Forget your G&Ts or Cosmos; go for a facial cocktail at SW1 Clinic instead

SINGAPORE (Mar 18): A typical facial session has the beautician cleansing your face, doing extraction, putting on a mask, patting on serum and sending you on your way home. You are not really sure what is used for each of those steps, and possibly only have a choice of manual or automated extraction and what mask is used. What if you could customise each of these steps?

SW1 Clinic lets you do just that. For $220, $260 or $350, you get to pick a facial cocktail consisting of various permutations from levels 1 to 4 — or what the clinic terms “clarify”, “purify”, “beautify” and “revivify”.

Each level has a number of options you can choose from. Clarify, for example, lets you pick between sonic cleansing, which uses ultrasound to clear those pores, and aqua.dermabrasion, cleansing by water jets, as the name suggests. Purify has five options for peels and exfoliation; beautify has nine ways to brighten your skin with serums or light; and revivify lets you pick from five masks to address concerns ranging from toning your neck to whitening your face.

I went for the $350 cosmopolitan cocktail that let me try all four levels, a welcomed pampering session at the end of a long Monday.

SW1 Clinic, which opened last year, is owned by Low Chai Ling and her husband and partner Kenneth Lee — the doctor team behind The Sloane Clinic.

The Sloane Clinic was one of the first aesthetic clinics in Singapore when it opened in 2003. Likewise, SW1 offers a host of treatments, from non-invasive cosmetic dermatology such as facials and fillers to plastic surgery.

Currently, SW1 Clinic is in two locations — Paragon Shopping Centre and OUE Downtown Gallery (main image). I visited the latter, since it is a stone’s throw away from my office.

SWI Clinic’s OUE Downtown Gallery premises were easy to find — just up the escalator in the central area of the building, near Saybons. To enter, there is a red telephone you pick up before someone buzzes you in, reminiscent of the speakeasy bars minus the secret password.

Inside, my therapist sat me down to fill up the necessary forms, then ran me through the extensive menu, explaining which concerns each option addresses. I was happy to take her recommendations, seeing as she was the expert. We then proceeded to the treatment room, where she removed my makeup.

After looking at my skin, the therapist suggested that I go for the aqua.dermabrasion, an oxygen facial, the PDRN (polydeoxyribonucleotide) perfection and the water infusion mask. She got me to close my eyes while she cupped essential oils over my face to get me to relax — the start of a heavenly 70-minute session.

Throughout the facial, the therapist was conscientious in explaining the procedures, telling me what she was using and its purpose. She even humoured my request to see the water tank after it had cleansed my face with pulses of water and suction (the water was not too murky, but I could see some whiteheads at the bottom of the tank).

Apart from the aqua.dermabrasion, which included light suction but is much more comfortable than the poking and squeezing employed in the traditional extraction method, the steps were soothing and calming.

Essentially, I walked into SW1 Clinic after a hectic Monday and emerged a happy kitty with skin that had been cleansed, hydrated and pampered with additional serums.