Skin Laundry 15 minute clean skin facial

Most professional facials take at least half an hour, so you can use the time to sleep, think or talk to your facialist about your skin particulars or life in general. Yesterday was an interesting ‘first’ experience for me of a 15-minute Skin Laundry Facial. This US skincare brand that has been on my ‘beauty radar’ for a while, thanks to my NY and LA girlfriends and this month it ‘landed’ at Liberty of London beauty counter on the ground floor.

FullSizeRender-2Last week I had a pleasure of talking to

Yen
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Glowing rejuvenation with Su-Man skincare

By far one of the easiest ways to look after your skin, combining it with the ‘me-time’, is to use face masks at home. Depending on your skin type and skin’s needs, integrating a mask into your weekly skincare ritual, is like being your own facialist. =&0=&, is a wonderful, no-nonsense facialist and her skincare products, appeal to women of various ages, but work particularly well for women upwards of 30. This month Su-Man launched her first face mask (notice the new, updated, packaging, which is eye-catching ), a labour of love and skill that took several years to complete, resulting in an effective and potent product that delivers results when the masking ritual is complete. So, what makes Su-Man Skincare =&1=& different from others on the market?

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First of all, this mask contains advanced bio-cellulose technology, which mimics the 3D structure of the skin. Su-Man developed an intensive mask, fusing ancient wisdom with modern technology, which rejuvenates, hydrates, plumps and brightens your complexion, even after a single use.

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Key Ingredients of the mask:

=&2=&: a powerful, mineral-rich antioxidant that has been used in Asia for centuries, it promotes a radiant, refreshed and soft complexion.

=&3=&: perfectly balanced minerals and vitamins help to revitalise the skin

=&4=& it soothes the skin and helps to hydrate & brighten it.

=&5=&: help to make your skin plumper and more supple.

=&6=&: it is a cosmetic peptide that is often used on sensitive skin, as it helps to decrease the release of the pro-inflammatory chemicals.

=&7=&: smaller in molecular composition than collagen, it penetrates the epidermis, helping to improve suppleness and moisture levels of the skin matrix, going deeper than skin’s top layer.

In addition, the mask also contains =&8=&, =&9=& and =&10=& that help the complexion glow well after you take the mask off, irrespective of your skin type.

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When I read through the whole list of ingredients, 31 in total, I did ask Su-Man about certain of them, like =&11=&, which is one of the preservatives, supposed to be least irritatiing, =&12=& ( an anti-fungal preservative ) and =&13=& but Su-Man replied that when it comes to formulation of her products, she is always guided by the principle ‘do no harm’.

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The mask comes in a package of four, each sealed in its own, individual pack. Each mask, once you open the exterior pack, comes in three parts – you need to remove & discard a protective layer from one side of the mask and apply it to cleansed, dry skin, carefully applying it over your face and correctly positioning eyes and mouth openings – if you are into mask ‘selfies’ with a slight sci-fi look, then it is a perfect candidate! Once you applied the mask all over your face, peel off outer protective layer and smooth the mask lightly, until it adheres completely to the contours of your face, becoming part of it, for ten to fifteen enjoyable minutes. It has a fairly quick cooling and plumping effect on the skin and doesn’t drip or slide off the face, even if you move around, instead of relaxing in the bath. Once the time is up ( I do leave it on for up to 30 minutes sometimes ), remove and discard the mask and take the time to examine your rejuvenated complexion in front of the mirror, while gently massaging the remaining mask essence into the skin.

IMG_2428One of the things that I really like about this mask, is that it gently hugs and adhere to the contours of the face, via a delicate network of plant-based ingredients and fibres, that aid in delivering smoothness, plumpness and luminosity to your complexion.

