Is this unique facial really better than Botox?

It's been hailed as face- and life-changing, and is said to help people detox from getting Botox. But what makes the Zone Facelift so in demand, and why are celebrities obsessed with its inventor, Ziggie Bergman?

I'll be honest - I hadn't heard of the Zone Facelift facial until my lovely reflexologist Niamh told me she was going to London to be trained in it. As soon as she told me she was starting the treatments, I immediately volunteered my face - Niamh is incredible at what she does and so I was happy to let her do this new treatment on me.

I assumed it wasn't the average facial and would involve a more reflexology-style approach than a traditional facial, but other than that I had no idea what to expect. I had one question though - would I love this facial so much that it would stop me getting Botox?

Who is Ziggie?

I did some research and found rave reviews online from Harper's Bazaar, the Daily Mail and Red Magazine editors, all talking about the 'facial reflexologist to the stars' Ziggie Bergman. She's known as a 'Botox detox' master, helping her clients move away from the needle and helping them see results in other ways, and she's the brains behind the Zone treatment and charges a hefty fee in her Knightsbridge clinic for a course of treatments.

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The treatment

It's based on the idea behind reflexology, which is that each area of the face corresponds to a different body part. As well as sculpting your facial muscles, it's also supposed to help balance out your body in a holistic way. I'm skeptical about some of these claims, but I do swear by the effects of 'regular' reflexology, so I reasoned that there might just be something to it.

It differs from a 'normal' spa facial in the sense that there's no cleanse, tone, mask sort of situations. There is a specially formulated Zone oil used (which I've also read great things about) but it's more about facial sculpting than actual skin improvements.

The tools employed during it look a little like torture devices. Spiky little rollers, cold metal rods that look really like chopsticks, a freezing, small set of (I think?) crystal balls and Gua Sha tools, which are jade paddles used to assist in lymph drainage.

You get a mini head massage right at the start just to completely zone you out (no pun intended). During the treatment, you are poked, prodded, rolled and stroked using a combination of tools and fingers. There's some vigorous slapping, pinching and rubbing involved, all in an effort to encourage blood flow to the surface of your skin, helping to both plump and to remove toxins. Luckily I was warned of this beforehand, otherwise I would've gotten a real fright.

Gua Sha Tools, as used in the Zone Facelift

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Bottom line–will I get botox again?

I really enjoyed the treatment. I was BEYOND relaxed after it. I would absolutely get it again, and my skin got lots of lovely compliments in the days following it. However...

There's no facial or oil or product on the planet that can mimic the smoothing effects of Botox exactly. So, I'm still committed to my twice-yearly dose to eliminate my genetically-induced forehead expression lines. But for the rest of my face, for the skin that I know will start to lose volume and start to sag as I age? The Zone Facelift will no doubt make an impact on that.

And trust me when I tell you, you'll float out of each treatment like you're walking on a cloud, which is not something I can say happens after you've undergone injections to face for half an hour.


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