Your hormone levels can begin dropping 10 years before your final period and then you can say goodbye to plump, problem-free skin and hello to weight gain and hot flushes.

It is all down to the shift in balance of the key hormones cortisol, oestrogen, testosterone and progesterone so rather than just accepting the ‘Change’ it makes sense to get yourself checked out to see quite how bad the problem is because the correct hormonal balance can help delay the signs of ageing.  At our Clinic we have a test which measures these key hormones and one of our experts can advise on diet and lifestyle and prescribe supplements to rebalance you and get the spring back in your step.  Cost is from £499.

And more Good News.  After the menopause, 30% of your collagen is lost causing your skin to thin and sag.  Just what you wanted!  But luckily treatments are being devised all the time and one, HIFU – a revolutionary non-invasive treatment – can treat brows, neck and jowls.  It stimulates collagen, with no downtime and improvements continue for six months.  The results last for 12 months.  We recommend 3 sessions a year to keep your skin firm and lifted.  From £500 per treatment.

My tips:

  • Yes, I know you have heard this before but what you eat can significantly improve your skin.  Healthy fats matter so stock up on oily fish, avocado, nuts and seeds, wholegrains, oats and brown rice.
  • Keep hydrated, but that doesn’t mean more coffee.  Switch to green tea instead as it is high in antioxidants.
  •  Search out products which aid collagen formation.  Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E and Stem Cells help retain moisture.  I developed StemCellutions Miracle Serum for just this purpose.  £50
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The CBD Stressbuster Facial

Another First for The Harley Street Skin Clinic.

As my regular readers will know, I recently posted about how a couple of CBD oil drops under the tongue, helped to take away the pain of my husband’s damaged finger.  At the time I found it hilarious, and thought he was making a fuss over nothing…but recently I tripped over a loose paving stone in Harley Street and sank rather gracefully (well, I thought so!) to the ground.  Luckily a girlfriend was with me and helped to slow the fall so I did not do any lasting damage, except to my dignity.   I was, however, rather shocked…or rather, in shock…so when I returned to the clinic I reached for the CBD drops.  Three drops under the tongue, and voila….30 minutes later I was calmer and the shaking had gone.

For those who are not aware, one of the most talked-about cosmetic ingredients this year has been Cannabidiol (CBD), which is a substance found in the cannabis plant, but without the psychoactive effects of marijuana –  so CBD will not get you ‘high’ or into a mind-altering state …but it is proving to be a useful tool in pain and anxiety relief as well as helping to reduce acne and stressed skin when applied topically, due to its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities.

Here at The Harley Street Skin Clinic we have been recommending CBD sublingual drops to our patients for a while as part of their overall wellness – and with good results – so the next stage was to look at the best way of using CBD oil directly on the skin as part of a skincare regime.  We  tried a few variations using willing friends and family, and again the results were very good, with reports of glowing skin and reduction of acne breakouts……which is why we have developed the first facial using CBD oil …..the CBD Stressbuster.

Firstly 3 drops of CBD  are taken sublingually as CBD has the ability to act on the brain’s serotonin receptors to relax and calm.  Then the skin is double-cleansed to thoroughly remove all debris and accumulated dirt followed by a relaxing, deep tissue massage using more CBD oil, concentrating on key pressure points, to help detox stressed skin and to restore a natural glow.  Finally a light film of CBD cream is applied to seal and protect the skin.

The brand of CBD we have been using, and selling in the Clinic, is by MariPharm because it is the purest CBD oil we tried, with a clear, yellow colour and a neutral taste.  Plus MariPharm operate according to photo-parmaceutical standards, guaranteeing a consistent CBD content.  This is important.

We only added this facial in the past few days, but we have already booked in several celebrity patients who have been delighted with the results.

If you fancy trying it for yourself the CBD Stressbuster Facial takes one hour and costs £120.00.  Phone 0207 436 4441

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Taking care of the pennies…

One of the biggest issues Nurse Kumar has is patients coming in to her clinics asking for a procedure  they have heard about.  “Women are more savvy than ever in their research,” she says.  “There is a lot of information in the media, and now television programmes that cover aesthetic procedures.”  The problem is that one size most certainly does not fit all. “It might not be the right thing for the patient so you have to be very careful not to go by just what they say they think they need.  Part of the skill is to recommend and advise so people can get the results they want.”

