When applying moisturiser at night, massage the skin,’ says Sian. If you want to lift and tone, use firm upward movements. If you want to drain the skin of toxins, Sian suggests gentle outward sweeping movements. Stacey recommends a deep massage to help your moisturiser soak in.
9. Treat from inside out
Taking life to extremes can create tired, dull skin, notes Danielle Lagrange, Spa Director for La Reserve Paris, Ramatuelle and Geneva. ‘Our skin is delicate, and so it’s important to treat it with care. Beauty and wellness go hand-in-hand.’ She recommends watching your diet, getting a good night’s sleep, and exercising.
10. Repair skin while you sleep
‘A good therapist knows that night is when your skin rejuvenates,’ explains Stacey, who cleanses thoroughly before bed. Debbie double cleanses at night – ‘often using Clarisonic Mia 2, which is good at stimulating circulation as well as removing dead skin cells’. She then uses a renewing night product that contains AHA or BHA ‘so I wake up with fresh, glowing skin.’
11. Stick with products for at least three months
‘People tend to jump between products too quickly,’ says Debbie. She explains skin needs three months before displaying the best results from a new regime. When switching products, she recommends you only change one at a time so you can see what the actual impact is.
12. Use your freezer
‘Try freezing your toner,’ says Debbie. ‘Then for an instant pick-me-up, pop one out and rub it over your face and neck. Keep it moving, as you don’t want to get an ice burn.’ The cold increases circulation, she explains. For an extra circulation boost, alternate with a warm compress.
13. Get a facial
Perhaps not surprising, given that all these experts are beauticians, but facials ranked highly in terms of top tips. Why? ‘They are treatment for the skin,’ says Stacey, allowing for that expert touch. She recommends getting one every six weeks.
Danae Mercer is a freelance journalist @DanaeMercer.