A few weeks ago I was invited to try out a Cellcosmet facial at Courtenay Day Spa*. I’d never heard of Cellcosmet before so if you’re just as out of the loop as me, here’s the lowdown. They’re a Swiss brand who are skin experts, and celeb fans include Jennifer Aniston, Claudia Schiffer and Liv Tyler. They describe their products as cosmeceutical, as they combine cosmetology and pharmacology.
Cellcosmet are very picky about where they stock their products as they require the staff to have a high level of training to ensure that customers are given as much information and assistance as possible. I love that. I hate it when you ask a question and the shop assistant has the minimum amount of information (that you could have just found yourself by Googling!)
They are also super choosy about their ingredients. They never use alcohol, artificial colouring, or essential oils that have been chemically modified or synthetically reproduced. This is great news for people like me who have sensitive skin (my rosacea can react badly to alcohol and colouring).
Their products are all split into 3 distinct groups, each with a specific purpose based on the skin’s needs. I am going to give you the blurb from Cellcosmet, as they explain it better than I ever could!
Cyto-Cosmeceuticals. These are based on cells that most closely mimic those found in our own bodies. Using a world-exclusive CellControl™ Method (which suspends the cells in a liquid that mimics fluid inside our bodies) they are able to keep the cells active, utilising up to 98% of their natural activity, which means more effective results for our skin. As we age, our cells lose their energy and these Cyto products deliver vital force back into our cells, re-energising them and revitalising the function of your skin.
Photo-Cosmeceuticals. These are based on marine and plant complexes which have a positive effect on the skin’s wellbeing. They are used to pre-treat the skin, preparing it for the Cyto formulas used later. They help to increase our body’s receptivity to the active ingredients in Cellcosmet’s products so they can work at their best.
Cyto-Phyto Cosmeceuticals. These combine both cyto and phyto cosmeceutical technology. They work together to optimise the skin’s receptivity to the cyto technology, which boosts our own cells energy. The percentage of cells is tailored to our skin’s age, so we receive the balance we need to supplement our skin as we get older – they basically make up the deficiencies in our cells and get our skin function back to optimum health.
Cellcosmet Facial at Courtenay Day Spa
Courtenay Day Spa is a bit of a confusing name as the spa is actually inside a luxury pharmacy on the St John’s Wood high street. If I didn’t know to go into the pharmacy to find the spa, I probably would have walked up and down the street for ages trying to find a sign! Once inside the spa, it’s pretty standard: very bright, white, clean with a calming atmosphere. The rooms are a decent size and felt very luxurious.
My facial was done by Sharon who is the Cellcosmet UK trainer so I felt like I was in great hands. She took her time to ask me about my current skincare routine, about my rosacea and what my triggers were (in relation to skincare and in general). She was also really great about explaining every step: what she was going to do, how it would feel and why that product – and more specifically the ingredients – would be best for my skin.
The products used on my skin during my Cellcosmet facial at Courtenay Day Spa are listed below:
Cellcosmet Gentle Cream Cleanser (Phyto-Cosmeceutical). This was used to remove my make up and felt very soothing. My skin didn’t feel stripped, tight or hot afterwards, as it includes Rose flower water, almond oil, shea butter and Jojoba oil. Plus it has that gorgeous spa smell (do you know what I mean? It’s a kind of aromatherapy-esque smell and it just instantly makes you feel relaxed!) It’s a fairly thick cream cleanser so you can really work it into the skin, but it isn’t so thick that your skin feels overloaded.
Cellcosmet Dual Action Smooth Exfoliant Cream (Phyto-Cosmeceutical). I’m not going to lie, when Sharon said she was going to use a manual exfoliator I panicked a bit. I try to avoid anything gritty or physical when it comes to my exfoliators as my rosacea means my skin is very sensitive and easily damaged. However, Sharon explained that with these types of exfoliators you can tailor their use to your skin type: someone with ‘normal’ skin can go to town working these into the skin to rid themselves of dry and dead skin. However, for someone like me whose skin needs more care, you can apply it like a mask (to allow the enzymatic ingredients to do their bit), leave for 10 minutes and then gently buff the skin with circular and very light-handed motions. This means the skin isn’t aggravated and still gets the benefits of the exfoliator. The product formula is very fine, so the ‘gritty’ feeling is barely noticeable. I am going to test out this theory at home so I can report back! (But as with all my recommendations and advice, please do listen to your skin. You know your face better than anyone and your skin will soon tell you if something is not right for you. When I try any new product or method, I always have my ‘panic stations’ products to hand so that I can nip any reaction or aggravation in the bud).
Cellcosmet Tonic Lotion (Phyto-Cosmeceutical). A step to ensure all the cleansing products are removed and mild chemical exfoliation to ensure that your skin is primed and ready for the next steps. Some toners feel very stripping and leave my skin tight and dry but this felt very hydrating whilst still being invigorating – it includes floral rose water and camomile extract.
Cellcosmet Activator Gel (Phyto-Cosmeceutical). This is described as a ‘sensory energising preparative gel’ and I think we’ll be seeing a lot more products like this popping up in future. It’s basically a gel that you apply to your skin to ensure that your skin is in the best state for products applied afterwards to permeate and absorb. This has cinnamon and ginger extract and you can smell it as soon as you open it (I like both of those smells, but it’s a warning to those who aren’t keen on stronger scents). I was a bit concerned about putting those ingredients on my sensitive skin as they are both used for invigorating and perking up skin, and products that promise to do that usually make my skin very unhappy! I voiced my concerns to Sharon and she applied a lighter layer than usual. I didn’t feel anything on application although I did feel a fair amount of tingling during the next step, I assume because the Activator Gel is only *Activated* when the mask is applied.
Cellcosmet Mattifying Anti-Stress Cream-Mask (Phyto-Cosmeceutical). The mask was applied in a fairly thick layer and left on my skin for about 10 minutes. As mentioned above I felt quite a lot of tingling which I was a bit worried about – not because it was sore or uncomfortable but because I worried my skin would be very red when the product was removed (spoiler: it wasn’t red at all, the picture below was taken after the facial). The mask was removed with a warm cloth and then a sheet mask was applied which instantly cooled my skin. I absolutely love sheet masks so this made me feel very relaxed and pampered!
Cellcosmet Cellular Eye Contour Cream (Cyto-Cosmeceutical). This is a very lightweight cream designed to be used around the eye area but can also be used on the lips which is great, as who can be bothered with 2 separate products? It is designed to revitalise and moisturise, helping to soften and prevent fine lines.
The last step in my facial was the Cellcosmet UltraCell Sensitive (Cyto-Cosmeceutical). It’s an intense revitalising treatment, and it’s great for sensitive, atypical skin like mine as it reinforces the skin and desensitises, as well as helping with elasticity and dehydration.
For those of you with sensitive skin who are worried that facials will flare your skin or make it super red, this is what my skin looked like when I got home from the spa – minimal redness, just gorgeous glowy skin!
*This facial was provided as a PR sample. For more information please see my disclaimer page.