5 top tips for smart sun protection

I can’t begin to express how essential it is for you to be smart with protecting yourself in the sun.  Spring is now approaching, but it is essential to protect our skin all year round as UVA is present all year round, in the same strength.  It is present in our lights and isn’t blocked out by windows.  It also penetrates our skin much deeper than UVB.  UVA are our ageing rays, and cause premature ageing of the skin as well as pigmentation and other conditions.

An SPF in a sun cream measures the protection only against UVB.  You need to make sure that your sunscreen offers Broad Spectrum protection, which will protect the skin from both UVA and UVB.  The factor that you need for UVB protection is very misleading, with a sun factor of 50 only offering  4% more protection than a SPF of 15.  And you get more chemicals on the skin when it comes to the higher factor.

So for these reasons protection against UV rays are required all year round.  However in the summer months extra protection is definitely required.  So follow these simple tips to ensure that you thoroughly protect yourself when the sun is stronger and whilst on holiday.  A tan is a scar!

  1.  Wear a sunscreen all year round and one that contains Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide as these offer the best UVA protection.  This can be in the form of a cream or are often found in make-up (mineral being the best)
  2. Reapply the sun screen as frequently as possible (at least every 2 hours) to exposed areas of the body – don’t forget your hands as they tend to age quite rapidly!
  3. Wear a hat as much as possible.  One with a broad rim is far more beneficial as this will provide more cover.
  4. Wear sunglasses to protect the eyes. This will help prevent the skin from thinning round the eye area
  5. Don’t sunbathe in direct sunlight and try and keep to the shade!

Pigmentation problems arise from UV damage to the skin and we can help to treat these conditions with vitamins and anti-oxidants.

The process of ageing starts from within, so feeding the skin the right nutrients from the inside is just as important as what you can apply topically.   Skin Defender from the Advanced Nutrition Programme is an antioxidant complex formulated with vitamins E and C, along with selenium and zinc which are all antioxidants, helping to protect your cells from oxidative stress.  It shouldn’t replace a sunscreen, but provides nutritional support for skin exposed to light. Best when combined with Skin Vitality 1, Skin Vitality 2 or Pro-Vitality.

advanced nutrition programme skin defender


Topically applied vitamins in the form of Environ Skincare and Environ RAD cream for sun protection can not only protect the skin from sun damage, but can reverse it too.  Applied daily it really can reduce your risk of skin cancer to very minimal levels.

AVST 1 and RAD


Don’t forget, a tan is a scar!

Open Day – Tuesday 28th April 2015, 2pm – 8pm

Open Day, Tuesday 28th April 2015, 2pm – 8pm

We would love for you to come along and see what we can offer you.  We will be providing mini treatments on a first come, first served basis.  Donations are gratefully received and all the money will be going to the Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice.

Please come and join us for a celebration of the relocation of our beautiful new salon with a glass of bubbly.  Goody bags, raffles and special offers will be available on the day.

Caci Non-Surgical Face Lift Launch Evening – Tuesday 17th March 6pm – 8pm

Caci Ultra Non-Surgical Face Lift Launch Evening

Tuesday 17th March 6pm – 8pm

On Tuesday 17th March we are holding an informative evening about this fantastic treatment that we have introduced here at Sarah Hurst Skin & Beauty.  We will be providing demos and special offers on the night, so we would love to see you here so we can tell you more about it.

Caci’s award winning treatments use the very latest pioneering technologies and have been voted the most effective anti-ageing treatments available.  The result over two decades of research, the non-invasive treatments can deliver dramatic, visible results, without the need for surgery.

Please ring us on 01273 270709 or email sarah@sarahhurst.co.uk to book your place.


The importance of CPD in Beauty Salons

The importance of CPD in salons

CPD?  What’s that?  It’s a term used for “Continual Professional Development”.  It is important in most careers to keep up to date, refresh skills and to stay at the top of the game.  The beauty industry is one of the fastest changing industries that I know of!  Technologies, products and application techniques tend to change regularly.  I qualified as a Beauty Therapist in 1988.  When I first set up for myself I drew on the experience I had through my college training and through working in salons.  If I hadn’t ever then developed myself by attending seminars, workshops, other training courses, reading professional magazines and networking, I would still only be able to offer the treatments that were around in the 80’s!

