The first thing you need to know about FaceGym is that’s it’s not actually a gym; however, it’s incredibly committed to the metaphor, so stick with me: FaceGym is “a gym studio for your face” where “trainers” perform a range of noninvasive, high-energy “workouts” (i.e. facials) to lift, sculpt, tone, and tighten the forty muscles of your face. FaceGym Notting Hill does kind of look like a gym too—albeit a very smart, fresh-scented one, with polished mirrors, high-ceilings, and natural-wood ballet barres.
Some of the facials offered include cutting-edge technology like radiofrequency and cryotherapy. My treatment, the Signature Electric facial, uses an electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) device called the FaceGym Pro.
The tech is used alongside high-performance FaceGym-brand skincare products, as well as products by Irish skincare brand Pestle & Mortar and dermatological brand Royal Fern.
With locations throughout London, Manchester, and New York City, FaceGym was founded by beauty journo Inge Theron as a healthy, zero-risk alternative to invasive, unregulated facial treatments.
After filling in a quick form on an iPad, I was seated in one of five reclining chairs to start the forty-minute Signature Electric facial. The “workout” starts with a “warm-up stretch” where a firm rubber ball is gently pressed into my forehead and towel-cloaked clavicles to release tension. My skin is then cleansed and refreshed with a hot towel. Then the workout begins: Lucky for me, I just get to lie back, while my “trainer” knuckles, kneads, pinches, and flutters over every millimeter of my face during the “cardio” phase. (It’s all rather pleasant.)
Next comes the sculpting, where my face is rolled with FaceGym’s gold derma roller to stimulate circulation and collagen—again, not unpleasant in the slightest. Afterwards, my face gets slathered in FaceGym’s Collagen Infusion Serum and tackled for ten minutes (five minutes for each side) with the FaceGym Pro device, which whizzes my skin into shape with electrical zaps. This is the less-than-pleasant part, but I was happy to ask for the highest setting because no pain, no gain, right? To be fair, it didn’t hurt; it just wasn’t something I’d want to do for more than ten minutes at a time.
My “cool-down” was carried out by a polished, red gua sha stone facial tool, which was cool and refreshing against my face, and my workout was concluded with an application of eye-booster cream and sunscreen.
Results—good ones—are instantaneous. My skin felt high and tight, in the best kind of way. Because the electric FaceGym Pro device is used on one side the face at a time, it’s possible to make a direct comparison and immediately see the difference in the lift and pliability in the skin.
Even several hours after the workout, my face felt fatigued, as if each of those forty facial muscles actually did some heavy lifting. My trainer recommended that I return for a treatment every seven to ten days, which sounds downright reasonable when you get these kinds of results. If only the real gym was this easy.
FaceGym Notting Hill, 57 Ledbury Road; 020 7792 1401; facegym.com; Signature Electrical Facial (40 minutes) £85.00