Tip – ‘Do your research for sure but stay open to what the expert you sees recommends; it’s more important that you research your cosmetic practitioner. 

One important aspect of being a top practitioner is respecting clients’ finances. “I tailor the plan according to their budget. If I know it’s a short term fix and they don’t have much money, then I think differently because people have a limited amount of money and I don’t want them to feel embarrassed if they can’t afford an extensive treatment plan.”

Still the most popular treatments in her practice are fillers and Botox… normally in combination. “But I do recommend peels, perhaps an enzyme peel where you just remove the dead skin to a glycolic peel to decongest the skin or for low grade acne or pigmentation.”

It’s a vastly different world from Nurse Kumar’s seventeen years spent in child protection and child health.  “If children disclosed to members of school staff, or to me, that they could have been abused, sexually, emotionally or physically,  I would get involved with the police and social services.  But I was also educating teachers on medical conditions they should be able to spot in children….such as diabetes, epilepsy and allergies and eczema.”

Tip – ‘I’ve noticed an increase in clients asking about skincare; they now prefer to buy from an aesthetic clinic than from one of the big name brands in department stores as they are medical grade and more effective.’

She gave emotional help when it came to children’s skin conditions. “One boy in particular had terrible eczema and was being bullied because he looked terrible. It was having such an impact on him.  That’s when I realised the emotional implications of how you look and it made me want to get into aesthetics. In fact one of my first patients was a lady in her fifties who had acne and it was after her sixth treatment she said that for the first time since she was fourteen she had left home without make-up, which was very heartwarming.”

As for the future, “The industry is evolving every day, every minute. There are new gadgets and new machinery but I thing you have got to be really careful when there are so many people trying to start new things all the time because it’s very easy to be manipulated into thinking ‘I’m not a good enough practitioner if I don’t have the latest machine’.  It’s not so much the machine but what you do with it as an aesthetic practitioner that makes you good.”

Reeta Kumar of Rejuvea and Harley Street Skin




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Face Firmers – The Fast Way to Plump, Youthful Skin

Skin tightening and firming treatments are one of the biggest trends for plump youthful skin. Here’s a round up of the latest non surgical  treatments and how they work.

Fast Face Firmer  
Forma uses next level radio frequency energy and can treat sagging skin on the entire face or just certain areas, including upper and lower eyelids jowls, smile lines and the forehead. It also improves skin tone and any skin texture irregularities. During the treatment a hand held device is massaged over the treatment areas, heating the dermis and tissues. This kick starts a supply of new collagen as well as contracting and tightening the layers of the skin to give a gentle lift.  It suits all skin types, has no down time and is ideal for those who prefer a natural-looking approach to rejuvenate their complexion, rather than using fillers or laser. The treatment is painless with no downtime and best results are achieved after a course of six to eight treatments.
The Ultimate Hi Tech Way to Lift and Plump
High Intensity Focused Ultrasound  (HIFU) is one of the latest ways to achieve tighter, firmer and lifted skin in one treatment.  A machine delivers a series of ultrasound pulses that bypass the skin’s top layers and goes into the deep underlying connective tissue to stimulate the production of collagen, elastin and other proteins. The treatment can be used around the brows and neck as well as for overall skin tightening and rejuvenation on the face. You’ll see best results after two to three months when new collagen has formed. There may have a little redness or bruising after the treatment, but this can easily be covered and you may experience some tenderness for up to 14 days.   Results can last up to one year
Similar to having a mini face-lift, this one-off non-invasive procedure can tighten saggy skin on the forehead, around the eyes, cheeks, mouth and jowls and rejuvenate the overall appearance of the face. Not for those who want an instant fix as best results are seen three to six months post procedure.    Facetite uses RF radio frequency and works by warming the skin with a fine probe that is inserted into the fatty layer just under the skin. This process does not remove tissue, but causes the skin to tighten instantly and then over the following three to six weeks new collagen is produced so you will see a continuous improvement.  You can expect up to 40per cent of skin tightening up to six months after treatment. Expect some swelling and bruising for up to seven days Results can last up to five years depending on lifestyle.
A procedure to ‘wake up’ the skin, lift features and boost collagen so skin will be tighter and fresher. Can be used all over the face including around eyes, cheeks and mouth and can help plump wrinkles, and fade sunspots and thread veins. Younger skin may only need one treatment but older skin may need up to four sessions.  A small hand held device is placed against the treatment areas and radio frequency energy is passed through a series of tiny bipolar pins, which heats the skin and causes tiny pin prick holes that the body naturally heals. Recovery is a week to ten days. Expect swelling and bruising during the first week.