As a salon owner, not only is it important for me to keep up to date and then pass this knowledge onto my staff, but it is also important that they are sent on training courses, encouraged to read professional trade magazines and research on the internet and find out what other salons are up to.

Back in the 80’s beauty was much more a luxury.  Treatments were luxurious and pampering, and if bikini waxing was embarked on then it would just be a quick tidy round the pant line!  Now, we have a new era of results driven treatments that have been developed, as technologies and treatment ingredients have become ever more sophisticated.  Machines drive in our facial products so that they can really work on the deeper layers of the skin.  Intimate waxing has become mainstream with Hollywoods and Brazilians being extremely popular.  Even massage has been developed to enable pain relief, rather than just a fluffy treatment to relax to.  Pampering is still part of many salons main menus, but the industry has definitely moved on, as the consumer has become savvier!

Good training is crucial, and I would advise you to ask to see certificates if you are unsure!  The Beauty Industry is still largely unregulated and there are lots of “therapists” offering treatments without any basic qualifications, or just having been on a day’s training course!  Intimate waxing shouldn’t be undertaken by someone who just has a waxing certificate.  It needs to be a specific intimate waxing course.

So take your time, look around and find a salon that suits you in terms of the treatments on offer and qualifications held by the staff.  I would also be looking for a salon that invests in its staff offering CPD and quality products.

The importance of internal vitamins in skincare

Advanced Nutrition ProgrammeVitamins are well known for their health benefits internally, but what about the effects they can have on the skin?  The skin is the outer most organ of the body, and the vitamins that you take for health benefits have to travel through the body and other organs before reaching the skin.  Vitamins that have the most effects on the skin are formulated in a way that maximises the absorbency into the skin.  This means ensuring that the vitamins are at optimum levels and of excellent quality, as well as being mixed with other anti-oxidants to ensure maximum efficiency.

The Advanced Nutrition Programme by the Institute of Anti-Ageing manages to effectively achieve this magic formula.  By taking vitamins internally then we are feeding the skin from within and then feeding it on the outside with our vitamin skincare.

The vitamin market is a minefield, and quality varies.  It is important to buy quality vitamins to ensure they are clean and the correct quantity of vitamin is in each and every tablet. It is also understanding what vitamins to take for what conditions.  Here is a run down of the most popular ones in the ANP range and their benefits:

Skin Vitamin A+ – Combining Vitamin A with Vitamin D ensure they work together for a healthy skin.  Vitamin A is one of the most important nutrients for skin yet over 90% of women don’t get enough, and around 80% of people in the UK are deficient in vitamin D. By boosting your levels by supplementing with Skin Vit A+ , you can help maintain healthy skin as well as strong bones and muscles.

Skin Vitamin C – A healing and support vitamin, Vitamin C contributes to collagen formation which helps skin function normally and supports the normal function of blood capillaries. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant, so it helps to protect your cells from oxidative stress caused by free radicals.

Skin Accumax – this is a supplement formulated for problem skin and Rosacea.  This is a patent-pending formula that works from within to restore natural radiance to the skin.  It contains a special combination of vitamins A, C and E plus DIM, a phytonutrient identified in broccoli.

Skin Omegas+ – these supplements benefit from the addition of Vitamin A.  It contains optimum levels of EPA (an important omega 3) along with GLA (an important omega 6) made from Evening Primrose Oil. Vitamin A is a key ingredient needed for skin health.

Skin Omegas+ is made with premium, clinically researched omega 3 from Epax, a world leading supplier known for its purity, quality and innovation. They hold a Friend of the Sea certificate, so you can be sure the omega 3 is sourced using methods that conserve marine habitats and resources.

Skin Collagen Support – As we get older, our skin can lose elasticity.  Skin Collagen Support contains vitamin A which contributes to the maintenance of normal healthy skin and vitamin C for its role in collagen formation. The formula is further enriched with the addition of carefully selected plant extracts.

