Wine and dine your skin

Choosing an Anne Semonin pampering package compares to selecting a bottle of wine, especially with names like Le Vintage, La Selection du Sommelier, La Cuvee Speciale and Le Grand Cru.

A treatment room at the new Anne Semonin Spa, at the Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit.

Located at the Pullman Bangkok Hotel G and the newly-opened Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit, Anne Semonin Spa has introduced a collection of body treatments based on oeno-therapy, which is rubbing wine onto the skin for aesthetic purposes.

Ancient Greek and Roman doctors used wine as an antiseptic and to heal wounds, and Marie Antoinette washed her face with red wine to ward off wrinkles. Hence, grapes are believed to provide natural skin boosters.

The new facial aims for smoother and radiant skin.

"Grape extracts contain polyphenols which have 20 times more anti-oxidants than vitamin C and 50 times more than vitamin E. They neutralise free radicals and inhibit enzymes involved in the skin-ageing process," said international trainer Julie Dumas. "There are not many anti-ageing treatments for the body, so we designed oenotherapy to cater to the increasing concern for ageing of body skin."

The 30-minute Le Vintage treatment involves an invigorating grape seed body scrub mixed with a botanical body oil to exfoliate the skin. The skin polishing can be followed by the one-hour La Selection du Sommelier, a body wrap with French wine mud, which is a mix of grape residue and glycerin.

"The red wine mud has a gel texture and for me it smells like chocolate," said Dumas. "Massaged into the skin, the reddish gel disappears and you can leave it on the skin without taking a shower."

The first two treatments focus on revitalising the skin, but the La Cuvee Speciale is a Thai-inspired massage involving the use of heated herbal pumices containing grape seeds and essences.

"We have stolen a Thai technique for this full-body massage. The pumices are soaked in botanical body oil, and through a combination of heat and pressure, the massage induces physical and mental relaxation," said Dumas.

A body scrub, wrap and massage are combined in the Le Grand Cru package, which starts off with drinking a glass of grape juice and ends with eating fresh grapes and sipping a glass of wine.

Since Anne Semonin is a French brand, it goes without saying that the best of Gallic grapes were sourced for making the products used in these treatments.

The spa chain was founded by French aesthetician Anne Semonin, who pioneered the practise of combining trace elements with essential oils for customised skin treatments. Collaborating with scientists and cosmetic surgeons, she also developed skincare products as cosmeceuticals.

"First and foremost, we are a spa brand, so it is important for us to constantly introduce new professional treatments," said Dumas. "Based on a cosmetic procedure, we have also introduced an anti-ageing facial but with a gentler technique."

The one-hour Skin Renewal facial combines mechanical and chemical exfoliation for smoother and brighter-looking skin. The mechanical exfoliation is done by polishing the face with a mixture of micronised crystal powder and a rich massage butter, whereas the chemical exfoliation involves a skin-peeling acid emulsion.

"Acid peels performed in doctor's offices use high concentrations of acids that alter skin's pH levels, which causes redness, irritation and discomfort," she said.

"We have adjusted the acid concentration and controlled the pH to ensure skin tolerance, making this facial suitable even for sensitive skin. After the facial, you can instantly see and feel the result and the skin looks even fresher the morning after."

Dumas recommends home use of skincare products in order maintain the results of the face and body treatments.

Call Anne Semonin Spa (Pullman Bangkok Hotel G 02-238-1991, Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit 02-797-0000).

Grapes are believed to provide natural skin boosters.

About the author

Writer: Kanokporn Chanasongkram
Position: Reporter