During my testing of this mask, I also asked my mother to be my mask volunteer tester and I have to report that we both came back with the same comment – our complexions looked plumper and dewier, even and well hydrated, so much so, that we both went to bed without applying anything else to our faces and woke up with plump, hydrated faces that looked fresh , even though we both went to bed late the night before. This mask can be used weekly, as a quick and convenient mini-facial for revitalising a tired or de-hydrated complexion. Su-Man also told me that you can warm the mask prior to application, by placing it, still in its exterior packaging, in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes ( don’t place it in the microwave !) and then using it in colder, winter months for enhanced pampering ritual, especially if you have been our skiing at high altitudes for example – this one I am still to put to the test, but I am definitely taking a couple with me for my sea summer break.

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Personally I belong to the school of thought that certain beauty rituals are better done ‘in private’ and not in front of our other halves, making this mask is a great treat when your other half is away or out or you are having a night in or are traveling with your female family members or girlfriends, for example on a hen weekend or girly getaway.  A radiant complexion gives us all a wonderful confidence boost and will make your other half appreciate your radiant glow too.

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Sarah Chapman’s flagship store and Skinesis clinic

To fulfil one’s dream, especially if you dream big, takes time but it is encouraging and inspiring to see someone succeed, especially if you have admired what and how they do it over the years.  Recently I was lucky to be given a private tour of Sarah Chapman‘s global flagship store and new Skinesis clinic which opened right in the heart of Chelsea – it is a calm and heavenly oasis that takes the concept of modern beauty to a new level.

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Located in the quiet enclave of Pavillion Road, in place of what used to be a ground floor children’s store, now it is a 3,000sq/ft space, split between retail and consultation space on the ground floor and seven room treatment clinic upstairs.

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When you enter the store, all high ceilings and lots of light, you are welcomed by the smiling & chic staff ( personally  I appreciate both male and female perspective on skincare & products & your other half might benefit from advice as well, if he comes with you or on his own), who will happily guide you to the area of your choosing, depending on your needs.

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There is a Theory Bar ( you can sit, talk, apply the products and learn the best techniques and tips ). In the future Skinesis dermal experts will host masterclass sessions on subjects like cleansing, using Sarah’s unique experience and application methods. Armed with the right skincare products and tips, you will go home where you will skilfully look after your skin, making sure it looks healthy and beautiful, irrespective of your age. There are also iPad stations, in case you come with kids or your companion, so they will be entertained while you have some ‘me-time’.

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The Hub focusses on the diagnostic of your skin and includes educational and tutorial space. You can also watch Sarah’s video tutorials – her massage technique is heavenly and makes your skin glow but I do wish my fingers were as effortlessly nimble as hers ! Vista machine will scan your face ( this service is complimentary ) and give you an indication of the true state of your skin, including pigmentation, spots, texture, wrinkles, pores, sun damage etc. and a consultant will be able to recommend a personalised skincare regiment based on your results. Images will be saved, so when you come back again, you will be able to compare results and choose the best skincare strategy for you in the moment in time.

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Fancy a pit stop for instantly glowing and radiant skin? Then Skin-Glow LED Light Pod is for you. It is positioned at the back on the store, on the left, behind the staircase and you will experience its rejuvenating qualities or treat problematic skin (each 30 minute session includes a ten minute skin consultation and cleansing, followed by a 20-minute light therapy – if you are lucky you can have a walk-in appointment but it’s not a bad idea to book it in advance ). Just across from the pod area there is an interactive ‘Discovery Zone’ with shelves displaying ‘Sarah’s Edit‘ – non-Skinesis products, like supplements or tools, that Sarah recommends. There is also a large video screen with Sarah’s YoutTube tutorials & product tips. If you are lucky, you might even see Sarah in-store, giving advice between her clients appointments.

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Now, to Sarah’s piece de la resistance, the Clinic. Go up the sweeping staircase and emerge, feeling like Cinderella ready for the ball, after the treatment. There are six treatment rooms upstairs, all benefitting from natural skyline light and a cutting-edge laser therapy room. If you are lucky, you might be booked in with Sarah ( she is famously discreet but her waiting list is a long one & deservedly so, as she has a wise and experienced head on her shoulders, beautiful skin, which is a true testament to her work & lifestyle and a calming demeanour ), otherwise you get a treatment with a dermal therapist trained by Sarah or skilled practitioners, if you fancy a treatment like Botox or dermal fillers.

