I don’t know if you guys are like me but I do a lot of brand
research stalking on Instagram. I love looking at photos of skin products, makeup, masks, injectables, before and afters – all sorts. So when I stumbled across a before and after of someone with pigmented skin like I had on my top lip I obviously clicked the heart and commented; little did I realise that I was commenting on a salons photo from Wellington, New Zealand…. We started up an insta convo where I expressed my amazement at the results they had featured, and I had remarked that I wish I was going back to NZ sometime in the future so I could go and see them.
Little did I know that in a couple of months I would find out that I would be going home for a short trip and when I mentioned this on my social media channels I started getting all sorts of emails and requests about products and companies wanting to collaborate.
One of which was an Instagram DM from Evie titled “kia ora e hoa” (I loved that she spoke te reo so much) from a Buoy Salon & Spa again. Evie is who I had been chatting to previously and she expressed that the team would love the chance to help me with my skin issues and were willing to drive to Hawkes Bay to give me a Skin Health Check (face mapping kind of thing) and a Signature Spa Facial. I was completely clueless as to what the Skin Health Check would entail but I was so down for a facial and to get some sort of explanation to what I could do about my pigmentation not to mention that I was completely blown away at the offer of them driving up from Wellington to see me so I accepted.
I mean I hadn’t had a good facial in 2 years so I confess this was what drew me in I really didn’t think there was much I could do about my other skin issues that would be non-invasive. I would never have imagined that this would be start of not only a beautiful relationship with two highly knowledgeable women, but also something where I would learn so much about my skin and how to improve it.
Previous to this appointment I was using my tried and true Tailor skin care, which if you’ve been following me for a while has been my core skin care regime for the past 4 years. I didn’t think I needed to change anything – my skin was combination, oily in the t zone and slightly dry around the sides of my face, I had some slight rough patches on my forehead, small bumps; I’m not quite sure what you’d call them and I also had some darkening of the skin on my top lip which I thought was most hormonal and I couldn’t do anything about.
You can read about my skin care routine and the products I was previously using here
Anyway so the day of my appointment rolled around the buzzer at the front gate rang and suddenly I got super anxious…. what if these two ladies were weird or something random happened and I had a reaction to the facial, something which has happened to me before… I remember walking out onto the drive way and thinking fuck I hope they are chill.
Evie and Keicha, their Senior Skin Therapist, both gave me massive hugs and were really warm and friendly. Keicha who was doing the facial gave me a run down on how she got into her job and the brands she had worked with and which ones she’d loved and disliked and why, which I found interesting and informative.
I didn’t really know about ‘active’ skincare to me I always just thought there were expensive creams for that fancier ladies, or that my mum used and then the pocket friendly, but just as good options. For me I was set on using all natural cruelty free products but not really thinking about what they were doing for my face apart from cleaning it and moisturising it. I wasn’t aware that I could improve the texture, pigment and overall feel of my face with an at home system.
So before we did the facial we did this face mapping thing. Basically I put my face inside this little portable machine (Observe – Skin Diagnostic Photographic device) that takes photos of your skin under different lights so you can see sun damage and problems areas you wouldn’t usually see in natural light, and from this you can assess the skin but also see how your skin is going to be if you just leave it and carry on as you are. This was freaky as fuck for me the amount of pigmentation that you could see under the light on my face was crazy, and scary for me. This was a kind of wake up light bulb moment.
After this, Keicha asked me about what products I was using and if I was using sunblock and how did my skin react to the sun etc. I completed a wee Ultraceuticals (‘Real Visible Results’) questionnaire so she could figure out my skin type and create a personalised plan that would suit me and my skin. This was the start of being a part of the Ultra RVR90 international competition (Real Visible Results 90-day challenge to better skin) that Ultraceuticals holds annually to find ambassadors for the next year. Buoy Salon & Spa had won Ultraceuticals Spa of the Year 2016, so I knew I would be getting the best of the best.
Before she talked me through the at home skin care regime she had prescribed for me she gave me the most amazing Ultraceuticals Vita-Clear Facial. Usually I’m quite awkward about people touching my face, but I almost fell asleep. Everything smelt nice and it was just a really great experience nothing stung or was uncomfortable and looking in the mirror afterwards I felt like I was glowing, so if you are living in the Wellington area and you looking for a good place to have a facial and get the best results possible for your skin then I highly recommend Buoy Salon & Spa
In my sleep induced state Keicha then talked me though the products that I would be using as part of my RVR90 day challenge. She told me that over the next 3 months I would notice a big difference in my skin, I was sceptical, I mean how much could a cream change my face….
The products I got prescribed and why were the following;
- Ultraceuticals Brightening cleanser: I had a combination skin quite dehydrated but an oily T this the skin and will remove surface oils.
- Ultraceuticals B2: Keicha wanted to ensure my skin had the best hydration and healthy lipid barrier whilst using her active products. B2 is light weight and pure hydration for the skin.
- Ultraceuticals moisturising eye cream: To hydrate and diminish fine dehydration lines. To prevent early signs of aging.
- Ultraceuticals Sheer Tint Moisturiser SPF30. I live in a hot sunny climate but like little coverage. It is lightweight and great for daily use.
- Ultraceuticals Brightening Moisturiser. This works fantastic alongside the brightening serum. With actives to reduce the pigmentation and a beautiful silky texture.
- Ultraceuticals Brightening Serum: Keicha put me on this to breakdown dark pigment in my skin. It has pigment blockers and AHAs and BHA to exfoliate and smooth the skin and give it that luminous finish.
I stared my routine around the 26th of February, even in the first days I could see a difference. My family also noticed that my skin looked more clear and bright. I still had a few pimples and in the following days I continued to get a few small spots but after the second week they were all gone and I haven’t had any major pimples in the last three months. The major things that I have noticed is that the pigmentation on my top lip has reduced significantly, for me this was HUGE. I had been considering laser as my mum had a similar issue with her skin and that what she ended up doing and I was literally blown away that I could see such a noticeable difference in such a short amount of time. Equally my skin was glowing or very bright even first thing in the morning when I woke up I was looking in the mirror and thinking “whoa my skin looks really fucking good”, If you follow me on snapchat you will see me first thing in the morning before I wash my face and I don’t want to sound like a dick but I think my skin looks amazing.
I’m now hooked on Ultraceuticals, they are also cruelty free (obviously, you won’t see my using things that harm animals at all). Their products are also free of parabens and synthetic dyes – they formulate all their products from environmentally friendly ingredients and sustainable sources. They also test their products on people and if you live in Sydney Australia you can registered to be part of their future trials, which I think is cool.
I will say that they do have a high price and that makes them slightly unattainable for a lot of people, but I can say that I will be repurchasing this product and continuing to use it, and next time I’m in New Zealand I will 100% be stopping into Buoy Salon & Spa for another Observe Skin Health Check (face mapping) and Ultraceuticals facial. I also think if you are taking care of you skin with an active regime like this it can reduce the need for more extreme solutions later down the track. I really cannot thank these two amazing ladies enough for not only educating me about active skin care but also for driving all the way from bloody Wellington to Hawkes Bay just for me. It made me feel incredibly special and even since going back to Greece they have stayed in contact to check in on how I’m going with my skin journey with messages and Skype.
These two amazingly talented and informed ladies showed me it’s never too late to get the skin you want.