The natural face lift
I don’t mind admitting to being the wrong side of 40 (no, really!), mainly because I’m lucky enough to have fairly good genes – mum: if you’re reading this, flowers are always happily received! But even good genes won’t hide the early morning wake-up call of kids (louder than a Rooster I tell you), the stress of full-time work and the amount of wine that goes down due to the stress full-time work. Oh, and, obviously, the natural ageing process.
While I’m not about to start ordering viles of Botox from my local dentist (who is now offering to fill my face while also filling my teeth), I’m up for any help I can get that is more natural.
On a glorious weekend trip to Burnham Market’s The Hoste recently (more on the hotel and restaurant in a future post), I was lucky enough to be invited to sample the small – but quaint – spa, with its flattering lighting and stylish outdoor post-treatment space.
What the spa lacks in size, it makes up for in range with a vast menu covering anything from Indian head massages to pedicures, and all body parts in between. Brazilian, anyone? There’s a Clarins make-up Masterclass and a Xen Spray Tan for women who are after something a little more indulgent, while men can go for a back or chest wax or a muscle-ease body massage.
Booked in for a collagen mask from renowned French beauty company Gatineau, my therapist, Jackie, commends my choice and leads me into a small but comfortable room to get started.
Being a little claustrophobic, I’ve avoided collagen masks in the past (will I be able to breathe?), but the warmth of this little spa, coupled with the friendly staff, fills me with confidence. Jackie asks me about my skincare routine before starting, which I embarrassingly admit to being a cheap face wash and a Boots moisturiser morning and night. She then explains the difference between dry and dehydrated skin before massaging a Melatogenine cleansing cream into my face and forehead.
A beaded face wash is then used to exfoliate – something I’m encouraged to continue at home two to three times a week (er, not likely) – and removed with a rose water. A heavy-duty Defi-Lift 3D moisturiser is then applied to quench, quench and quench again in preparation for the mask.
This is the part I’m not looking forward to and I take some deep breathes while Jackie cuts out a mask to fit my face. She places it on ensuring my nose and mouth are free- my eyes are covered to capture those pesky little crow’s feet.
When the mask is the right shape and in place, water is added to encourage it to melt into my skin, leaving me no option but to close my eyes so that my eyelashes don’t curl up. Despite being able to breathe perfectly well, it’s a very dark, very odd sensation and one I don’t want to undergo for long, but an arm massage and some soothing music puts me a little more at ease. Besides, what’s a little discomfort in the name of beauty?
Within just two minutes I’m relaxing nicely, lulled into a better head space with soothing music and a head massage. After 10 minutes, the mask peels off in one clean sheet and reveals a face free from the dark circles that tend to be daily visitors these days, while my cheeks are baby-bum soft.
So, in the battle of claustrophobia versus crow’s feet it’s claustrophobia: 1; crow’s feet: 0 – quite a result!
The Hoste, The Green, Burnham Market, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE31 8HD. Tel: 01328 738777. thehoste.com