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While the area downstairs is modern, welcoming and cool, upstairs you experience calmer vibes & get to treat your skin from the inside out as well, with the help of herbal teas displayed for your choosing on a beautiful Art deco trolley.

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I had a chance to ask Sarah about what actually makes her flagship store and Skinesis clinic different to other facialists’ salons and what was the inspiration behind it (I consider this to be one of the joyous perks of my job, as I get to talk to amazingly talented people like Sarah and get a little glimpse behind the scenes ) and she was charmingly descriptive & candid when it came to her answer.

”In terms of the clinic, what makes us different is that we don’t follow a step-by-step formula. I train all my therapists to be ‘thinking therapists’, instilling in them the importance of stopping to look, think and watch, enabling them to tailor your treatment accordingly. This bespoke approach ensures that each treatment caters for exactly what & when your skin needs needs it, for truly transformative results. We also push the boundaries in our approach, using semi-medical techniques with traditional hands and machines.

From the boutique’s perspective, I wanted to mirror the work we do in treatment upstairs with an informative and hands-on approach to retail downstairs. In-store, our skincare experts can take you through a full skin diagnosis with our state of the art Visia Skin Cameras and advise you on the correct skincare approach accordingly. I wanted to be able to fully educate my clients and customers, so we designed a specialist ‘Theory Bar’ where you can enjoy a masterclass in how to use the products, an ‘Image Hub’ full of  instructional video demonstrations and a ‘Discovery Zone’ complete with interactive iPads – all of which are complimentary.

One of the biggest advantages in this new phase of Sarah Chapman London is the space we have,  with flexibility of services that I can now offer my clients. We are now able to offer ‘drop-in’ treatments, which is something I have wanted to offer for a long time but our previous treatment rooms were always at full capacity. Now, you can stop into the Boutique and enjoy a 20 minute Dermalux LED Collagen Therapy ahead of an event or perhaps just for an extra boost, with our state of the art ‘Skinglow LED Light Pod’.

I want to give all my clients and customers the confidence that comes with beautifully healthy skin, offering the means to achieve this through accessibility, be it in treatments, products, education or expertise. I always strive to push the boundaries of skincare, always offering the latest technology and innovation creatively and effectively, so I hope that my flagship Skinesis Clinic and Boutique will become the definitive destination for all your skins needs.”

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Sarah collaborated with award-winning Architects and Designers Studio RHE who managed to harness her approach to skincare & reflect them through elegant designer detailing. Admiring light features, antique mirror finishes & sensuous textures you can’t help but breath out and relax even before you are lead away to your treatment room.

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However we often judge the space by smaller, finer details and I think only a woman can think of a little room, where one can fix make-up discretely after a treatment, before emerging triumphantly into the world from a soothing and relaxing cocoon. On that note, when are YOU planning to visit Sarah’s store & clinic?

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 Sarah Chapman London & Skinesis Clinic

259 Pavillion Road, Sloan Square, London, SW1X 0BP

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IOMA scientific facial

I first came across a beauty brand IOMA PARIS during an anti-ageing show at Olympia, where the products and the team left me feeling intrigued. Then I had another very interesting conversation and diagnostic with the brand’s representative Nikki at Monty’s PR Xmas showcase in the summer ( yes, it happened in July, your read it correctly). My curiosity went up a notch again, especially as I found Nikki not only knowledgable but very calm, in a soothing kind of way. She is one of those people that almost instantly relaxes you when you talk to her. In the middle of October, upon Nikki’s invitation, I came to Harrods brightly lit beauty hall to have an IOMA facial with her.

