In conversation with Sarah Chapman

This week we talk to expert facialist Sarah Chapman about common skin issues, how often you should have facials and the most innovative treatments available at her London clinic.

Image Credit @ Sarah Chapman

Sarah Chapman is one of my favourite facialists in London. She has a refreshing and unique approach to skincare. Her skinesis clinic, down a cobblestoned laneway near Sloane Square, is a wonderful skincare oasis. Some of my favourite features include the 20 minute LED light therapy treatment that you can do before a big event or party, the Jet Set Skin Essentials and the complimentary consultation service.

My Q&A with Sarah Chapman:

I really liked your story and how you started as a makeup artist, could you tell me about how it all came together for you?

When I left school I discovered from a friend that you could train and work as a make-up artist, which was such a refreshing change after school geography and maths! I moved straight to London and enrolled in Complexions make-up school. From there I explored all aspects of make-up including time in Australia training in film and special effects. Working with make-up introduced me to skin close up and I went on to further train in my beauty skills as a therapist covering all aspects of beauty, aromatherapy, nutrition, massage and facials. I believe this rounded knowledge has really helped me with my work as I like to think laterally and outside the box and there are always so many influencers on skin. Back in London I started working in beauty managing health club spas and then with skincare companies focusing on training, sales and business development. I became more and more fascinated with skincare and skin as I learnt more with the skincare companies and working with Dr Fernandes of Environ. I started my facials initially to help a friend of mine who was moving to Australia and wanted someone to look after some good clients of hers and it grew from there. Facials then grew into product obsession and I trained in cosmetic science before developing my own Skinesis range. Last year I was very proud to open my flagship clinic and boutique near Sloane Square.

“I have an amazing team of facialists who are the best in London and they are all fully booked with waiting lists, we are all very proud of that.”

on her team

When did you start doing facials?

I started facials when my friend emigrated to Australia many years ago, starting with a few clients to help her out which grew by word of mouth developing into a facial business with 8 personally trained facialists and 7 treatment rooms, performing over 8,000 facials a year and we love it!

Is your product organic?

My products are not organic, they are though paraben-free and carefully formulated to be performance driven whilst modern and friendly. Cosmeceutical, scientific, technical formulas enhanced with botanical, natural extracts and oils.

How did you start to understand about bigger skin issues, like acne?

I am fascinated by skin so I spend time reading and studying, but also over the years I have seen so many skins that I have treated, so you learn every time. Acne can be complicated so I also like to look into the client’s lifestyle, eating habits, sleep habits. Once I had a client who had such a troubled skin, I saw her a couple of times and we improved the superficial skin health, I asked a lot of questions and felt that she was dairy intolerant so referred her to get that checked and I never saw her again! I contacted her and she said I was right, her skin had cleared up and she didn’t need to come any more – that makes me really happy!

“The boutique was designed as a ‘play’ space for beauty, in fact at my launch one journalist described it as the ‘apple’ store of skincare, modern, interactive and informative.”

on her Sloane Square clinic

How long have you had the clinic and boutique for?

I opened my new space in May 2015, time has gone so quickly. We had 240 people on the waiting list at my small clinic before so needed the space, I love too that we now have the drop in services and advice in the boutique. I have an amazing team of facialists who are the best in London and they are all fully booked with waiting lists, we are all very proud of that.

I really like that people can come in and talk about their skin without having a facial, and understand the products better – how does this normally work?

The boutique was designed as a ‘play’ space for beauty, in fact at my launch one journalist described it as the ‘apple’ store of skincare, modern, interactive and informative. You can drop in and have a consultation with confidence in the advisor team, you can have your skin scanned with a Visia® skin analysis camera and this is all complimentary. You can sit at the theory bar and have interactive advice with our advisors and trial products on yourself or book a masterclass. We also incorporated a Skin-glow LED pod so clients can drop in for rejuvenation or acne blue light treatments with our Dermalux® LED. This lasts 20 minutes so you can drop in or make a booking and it’s a brilliant quick fix in between facials or in fact good for those who do not want full facials, we only charge £40 and consultants will cleanse and prepare your skin if you wish. We encourage people to just drop in and enjoy, relax and watch the ipad tutorials in the discovery zone.

Can you tell us about the LED light therapy treatment? How long does it last?

Dermalux® LED therapy uses 3 light spectrums; red, near infra-red and blue so we are able to target all issues on the skin such as acne, firming, rejuvenation, anti-inflammatory. We use the same machines in our full facials and they have been proven to give amazing results – great for a quick pre party fix or for a course of acne treatment. A session under the light is 20 minutes and can focus on one light or use a combination, which is very unusual in LED technology.

“Cosmeceutical, scientific, technical formulas enhanced with botanical, natural extracts and oils.”

on her range of products

How often do you think people should get facials?

We recommend at least once a month for good skin maintenance and if treating a specific issue or giving skin a boost we can see clients once a week. We offer so many different hands-on and technology protocols that we can customise facials even if you come once a week. We also offer technical treatments like Radio Frequency skin tightening (Endymed®) which require weekly treatments for best results.

In your experience, is there a difference between black and white skin?

There are differences with all Fitzpatrick types from the palest porcelain to darkest complexions. They need to be treated differently to a degree but all skins will benefit from a good, healthy skin routine. Some treatments such as IPL are only suitable for certain skin colours.

Can you tell us about the tests you can run on skin that show you where and how the skin is damaged before it shows on the surface?

We use Visia® skin cameras that show underlying skin issues such as vascular (veins), pigment, deep wrinkles and can show how you compare to the average for your skin age – this gives clients a real understanding of what to focus on in skincare routines or facials, often making people aware of areas of sun damage. This is a complimentary service we offer in the boutique.

“I am fascinated by skin so I spend time reading and studying, but also over the years I have seen so many skins that I have treated, so you learn every time.”

on how she became an expert

What’s the best way to get rid of skin/sun damage? What are the options for people?

A good daily routine with vitamin A is essential, such as my Age-Repair Serum, Dynamic Defence and Overnight Facial. Pigment can be improved with peels, good facials and skincare and further treated with Cosmelan or IPL. Deeper lines can be treated with micro-needling, deep dermaroller and Fractional Skin Resurfacing (Endymed®), generally I recommend a combination of treatments so that skin is healthy, glowing and treated at a deeper level. We use a combination of needing and Stem Cell Collagen Activator as our most popular skin rejuvenation.

Could you tell us about micro needles – a simple explanation of how it works and the benefits? How often do people need that done?

Micro-needling uses a technique to cause micro trauma to the skin inducing collagen production as your skin naturally heals itself. We use this in different ways, with anaesthetic at a deeper level to induce collagen and firming or in a more superficial way to stimulate and enhance penetration of specific products, stem cells, peptides, DMAE, hyaluronic acid etc. Some clients have micro-needing every month but the treatment can also be done for some every 1 – 2 weeks; with the deeper treatments we recommend 4-6 weeks to allow the fibroblasts to kick start their collagen production.

Could you tell us about the infra-red jawline lift?

Endymed® Radio Frequency skin tightening is a non painful skin tightening treatment which uses heat deep in the dermis to heat up collagen fibres causing a contraction, giving an instant lift. Over a course of treatment the skin is firmed and jawlines are tighter. The results continue to develop over following months but we do also have VIP’s who will have this treatment pre-special events for instant results.

READ NEXT: Facials for your body | Pre-Event Facials 

© Wendy Rowe. All Rights Reserved.