Beauty: Bespoke Beyond Medispa Facial, Harvey Nichols, Edinburgh

WHAT IS IT? Some treatments have you floating off into a sweet-smelling nirvana, but leave you looking no different than when you went in. Beyond Medispa's approach is less about relaxation, more about medically sound products, developed by plastic surgeon Dr Barry Cohen, and the latest techniques designed to deliver real results. The bespoke facial is one of the spa's signature treatments and includes a facial peel, microdermabrasion and mesotherapy, all customised to suit the individu

HOW DOES IT WORK? First the therapist cleansed my face and removed my make-up before carrying out a skin analysis to establish my needs. That was followed by a 10 minute face, shoulders and decollete massage featuring lymphatic drainage techniques to rid my body of toxins. A gorgeous-smelling pumpkin scrub containing wheat extract and vitamin E was then applied to the whole face/decollete area to start the exfoliating process.

The diamond microdermabrasion used here differs from other types in that, not only is it more effective, but it also doesn't leave you picking crystals out of your ears for the next four days. The combined abrasive/sucking action removes dead skin cells from the surface of the skin, with a variety of head sizes meaning the therapist could get into even the smallest nooks and crannies around my nose. The results are plain to see, as a little ball of dead skin, looking a lot like a dust ball from beneath the sofa, is discarded at the end.

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Next came the GloEnzyme peel – just five per cent strength for me, but those on a course of treatments can work their way up to 60 per cent, and the stronger the peel, the more dramatic the results. This stayed on for a maximum of five minutes and though the therapist promised to remove it if it stung too much, it never got that bad. To soothe my by then pink cheeks, a vitamin E calming gel was left on for a further five minutes.

Next was the mesotherapy – as seen on Ten Years Younger, where vitamins are injected into the skin. Instead of needles, a galvanic current of electricity was used to force the vitamin serum deep into the dermis, encouraging collagen production and hydrating my dried-out skin cells.

After a quick removal of a few tiny black and whiteheads, my face was toned, some eye gel applied and a moisturiser with SPF 15 slicked on to protect my newly nude face from the elements.

STRIP OFF OR COVER UP? It may only be your face, neck and shoulders being treated, but you'll probably feel more comfortable stripped down to your underwear, snuggled up under warm towels.

DOES IT WORK? Of all the facials I have had, this had the most obvious results. My skin felt as soft as silk, and those wrinkles between my brows and at the corner of my eyes had been significantly smoothed out, leaving me looking more wide awake and younger than I have done in months.

WHO'S IT FOR? It's an ideal treatment to combat the worst of the winter, when we all get a little lazy with our beauty routines. But it is particularly useful for anyone with specific skin problems – whether that be acne scarring or skin pigmentation – because it's tailored to the patient.

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HOW MUCH DOES IT COST? 150 for 90-minutes. There is currently 25 per cent off your first visit to the clinic, and the offer runs until May.

Beyond Medispa, Harvey Nichols, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh (0131-524 8332,

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• This article was first published in Scotsman on Sunday on 10 January, 2010.