Skin Vitamin 1 – a good multi-vitamin which includes vitamins and minerals involved in the maintenance of healthy skin, hair and nails including: Biotin, selenium and zinc which contribute to the maintenance of normal, healthy hair.

Biotin, iodine, niacin, vitamin A, vitamin C and zinc which contribute to the maintenance of normal healthy skin.

Selenium and zinc which contribute to the maintenance of normal healthy nails.

Skin Vitamin 2 – These convenient daily blister strips each contain 4 supplements; a multivitamin and mineral, antioxidant complex, vitamin C with black elderberry and bilberry extracts and omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. The combination includes vitamins A & C and riboflavin for normal skin; selenium and biotin for hair, along with selenium and zinc for nails. The advanced formulation also contains vitamin D, iron and vitamin C for the normal function of the immune system and antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin E, plus manganese to help protect cells from oxidative stress.

There are others in the range as well, but these are the most effective on the skin.

If you are serious about skincare and repairing and maintaining healthy skin, then internal vitamins are the building blocks for this achieving this goal.

Why it is important to wear a sunscreen all year round?

Why it is important to wear a sunscreen all year round?

Most of us are aware of the importance of wearing a sunscreen to protect our skin in the summer when the sun is shining, or on holiday when we are out in the sun more than usual.  This is because the UVB rays are stronger at these times, and these are the rays that tend to burn the skin (remember B for burning).  I am not disputing the damage that UVB does to the skin, as it can cause severe damage, burns and cancer, and that is a fact.  However UVB is only normally absorbed into the epidermal skin layers.

UVA (remember A for ageing) is around all year round, in the same strength.  It reflects through windows and is in our lights.  Although UVA doesn’t cause burning to the skin, it is absorbed much deeper into our dermal skin layers and therefore causes ageing, pigmentation and also cancer.  Studies have shown that lorry drivers for example, have much more sun damage and ageing on the side of the face that the faces the side window, as this reflects the UVA through.

I see many clients with sun damaged, ageing skin who I ask “when do you use a sunscreen?” and the answer is “in the summer” or “just when I am on holiday”.  This is why I want to educate you in the importance of good skin care and sunscreens, and the necessity to start them from a young age.

About 80% of sun damage is achieved before the age of 18.  Although it still might not be seen visibly at this time (it can take 40 years for the damage to appear), it is still there.  This is why it is vitally important to protect our children’s skin and teach them the importance of looking after it. 

The fact to remember is a tan is a scar!

Just in case you are unsure about what factor SPF you should be using, then to reassure you that a 20-25 is a full sun block.  I wouldn’t even consider putting anything higher than this on my skin as all you get is a lot more chemicals and only a few minutes longer in the sun.  You should be reapplying every couple of hours or so with a cream sun block.  With a sunblock in your mineral make-up, then because of the adhering properties of the minerals and the fact that the structure of them doesn’t change under UV, then you will get away with it for longer.

So please remember to put on an SPF that is broad spectrum (protects against UVA and UVB) all year round.  Combined with skincare that provides the skin with anti-oxidants such as Vitamins A, C and E that physically help to repair sun damaged skin and protect from free-radicals, then you can’t go far wrong!

Environ RAD SPF 25 spray
Environ RAD SPF 25 spray

How To Prepare Your Skin For Your Wedding Day

How To Prepare Your Skin For Your Wedding Day

One of the biggest days of our lives is our wedding day, and being on show most of us want to be looking and feeling at our best. Beauty Treatments are hugely popular just before the event, with many people opting to have their make-up done for them, along with waxing and nail services. Some even find huge relief from a massage as the day looms as a way of de-stressing and taking some time out!

What about services that can of huge benefit leading up to the event. One facial in the week before isn’t going to give us that desired effect of glowing, blemish free and healthy skin. In fact, it can have the opposite effect as many facials can be deep cleansing, and therefore if you aren’t one for having regular facials it can draw things out and therefore gain the odd ‘spot’!