*As with most ageing processes, prevention is better than cure when it comes to skin losing its taut appearance so:

* Quit smoking – it accelerates skin ageing and damages the collagen in your skin, hence the tell-tale sagging and crepey skin seen in smokers.

*Sun exposure is the prime reasons for hastening collagen loss so wear an SPF20 broad-spectrum cream that protects against UVA and UVB rays EVERY day.
*Ask a dermatologist to prescribe a retinoid cream – the gold standard for skin rejuvenation as it can stimulate collagen, keeping the skin looking plump and healthy.

*Exfoliate at least a couple of times a week.  This helps speed up skin and collagen renewal.
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The Apprentice who won with Aesthetics

Dr Leah Totton may be best known as the winner of The Apprentice in 2013, but  by doing so she not only won the backing of Sir Alan Sugar, she also was privy to his business expertise. “I’ve now got a really amazing business partner, who gave us a fantastic leg up into the industry, but building a credible medical brand is by no means done for you by winning a TV show,” she says. “It’s a very competitive industry and you have to make sure you are leading the way. And the only possible way of doing that is to offer an excellent customer experience.”

A cosmetic dermatologist, Dr Leah has established herself as her own brand with her own skincare line and two Dr Leah Cosmetic Skin Clinics, one in Moorgate in the City of London and one in Leyton in Essex.  “There are differences between the two clinics and what women and men want.  In Leyton, where sun-beds used to be very popular, there is more sun damage, so we do a lot more advanced peeling and microdermabrasion, acne treatments too and lip augmentation.  The clientele is younger as well, mainly women in their twenties and thirties in Leyton, whereas in the City it tends to corporate female professionals from say 42 to 55 for Botox and general anti-ageing rather than facials which they don’t have time for.    We see many more men in the City  and the most common treatments are Botox and hyperhidrosis, [excessive underarm sweating that can be treated with Botox].”

Tip – ‘Pollution is a huge issue for my ladies who live in cities. I recommend they use Obagi Professional 20% C-Serum to neutralise free radicals before they can attack the skin and cause ageing.

Unusually  for a cosmetic practitioner, Dr Leah still practises as a GP at a London NHS hospital two days a week. “I trained as a doctor and that is my vocation and I really missed clinical medicine. Actually I think that being a good clinician is paramount to being a good aesthetic doctor and now I’ve got a lovely balance which makes me enjoy and appreciate both.” It’s telling too that Dr Leah became involved in aesthetics when her aunt had some dermal filler done by a beautician in Derry, in Northern Ireland.  “It went quite badly wrong and although she had it dissolved she is now permanently scarred from it.”

In her clinics, however, it is thread lifts that Dr Leah sees as the treatment of the future.  “We are about to launch the Dr Leah Lift which is the Silhouette Soft Thread lift with the Obagi peel.”  For the uninitiated, a thread lift involves  – literally – a thread inserted in the lower face to lift sagging skin, creating a firmer, younger look. It will eventually dissolve but has the added benefit of increasing collagen production.  “Our other doctors do a lot of Botox and filler, as you would imagine, but I focus mainly on facial sagging and thread lifts.”

Has she had a thread lift? “I’m 29! But when the time comes and my face starts to become saggy I will definitely think about it.  But I should be good for another ten years.”

Dr. Leah Cosmetic Skin Clinics – Moorgate and Leyton

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Unlock your Genetic Code and take control of Anti-Ageing

Lesley talks with Angela Beecroft, who regular readers of this blog will know who helped her with Losing It!

