Hands up, who suffers from adult acne?! I hear ya. I made it through 33 years of my life without ever having more than one stubborn little red screaming tyke on my face at any one time. But during lockdown, one tyke multiplied and asked its friends over to the party. And party they did, completely disregarding any kind of social distancing rules.
I spent hours trying to figure out what was causing my skin to have erupted, like a dormant volcano that had come to life after 100s of years. And I feel embarrassed to admit this, but I wonder whether anyone has been as naive as me, not to realise that the hormone I had been pumping my body with for so many years, was preventing these little mountains of hell from springing up whenever they bloody well want.
I stopped taking the pill in October and was blissfully unaware for around 6 months of what was in store. I had been taking the combined pill since I was 16 but switched to the single hormone pill when I was in Australia, as I was starting to get ocular migraines – basically where your vision distorts and makes it feel like you’re looking through a kaleidoscope – pretty scary stuff, especially when you’re driving! Then I started reading stories of women who had been on the contraceptive pill for years, who had developed anxiety and depression and attributed it to the pill.
So off the pill I popped. And during lockdown my skin got progressively worse. So it was a real treat to receive an email from Mark Suedey, an amazing hair stylist who had done my hair years ago at his cute little salon in Central London, offering a facial review. I jumped at the chance and was cycling down there a few days later.
Mark now occupies a different salon on the very cute Woburn Walk in Bloomsbury and it is just beautiful. Mark had had his eye on the shop for a while and it was apparently very run down when he acquired it. You’d never be able to tell, though – it is bright and spacious and has a beautiful garden at the rear, which clients can take a moment to sit and relax before / after treatments.
Downstairs is the treatment room and I was met by facialist / masseuse Anu, who explained the facial process and gave me a quick consultation on my skin type, what products I use etc…
I had to be honest with her and say that I’ve never really been good at skincare, as I’ve never needed to (I know, that’s not the way to think, but I genuinely have never been taught anything different!)
I asked a load of questions and she set to work, first by cleansing my face, followed by exfoliation with a product that smelled so good I could have eaten it. Next up was a rose water toner, followed by a clay mask. I’ve always loved the feeling of a clay mask – the cold and heavy mixture slathered over your face, which turns hard and doesn’t allow you to move your face. I wonder if this is what botox feels like?! Ha.
Next was a lovely long massage of the face, neck and arms. Anu’s style incorporates massage into her facial treatments, as it promotes circulation. It felt great and I was so relaxed. She finished the treatment with a splash of serum and some hydration moisturiser. I wasn’t ready to leave after the hour, but I walked out of the salon with a glow to my face and feeling the most relaxed I have felt all year.
The rejuvenation facial with Anu at Suedey Salon costs £80