So what is the best way to ensure that our skin is looking its optimum, so that we really do look and feel our best on a day where we are on display? There are numerous products and treatments on the market all offering to provide us with the miracle we are looking for, but this isn’t always the case. In fact the cosmetics market it one of the biggest minefields, and there are very few products that offer us more than just moisturising our skin (in fact some can have the opposite effect), when we are looking for a product that can really bring about the results and changes that we are looking for. I don’t understand why people will just walk into a department store with all their many different products and buy from there. There is so much choice, how do you know which ones are better?

By buying from a skincare professional within a salon, you are in the best hands. As therapists we learn all about the skin and how it functions. If we have done our research correctly and chosen a product based on what the skin really needs in the way of active ingredients to keep it healthy, then you should be in the right place to choose a truly effective skincare programme.

We work on the ‘feed, fortify and finish’ philosophy. This means that we approach the skin from all angles, firstly by ‘feeding it’ from the inside with supplements from the Advanced Nutrition Programme. These supplements are skin specific with the ingredients designed to provide the skin with the nutrients that it needs. Secondly, ‘fortifying’ the skin from the outside with Environ skincare, which have active ingredients that are naturally found in the skin, and are clinically trialled and medically proven to repair and normalise the skin. Finally with Jane Iredale Mineral Makeup which is a healthy makeup for the skin as it is full of natural ingredients and provides sun protection. Also because they are made from the highest quality minerals on the market, the range does not congest or irritate the skin.

Your programme will be completely tailor made for your requirements. This is based on your skin, time and budget. Not one size fits all and you are an individual with your own needs. It is best to start a few months preferably before the big day to give us chance to work our magic.


“I can’t praise Sarah Hurst Beauty Studio enough! The staff have an extremely professional attitude but whilst still being incredibly friendly and approachable.
I have visited the salon for various treatments (electrolysis, manicure etc.) and after Sarah’s recommendations of the Environ products I decided to start using the skincare range and booked some Environ facial & peel sessions before my wedding day.
Being a smoker and having a more mature skin at the age of 41 I wasn’t expecting major changes in the timescale I had.
However I was amazed at how quickly my skin felt plumper, glowing and more youthful.
My skin felt & looked wonderful on my wedding day which was a huge relief as my husband is 12 years my junior! Phew!!! Thanks Sarah & Sophie
I would highly recommend having a course of Environ facials. They would be beneficial to anyone.
If you want to improve your skin texture and appearance then book NOW!
Once again thanks so much girls!”
Elke Healey.


Hair Removal For Transsexuals

Hair Removal For Transsexuals

We have treated many transsexuals for hair removal in the Studio, all at varying stages into their sex change journey.  We have learnt so much from them and are proud to call them our friends.  It’s not an easy journey to undertake, and it’s not undertaken lightly.  Hair is a big issue, especially on the face for a male to female transsexual, yet it seems that often hormones aren’t prescribed until the person is living in the main as a woman.  Yet having facial hair can really affect this as it is a big part of being able to feel feminine.  Why is someone expected to go to work as a woman, yet have facial hair? Of course it can be shaved, but this often produces the unwanted ‘shadow’.  A more permanent solution is often sought, but faces it’s own difficulties as the hair needs to be there a little for treatment to take place.

Treatment for facial hair removal is a big part of the sex change journey. What treatment is best, should it be laser or electrolysis? I can’t answer this question unfortunately as different treatments suit different people, but we have had amazing success with electrolysis.  It is a long process and requires a high level of commitment, but with a trusting relationship set up between therapist and client it is hugely successful and rewarding. Electrolysis is the only form of hair removal that can claim permanence and I have seen many clients who have been disappointed with their laser/IPL treatments, and then again others who have found it good.  Electrolysis is often still required to ‘mop up’ remaining hairs as laser only reduces them.


Electrolysis is the only approved method of hair removal on the genitalia prior to gender reassignment surgery because of its permanence.  This is also for female to male transsexuals who often require hair removal on their forearm.  The forearm skin is often used to create new male genitalia.

The NHS often do fund for hair removal prior to genitalia reassignment surgery as this is seen as part of the surgical process. However they tend to be quite late in setting up this process and leaving hair removal until the last minute is not advisable.  I would recommend starting treatment for hair removal on the genitalia (M to F) or the forearm (F to M) at least 2 years prior to surgery.  It is best to check with your surgeon (or their nurse) to see if hair removal is even required, as it isn’t always the case.