Imagine a world where we can reset our genes and radically slow down the ageing process where lifestyle changes can alter the way you age? Well thanks to the latest cutting edge research that world is closer than you may think!

Your genetic code is the hand you have been dealt, your unique blueprint defines your biochemical makeup and body shape, it influences how you stay physically and mentally fit as you age. If you have won the genetic lottery you may stay flawless, skinny with a flat tummy and be blessed with long legs and good muscle tone, however the majority of us end up with an expanding waistline, loss of muscle tone, thinning bones, cellulitis, wrinkles, declining memory and various parts of our anatomy heading south.

The good news is that scientists have unlocked the genetic code finding new ways for us to take control of our genes, rather remarkably around 90% of the signs of ageing and disease are caused by lifestyle and can be influenced by the three pillars of healing: our choices of food, exercise and mindfulness. How you live your life, your environment, your inner biochemistry, your thoughts all influence how you age.

The Human Genome project was completed in 2003, since then scientists have strived to identify the specific genetic switches which influence metabolism, weight, skin health, disease, cognitive decline and overall ageing. The turning on and off of genes is called Epigenetics: your genes load the gun and your environment pulls the trigger, as the body of knowledge grows so does our ability to influence gene activity. There is much more to learn about Epigentics, this exciting field of research is expanding at a phenomenal speed.

Whatever your age it’s never too late to influence how you age! One of my clients is extremely glamorous, in great shape, runs 5k every day, takes no medication, has bags of energy and lives life to the full, she is 73 and hasn’t had a cold for as long as she can remember and wakes every day feeling great! She has a great health span, the period of time you can thrive, living in harmony, without any illness and feeling healthy and happy and bursting with vitality.

Life in the 21st century means many of us are trudging along on our “hamster wheel” of life, exposed to increasing stress levels, pollution, pesticides, preservatives, inactivity, bad fats, high sugar consumption and chronic sleep deprivation. Sounds familiar? Well you now have a choice, step off the hamster wheel and take control and invest in your future health for optimal ageing.

Let’s look at what influences our genes.

There are 6 specific genes that affect ageing and have the greatest impact on your health. If you have a variant on this gene (a small change that can influence whether the gene behaves in a positive or negative way) what you eat, drink and environmental factors can turn these genetic variants on or off.

  1. Fat Mass and Obesity associated (FTO) Gene, this gene influences your risk of obesity and diabetes, it is responsible for how hungry you feel and how quickly you feel full after eating. A high fibre, low carbohydrate personalised diet with increased exercise helps balance blood sugar levels, lower insulin levels to prevent the middle weight gain and the development of Diabetes Type 2.
  2. Methylation Gene (MTHRF) this plays a role in processing B Vitamins, proteins and alcohol, a variant on this gene may lead to mental health issues, depression and a greater risk of Cardiovascular disease. High homocysteine levels associated with a variant on this gene can be reduced with a green smoothie full of Folate, B6 & B12.
  3. Vitamin D Gene, VDR Gene influences your ability to absorb Vitamin D which is clearly necessary for health bones, if you have a variant on this gene you are more likely to suffer bone loss so you require a higher levels than the recommended daily Vitamin D intake of 1000-2000 IU per day.
  4. Longevity Genes, (mTOR) (FOX03) (SIRT1) these regulate cell growth and healthy cell division, telomere activity and lifespan, so a variant on these genes may have a profound impact on your lifespan. Telomeres are rather like a hair plait, as you age the telomere unravels Influencing cell division, they are the timekeepers of the cell and as the telomere unravels you age.


Where do we start? Well let’s start with the foundation block of our health – “The Human Microbiome”- this is the 2 kilo of bacteria that live in your gut, from your mouth to your bottom you have a balanced system of microbes, this changing ecosystem is the very foundation block of your health and has a profound effect on every system in the body. Your gut microbes constantly communicate with your genes influencing how they behave so it makes sense to start with improving gut health. Every folk full of food either promotes or reduces inflammation, every folk full of full is full of microbes, the health of your gastrointestinal tract determines if the microbes are harmful or friendly.

