As a regular traveller and sun-lover with an appetite for a Margarita or four (!!), I’ve become increasingly aware of how my indulgent habits affect my skin. I’m fairly lucky, genetically speaking, when it comes to my complexion. However, there are some unwanted early signs of ageing that I’m keen to put a stop to. And, as much as I love being bronzed, I don’t want to be one of those deep-golden, leather ladies looking like I have a pair of worn-out slouch boots hanging from my chest. For my latest blog I was eager to find out whether wearing a high SPF on your face was really a daily necessity and to be advised on what skin treatments – both non-invasive and invasive – could help slow down the ageing process.
I met with Kay Greveson, an award winning nurse, accredited medical aesthetic specialist and owner of Regents Park Aesthetic. In our interview, we discussed her top tips on maintaining healthy, glowing skin at her luxury flagship clinic in the heart of Mayfair. Kay is very warm and welcoming and has years of knowledge under her belt. I can’t emphasize how important it is to feel comfortable when you’re seeking any advice that could affect your health. If you’re thinking about going ahead with any treatments do your research and never be too shy to ask questions.
Dr Maryam Osmani and Kay Greveson from Regents Park Aesthetic
Do you have your own strict skin regimen? Are there any products you highly recommend?
I am 39 and therefore use a range of products to combat previous sun damage in my early 20’s and keep my skin hydrated. I cleanse daily using Aveda Outer Peace Foaming Cleanser, followed by GloTherapeutics Super Serum. This is great as it contains peptides and anti-oxidants. I moisturise daily using ZO Ossential Daily Power Defense, which I also use in the evenings. I’m not the best at exfoliating but I do try to do it once per week and use ESPA Refining Skin Polish. I don’t use a foundation as I prefer a lighter coverage so use a tinted moisturiser with SPF.
What is the best advice you can give me to prevent premature ageing?
The number one is to protect your skin by avoiding sunbeds as this can prematurely age the skin. You may not think twice about it when you are in your twenties or thirties but the damage will show later in life. Use a moisturiser with SPF and antioxidants to protect the skin.
OK, but most of us look better with a bronzed glow. Is there a healthy way to tan?
Fake tan is definitely better for the skin than sunbeds and there are now many different versions available to suit various skin types and give a tan without streaks or funny smells. Particularly good fake tan products include Vita Liberata. Most moisturisers and foundations contain some form of SPF, which can protect the skin from UVA so try and look out for these on the packaging.
Is there an effective way of reversing pigmentation?
Pigmentation is most commonly caused by sun damage but can also be caused by hormonal changes. Skincare products containing Hydroquinone and retinol are incredibly effective at treating pigmentation. Brands including ZO have a range of products, available on prescription from aesthetic clinics or dermatologists, that gradually improve pigmentation and even out skin tone by reducing the amount of melanin production. It is important to take care of your skin and avoid excess sun once the pigmentation has resolved, otherwise it can return.
Are there any new exciting treatments that you’re about to offer at the clinic?
We are excited to be launching PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) facials and hair restoration treatments. This involves taking a small amount of blood from your arm, separating the plasma and injecting it back into your face. It may not sound appealing but is an effective treatment to stimulate collagen and brighten the skin. It has also been shown to be effective at stimulating hair growth in the scalp.
We are also soon to be offering non-surgical Blepharoplasty (eye-lid/bag) treatment using new technology called FELC. This works the same as the well known PLEXR technology, which we have used since we opening our flagship Wimpole Street clinic, but has less downtime and improved patient comfort during the procedure. It works by generating plasma between the probe tip and the skin, aiming to sublimate (controlled burn) the superficial layer of skin, to cause a shrinking and tightening of the excess skin tissue. This machine is very versatile and can also do tattoo and mole removal.
What are your most popular treatments?