If you would like to discuss electrolysis for your hair removal requirements we would love to see you.

The Power of Beauty Treatments

The Power of Beauty Treatments

There is a popular misconception that beauty treatments either performed at home or in a salon make you vain and shallow as a person. However the psychological power of these treatments goes much, much deeper than just about how the person looks, but affects how they feel about themselves. If psychologically debilitating conditions, then this can cause them to feel so unconfident  with their appearance that it might prevent them from going out, getting a job, making friends etc. It has also been known to affect someone so deeply that they became suicidal.

Results driven beauty treatments such as skincare and supplements that really do improve the skin at a cellular level or electrolysis that removes the hair permanently from a ladies face improves the confidence and lives of many people. So many times I have heard a client say that once they have had their facial hair removed that they can face people with confidence and not talk from behind their hand that they use to cover themselves. All of these things along with wearing clothes that we love, having a fabulous hair style, all improve our level of confidence so much that our personality starts to shine through. I always remember watching the episode of ’10 years younger’ when the woman involved became so confident that she changed her life completely by leaving an unhappy relationship and move abroad for a work position that was going to further her career. She was so happy and confident.

If people have some of these visual conditions, it not only can affect them getting a job because of their lack of self confidence, but because others can perceive them to be ‘not the right image’, although this wouldn’t be openly admitted. It has been shown that pretty people are far more successful in gaining jobs.

So if you are thinking about visiting a salon to address any issue that is of concern to you, don’t feel intimidated or worry about what people may think. This could be the start of a new life with the new, confident you. It’s the most liberating and powerful feeling.


Facing up to the facial hair problem.

Facial electrolysis with Sarah Hurst has been incredibly effective for me. I am a 40 year old female who chose to opt for electrolysis as I had a mass of thick, dense black hairs covering my chin, jaw line, neck, and upper and lower lip. I called it my beard. I used to have to shave every morning and again in the evening if I was going out. I hated bumping into people I knew in bright daylight as I knew they could probably see stray hairs that I had missed or even stubble if it was late in the day. It really affected my self esteem and it made me feel so unattractive.

I had tried to get help before to treat the facial hair problem, investing in 6 Laser Light hair removal  sessions at another salon but they only temporarily lessened the problem, and the hairs came back worse than ever and made me feel as if I was a hopeless case. Approaching my 40th birthday after living with this embarrassing problem for so long, I felt so desperate that I made it my goal to find someone who could help me to address the problem. This time I researched it more thoroughly and the results indicated that electrolysis might be more helpful and yield a more permanent result than IPL. The shame I felt was a really big obstacle to getting help as were financial restraints.

Another issue was that I do not tend to go to beauty therapists as part of my usual routine and felt nervous at the thought of walking in to somewhere where I might be judged for letting the problem get so bad. Nor did I want to go somewhere right in town as I felt so embarrassed about the severity of my problem and it helped that Sarah’s salon was tucked away out of the town centre. The staff were all really understanding and that made such a difference. No one gasped in shock and they made me feel normal.

After the first session I noticed a difference, it restored my hope and after several sessions I noticed a huge improvement. With weekly 30 minute sessions Sarah cleared my beard within a month and I went from shaving twice a day to not needing to shave at all between my weekly treatments. I was not expecting that to be the case at all. I thought it would take an age to have any impact on my terrible facial hair but amazingly the hairs got a lot thinner after a really short time. There were also a lot less hairs and they took much longer to grow back than before. In the space of 1 month I cannot believe how different I look and feel. There is a really significant difference that I was not expecting, my facial hair has drastically lessened more than I ever thought possible. I can hold my head up high and I don’t feel the same level of shame and self-consciousness I used to feel.

I am writing this to help others who may feel hopeless about their facial hair problem I want to say with the right help and the correct treatment it is possible to drastically reduce a facial hair problem. I am still being treated for stray hairs here and there but my facial problem is nothing like it used to be. I would recommend this treatment to anyone who has a facial hair problem even if like me you feel it is too bad to face.