True glamour begins with great skin. I have worked all over the world as a beauty editor from Sydney to New York and with 30 years in the biz, it’s rare that a product stops me in my tracks because it truly adds a lustre to my skin that is FAB-U-LOUS! These days I'm even harder to impress as I need something that's transformative on my mature skin (I will be 55 in a couple of months) without going under the knife – or even a teeny weeny needle.
One brand that A-listers of all ages never tire of giving love to is 111Skin: Demi Moore, Jennifer Aniston, Margot Robbie, Miley Cyrus, Victoria Beckham, Kate Beckinsale - hell, even First Lady Dr Jill Biden to name just a few. They're all avowed fans of this British doctor brand and love nothing more for pre-event prep than 111Skin.
The man behind the brand, Dr Yannis Alexandrides, was the first to bring the biodegradable bio-cellulose sheet mask over from the Far East more than a decade ago and his 111Skin masks have never been bettered. No actress’s transatlantic flight or get ready routine is complete without a 111Skin the Sub-Zero DePuffing Energy Facial Mask ,(Jen’s favourite) or the 111Skin Celestial Black Diamond Eye Mask, loved by VB. T he Rose Gold Brightening Facial Treatment Mask was originally meant to be a limited edition, has now sold a staggering 18 million treatments.
Unlike many masks, these ultra-nourishing beauties don’t skimp on serum (you can refresh them and repeat if you're clever) are most definitely a cut above the regular. But there's a new kid on the block that seriously impressed me, and which could well steal their crown. Not as Instagrammable maybe but punch-packing nonetheless – say hello to 111Skin Concentrates £125. Ampoules are the new sheet mask!
It's a box of seven glass vials filled with clinical-strength serum in five of 111Skin's popular collections for different skin concerns. You use one every day for a week morning or night. If you’re a fan of the anti-aging 111Skin Celestial Black Diamond products packed with tightening peptides, there’s a black box of Firming Concentrate ampoules for you. Or if you like the Rose Gold Brightening Radiance Treatment Mask, with radiance boosters such as vitamin C, go for the Radiance Concentrate set, so on.
Unlike the sheet masks - which remind me of our pre-pandemic globetrotting times - the ampoules fit perfectly with our new stay-home beauty skills and were themselves born out of lockdown. With clinics shut, Dr Alexandrides’ wife and business partner Eva began using the high-strength formulations of the 111Skin clinic at home (it helps when your other half is on hand to dispense). The couple made it their mission to bottle them into single-dose at-home treatments.
I chose the Y Theorem Concentrate ampoules; Y Theorem is Dr Alexandrides' original post-procedure formula, the elixir that launched the entire range almost by accident after his plastic surgery patients begged him to bottle it. It has a potent blend called NAC Y2, which roughly translates as mega antioxidants, skin barrier builders and collagen stimulators. It's for stressed skin, not just post-treatment but if you're reactive, inflamed, red, undernourished or simply just need TLC.
In my midlife years, I’m suddenly more prone to rosacea, having never had it before, and now skin-calming is a top priority. I liked the idea of putting my skin on a week-long intensive to restore the skin barrier and deeply nourish, undoing the effects of pollution, sunlight and stress.
Each glass ampoule snaps open cleanly with a reusable plastic grip and there's a generous amount of the watery liquid - enough to douse my face neck and chest. I do my first dose at night on freshly cleansed skin. When I wake, I am very obviously refreshed, with almost shiny new skin. Over the course of the week, I quickly see an obvious improvement in hydration. The fine lines around my eyes and mouth appear blurred, plumped and my cheeks less irritated.
My skin has never looked better and I am receiving compliments all over the place. I appear more youthful, smooth and brightened – my own sister asked me on Zoom the other day if I had had a sneaky lockdown lift! My foundation glides smoothly over my skin and wrinkles appear diminished.
I am also on a 'glow from the inside' beauty regime and taking collagen powders and vitamins, but still, I cannot commend this enough. I believe you need both the internal and the topical to be symbiotically healthy and vital anyway.
I am sold and totally comprehend why the great and good have this brand in their beauty arsenal. In fact, I had to order more to do the photograph you see here – I had literally used them all in one fell swoop. And, I don’t think you can recommend a product more fulsomely than that!
Buy 111Skin Concentrates, £125 for 7 days
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