Fast Fixes for Perfect Pins
A daily dry body brush (pre-shower) really is the fastest and most effective way to get skin glowing, improve circulation and remove dull, dry and flaky skin. It will also help drain toxins and will improve the look of cellulite. Do it for a week and see the difference. We promise you’ll be converted. Bristle Body Brush, £9.50 HydrОa at Oliver Bonas, Jesmond
There are of course many ways to remove unwanted hair and each one has its own benefits and drawbacks. The time and money spent on waxing, the more temporary results and lingering aroma of depilatory creams, and the convenience but bristle-forming benefits of shaving. Hair removal is very much part of our beauty routine. With advances in technology, at-home IPL hair removal is now a serious option too. Using light pulses to limit hair growth on legs, bikini line and even facial hair, persistence pays off and it’s well worth the investment if body hair bothers you. Philips’ Lumea Prestige IPL, £300 (stockists regionwide) is one of the UK bestsellers, or try the new Diamond Air+, which combines freezing technology to protect the skin with five different energy levels. Diamond Air+, £210 Ulike at currentbody.com
Smooth and Soften
What ever else you may or may not do, a good moisturiser is essential to repair and rejuvenate skin which has been hidden for months. Use daily for soft, supple skin. It might be on the pricey side but we haven’t found a better one than the iconic Creme de Corps Whipped Body Butter, £37 from Kiehl’s, but the Brazilian Bum Bum Cream, £18 from Sol de Janeiro, with its cocktail of ingredients including caffeine to boost circulation, does give it a good run for its money.
A touch of colour makes most legs look a lot better. Mix Charlotte Tilbury’s Supermodel Body, £45, with your regular moisturiser, or apply directly to legs for a hint of flattering tan. Use to add shape and definition by applying more colour to the front of shins (and arms). For those who want instant, longer-lasting colour without waiting around for colour to develop, St Tropez’s Express Bronze Mousse, £33, is the one to go for. After an hour you can expect a sun-kissed glow, two hours means a medium tan, and three says just-back-from-the-Med bronze.
Long Term Tan
If you are nervous about fake tanning, or just like a little more control (and subtlety) then a gradual tan is a great idea. The Gradual Tan, £22 from Tan-Luxe, is an odour-free hybrid oil and lotion which gives a natural tan in just one hour, but can be used daily to build your own bespoke colour.
If you are looking for a firming cream look out for retinol in the contents (0.3% retinol is best). It won’t cure cellulite but by improving the skin’s tone and texture it will help thicken the outer layer of skin to reduce the appearance of bumpy orange peel beneath, but be prepared to be persistent – you will need to give it six months to really see the benefit.
In For The Long Haul
No-one said being beautiful was easy. These tried and tested treatments may require some work and commitment but the benefits are worth it.
Unsightly thread veins are common but they can be removed with laser treatment, light therapy or specialist injections, depending on their size and where they are. It’s a relatively straightforward procedure which can be carried out as an outpatient at Spire, Washington, but you may need more than one treatment. spirehealthcare.com/spire-washington-hospital
If you prefer professional help, in-salon IPL hair removal uses high intensity light of different wavelengths to penetrate to the dermis, covering larger patches of hair than laser treatment to permanently remove hair by destroying the root. IPL works best on darker hair which absorbs the light better. It may take more treatments than laser hair removal but is less painful, you can have back-to-back treatments as there is no down time, and treatment times are fast. At selected salons regionwide.
Cellulite is fat, water and fluid which becomes trapped in collagen fibres under the skin. If this connective tissue becomes weakened, pockets of fat and fluid push through, causing the lumps and bumps we all hate to appear. LPG Endermologie is a deep massage-style treatment which helps drain the fluid and stimulate collagen production to improve the look of the connective tissue for smoother skin. A course of weekly treatments, followed by regular maintenance treatments, will make a noticeable difference. At selected salons regionwide.
FDA-approved Cryolipolysis, or fat freezing, involves controlled cooling (within the temperature range of -7 to -10 degrees centigrade) to destroy fat cells by a natural process called apoptosis. Other cells such as skin tissue and blood vessels are not as sensitive to freezing and are therefore unaffected by the treatment. As the fat cells are destroyed they leave the body through the lymphatic system. It is effective and many clients see a visible difference after just one session, but a course of three or four treatments is usually recommended. RT Aesthetics, Whickham rtaesthetics.co.uk