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The treatment room, located behind a discreet door at the back of the beauty hall is tiny and you can hear the gentle hum of the shopping crowd outside, yet it doesn’t distract you or the therapist and you feel like you are in a gentle, pampering cocoon.

IOMA is a scientific based brand that approaches each of its client’s individually and tailor makes treatments and skincare according to the client’s specific needs. Jean Michel Karam, brand’s founder and CEO took it as one of his main aims to treat his clients in the way that they will see the ‘before’ and ‘after’ results on the computerised screen, after the use of IOMA products. Your skin is assessed by MEMS machine (Micro Electro Mechanical Systems) which detects physical phenomena like pressure, acceleration etc. in a particular environment. In IOMA case MMS are miniaturised and integrated into skin analysis devices that will measure accurately several of skin parameters, like moisturization, clogged pores, bacterial activity, pigmentation, UV damage, redness, fine lines and wrinkles. In the case of bespoke rituals, the formulations will be personalised according to your needs at the moment in time. The machine-

IOMA Beauty
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Perricone M.D & CACI facial at Liberty’s of London-high-tech rejuvenation at its best

Perricone MD is a wonderful beauty brand and I very much enjoy using some of their products, as well as their Omega 3 and Super Berry with Acai supplements-clever  beauty mixed with potent nutriceuticals. Recently Dr. Nicholas V. Perricone M.D. who is a board –certified dermatologist and world-renowned anti-ageing expert, joined forces with CACI, UK’s largest manufacturer and supplier of non invasive aesthetic treatment systems to create a wonderful facial that tones, lifts, rejuvenates and really changes your facial contours, even after one session. Dr Nicholas Perricone actually holds the opinion that: “The CACI Ultra is unrivalled when it comes to maintaining a lifted, firm and toned face and neck.”

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I was invited by Perricone MD Cosmeceuticals team to experience the 45 minute facial in the privacy of the wonderful treatment room in Liberty’s of London ( this year Liberty’s really made a big push with their beauty department and treatments and it seems to be paying off in spades, with more structured product zones, interesting brands and experienced therapists ).

Amid the hussle and bustle of the roaring business on Saturday, I was taken by Giulietta, my facialist, to the treatment room and as soon as she shut the door behind us, the relaxed atmosphere and slightly dimmed lights made my slight nervousness dissipate-I have never had an invasive treatments and trying this high tech facial for the first time, I couldn’t help but wonder what the final result would be like.

Giulietta, who comes from Sardinia, a sweet, statuesque woman with clear, plump skin went through the questionnaire with me first ( making sure that I haven’t had any invasive treatments, like Botox or wasn’t pregnant ) and then explained the treatment to me ( as well as point out the machine and its attachments that she was going to use during the facial ), before she left the room to let me get ready (you need to take your jewelery and watch off ). When she came back a few minutes later, she placed a hair-band around my head, examined my face and started the facial with cleansing my face with Perricone M.D.


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Forlle’d Hyalogy Oxygen Hydraderm facial with Sherron Holder-Culver (SP&Co)

Sherron Holder-Culver works at SP&Co, a health & fitness company located in the basement of Michael Hoppen gallery in Chelsea. Funnily enough, I often pop into the gallery to view their exhibitions, but somehow the fact that there is a gym and a place with interesting health and beauty practitioners downstairs, has escaped me-so much for priding myself on having a sharp eye!

I came in on a quiet sunny Saturday morning and was looking forward to meeting Sherron and trying a Forlle’d Hyalogy oxygen hydraderm facial. Sherron, a lovely woman with masses of beautiful thick curls held away from her face by a red ribbon and a wide smile on her face, welcomed me in and took me to the changing room, asking me whether I wanted a drink ( later we both failed in our efforts to open a tight lidded bottle of CocoJax water, which made both of us laugh, as each one of us thought we had some muscle power in our arms ).

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The room where Sherron works is small but intimately cosy and warm, with wooden shelves at the back housing various products, including one of my favourite brand’s ( Ole Henriksen ) and fluffy brown towels covering the treatment bed.

