Five years ago the beauty industry was laser-focused on obliterating wrinkles. From £200 supercreams to overzealous Botox shots and fillers, a smooth, motionless forehead and wrinkle-free face were the sole measure of youth. But fast-forward to 2015 and there has been a seismic shift: we’re no longer obsessed with looking ten years younger ‘overnight’ – it’s OK to have a few laughter lines. And we’ve finally twigged that looking healthy and happy is far more attractive (and age-appropriate) than an overinflated face.
‘Texture not wrinkles is the new buzzword,’ says dermatologist Dr Nick Lowe. ‘The latest procedures are focused on minimising pores, correcting uneven colouring and promoting radiance,’ he adds.
And this stealth approach is catching on. Beauty and hair companies are throwing scientific research into achieving a head-to-toe glow. From make-up primers that act like Spanx pants for your skin, to haircuts and colours that lift your features, turn the page to discover the latest ‘little-and-often’ ways to ‘naturally’ freshen up your look.
Beyond Botox: the new light lift
What is it? Fine fillers applied with much gentler needles are being used on the forehead to soften rather than freeze wrinkles, while Botox is being employed to lift the jawline and neck. ‘It used to be the case that women would have a massive dose of Botox once every six months,’ explains leading LA dermatologist Dr Harold Lancer. ‘But that didn’t look believable with the rise of digital photography and HD film, which highlights every imperfection – including bad Botox.’
Now it’s all about combining fine, traceless injectables with the latest in ‘facial rejuvenation’ treatments to add that photofilter ‘glow’. New ‘lite’ radiofrequency devices and advanced lasers have taken over from harsh lasers and chemical peels to lift skin tissue and encourage the skin to produce more collagen. ‘A uniform skin texture, rather than the obliteration of wrinkles, has become the ultimate sign of youth,’ adds Dr Lancer, who recently launched his own range of anti-ageing skincare in the UK, of which Kim Kardashian, Beyoncé and Victoria Beckham (below) are all fans.
The liquid forehead lift ‘We use a very fine cannula that allows for a virtually painless and precise application of hyaluronic acid [filler] to lift, smooth and hydrate forehead lines rather than paralysing muscles. This method can also be used on the eye area to open it up without giving a surprised look,’ explains cosmetic medicine practitioner Dr Michael Prager. From £445, drpragerclinic.com.
Venus freeze Combines gentle radiofrequency with electromagnetic radiation (previously used to heal broken bones) to stimulate new collagen and encourage the growth of skin cells for a tighter, more luminous complexion. From £300 per treatment. For salons, go to venusconceptuk.co.uk.
Dermasweep uses a mild vacuum system to exfoliate the skin and clean out pores (without the use of the harsh crystals previously common in dermabrasion), while infusing the skin with radiance-boosting solutions. Perfect for brightening dull complexions, treating dehydrated areas or mild sun damage. From £185, drnicklowe.com.
Nurse Jamie Beauty Stamp You might have heard of dermarolling, the micro-needling technique that injures the skin to encourage it to produce more healing collagen. Now meet the Beauty Stamp, a new at-home device from US nurse Jamie Sherill. ‘Micro-needling works, but it can pull and drag on the skin. This device is gently pushed into specific areas of the face, creating tiny impressions that encourage the skin to repair fine lines and better absorb the anti-ageing ingredients in your skincare serum,’ explains Jamie. £38, harrods.com.