So many beauty promises are codswallop but I believe in 'hurty' facials

When it comes to the trauma-triggers-collagen principle, I am a true believer

A “hurty” facial is your only man. A whispery, kindly lady smearing a gentle plant-based product on me, then taking it off, then slathering me with another, and so on, is a giant waste of time, because I can do that myself at home (although I never do.) But a facial involving machines and chemicals that tingle and sting – surely that means it’s working? So my latest Sudden Wild Enthusiasm is for Microinjector Lifting Facials.

Interested? Right so! Go to Stillorgan in Dublin, to Pretty Nails Pretty Face, to Mihaela, one of the loveliest people on earth. After she has removed any make-up, you get a speedy, effective enzymatic peel, followed by a layer of hyaluronic acid (miracle plumping agent) and then, all hail the Microinjector Pen.

You’ve heard of micro-rollers, where a roller covered with sharp little nibs is pushed over your face. The trauma of the micro-punctures stimulates the production of collagen (which gives our skin strength and elasticity). Well, the pen is the same principle, except that it can get into more hard-to-access areas (like around the eyes).

So many beauty promises are codswallop but when it comes to the trauma-triggers-collagen principle, I am a true believer. I’ve been having IPL on my face for a few years. It hurts, it works. It also costs. This facial – €100 – is much more affordable.


The nibs on the pen come in four different lengths – short equals painfree; long equals hurty but more effective – if you “go long” Mihaela will numb you with anaesthetic cream.

To date, I’ve gone short, which has felt almost disappointingly pleasant. Next comes a trio of powerful lifting masks, targeting the eyes, the neck/decolletage and the “main face”. Fifteen minutes later you get a hydrating mask, followed by a final layer of hyaluronic acid and you’re good – very good – to go.

The nonhurty version has no downtime, just startlingly luminous, fresh-looking skin, which is a godsend at this time of year. With the longer nibs you can have redness for up to 48 hours, which is why I’ve planned a course of 6 for January.