Our injectable treatments such as Botox and lip fillers are the most popular procedures but people are increasingly looking for less invasive ways of staying young. Patients love the HIFU (High Intensity Focussed Ultrasound) and Radiofrequency treatments we offer as they are proven technologies that tighten the skin on the face and body. HIFU is a one-off treatment whereas Radiofrequency is a 6 weekly course that can be done alone or in combination with our SkinTech facial. We have seen amazing results from both treatments.
Dermal fillers and Botox have become increasingly popular to the younger generation, what are your thoughts on this? Is there an age where you think it’s too early to start?
We are seeing younger patients coming to our clinic for consultations. I think this is mainly caused by increased awareness of aesthetic treatments via social media and in the press. We will turn people away if treatment is not necessary.
Are there any other, less invasive treatments, that you would recommend for anti-ageing results?
The early thirties is the time when the skin stops producing as much Hyaluronic Acid (The building block for skin hydration and plumping). Maintaining skin hydration and elasticity is important during this time to delay the signs of ageing. Regular facials can keep the skin hydrated and exfoliated. Treating your skin to light chemical peels or microdermabrasion can help to keep your skin fresh without the need for treatments involving needles. Muscle toning facials such as CACI can also help, as can a good skin care regimen involving products containing anti-oxidants such as vitamin A and E.
Regent Park Aesthetic’s flagship clinic
What advice would you give someone who’s trying Botox or Fillers for the first time?
Be realistic about your expectations and don’t try to compare yourself to celebrities. Any aesthetic treatments such as Botox and fillers should be done to enhance your natural features rather than change your face completely. A less-is-more approach is good.
What are the key signs clients should look out for when choosing a practitioner?
The main advice I can give is to do your research. Ensure the person doing the treatment is medically trained (doctor, nurse, dentist) and don’t be afraid to ask them how much experience they have in the treatment you want. Reputable practitioners wont mind you asking to see certificates or before/ after photos of their work. Never feel pressurised to have a treatment and listen to the advice given. Be wary of practitioners who seem to criticise your appearance and not give you a balanced opinion. Ensure the practitioner takes photographs before the treatment and that they take a medical history and consent.
How long do the results last?
Results from Botox show 2 weeks following treatment and last around 3-4 months. Dermal filler results are noticeable immediately and last from 6-12 months. Treatments such a cheek enhancement use a thicker type dermal filler and can last up to 18 months. The effects can be shortened in people with a high metabolism or who exercise a lot as this will break the product down faster.
Are there any long-term negative effects from using Botox/Fillers?
The effects of botox and fillers are temporary, therefore once it has been metabolised by the body, it no longer has any long-term effects. We do not recommend having Botox more frequently than every 3 months as it can weaken the muscle and cause it to drop (known as muscle atrophy). It is best to allow the botox to wear off before having repeat treatment.
Have you ever heard any horror stories from your clients/have you ever had to correct someone’s mistakes?
I recently corrected lip filler for a blogger who had too much injected into his top lip at another clinic. The filler made his top lip too excessively large and out of proportion to the rest of his face. I corrected it using Hyalase, a product that dissolves unwanted Hyaluronic Acid based dermal filler. Within 12 hours of treatment his lip had retuned to normal.
If skin is more mature (aka 60+), what is the most cost effective and least invasive way to knock off the years?
This all depends on the skin quality and extent of skin and sun damage. Mature skins that are in good shape can get away with a good skin care routine and products containing antioxidants whereas others with poor skin quality and deeper, more extensive lines and skin laxity may have to resort to more invasive treatments such as dermal fillers. Sometimes treatment with dermal fillers can be more cost effective and give better results than skin tightening treatments, It all depends on the persons expectations from treatment. For those wanting the less invasive route, you cant beat a good skin tightening and muscle toning treatment such as CACI, HIFU or Radiofrequency.
Regents Park Aesthetic offer weekly clinics in Harley Street, Regents Park & Marylebone and regular monthly clinics outside Central London. If you have questions about any of Kay’s treatments, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be testing out some of their facials soon, so keep an eye on my blog for more!