One size fits all is now an outdated model for Medicine, the last 3 decades of low fat, high sugar, low fibre, high carbohydrate consumption in highly processed foods have left a terrible legacy with increasing levels of chronic health issues which have their roots in inflammation and toxicity, people are living longer with conditions including Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Heart Disease and Cancers, the treatment of which is crippling our health services. The Institute of Functional Medicine has given us a blueprint to change the way we do Medicine to take a personalised approach to the healthcare we practice. We all want to live a long healthy lifespan where we have optimal health and function.

We now have tremendous potential and the tools to make this happen.


Top tips to switch on your longevity genes!

  1. Look after your gut, take a good quality probiotic capsule to repopulate the beneficial bacteria for at least a month a year and eat the following prebiotic foods which feed the good bugs: blueberries, garlic, chickpeas, chicory, oats, artichoke hearts, asparagus, apples and green bananas. Increase your intake of gentle fibre by adding milled Flaxseed meal to breakfast, soups or a smoothie, this promotes gut motility (how your gut moves) and helps removes toxins. A low carbohydrate high fibre diet can influence the activity of the (FTO)Gene.
  1. Eat 20% less food and at least a pound of different coloured vegetables a day, aim for a rainbow plate at every meal, limit your intake of lean red meat to 1-2 times a week and increase fresh fish, seafood, chicken, use pulses & legumes and root vegetables as your carbohydrates.
  1. Make good fats your friend, have a daily intake of Omega 3 fats from cold water fish, salmon, fresh tuna, mackerel, sardines & anchovies, & Omega 6 fats from nuts & seeds and their cold pressed oils which you don’t heat! Cook with organic coconut oil. Avoid sunflower, canola, corn and all hydrogenated oils.
  1. Avoid dairy, sugar and gluten and processed beige foods, use grains such as buckwheat, quinoa and gluten free oats in minimal amounts
  1. Have intermittent fasting for 12-18 hours once to twice a week, this can switch on the SIRT1 longevity gene, so don’t eat from 6pm to 12 midday the next day.
  1. Move, engage in exercise that you love that makes you sweat at least 3 times a week.
  1. Meditation not only helps lower your Cortisol levels (the stress hormone), decreases anxiety but it also increases brain plasticity (the way your brain cells talk to each other)
  1. Sitting in a sauna for 20 minutes 3 times a week is thought to switch on your Longevity Gene (FOX03)
  1. Reduce your alcohol intake for Freshly pressed red grape juice, pomegranate juice & cherry juice which contain compounds which influence your SIRT1 longevity Gene. Drink bone broth, miso & coconut milk kefir
  1. Oral hygiene, taking good care of your gums, teeth and oral cavity has an amazing effect on health, bugs in your mouth can migrate into your blood stream with poor oral hygiene and influence immune activity. Swish coconut oil around your mouth for 10 minutes daily to improve your oral microbiome, plague prevention and gum health.


Mark is a 74 year old gentlemen who has a passion for life and his health, he engages in skiing and cycling, follows the above principles, using Functional Nutrition we have improved his “gut microbiome” tested his DNA so he eats according to his genes, he meditates often, sees the beauty in his environment and lives life to the full, his DNA age came out at 58 years which is remarkable 16 years younger than his chronological age.

Functional Nutrition Consultations uses a whole system approach to optimise your health span and longevity.   An initial consultation serves to guide you in the direction of specific Functional testing for you, depending on your family and past medical history. We can explore your “Human Microbiome” with Map My Gut, measure your DNA age and unlock your unique genetic code.

Angela Beecroft

To book an appointment phone 0207 436 4441

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The Lip Lady of Lancashire

“This is the best job in the world,” enthuses Nurse Pawson who has a small discreet clinic six miles from Preston which she credits – along with her skill – as one of her tools of success.  “One of the secrets to a busy aesthteics practice is 100 per cent discretion because Botox and fillers are still a massive taboo, “she says.  “We are down a little country road in the middle of nowhere with a tiny sign, which could have been business suicide.  But it’s actually made us really busy now and makes a difference with online reviews which are increasingly important to business because people read them and then travel to see us.”