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Forlle’d is a Japanese brand that uses nano technology in their skincare formulations and Sherron is working exclusively with them in the UK ( while she doesn’t use all of the brand’s products, she is very complimentary about their research and products-I found it reassuringly helpful to know that she is a selective therapist that mixes and matches brands in order to achieve ultimate results ). The facial that I was having is aimed at replenishing essential vitamins, amino and hyaluronic acids and ceramides in your dermis layer-in general this combination is available via injections or mesotherapy ( neither of which I have had in the past  and nor do I plan to have in the immediate future-this girl prefers nature & nurture to anything needle related ).  The treatment began with me getting cosy under the covers and Sherron putting a warm compress over my feet, which almost instantly relaxed my body-don’t forget all the reflexology points on your feet that play a role in relaxing you and easing the tension.

With my hair pulled away from my face, Sherron started with a double cleanse-Forlle’d squalane oil based cleanser cleared my skin from the effect of pollution residue, while the foaming cleanser ( with palm oilbase ) finished the cleansing process. Both cleansers leave your acid levels intact-Sherron holds firm that one’s skin shouldn’t feel ‘squeaky clean’ after you finish cleansing.

This relaxing cleansing ritual was followed by a very indulgent hydration of the skin with pure filter water through the platinum head ( I love clever gadgets ) which opens the pores and lets the products penetrate deeper. Extraction shouldn’t aggravate your skin, according to Sherron ( in my case,  the apples of my cheeks, where I tend to get occasional redness ), the aim instead is to get the balance of the skin right. The area around my nose ( this area on our face is prone to congestion, however it isn’t that easy to clean, unless you go to the facialist or dermatologist ) was gently but effectively attended to and I have to say that there was no redness post treatment.

I am a very big fan of Ole Henriksen ( as my past posts about him and his treatments can testify ) and so is Sherron, who used to work at Ole Henriksen space at Bluebird. She actually knows Ole in person and has done some training with him back in LA. As a consequence she is also a huge admirer of his and uses his products during the treatments and facials that she does. Ole Henriksen chamomile mask was applied to my face ( it smells so nicely I think of summer and green fields with an occasional daisy popping up its head ). Forlle’d P-effect reliance gel then gets applied all over my face , which acts as a perfect skin supplement of the skin, as it contains CoQ10, marine collagen & elastin, as well as a stable form of brightening vitamin C. This gel boosts skin’s moisture retaining function-quite useful be it in the warm or cold time of the year ( the product feels like a slightly liquefied gel and the skin feels remarkably soft after application, as if it has a protective barrier over it ). At the same time an oxygen mask is placed all over my face-well, it’s a plastic mask that sort of stands a small distance away from your face and while very pure oxygen is sprayed all over your face, boosting your skin’s clarity and luminosity. While your face is getting an oxygen treatment, Sherron gives a relaxing foot massage ( you can choose to have an arm one, if you prefer ) and you also have soothing neck and shoulder massage. By the time that my ‘oxygen’ session was almost done, I started feeling slightly woozy and had to ask Sherron to remove it from me. Sometimes a good thing can feel like it is too much, like going skiing and feeling slightly light headed when you go up the mountain slopes-it takes time for the body to adjust. The same applies to oxygen in pure form-we live in very polluted environment and aren’t used to fresh air in the city. Sherron says that if a client is claustrophobic or weary, then they can choose to have ‘an oxygen mouth instead of having a full face’ treatment.

The facial is finished by the oxygen rich spray ( mixed with Forlle’d patented ionised platinum lotion which contains vitamins, ceramides, amino acids, copper, silver and gold, all of which help to stimulate fibroblasts ) that helps to revive, condition and hydrate the skin, as well as boosting collagen and elastin production. 

