In the second installment of our “London hair and beauty Salon” series, Juliet Herd, azureazure’s features editor, explores some of London’s best hair and beauty salons and finds out what’s trending, which treatments to book, and all the latest in beauty, haircare, and wellness. To learn more about these fabulous salons, keep reading below.
DR BARBARA STURM BOUTIQUE & SPA
125 Mount Street, W1K 3NS
One of the most exciting launches of 2021 was, without doubt, the opening of leading skincare specialist Dr. Barbara Sturm’s first stand-alone London boutique and spa in the heart of Mayfair.
If you’ve ever been fortunate enough to be treated to the ‘Sturm Glow,’ you’ll know that this launch represented a big deal in the beauty world, the equivalent of a child let loose in a sweet factory. Funnily enough, an actual candy shop in the spa features a ‘pick and mix’ of mini-sized products.
Known for her non-surgical anti-aging treatments and cutting-edge products, the LA-based German aesthetics doctor has built a following of celebrity devotees, including Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Gwyneth Paltrow, Hailey Bieber, Chrissy Teigen, Kim Kardashian, and Kate Moss.
The spa offers a range of signature facials and sought-after treatments, including the revitalizing Instant Glow facial, which calms the skin using purslane, a superfood plant packed with regenerative antioxidants and nutrients. You can also include micro-needling or micro-dermabrasion as part of your facial to stimulate collagen and elastin in the skin.
Other hero treatments include the Super Anti-Ageing facial, which deploys acupressure techniques and massage using a nano skincare device for deeper penetration, lifting the skin around the jaw, and reducing fine lines and wrinkles – with the added benefit of no downtime.
Set over two floors, the sleek, minimalist flagship spa has been designed in collaboration with architect Tobias Freytag, who also created the look for Dr. Sturm’s LA and Dusseldorf residencies. Services include 1-1 private appointments with an expert aesthetician and a discreet VIP entrance, as well as access to the brand’s complete molecular cosmetics line.
The Mayfair establishment is also the first to offer exclusive body treatments, including a refreshing anti-aging treatment and a zingy new scalp massage. “My London clients are among the most discerning in the world when it comes to their skincare knowledge, forever searching for the latest innovations and ingredients to benefit their skin,” says Dr. Sturm.
“I love London; it feels like a second home to me.”
LISA FRANKLIN CLINIC PRIVÉ
251 Brompton Road, SW3 2EP
Innovative skincare sanctuary Lisa Franklin Clinic Prive is the ultimate oasis for stressed-out Londoners, tucked away on the corner of Brompton Road and Egerton Gardens with views over elegant Knightsbridge.
A former make-up artist, the award-winning Franklin, has been quietly building her reputation as an expert in problematic skin, including acne, redness, and rosacea, for more than 20 years. Her treatments combine traditional techniques with state-of-the-art science-based technology and scientifically-advanced products, both from her own range and other carefully curated brands.
She recently became the first UK practitioner to offer the non-surgical fat reduction and skin tightening treatment, Evoke. Non-invasive, Evoke uses hands-free applicators to deliver bipolar radiofrequency to shape and contour the cheeks, neck, and jawline in a safe, painless and consistent way.
All the treatments are unisex, with the most popular being the Repair, Recover, Renew signature facial, tailored to individual needs and focused on cleansing, protecting, and restoring vitality. To finish, there’s a soothing rose quartz lymphatic massage guaranteed to lull you to sleep! You can then add on courses such as CACI (non-surgical facelift), Dermalux (delivering LED phototherapy to treat aging skin, acne, and blemish-prone skin), and Endospheres therapy (to improve lymphatic drainage and increase blood circulation).
The popular new treatment is the back facial – treat your back to a cleanse, exfoliation, steam, and extraction as part of a bespoke body scrub using a blend of Himalayan salts and natural oils.
As a London resident and rosacea-sufferer herself, Franklin has long been aware of the impact of pollution and city living on the skin, prompting her to create her own award-winning vegan range of products packed with antioxidants, key actives, vitamins, and minerals that quench free radicals.
The latest addition to her skincare portfolio is a natural broad-spectrum sunscreen containing zinc oxide and titanium oxide. It not only provides high-grade protection from the sun but also neutralizes the harmful effects of electronic radiation pollution from screens and devices. Super hydrating, it’s also a savior for travel-fatigued skin.
In addition, there’s a collection of super serums for brightening, hydrating, and tackling specific skin concerns, such as rosacea and acne, plus a men’s range, including a gel wash, refining scrub, and pollution defense cream.