Now working ninety hours a week, Nurse Pawson has a very different medical background to what she is doing now. “I was a chemotherapy nurse, but around ten years ago I decided to do something else but still in the caring profession. A friend suggested I look into aesthetics.  And although sometimes I miss the buzz of the wards, I haven’t looked back.”

Tip – ‘Do your research; a lots of beauty therapists are passing themselves off as practitioners even wearing nurses outfits, so for all intents and purposes people think they are medically trained. Always ask to see qualifications; if they don’t or can’t produce them, leave.’

Since she started has she seen developments?  “There have been massive changes. When I began, The Look was lots of filler and no facial movement whatsoever;  I used to go to aesthetic conferences and they were like freak-shows. I hated that.”

Her starting point with all her patients is skin quality.  “ I do a lot of peels  because I believe that good, hydrated and smooth skin is a hundred times more important than injectables.  I use the Perfect Peel.… and for a lighter effect, the Alumier Peel …to get rid of all the lifeless, dead skin cells and visible damage.  The results are baby-smooth skin with no visible ageing open pores.  I do my own peels twice a year and although it’s a bit Samantha out of Sex and the City, the results are second to none.”

Tip – ‘When it comes to skincare I have my own range but whatever you use it should be high in vitamin C for anti-oxidants and Vitamin A for skin renewal. And obviously an SPF, which everybody should be on anyway on a daily basis. Those are really the three things that your skin needs.’


Also known as The Lip Lady of Lancashire, Nurse Pawson has made her name for  her ability in creating naturally plump lips, but she also deals with others mistakes.  “I still see lumpy, bumpy lips with infections,” she says.   “It’s come from this ridiculous fashion of the top lip being bigger than the bottom making women look like ducks because the dimensions of the lips are all wrong. The dimensions should be 40% on the upper lip and 60% on the bottom lip to create a balanced mouth.”

Nurse Julie Pawson of JPA Clinic in Ribchester, Lancashire.


The top tip from all our experts?  Wear factor 50 every day, come rain, shine or snow.  New Epionce Daily Shield Lotion Tinted SPF 50  is a new old best friend. (£45

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Long in the tooth

It’s an old phrase but we all know what it means….. to be old!  So considering that this phrase has been synonymous with old age, isn’t it surprising that the mouth and teeth have been overlooked when it comes to anti-ageing treatments.

Well no longer! Andrew Parkman talks to Lesley about what ages a smile and one simple thing we can do, or can have done, to combat this and stop us looking long in the tooth.

Colour – Cleaning versus Whitening.

The first place to start is the colour of the teeth. As we age our teeth naturally get darker. This is due to internal, as well as external factors.

The main cause of darker teeth is external. It’s staining. And the good news is that this can be cleaned off! We can control staining by reducing the things which we eat and drink that cause staining. For example, if you drink either tea or coffee without milk, you will notice that by the end your nice porcelain cup will be quite stained. If you drink tea or coffee with milk you will notice that your cup has little or no staining.

Red wine is another example, although I wouldn’t suggest drinking red wine with milk! Perhaps having a glass of water and alternating with the red wine. Or switch to white wine.

Tip1. Reduce staining by having less of the things that cause staining.

As I said stains can be cleaned off. This can be by you or by a dental hygienist. You can reduce staining by cleaning off the soft deposits on the teeth called plaque. But plaque becomes hard over time and this is called calculus or tartar. Tartar is a porous hard deposit that loves to absorb stain onto its rough surface. When tartar builds up it needs to be cleaned off by a dentist or hygienist.

Tip2. Clean the soft plaque off your teeth twice a day.  DO NOT use an abrasive toothpaste. In the long run this will lead to more staining, as the enamel wears away and the tooth will be left with a rough surface which staining can cling to. There are now some really good charcoal toothpastes which help to absorb staining. They tend to be black so it can be a bit off putting but they do really work.

Tip3. Have the hard tartar cleaned off regularly by a hygienist. Don’t give the stain anywhere to cling to.

Tip4. Air-polishing. When the hygienist cleans my teeth, I get her to do something we call an “air-polish”. It brings the teeth up to as white as they can be without using bleach to whiten them.  The good news is it’s simple and quick and relatively cheap.

Now for the internal discolouration.