While Sherron has kind, dancing eyes, she is a very calm and knowledgeable practitioner who is very curious and is constantly learning and researching new things. The equipment that she uses gets imported from Japan ( like an ultra-sonic spatula that boosts circulation and has a lifting effect on the skin ) but when it comes to skincare brands, she prefers to mix and match, in order to best suit her clients needs. She is like an ‘animated chemist’ who wants to be ‘in the know’-it took about six months of research of Forlle’d  ( this brand is quite popular in Russia, in Moscow in particular there are several spas that use their products ) and she only chose the ones that don’t contain ‘blue parabens’.

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When I ask Sherron how this facial came about, she tells me that it is ‘a clinical facial with great added touches’ and it aims to relax the client and get the best results for their skin’. She likes using essential oils and firmly believes in their benefits, so she mixes essential oils for her clients but says that one needs to be selective about which one to use. For example you need to avoid pumpkin essential oil if you have dry skin, while oil like neem and tea tree are good anti-fungals ( helpful if you are prone to skin break-outs ).

We both agree that it’s not about the fancy packaging but about the efficacy and suitability of a product to the client’s skin, that’s why Sherron is particularly complimentary about such brands as This Works, Micheline Arcier, Ole Henriksen, Aromatherapy Associates  and Forlle’d.

What really appealed to me is that Sherron chooses to treat her clients holistically, carefully ascertaining their needs and their skin, giving advice and sometimes making products tailored especially for them. If need be, she will send you to a nutritionist or dermatologist, as well as educate your about skincare and well-being. As she puts it to me ‘the more you educate, the more the person wants to learn. I don’t feel I should short-charge people. You wouldn’t do it to yourself, why do it to others?’

Sherron has Barbadian roots and was brought up in the environment of open door policy, celebrating people and food. Her mother was a cake maker and came from a well-off family, while her father wasn’t as well-off, so really wanted to impress his wife-to-be and her family. Sherron’s mother was nervous of Western medicines, so she tried to create lotions and potions and this love of creativity and mixing, clearly rubbed off on Sherron, who initially mixed products for herself and then progressed to mixing them for the mothers in her children’s nursery and then started selling them on Portobello road. She did a course in massage but really wanted to heal people with good, effective ingredients.

She is an independent spirit who always followed her path, be it while working at Berkeley hotel spa, Le Colon Hotel in Kensington or Oliver’s( ‘a fabulous organic store in Kew gardens’ was how Sherron described it to me ) and Revival( the biggest health centre on Chiswick High street at the time that Sherron worked there ) before ending up working at Bluebird.

 What I very much enjoyed was talking to Sherron and learning about my skin-she  ‘re-assessed’ it several time during the facial, and her comments made sense to me. She aims to tailor make every treatment to your needs, so you can choose a facial ranging from bespoke maintenance, to glycolic peel with oxygen, stem cell anti-ageing, derma-rolling with oxygen & red lights or an express one if you are short on time. Issues like wrinkles, acne scarring or large pores are addressed.

In my case I walk away with advice that I don’t necessarily need to cleanse twice a day. As long as I do a thorough job in the evening, then I can just do a quick wash with warm water in the morning. Another advice is to mix equal parts of lavender and tea tree oils in good quality olive oil ( the one where you can see some residue at the bottom of a glass bottle) and then add some minced garlic, which has anti-bacterial properties. While I tell Sherron there and then that I don’t think I will be using garlic on my face if I can help it .) I really value the depth of analysis and the care that Sherron bestowed on me and the knowledge that she kindly imparts, making me think about my skincare needs and routine-a very good thing! She warned me that I might have some redness around the apples of my cheeks, as my skin re-adjusts itself but it wasn’t drastic and within a few days I noticed an improvement in my skin’s clarity.

To learn more about Sherron and Stephen Price & Co, go to :http://www.spandco.co.uk/SherronHolderProfile.html

3 Jubilee Place, Chelsea, London SW3 7TD tel. 0207 351 3332

For a full list of treatments that Sherron offers, go to:

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