Facials are my thing. Or rather, facials are pretty much the core of my job. From LED light therapy, to dermal peels, to various acids, lotions and potions, a good part of my job is spent figuring out my AHAs from the BHAs and PRPs from PDOs in the quest to help various skin issues and get old skin looking young again.
So when Marian Bourne, founder of Celgenics, got in touch with her idea of a relaxing, rejuvenating facial using vegan products, no harsh chemicals, and a hands-on approach, I was intrigued, if slightly skeptical.
My main issued was simple: how can vegan, organic skincare range compare to some of the world’s most popular doctor-led medical tried and tested skin products?
After doing a bit of research on Marian’s facials and skincare line and reading how others had experienced a dramatic change in their skin and wellness after one session, I knew I had to see what the fuss was about.
I booked to see Marian at her base in Como Shambhala nestled in the Metropolitan Hotel on Old Park Lane.
After navigating the tube at Hyde Park Corner and mistakenly gatecrashing a press event being held in Nobu, I wandered up to the second floor and found the spa.
I was greeted by a lovely receptionist who handed me a cup of spicy warm ginger tea, before introducing me to the perfectly poised and softly spoken Marian. After the welcome, it was over to the changing rooms to put on a fluffy robe and slippers, before being led to a cosy treatment room.
Once I’d filled out a consultation form, documenting my botox and filler treatments which need some special treatment, Marian asked questions about my life, diet, and what I wanted from the facial. One word: RELAXATION.
Up onto the couch I went, where Marian started by massaging my feet – it was so comforting. Even writing about it a week later fills me with a sense of warmth and calm. She could tell I was feeling tense, as if I’d been holding in negative tension, and how true that was.
After assessing my skin and body’s needs, she started work on cleansing the day’s make-up and grime off my skin. A double cleanse with her Deep Cleansing Lotion, which is made of pure Swedish spring water and infused with oils and Vitamin E, took off all the impurities and the facial began.
Using massage techniques accrued over her twenty year career in holistic treatments, Marian massaged my face over the full 90 minutes, helping to drain lymph nodes and reduce puffiness. She also used two handheld LED machines at various points throughout the treatment.
LED light is cold, painless, and stimulates the skin depending on the type of light used, and rather than being sat under an essentially oversized lamp for 20 minutes, the light was directed only to the areas needing treatment. I’ve seen first-hand how LED light therapy can be used for skin rejuvenation so it was nice to get treated for a change.
Halfway through, Marian stopped and asked me to see the difference, and I couldn’t believe it! The left side of my face was dull, sagging and tired-looking. The right side, the side she’d started on, was a marked difference. My brows were lifted, my eyes looked brighter, wrinkles were reduced and the nasolabial crease (the line from your nose to the corner of your lips) was less noticeable.
All in 45 minutes!
Marian then continued with the treatment, ending with a relaxing scalp therapy. From head to toe, I felt like jelly, deeply relaxed, with a gorgeously plump and youthful face.
Marian then spent time explaining her work, how her experience in the industry has left her less than impressed at skincare products on the market. Many water-based solutions end up with vitamins and minerals stripped – think the distilled water you’d use in you car’s radiator. It’s water, sure, but the body needs those minerals to function.
Instead, she travelled all over the world to find a supplier using mineral-rich waters, and ended up in Sweden. All of her products are flower and herb infused, drawing on the healing and restorative features of each. She’s also heading into colleges around London to teach budding beauty types how to best hold a client’s head, without resorting to a hairdresser’s wash and massage technique.
It’s fascinating to hear her passion and love for the industry, Marian is a genuinely lovely lady with real heart and feeling for her clients.
A course of facial treatments are recommended, but at £120 per session a one-off session is more than enough to see great results before a special event or office party. To book, visit the Celgenics website and get in touch.