Spotlight: Men's Grooming

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If your significant other is helping himself to your moisturiser with annoying regularity, its time to get him educated. Send a link of this piece so he can read it - its for his own good.

Men are getting into skincare in a big way, and thats why there is a sudden fluctuation of tremendously fresh, glowing men bouncing around the City. This could be for various reasons, maybe its the amount of advertising being bombarded on them recently, maybe it's the rise of the 'selfie' or maybe they're just born with it. Who knows?

What 's true is that while some men are confident enough to buy their own products, others are more than happy just to use their partners. You may be wondering, why not? Well, women's products are designed for women - and spoiler alert guys, your skin is not the same as a girl. 

Dr Harpal explains: 

First of all, men have more testosterone so this contributes towards oilier skin which has some positives. The plus sides of oily skin is the ageing skin manifests longer than it does in women, the off side is that they'll be more prone to acne and during adolus and hormonal surge we'll see acne resulting in pitted scaring. We see quiet a lot of men with pitted scarring at our clinic than women. Also note, their skin is thicker, they have hair growth on the skin which causes excessive irritation and damage. They can get folliculitis from poor shaving habits similar to when women shave the bikini line. 

Although something is better than nothing, your complexion needs its own formula. But, we understand that you'd rather be watching the FA Cup Final, so we've got you covered. 

Get a bi-monthly facial

The 'steam facial' usually seen at the barbers only has 3 steps, all too often this is comprised of steam, extract, moisturise. Whereas in a 'true' facial, the whole process has 7 steps: cleanse, steam, extract, mask, massage, tone, moisturise. Every step is essential and has its purpose to ensure you have instant yet long lasting results. We like to keep things as simple as possible and for this reason we have 3 staple facials:

1. Detox Lymphatic Facial.
Ideal for: everyone, especially those who shave a lot, spotty, large pores, dull skin. 
(30 min or 60 min) a hard working treatment to unclog every single pore, the therapist will even show you how much gunk she extracts from your face!
2. Oxygen Facial
Ideal for: just before a big event, this is the full works and suitable for all skin types. 
(45min) with luxury in mind this facial hydrates, plumps and leaves you glowing for up to a week. Best just before an important event.
3. Anti-Ageing Facial
Ideal for: early 30's-mature skin. Targets all signs of ageing. 
(60min) this one turns back the hands of time and restores your factory settings. Powerful ingredients to banish fine lines and sagging. Ideal for 

Our facials are as bespoke as a suit from Saville Row, we understand that your skin can change from time-to-time and so, we have created mini-enhancements to add to your facial for maximum results. Check our facial page for more info on enhancements.

Keep these staple products in your bathroom

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NeoStrata Exfoliating Wash. Good for: ingrowing facial hairs, dull, oily, acne

This lightly exfoliating wash helps enhance exfoliation and prepares the skin for treatment. 

The key ingredient is Polyhydroxy acid to enhance exfoliation and remove debris from pores. This uber simple wash doesn't dry the face and is suitable for all skin types.

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Healgel Intensive (the green one)
Good for: post shaving, reduces ingrowing hairs, wound healing

Keep this next to your shaving kit. Healgel products have been designed by British plastic surgeons for wound healing, so it's perfect post shave. Soothes, repairs and protects the skin and can help with a wide range of skin care concerns including scars and eczema so feel free to use it on the body too.

Healgel Face (the pink one)
Good for: lazy days, slap it on all over the face and you're good to go
Packed with naturally derived minerals and omega oils to help "rescue" skin from the daily rough and tumble. Don't mistake this with Healgel Intensive, whereas the green one targets specific problem areas, the pink one is a lightweight formula for all-over-use. 

Healgel Eye (the blue one)
Good for: the morning after the night before, bags, dark circle

Whether you're working too hard or partying too hard, the results can often show around your eyes. This gel-like formula cools, lifts, brightens and hydrates the skin around the eyes for that instant "awake look".

