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A luxury facial that works wonders


There are some undeniable benefits to writing Muddy Stilettos. A legitimate excuse to wear elasticated trousers for food reviewing purposes. Walking 5 metres from bedroom to office (known until 8.55am as the kitchen table). Seeing more musicals than is strictly necessary for theatrical reviews. And perhaps, more than anything, trying out facials.

I tried the Environ Luxury Active Vitamin Facial at the Relaxation Rooms in Guildford last week. Environ is the brand that celebrities like Elle Macpherson and Naomi Watts swear by – and it’s this facial that keeps Hilary Swank looking so darned good. (I mean, look at the woman – she’s flipping gorgeous!!)

The treatment combines the freshest and most active forms of vitamin A, C and antioxidants which are pushed deep into the lower layers of the skin using soundwaves and small electrical pulses. It all sounds a bit scientific, and that’s because it is. This treatment is backed by science.  This process stimulates collagen to soften lines and improve elasticity, increase hydration and boost radiance. I noticed a difference in my skin, after just one treatment. Imagine what would happen if I went the whole hog and booked several.

The Relaxation Rooms are just above Multi York, at the top end of North Street. The spa has been there for 12 years, but it’s tucked just around the corner from the main shop fronts, so you might easily miss it. They’ve just reach the finals of the Professional Beauty Awards – among only four others in the South East and London – so you know you’re in excellent hands.

I had my 75 minute treatment with senior therapist, Ashley – who is a walking advertisement for looking after your skin. Wowser, Ashley. Could you be any more gorgeous?


The facial involved firstly a pre-cleanse to remove dirt and oils, before a clay masque which exfoliates through microscrubbing, this was followed by cleansing gel to strip the skin of all oils which allows the big guns, the vitamin A and C serums, to really penetrate the skin.

The vitamin A and C treatment gel is conductive and the electrode is used over areas that are deemed most in need. This bit’s not massively relaxing, but then it’s not uncomfortable or painful either – a little like tiny pins and needles. I quite liked the feeling that something was really penetrating (and hopefully blasting) my wrinkles.

The final part is the ‘Alginate’ masque, which is applied all over the face with a brush – literally – including over the eyes and mouth, leaving only my nostrils so I could breath. It’s thick and cool, and another pulsed electrical current is applied. I could feel a tingling sensation, which again felt like good things were going on. Ashley says this is to help restore pH Levels.


The Algi mask stays on for about 20 minutes, during which time Ashley gave me a hand and arm massage. Finally, after the masque is peeled off, Ashley applied eye cream, an Environ moisturiser  and an SPF.

After my facial, I was taken to the relaxation room where there’s plenty of water and herbal teas, and I was served a small fruit platter. Sadly, I couldn’t stay long because I had to whizz off to a meeting in Ripley. But the platter was a thoughtful tough.

Next time, I’ll build in a little extra time so I can zone out for a little longer.


Environ Luxury Active Vitamin Facial (three areas) is 75 mins and costs £85, or for 90 mins (and 10 areas) it’s £99. As a special offer for Muddy readers, the Relaxation Rooms are offering 25 per cent off the £85  facial for anyone who has not yet had their Environ facial. That makes it £63.75 – so you’d be quite crazy not to really! And don’t forget to let me know what you think.

Relaxation Rooms, 8a North Street, Guildford, GU1 4AF. Tel: 01483 561 110.


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