Facialist Anouk Biard in her Paris studio
© Arthur-Castillon

The queen of lift: Anouk Biard, Paris 
Biard is the go-to for the Paris set, known for stripping away the multitude of steps beloved by many facialists in favour of a hands-on massage using a specially blended treatment oil (sourced from her local herboristerie). Her technique, evolved from the Japanese art of kobido, involves a rhythmic, delicate press-and-release dance across the face that on first experience might prompt the thought, “Is this it?”, yet swiftly gives way to hypnotic nirvana. Results are impressive: skin plumped and lifted, braced with new oxygen, and eyes glittering from the lymphatic detox. Kobido facial, €110 for 60 minutes; DM @abmassagekobido for bookings

See also: the “cosmic-lifting” technique of Paris-based Sophie Carbonari; sophiecarbonari.com

Facialist Keren Bartov
© Keren Bartov

The tech wizard: Keren Bartov, London
Carved arms, Valentino kitten heels and a skirt split to the thigh: Keren Bartov is out-and-out fabulous. Now with 17 years’ experience between her studios in Notting Hill and Tel Aviv, she no longer offers a menu, she simply looks at skin under the magnifier. “We’ll decide what’s best,” she says. Her technique is to deploy many machines. Treatments include skin-tightening radio frequency, toning ultrasound and collagen-stimulating cold plasma. She’s particularly celebrated for “the glow” she gives her clients’ skin after a session. Bespoke facial, from £650 for 90 minutes; kerenbartov.co.uk 

Products on the shelves in Bartov’s clinic
Products on the shelves in Bartov’s clinic © Keren Bartov

See also: Adeela Crown. Known as The Skin Engineer, the HTSI contributing editor is a red-carpet and film-set favourite and also writes our monthly beauty column, Ask Adeela; adeelacrown.com

Cynthia Rivas
© Susan Shek

The radiance restorer: Cynthia Rivas, New York and Paris residency
Rivas – luxuriant hair, shirt dress and Gucci slides – has a reputation for being the models’ favourite. She takes a residency in Paris for Fashion Week each season, but otherwise can be found on the Upper East Side in a private studio. She spent several years in a busy NYC dermatology clinic before going solo, and offers a personal shopping consultation for skincare as part of the appointment. Her signature facial features  an antioxidant vitamin infusion, delivering mega-watt moisture as it invigorates and fortifies. And Rivas is gutsy and practised enough to perform a three-way exfoliation in a single appointment – mechanical, enzyme and acid –  which means the utmost radiance. Signature Customized Facial, from $495, cynthiarivasskincare.com

See also: Giulio Borbon of Milanese clinic Studio Borbon – who also administers vitamin drips and booster hits; studioborbon.com

Guendalina Gennari
Guendalina Gennari

The super-sculptor: Guendalina Gennari, London
It’s usually the case that a holistic treatment and a results-driven facial are mutually exclusive. Gennari breaks the mould. Her advanced facial, offered in the spa-like surroundings of her Notting Hill “salon” (don’t say clinic), is both effective and a delight. It takes a bespoke approach that builds on a scrupulous cleanse, extractions and a hands-on massage that doesn’t hold back. An arsenal of techniques whip, cajole and stretch the muscles and ligaments. As cheekbones are sculpted and jawlines sharpened, whole-body relaxation sets in. This is the facial for the sleep-deprived and cortisol-challenged. Cooling, skin-enlivening oxygen and tailored product application conclude proceedings, plus a final application of SPF50. Advanced facial bespoke, £400 for 90 minutes; guendalinatheskinsculpter.com

Products on show in Gennari’s salon in Notting Hill
Products on show in Gennari’s salon in Notting Hill

See also: Alexandra Soveral, the holistic mistress of the facial massage; alexandrasoveral.co.uk

Fatma Shaheen

The tightening titan: Fatma Shaheen, London
If your wardrobe staples are from The Row and your shopper Goyard, you’ll understand a facial with Shaheen is more than the sum of its parts. Her treatment room is in the inner sanctum of Matches Townhouse on Mount Street (so it’s Baccarat crystal for your water), but she also does regular residencies in New York, Paris and LA. Shaheen, a self-titled “skin designer”, is dynamic and assertive. It’s easy to understand her appeal with the judicious fashion set. Needling is key for “tightening!” – which she’s enthusiastic about. She is liberal with highly potent actives (from her own well-regarded product range), while using radio frequency and an extraordinary mechanical suction tool to stimulate new collagen, which latches on like a newborn to deliver plumped skin. The impact is immediate and obvious, rather like a new outfit. The Vitamin Skin Juice Treatment, 60 minutes, £1,000. skindesignlondon.com

See also: Sarah Chapman – long-term go-to of the Chelsea set, who also has an excellent eponymous product range; sarahchapman.com

The go-to for glow: Lisa McAvoy, London
McAvoy’s masterful maintenance facials include a deep cleanse, a brightening peel, thorough extractions, needling with active skincare, and lymph-draining massage to promote a luminous, smoothed complexion. Extra radiance is found via LED therapy. Her extraction technique ensures milia and blackheads are seen off with minimum fuss and she applies her punchy exfoliating acids with kindness. Her speciality is a glowing complexion without tipping into downtime. She’s the kind of warm, unaffected person you want to see a lot. Maintenance with Micro-Needling, £250 for 90 mins; 07809 225 112

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