City Skin Defence

Suddenly, everybody is talking about nitrogen dioxide and free radicals in the air and the direct effect it has on our skin. I, for one work in the City of London where the air is thick with harmful pollutants and I do worry about the how it can have a significant impact on my skin, not just on the surface.
The tipping point was in January 2017, when pollution readings taken from Brixton, Oxford Circus, Kings Road, Chelsea and Kensington High Street showed that nitrogen dioxide levels had breached the EU annual limit for an entire year - in just five days. Since then, MP's called the crisis a "public health emergency" whilst the Royal College of Physicians and Royal College of Paediatrics have reported around 40,000 deaths each year are due to the exposure of pollution.

Something that is becoming harder to miss is the effect it is having on our skin, although pollution particles cannot be seen or smelt, women living in urban and built-up areas are seeing more visible signs of ageing, higher rates of dark spots, pigmentation, imbalance in pH levels and adult acne. According to the Journal of Dermatology, environmental pollutants increase age spots by 25% around the cheek area as a direct result of nitrogen dioxide concentrations. So with all this bad news in mind, we now know that air pollutants can deplete antioxidant defences and perhaps even degrade proteins in the skin. 

While politicians debate and universities research about how to clean up the air, there are some everyday simple things we can do to protect ourselves, on the surface and from within. Here's our breakdown of treatments and products available to help defend your skin against the baddies in the air. 

Antioxidant Defence Serum by NeoStrata

  • Concentrated SynerG Formula containing 8 powerful multi action antioxidants is designed to combat oxidative damage and protect the skin from premature ageing
  • Patented Bionic and Polyhydroxy Acids trap oxidation promoting metals and help prevent sun-induced cellular damage
  • Citric Acid, Lilac, Green Tea, and Chardonnay Grape Seed Extracts work together to neutralise free radicals and help preserve healthy DNA, lipids, and cellular membranes.

Antioxidant Booster Serum by Intraceuticals

  • Revitalises and balances dull, stressed skin with exceptionally powerful natural antioxidants sourced from the Australian Rainforest.
  • Clarifies and refines the appearance of skin prone to blemishes, visible pores, sun damage, uneven texture or deep wrinkles.
  • As a booster serum, it can be used in conjunction with your own daily serum or as a stand alone. It's also very pocket friendly.

Glutathione supplements or intramuscular shots

  • This works from the inside, if you're taking injections you'll only need it once fortnightly/monthly depending on what your practitioner tells you. Or opt for supplements.
  • Plays an important role in detoxification reactions, protecting the cells from harmful effects of unwanted chemical substances, such as free radicals.
  • With high cysteine concentrations in the cells, explaining the protective effect against unwanted foreign chemical substances.
  • It helps with cell growth, wound healing and immune function.
  • Plays pac man and eats up free radicals which are created during exposure to hot and cold environmental temperatures and UV light from the sun or toxicity. There are others factors such as exhaust fumes, pollutants for those in the City and for those who travel a lot by trains or planes where cabin fever can effect the air (re-circulated air).

Harpal skinCity Detox Lymphatic Facial 30 & 60 minutes

  • The lymphatic system is designed to remove waste products and toxins in the body. 
  • We use a lymphatic drainage suction devise to draw out impurities. 
  • Deep cleanse, steam, extraction and mask with the full hour facial.
  • Your therapist will even show you the suction devise at the end to prove how much grime can build up in your pores! This is a very satisfying facial, consider your skin well and truly cleansed.

Heliocare 360 Fluid Cream SPF 50+

  • Protect, protect, protect with spf
  • Very high photoimmunoprotection with an innovative ulra-light fluid cream texture. 
  • Its exclusive combination of advance filters and BioShield System provides broad spectrum protection against UVA, UVB, IR-A and Visible Light.
  • Enriched with Fernblock FC for powerful antioxidant activity, and actives which repair sun damage. Suitable for all skin types, with a soft, invisible skin-feel.

NeoStrata Resurface Ultra Daytime Smoothing Cream SPF15 10 AHA

  • Correct the visual signs of photo-ageing and prevent future damage with a broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen in this antioxidant-rich day cream.
  • Ideal daytime exfoliating moisturiser helps to diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • It contains three potent antioxidants, including MMP inhibitor Lactobionic Acid, plus broad spectrum sunscreen, to help preserve collagen and maximise protection against oxidative damage. Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) exfoliate to visibly smooth skin. 