A tooth is made up of 2 layers of hard tissue. The top layer (the bit we can see) is the enamel. The layer underneath is called dentine. The general colour or shade of the tooth is predominantly determined by the dentine, firstly its colour and secondly its thickness or density. As we get older the colour of the teeth darkens naturally as the thickness and density of the dentine increases. You can see dentine if your gums have receded and some of the root is showing. The root of a tooth has no enamel and is only dentine.

The good news is that you can alter the colour of the enamel and the dentine. This is what we do when we do “tooth whitening”. We use a bleach to penetrate the enamel and even the dentine underneath and thus whiten the teeth. At this point I should point out that there are different forms of bleach. Some of them are safe to use in the mouth and some are not. Because of this in the UK it is the law that bleaching can only be prescribed and carried out by dental professionals. I have seen countless examples of people who have damaged teeth from having the wrong type of bleach used on their teeth.

Tip5. Have your teeth whitened only by your dentist. After all bleach is a poison! It is important that it is administered correctly and appropriately.

There are different ways of whitening (bleaching) teeth.

1.     Light or laser activated whitening at the dentist.  Good for getting a quick result – leave to go for lunch come back to the office with whiter teeth!  Down sides are less longevity, greater sensitivity and less control for you. From £450

2.     2. Whitening using whitening trays – sometimes called “home whitening”.   Good because there is less sensitivity. More control for you as a patient as to how much whiter the teeth go.  Greater longevity as it’s easy to top-up whitening in the future. From £395

3.     Or a combination of both. It depends on the time constraints, sensitivity and longevity.   By combining both methods you can potentially reduce sensitivity, speed up the treatment and achieve longevity. The down side is that this is the most expensive way to whiten the teeth. From £650

The big down side to whitening is the sensitivity. However, sensitivity means that it is working. It usually happens around day 3 of home whitening. It can subside, but occasionally stays for the entire process and for some days after. The good news is that it is usually simple to control and does go away.

The other down side to whitening is that fillings, crowns, caps, bridges and veneers will not change colour as the teeth are whitened. So, these may need to be changed after the whitening treatment to match them to your new tooth colour. Teeth that have had root canal treatments can be darker than your natural teeth. Root treated teeth may whiten with tooth whitening, BUT it is likely that the change in shade will be much slower in these teeth.

In conclusion

Teeth darken with age. Therefore, whiter teeth make a person look younger. Whiter teeth also hide any discrepancies in the shape, size and position of teeth.

Start simple and have the teeth cleaned, have an air-polish if possible. (I never whiten teeth that are not clean) You might be surprised at how white your natural teeth can look. Get rid of the outer stain and then keep them clean with good oral hygiene and using a good quality stain reducing toothpaste. Be careful what you eat and drink. Steer clear of foods and drinks that can cause staining.

Whitening: Have the teeth whitened by a professional. Make sure that they have checked that there are no fillings, crowns, etc that may not whiten. And that you have a plan for these teeth so that you have a good outcome. Follow your dentists’ advice and pick the whitening process that is the most suitable for you. 



Andrew Parkman.

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From Fillings to Fillers

Having practised as a dentist for fifteen years before becoming an aesthetic doctor, it was Dr Emma Ravichandran’s mother who suggested that she look further away from paediatric dentistry.  “My mum said ‘Maybe you could do some of this for me’!” she says.  “So I did an introductory course into Botox and fillers in 2006 and carried on doing aesthetics alongside dentistry,” explains Dr Ravichandran.  “But after a year my boss said to me ‘you’ve got one foot on the boat and one foot on the pier’ and I had to make up my mind. And I chose this direction.”

But a dental background has given untold benefits to her technique.  “Because of my dental background, I try to correct any anomalies around the mouth. Say somebody has a weak chin, then you can bring that forward, with filler such as Profhilo.

And I get referrals from other dentists.   For instance, if a patient has a gummy smile, I can help that by using a toxin; I favour Bocouture which has the most amount of active toxins.”

Tip – If you sleep on one side you will always have less volume on that side which is ageing, so try to alternate the side you sleep on.

