I am a beauty therapist with many years of experience. I obtained my education as an aesthetician and electrologist from the prestigious London Institute of Beauty Culture in 1981.
My first steps as a beauty therapist were equipped with the newly obtained knowledge about collagen and elastin, that once you break up, damage your precious protein network found in the skin, you are done.
There were no creams, potions, lotions, electrical machines or other methods in the world that would repair that type of damage. That awareness was daunting.
General knowledge also told us that from around 25 years of age our treasured network of collagen and elastin gradually deteriorated year by year. Collagen gives structure to skin, bones and muscles and all other connective tissue and can be found in blood, and elastin allows body’s tissues to return to their shape after stretching or contracting.
Prospect of a Pending Scare and No Return Journey
In 1980 Miriam Stoppard, dermatologist, researcher and the general editor of The Face and Body Book, made it plain:” No substance or process yet known to science can restore permanently the proteins, fats and moisture that provide supple support for the skin, or do anything to repair the fractures that develop in the collagen within the dermis as the body grows older.”
On collagen in the dermis she wrote: “Through this framework runs a network of nerves, nerve endings and blood vessels. In young healthy skin, collagen is arranged in parallel bundles that lie alongside each other and have the ability to stretch and then resume their original shape. They give young skin its suppleness, smoothness and plumpness. As we get older, the integrity of collagen bundles is lost, the fibres split, the bundles break up and the parallel arrangement disintegrates. The architecture of the skin crumbles; it sags, wrinkles and becomes thin. These signs of age cannot be prevented and can be removed only by cosmetic surgery, skin peeling or dermabrasion.”
On facial massage Miriam Stoppard wrote: “The belief that the procedure will improve the skin as well as make you feel more relaxed is unjustified.”
The Trick of Being Systematic and Regular
Back in the 1980’s when the book was written I was young and newly qualified. I believed and respected what I was taught in my beauty school. I loved all beauty procedures and practicing them was a way of life.
For me initially it was difficult to establish if the beauty treatments I delivered to clients were successful or not. My clients liked them. However, I did not see the immediate improvements of the treated skin, unless the problem was dehydration or acne. Nevertheless, I still recommended a range of good Sothys cream products (which back then were very eco-packed) to prevent or possibly delay any daunting prospects.
I did the same for myself. Having young skin then it was difficult to pin point how effective these electrical and cream treatments were.
Only in my later age I have discovered what a difference it makes to use a good cream and to practice regular face massage.
The 1980s Daunting Knowledge about Deteriorating Collagen Has Gone Away Like a Bad Dream
Compering to the 1980s science nowadays is teaching us different things about collagen. It is teaching us that regularly stimulating skin with an appropriate massage technique not only protects collagen and elastin network, but also helps the skin to produce it. Eating the right food and exercising helps to protect, maintain and even to create the conditions for producing it again. Suddenly, the disheartening prospects of uncontrolled wrinkling and sagging skin has gone away like a bad dream.
Massaging, Massaging, Massaging
As a beauty therapist I can confirm that this is absolutely true. Having regular facials and body massages, among other benefits, keeps skin looking younger and healthier.
The rejuvenating and restoring salon massage needs to be followed by a regular home routine doing hand massages or with the help of non- intrusive massaging tools and plenty of oils and creams.
The tools I recommend are the environmentally friendly options of sponges, brushes, face cloths, rollers, jade stones and Chinese facial and body cups.
The massage needs to be gentle and done regularly.
Suitable regular facial and body exercises as well as a good nutritious diet are also recommended.
When it comes to maintaining younger looking skin even Miriam Stoppard will agree that times have changed for the better for us all.
She always promoted natural beauty even when in her research she could not see any results in skin improvement due to beauty therapy care.
Nowadays we know that the trick to looking younger lies in simple ways. We know now that just by repeatedly massaging the skin with good creams and oils *, we help to maintain and restore lost collagen. Naturally obtained results like this are satisfactory, no sagging skin and definitely less wrinkles. Natural good looks give you confidence.
Being regular and systematic is the best and the most effective trick ever in beauty care. It works.
In the past doing facial massages every day was over the top. Today it is a normal thing to do.
* Other professionals who recognise benefits of regular massage:
Dr Gantsho: practical effects confirm results of regular massaging
Akane Miyaji, Kaori Sugimori, Naoyuki Hayashi: “ Short and long term effects of using a facial massage roller on facial skin blood flow and vascular reactivity.” Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 2018: 41:271 DO1 :10.1016/j.ctim.2018.09.