Intraceuticals Bespoke Facial with Antioxidant Booster

  • There is no greater satisfaction than having serum sprayed onto your face with pure oxygen, truly the essence of a city smart facial. The Antioxidant Booster will bubble wrap your face against the elements, smooth, brighten, refine.
  • Low molecular hyaluronic acid is infused with an antioxidant booster to leave you looking and feeling clean and radiant for up to a week.

The Importance of Body Exfoliation

I have never really taken body exfoliation seriously, until my friend took a photo of me in a bikini at the beach. Yes, shock and horror took over when I discovered dimply, dry skin behind my thighs. The fact that the cellulite and stretch marks were bad enough to show in a badly focused mobile phone photo confirmed just how bad the situation was. Yup, it was pretty bad.

Now, no one at the beach ran away from me screaming at the sight of my dimply skin because lets be honest - no one really cares. But, it mattered to me. My thoughts on cellulite are similar to my thoughts on spots, unwanted hair and wrinkles: if you are self conscious about them, then by all means take measures to banish the issue and then spend less time fretting. 

So, the very next week I came into work and spoke to my friend and colleague, Viola. There was no time to waste. I needed a solution that was non-invasive, affordable and as I'm lazy, done by someone else! There were plenty of options, Mesotherapy, Fillers, Microneedling, Plexr, etcetera etcetera. They're all great, but far too advanced for me. I needed something a little more pocket friendly and organic. Enter Dry Body Brushing and Glycolic Peels, and here is the low down:

So, what are the benefits of dry body brushing?

This is a no-brainer, the brushing will slough off any dead skin and allow the new skin to absorb all the goodness of moisturisers and oils applied. Secondly, the gentle motion of brushing in one direction will create a lymphatic type drainage, helping the body release excess toxins and promote better blood circulation. In turn, you'll be helping to break down all the unsightly lumps and bumps caused by coagulated fat cells. 

What are the benefits of body peels?

Chemical peels are great for men and women alike. Do not be alarmed by the term 'chemical', this is a mild dose and very safe to use on the body. Peels are a non-invasive way to correct and treat unsightly scarring, pigmentation, uneven texture and wrinkles. It can treat melasma and sun damage by dissolving the top layer and stimulating collagen growth at the same time to give longer lasting results. A combination of dry brushing and chemical peel will give optimal results of both methods.

"There is a peel suitable for every concern. From pigmentation to spotty backs, peels are the quickest way to deal with those embarrassing body parts" - Harpal Clinic skin specialist Viola

What is the process?

The process is easy for you and me, not so easy for the therapist!
1. Kick back on the bed whilst the therapist gives you a good 'ole scrub with a dry brush
2. She'll mix and apply a glycolic peel all over your body, back and front and let it sit for a few minutes
3. Thoroughly wipe off the peel with hot mittens. (Goodness me, this step feels amazing) 
4. Moisturise the body with a lotion to soothe and hydrate with lovely light body massage
5. Total time taken, 60 minutes.

There's much more to it than the four steps above, but rather than explain the finer details, I thought it better to give you a demonstration! Click on the video for a sped-up version of the treatment. 

The results?

In short, this treatment changed the overall condition of my skin. After one session skin was as smooth and supple as a baby's butt. After four sessions I honest-to-God saw a remarkable difference. Stretch marks faded, cellulite definitely reduced, skin tone and texture was even and smooth. My arms, legs and décolletage saw the best results, keratosis (chicken skin on arms and thighs) disappeared, reduced pigmentation on knees and elbows whilst the neck and chest looked tighter and firmer. 

This is a beautiful treatment without a doubt. Think of it as a fast track to better skin and a huge confidence booster.

Fabulous Five

Winter is here, so bring on the slew of treatments, products and supplements to calm, heal and protect your body inside and out from the dark dreary nights, fierce winds and central heating. Scared and feel like the only option is to hibernate until Spring? Fear not...
We've narrowed down the five superhero treatments and products available at Harpal Clinic to fight off all that Winter has in store and put the spring back in your stride.