But working in Scotland has another advantage to the rest of the UK – new regulations. “Aesthetic clinicians are being regulated by the Scottish government which is definitely in the public interest,” explains Dr Ravichandran.  Now, only registered healthcare professionals who have achieved an expert standard of training to will be allowed to practice and there will be mandatory registration to all cosmetic practitioners, including beauty therapists.    This is a huge step in the right direction and one the rest of the UK should follow. “Of course it’s vital for public safety,” Dr Ravichandran continues. “But if you come to a registered clinic with a doctor or nurse who has really invested a lot of time learning and aspiring to provide proper anti-ageing medicine versus someone just carrying out  the procedure of injections or the dreaded ‘Botox parties’, you will get much better results.”

As for herself, at 41 she has had “a little bit of toxin” since hitting 35.  “I definitely do not subscribe to the frozen look and like to make everything look natural.”  Fillers, she says are best to help replace the fat and lift the cheeks as gravity takes it’s hold and jowls appear.  Does she still do the odd filling?  “No, not at all, not for fun! No, definitely not.”

Tip:  Slapping on hand cream every-time you wash your hands will only go so far – “use a high SPF 50 waterproof body lotion for even more protection” suggests Dr Ravichandran.  


Dr Emma Ravichandran, is the co-founder of Clinetix clinics in Glasgow and Bothwell in Scotland

Posted in Anti-Ageing, Ask the expert, Body Beautiful, celebrity, Glowing Skin, Harley Street Skin Clinic, Lesley Reynolds | Leave a comment

No Munchies Required!

As you all probably are aware of by now,  I am married to Dr. Aamer Khan,  a cosmetic doctor whose skills and delicate touch with the needle is well documented.  A sprinkle of Botox here…a mini dash of Profhilo there.  A surgical thread lift in super-quick time…no problem.  All these and more are part of his daily life, so when he trapped his fingers in a drawer recently it was a major disaster.
Clearly it was painful, but I initially dismissed the noise and cursing as a normal masculine approach to illness.  Man flu ring a bell anyone?  However, I had to eat my words when the swelling began and one finger in particular looked as though it had been broken.  Scans revealed not, but it was pretty obvious that it was going to be a while until that particular finger was going to be in good working order again.  Luckily, his body seems to have a good recovery process and he was soon back to work….but the finger still ached and was definitely much stiffer than the others. 
Ibroprofen helped, but being an impatient person (!) he started researching what else might be out there to help.  As luck would have it, there was a huge amount of publicity about the use of medical cannabis for conditions such as epilepsy (was it legal etc)  so he began there ….and discovered cannabidiol..CBD to you and me.  
Now to be clear..Yes, CBD is derived from the cannabis plant..but No, you cannot get high from it as it does not contain the element which is mind-altering…that’s called THC and illegal in the UK.
The mere mention of cannabis is likely to send everyone into fits of laughter with the word ‘munchies’ being bandied around…rather too fondly in some cases!  But the benefits of medicinal cannabis are being being studied at the moment particularly for multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, Parkinson’s  and inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, because if it works it will be a huge breakthrough.
In the meantime, there are two versions of CBD currently, and legally, available in the UK:
CBD Cream is a brilliant moisturiser, as it has more of the essential fatty acids our skin needs than any other vegetable oil.  It’s anti-inflammatory too, so the anti-ageing possibilities are really quite exciting and many well-known skincare companies are looking at incorporating CBD into their ranges, particularly those dealing with acne or eczema flare-ups.
CBD Oil, which is what my husband used.   A couple of drops taken orally, under the tongue worked almost immediately….well pain relief in around 30 minutes is pretty immediate in my book….then fingers were flexed and all was well.  And so it has continued whilst the finger healed.
He was so impressed that I was tempted to try it for myself despite the fact that I was never a fan of cannabis in any form, so have I never tried it before… but because I have high stress levels due to my day-to-day life I wanted to see if it could help take the edge off…to calm me down.  It does.  Plus I have higher concentration levels too.
To be honest, in the beginning, we were both a tad sceptical, but after our personal experiences we decided to conduct some trials in the Clinic and are currently testing both the cream and the oils on patients with acne or scarring.  We are cautiously optimistic, but these things take time so the results will not be available for a few months, and I will report back then.
The brand we are using is MariPharm
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