Wednesday 2 December 2015

The Much-Fêted Biologique Recherche Facial

Biologique Recherche. Mere mention of that name is enough to prompt a chorus of ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’ from skincare connoisseurs from around the globe. I say ‘skincare connoisseurs’ as outside of those circles Biologique Recherche is not a name that terribly well known.

It is through writing Face Up Beauty that I have got to know the brand and I was thrilled at having the opportunity a few weeks back to experience the much-fêted BR facial for myself.

Biologique Recherche is a French skincare brand founded 35 years ago. Its flagship boutique is situated on the Champs-Élysées in Paris and it operates a cold formulation facility just outside the city, where its more than 100 skincare products (including its hero P50 family of balancing exfoliators) and 30 bodycare products are manufactured.

Why is Biologique Recherche so beloved?

It’s the skincare formulations combined with the bespoke in-salon treatment that makes BR different. Every facial is tailored to a client’s own ‘skin instant’, i.e. what the skin needs at that particular moment in time - eschewing the ‘poor’ categorisation of skin as either dry, normal or oily.

BR skincare products are ‘cold formulations’, meaning they are made without heat which can distort the molecular structure of ingredients (think of the greater nutritional value of a raw apple compared to one that has been baked or steamed).

They contain high concentrations of active ingredients from marine, botanical and biological sources including animal placenta, colostrum and amniotic fluid. Cold formulations cool and calm the skin too, key to BR’s approach to improving skin health.
Treatment Room

Then there’s the therapist-led treatment procedures. These focus on stimulating, sculpting and lifting the skin (working along each facial muscle group). Manual skin manipulation techniques are combined with BR’s Remodelling Face Machine, which uses a variety of electrical currents to aid the penetration of topical skincare, as well as lift and tone.
New: Biologique Recherche Cryo Sticks, used to Cool and massage the skin

Facials can also include a customised skincare cocktail, which the therapist will mix up on the spot from various professional BR serums according to what the skin needs.

My Facial

Blissful! My 1 1/2 hour treatment (at BR’s training facility in West London) incorporated every element of treatment that my skin most needed – procedures and skincare to tackle the congestion around my nose and chin, lift (most notably around my eyes and jaw area) and hydration.

My therapist Amie, head of UK training for BR-UK, was absolutely delightful – and patient (I must have bombarded her with one million and one questions!).

She started with a quick cleanse and then assessed my skin (the starting point of every BR facial). To follow was a welcome massage (firm and joyful, and incorporating the shoulders too), a second cleanse, exfoliation using P50V, a professional exfoliating and hydrating booster serum, and an oxygenating mask combined with the BR Remodelling Face Machine (yes you probably will get a metal taste in your mouth but the current is not in the least bit uncomfortable).

All the while skincare is applied, Amie used manual massage to relax, stimulate and lift my skin. I’m listing all the skincare she used and in the order she applied it at the end of the post as this will be unique to each client.

BR facials always treat one half of the face at a time, and several times during the course of the treatment Amie gave me a mirror so I could see the difference between the side that had just been treated and the one that had not. The difference was striking – in lift and radiance most notably. 

My complexion post facial looked incredible, and I can still see lift now, several days post treatment. I don’t think I’ve ever before felt brave enough to face the world after a facial without reapplying my make-up – but I did this time! True story: on my walk home, I bumped into a friend who stopped to chat and broke off mid-sentence to say ‘goodness Tracey, you do look well’.

BR facials are available at 16 different UK spas and salons. Prices vary according to the products and procedures used but as a guide, my facial would set you back £250. Ouch! Indeed, especially if you’re into the ritual of a monthly facial. Then again, every woman deserves a treat every now and again!

More on Biologique Recherche here.

My BR Facial - Order of Treatment

Lait VIP02
Lift CVS Booster (Professional Products)
Masque VIPO2
Remodelling Face Machine
Amniotique & Placenta (cocktail of serums)
Crème contour des yeux VIPO2 (eye cream)
VIPO2 Cream and Crème Placenta (mix of creams tailored to ‘skin instant’)
Fluid VIP02 Finishing Serum 

Lift CVS booster
This exfoliates, lifts, restructures, firms, hydrates and protects against external factors. It combines Hyaluronic acid for intense hydration, Diatomic algae powder to exfoliate and detox, and a complex of amino acids to strengthen the skin’s barrier and functions.

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