Top five treatments

1. Radio Frequency (the non surgical face lift)
Heat energy is zapped deep into your skin to boost collagen and leave you with firmer, tightened and evenly toned skin. The treatment starts with a thorough cleanse, a gel is applied and the RF wand is glided across your face. It will feel soothing with a sightly warm sensation and is followed by a healing serum to seal everything in. This is ideal for victims of saggy skin and the best thing is...RF can treat any part of your body. Saggy knees, boobies and bums beware!

2. Micro Needling (collagen induction therapy)
Think Derma Roller, to the power of 10! Micro Needling is the Trickster, it causes injury to the skin and fools it into repairing itself. The healing process then stimulates collagen production, heals acne, scars, cellulite, stretch marks, wrinkles and more. Treatment begins on cleansed skin, topical anaesthesia is applied to the area 15 minutes prior and then the therapist is let loose with a wand yielding 16 tiny needles. Later you may feel a little tender, some dryness and peeling for the next 2-3 days. This is your skin healing itself. Results can be seen immediately and will improve over a period of weeks and months.

3. Intraceutical Hollywood Facial
This a favourite amongst the heroes at Harpal Clinic and endorsed by an array of Hollywood stars. An all rounder it treats wrinkles, fine lines and hydrates your skin in an hour of pure bliss. Following the three step hyaluronic layering process, you'll leave looking visibly refreshed and plump.

4. Micro Dermabrasion+Electroporation
The AquaTouch gadget will gently exfoliate away dead skin cells from the surface. This polishing treatment uses water micro dermabrasion technique so rest assured, it is kinder to the skin. The added super power of electroporation will increase permeability of skin cells and allow serums to sink in with supreme effect. Treatments range from 30-70 minutes long and you'll experience zero downtime. 

5. IV Vitamin Cocktail Infusion aka Myers Cocktail
This is an intravenous nutrient potion. A mixture of Vit B, Vit B, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, minerals such as magnesium sulphate and calcium. This will enhance your immune system, reduce fatigue and help anyone with digestive problems, bloating and allergies. Think of this as a boost, it will help you stay perky and protect against the nasty cold and flu viruses winter unleashes.

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The superhero products to get you through the big freeze

1. Intraceutical 3-step (sold separately)
This trio of hyaluronic beauties will help you Revive, Replenish and Protect. Designed to work in harmony with each other they combine powerful ingredients to fight against the signs of ageing. With the option of Rejuvenate, Opulence, Atoxelene and Clarity to target your specific concerns, these heroes have been endorsed by an array of Hollywood celebrities.

2. NeoStrata Problem Dry Skin Cream £36
The combination of freezing temperatures and central heating can cause havoc on your skin. This rich cream can be used on any part of your body experiencing extreme dryness. Jam packed with moisturising oils, beeswax and other goodies it will reduce flaking, chapping and will even help heavily calloused areas, yet it is safe and gentle enough to use on sensitive areas such as your face. 

 

3. Intraceutical Boosters £39.95 each
These nifty little guys are brilliant. Four powerful serums allowing you to customise your skincare, they can be used alone or combined with your daily skincare.

  • Vit C+B Booster to Smooth, Brighten Strengthen
  • Collagen+ Booster to Restore, Tighten, Volume
  • Antioxidant+ Booster to Detox, Revitalise, Balance
  • Vit A+ Booster to Regenerate, Clarify, Refine

 

 

4. NeoStrata Anti-Oxidant Defence Serum £78
Another serum to put the spring back into your skin, this product contains 8 antioxidants which will combat oxidative damage and fight against ageing. Wrinkly, sallow, dull skin be gone!

5. HealGel Intensive £37.50
We rave about HealGel at Harpal Clinic. Created by world leading plastic surgeons and biochemists its purpose is to soothe, repair and protect your skin. This versatile product can be applied anywhere on your body and is gentle enough to use on your face (a great base as a makeup primer) and even soothe intimate areas after a waxing.