57 Ledbury Road, W11 2AA
FaceGym sessions aren’t for the faint-hearted. As the name suggests, they involve a full fitness workout for the face using customized massage techniques, including knuckling, pinching, and whipping strokes, to stimulate blood circulation and collagen, boost the lymphatic system and increase cell renewal. Like any exercise program, it begins with a warm-up, followed by some intense cardio and sculpting, and finishes with a calming cooldown.
“Our non-invasive studio workouts target the 40-plus forgotten muscles in your face to get you face fit,” explains founder Inge Theron, who successfully pivoted to online classes during the pandemic.
You can complement your studio workout with add-on technologies, including radiofrequency and cryotherapy, and choose from a range of best-selling skincare products and high-tech face tools, including the classic Face Ball and Gold Derma Roller.
If you’re keen to up your facial fitness goals, you might want to try the Cryo Medi Lift workout with the new Medi Lift mask, which uses state-of-the-art electrical muscle stimulation technology to give cheeks and lower face an instant lift. You can even buy the mask to use at home but be careful not to scare the kids!
FaceGym has also branched into skincare with a high-performance range that features four signature products designed to “prep, train, and recover” your skin. The newest bit of kit in the brand’s workout arsenal is a first-to-market vegan collagen booster, Active Blast, which consists of a freeze-dried collagen sphere activated by FaceGym’s Hydro-Bound serum to fire up the skin’s metabolism. You can opt for either a seven-day or 28-day treatment box, available at Net-A-Porter and online.
There are now five FaceGym studios in London, including the original concession at Selfridges, Oxford Street. And if you prefer to get your daily hit from the comfort of your own home, you can join the 30-minute online classes, five times a day, at £10 per class – or buy a ‘class pass,’ like you would at any gym.
2 Hans Crescent, SW1X 0LH
This must rate as the ultimate retreat: a complete beauty, wellness, and lifestyle hub located just behind busy Sloane Street in a five-story, 12,000-square-foot former private residence known as the White House.
New this autumn is the Urban Retreat experience package (£195 instead of £260), which includes a sauna session or classic blow-dry, neck and shoulder massage, facial, mani or pedi, choice of brow threading or waxing – plus a glass of bubbly.
All facial treatments are customized and feature techniques such as Galvanic deep cleaning, hot and cold therapy, vacuum lymphatic drainage, and extractions. You can also choose from both surgical and non-surgical cosmetic treatments at Dr. Medispa, including anti-wrinkle treatments and IV vitamin infusions.
For a real treat, book in for a signature seasonal facial rejuvenation facial with skincare guru Kirstie Garrett, founder of eco-skincare and wellbeing range EBO, who holds a pop-up clinic at UR two days a month at £130 for 60mins. Garrett uses her vitamin-packed seasonal facial oils as part of a lymphatic drainage massage to clear pathways and release tension – expect some energetic movements (with hands and face rollers) combined with soothing rose quartz.
You can also revitalize your skin at home with the new nourishing winter essential facial oil (www.ebobeauty.com), which contains neroli and rose geranium to kick-start sluggish circulations and black seed oil for its anti-aging and anti-inflammatory properties.
For those interested in getting physical, Urban Retreat offers Bikram yoga classes and yoga and meditation sessions. As a reward, tuck into a healthy post-workout lunch, dinner, or snack at plant-based restaurant Holy Carrot!
DR RITA RAKUS
34 Hans Road, SW3 1RW
Widely known as the ‘London Lip Queen,’ award-winning cosmetic clinician Dr. Rita Rakus offers a full complement of aesthetic medical treatments at her Knightsbridge clinic, ranging from advanced lasers and fat freezing to non-surgical facelifts and Profhilo.
Her team of experts includes Mr. Kambiz Golchin, an ENT and facial plastic surgeon specializing in facial plastic surgery and cosmetic treatments. Dr. Max Malik, an aesthetic dermatologist and hair restoration surgeon, and Dr. Galyna Selezneva, a specialist in non-invasive procedures.
Dubbed the ‘Ice Queen’ for her fat-freezing expertise, Dr. Selezneva specializes in flab-melting, cellulite-suctioning, and skin-tightening. Treatments include CoolSculpting and Cryolipolysis, which involve freezing fat cells without damaging your skin.
As a former NHS psychologist, Dr. Selezneva makes a point of offering a 360-degree, holistic “mind, body, and spirit” approach designed to empower women.
“I always start by reassuring them that there is no need to ‘fix’ themselves; they are wonderful just as they are,” she says. “I never want any treatment to be motivated by a fear of unworthiness. Rather than focusing on the parts they don’t like, I encourage all patients to nurture the parts that they do.”