With just a seven-month engagement, our Wedding Ideas bride-to-be had little time to dedicate to her beauty regime. Here, she talks us through the steps she took at the bea Skin Clinic to get wedding-day-ready fast.
Real Bride Review: bea Skin Clinic
What: Botox (From £250), TCA Peel (£225) and a geneO+ facial (£125).
Where: bea Skin Clinic, London. Biancaestelleaesthetics.com.
If you’ve already started planning your wedding, you’ll know that it can be not only stressful but oh-so-time-consuming and tasks you might have foreseen taking hours, end up taking days. You can understand then, why my skincare regime took a backseat and it was only when I came up for air two months prior to the wedding that I finally turned my attention to my face.
Whilst I don’t suffer from acne or any severe skin issues, years of sun exposure coupled with my age (30) meant I had a fair bit of hyperpigmentation, not to mention some fine (and not so fine) lines.
Fortunately, I work in the beauty industry and have a pretty good grasp on the best in the business so having known Bianca Estelle for a number of years and having witnessed her skincare wizardry on some of the people closest to me, I knew she was the only woman for the job.
One dreary afternoon when the sky was as lack-lustre as my skin, I hot footed it down to the bea Skin Clinic in Marylebone and following a thorough consultation with Bianca, we decided on a three-pronged approach that would leave my skin radiant in time for my late October wedding.
Step 1 – Botox – to remove the most noticeable wrinkles and smooth the skin
Step 2 – TCA peels to exfoliate and brighten the skin, helping to reduce hyperpigmentation
Step 3 – A genO+ facial, the clinic’s ‘Ultimate Super Facial’ for a youthful glow
During the first of my three appointments within two months, Bianca injected Botox into three areas – the frown line (which had coincidentally deepened since wedding planning began), the forehead and just below the temples to address crow’s feet, all the while checking I was OK and tailoring the strength to the look I wanted most (subtle, as if no one would be able to tell I’d had it!). I was pleasantly surprised by how tiny the needle was and how quickly it was over – it was short, sharp and very bearable.
At this same appointment, Bianca prescribed a TCA (Trichloroacetic) peel and this was definitely an eye opener. I don’t know what I’d been expecting but this consisted of a damp chemical-coated swab being wiped over my face in layers. The sensation is HOT, and it builds with each layer, so the clinic provides you with a fan to cool down.
I was instructed to carry out some facial muscle exercised which I obeyed, despite some unusual looks on the journey home and later that evening, I could already notice the effects of my treatments taking place – my skin felt taut and was a little sore, almost like I had spent the day in the sunshine.
Bianca advised me that, as a first timer, the Botox would take effect after around five days and that my skin would start to shed even quicker. She wasn’t wrong – after a few days, the top layers of my skin began shedding and I was flaking all over the place.
But this lasted just a few days before super soft and less pigmented skin was revealed underneath. Meanwhile, my forehead was the first to benefit from the Botox, followed closely by my crow’s feet and frown lines – I still had a little movement, just as I wanted but felt that I had turned back time by five or so years.
After a few weeks, I was back into the clinic for a second, stronger TCA peel – with this came far more shedding and an even greater result. Bianca advised me that these are an ideal treatment to have ongoingly as you can increase the strength with each appointment, and I know I’ll be keeping these up once the wedding’s over.
Finally, it was time for my last visit to the clinic and I was treated to a geneO+ Facial, a treatment that deeply exfoliates with Ultrasound technology followed by TriPolar Radiofrequency to stimulate collagen production and firm the face. This was by far my favourite of the three, partly because it felt like a spa treatment and partly because the results were instant – my skin felt contoured and I’ve never been so confident going makeup-free.
In addition to the treatments, I was prescribed some bea Skin Care products to use morning and night back at-home to help maintain the results achieved. These come as an extension of Bianca’s clinic and there’s a brilliant range of formulations to help tackle all skin concerns. For me, I used a combination from the Master Antioxidant Range as well as Luminescence Range but a great place to start is the 5 Step Regime, which is suitable for all skin types.
Words by Hannah Bailey