Have you ever wondered how the experts look after their skin? Meet Victoria Partridge-Brown, renowned for her honest and down to earth approach as a Facial Specialist and Beauty Therapist. She has over 19 years’ experience in the industry and a dedicated following from all over Oxfordshire and the surrounding counties, that flock to benefit from her healing hands! Working from her salon and secret retreat ‘The Lavender Room’, Victoria brings bespoke and meticulous facial treatments to people who feel lost in the overwhelming world of beauty counters & salons. Here she tells us the secret to glowing skin and what products really deliver…
“The magic of working as an independent facialist is that you get to prescribe skincare bespoke to each client. There is no one perfect brand, so I pick and mix from several amazing brands to make sure people have a simple yet effective routine. Investing in the right products that deliver results will save you money in the long run…”
Victoria’s Morning Routine
Step 1: Cleanse
Each morning I wash my face in the shower with Medik8 Surface Radiance Cleanse (£18). This pH neutral gel cleanse uses AHA & BHA acids to gently exfoliate the skin. The salicylic acid makes it a perfect choice for skins that are prone to breakouts and dullness.
Step 2: Eyes
I follow this with one pump of NeoStrata Skin Active Intensive Eye Therapy (£48). It is by no means the cheapest eye cream, but it is packed full of ingredients that are proven to work; it depuffs the eye area and lines look smoother and more refined. This is the only one I have found to work and is the only eye product stocked at my salon.
Step 3: Treat
Vitamin C is fantastic for brightening skin, targeting pigmentation and helping stimulate collagen and elastin production. I opt for Medik8 C-Tetra (£35) as it works well with other products and doesn’t cause irritation.
Step 4: Moisturise
During the winter months, I will apply two pumps of Cerave Facial Moisturising Lotion (£9.50) which is full of ceramides to support the skins natural barrier, whilst nourishing the skin with niacinamide and hyaluronic acid. In the summer, I generally skip this step and go straight onto a moisturising SPF.
Step 5: Protect
The last step is always, come rain or shine, Heliocare Mineral Tolerance SPF 50 (£27.00). This is a dream product that has the most advance UV & free radical protection. It is suitable for all skins (even rosacea) and is moisturising enough not to need a separate moisturiser, but equally doesn’t leave the skin greasy. A hero product!
Victoria’s Evening Routine
Step 1: Makeup Removal
Again, nothing fancy or complicated! I like to remove my makeup with an oil-based cleanser, I rotate between a few brilliant but inexpensive ones in terms of how long they last: Clinique Take the Day off Balm, Medik8 Lipid Balancing Cleansing Oil or DHC Deep Cleansing Oil. It is so important to remove the day from skin, but it is vital to protect the barrier function of the skin.
Step 2: Cleanse
Once makeup is removed, I go in again with my oil or balm as I personally like the oily feel on my skin, as it has become drier with age and hormones. Also, it helps protect the barrier function as creams and oils help to maintain moisture and do not strip the skin.
Step 3: Treat
I repeat with the same eye cream as before, there is no need for separate ones. The NeoStrata is such a great all-rounder, as it targets and corrects various issues.
Next, it is all about adding hydration in the form of Medik8 Liquid Peptides (£45). This is a real powerhouse of a product. With 30% peptides, this formula improves visible signs of ageing and with a hyaluronic acid base it hydrates, plumps, and targets dehydration in the process.
Step 4: Correct
The most important step each evening for me is 1 pump of Retriderm Retinol (£45). Retinol is the gold standard product for skin. It helps to reduce fine lines by increasing the production of collagen, as well as targeting pigmentation and texture. Retinols aren’t just for people thinking about the aging process, it is a vital ingredient for acne/breakout-prone skin. They increase cell turnover which helps to unclog pores, increase healing, and help prevent scarring. This is where a Facialist will help find the correct retinol for your skin and prescribe the correct application method.
Step 5: Moisturise
Finally, before going to bed I will always massage in a large pump of Balmology Rose Facial Oil (£30). I am a huge fan of massages, both during Facials and as part of homecare. Releasing the muscles and draining away stagnated fluid helps to contour and bring new oxygenated blood to the skin.
Victoria’s Skin Tips
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate! Adding a Hyaluronic Acid into your routine will do wonders for any skin. Medik8 Hydra8 B5 (£40) is fabulous.
Plus, eating fruit and veg with high water content is so important as well as consuming essential fatty acids, drinking lots, no alcohol and little caffeine.