In the latest episode of the ongoing Botulinum Toxin A (commonly known as BotoxTM) and dermal filler scandal, the Times newspaper has published a report on the illegal use of unlicensed BotoxTM by unauthorised injectors.

To read the full article which has been reproduced on the” Save Face” website (the Times newspaper has a paywall) click on the link below:

TIMES INVESTIGATION ‘Black market’ Botox investigation: ‘If you know where you need to put it, nothing goes wrong’


The article is self-explanatory and shocking.   The use of black-market products injected by unqualified injectors can result in severe complications, including necrosis of large parts of the face and even blindness.   The injectors who claim there is no risk are either dishonest or so far from the reality that they are not aware of the risks.  Which also means they have no training or experience in correcting complications that can occur or how serious their effect can be.


At Cosmex Clinic we are fortunate to have Registered Nurse Louise Sommereux as our Clinical Director.  Lou has performed over 500,000 Botulinum Toxin A and dermal filler injections since she founded the Cosmex Clinic in 2002 and this year we are very excited that Cosmex will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in June.


During that time the clinic has had just two serious injectable complications.  Both were recognised and managed successfully in clinic because Lou and the staff she trains have the necessary knowledge and prescribing skills.


In addition, Lou was a founding Director and Vicechair of the BACN (British Association of Cosmetic Nurses) that operates a strict Code of Conduct to ensure patient safety.   Then in recognition of her work to raise standards in Aesthetics was awarded Nurse of the Year in 2014 and has been a finalist to date.


Lou is passionate about education and professional development, as a mentor for the BACN, Northumbria University and company trainer she shares her skills, knowledge and standards with her staff and colleagues.

Close up of adult man with acne

Despite what glossy magazines may tell us, acne isn’t just something we battle in our teenage years. Adults can also suffer from acne breakouts – and it can happen at any age.

Adult acne can affect both men and women and, though the pimples may appear the same, adult breakouts are actually rather different to the ones you may have experienced through puberty.

For men, acne commonly appears on the back, but it can appear around the lower half of the face as a result of the regular grooming regimen. In women, it often appears on the cheeks and forehead.

Acne can be caused by numerous factors including hormones and sometimes even genetics. In this blog we will break down five factors that could contribute to adult acne to help you on your way to a clearer complexion.

Consider your skincare

While a good skincare regime is crucial to keeping your skin healthy, too many different products, including your moisturisers can actually lead to acne breakouts. It’s good to be mindful when you add new products, ensuring they are formulated with approved, helpful ingredients such as actives and antioxidants to care for the skin.

New products may contain some preservatives and ingredients that don’t agree with some of your other products; this could overwhelm the skin, leading to irritation and acne breakouts. We recommend introducing any new products slowly, and making sure they are formulated using ingredients that agree with your skin.

Give products at least one month to work, and expect to wait three months to see any visible results from new skincare additions. If you are using any specific acne treatments, be mindful as they can be harsh on the skin; if you mix and match too many of them it can actually make your acne worse. It’s a good idea to speak with your skin expert if you need some guidance.

Remember to double cleanse

Your evening skincare routine should always start with a double cleanse. After a long day, makeup, oil, and dirt build up results in a triple threat to the skin, leading to clogged pores and acne breakouts.

The first cleanse will remove any makeup and surface dirt from the skin, and the second cleanse will help target any acne-causing bacteria that may be trapped within the pores. Make sure the cleanser you use is gentle, and doesn’t strip or irritate the skin causing it to feel tight.

Don’t forget to exfoliate

Two to three times per week, you could try to incorporate an exfoliating treatment. Exfoliators are designed to target, and deep clean the pores to draw out any impurities or acne causing bacteria. They will also help to remove any dead skin cells, and promote healthy cell turnover for a brighter, clearer complexion.

Look out for ingredients like salicylic acid, lactic acid or glycolic acid in your exfoliator as these will really help to regulate your sebum production and remove bacteria. After exfoliating, we suggest going in with a vitamin A treatment, which will further help to stimulate healthy skin cell renewal, and help to treat any active breakouts you may have.

Be mindful of the time

This is particularly important for your evening skincare routine. Make sure you are not doing it right before going to sleep.

Give your products at least an hour to sink in and really penetrate the skin before you head to bed. If the surface of the skin is still saturated in products, it will inevitably transfer onto your pillow and therefore will have less effect on the skin.

Your hair removal routine

Be mindful of what you use on your skin both during and after hair removal. Many products are comedogenic, meaning they will clog your pores and potentially lead to breakout. You should be particularly careful if your skin is already sensitive or irritated from the process.

Before you attempt hair removal, you should clean the area properly, and use non comedogenic products that will not clog your pores. After you are finished, again, clean the area if necessary and use a light-weight moisturiser to soothe the area.

Be mindful of the difference between acne breakouts and irritation. Directly after hair removal, your skin can be very sensitive due to irritation; if you develop tiny bumps that are red and itchy, this is simply an irritation of the hair follicle.

If your spots are bigger in size, not accompanied by any skin redness and/or appear as whiteheads, you may be looking at acne.

The solution

From topical lotions, to HydroMedi treatments, there are plenty of solutions on the market to help you combat adult acne. Our skin maintenance machine uses a special blue LED light to help remove bacteria. A red light is then passed over the skin to reduce inflammation and soreness from comedones, helping accelerate the healing process.

If you are struggling with acne, speak to one of our skin experts. We can carry out a full assessment using a special analysis tool which will look at your intrinsic cellular activity, including sensitivity, acne bacteria and excess oil to help identify your skin’s individual needs. This is a crucial step, as everybody’s skin has different requirements and will need a tailored solution.

Remember, not everybody’s skin is the same, that is why you should opt for a solution tailored specifically for your needs. Ask us for more information or visit the treatment pages.

before and after laser hair removal on a womans armpit

If you are considering a laser hair removal treatment, it pays to do your homework. It’s easy to be lured in by the thought of no more waxing, but it’s not always that simple.

In this blog today, we will break down 7 things you need to know before getting laser hair removal, and why you should be mindful of who you trust with your treatment if you choose to go ahead.

It’s not a quick fix

In recent years, laser hair removal has been thought of as a ‘quick fix’ for getting rid of unwanted hair permanently. Whilst the treatment sessions may only take around 30 minutes in some cases, patients usually will need between 8 – 12 treatments to see a true result; and need to be regular and consistent in your appointments.

Laser hair removal treatment aims to destroy the hair follicle during its growing phase, therefore any follicles not in the growing phase may not be permanently removed. Therefore, you should be prepared for regular sessions as each individual follicle will be a different stage in its growth.

You should do some prep beforehand

Before you undergo treatment, it is very important that your chosen practitioner carries out a patch test. This will help to determine the precise grade of laser energy required for your skin and hair type, to ensure you achieve optimum results.

For optimum results, you should try to ensure that each area is thoroughly prepared for treatment. First and foremost, shave the area 24 hours prior to treatment. Waxing, plucking, epilating, or tweezing will not do; using a razor will ensure the hair is still inside the follicle for treatment.

It’s advised to limit sun exposure for at least four weeks prior to treatment, and you should avoid tanning lotions. It’s recommended a thorough exfoliation is undertaken beforehand to make sure any tan residue is removed.

On the day of your treatment, ensure you are not wearing any moisturisers, lotions, perfumes, deodorants, or make-up products on the treatment area. If you are, inform your practitioner so they can clean the area as required.

Your skin/hair colour and age matters

During your first consultation, your practitioner should talk to you about your ethnicity, skin type and hair type, because the darker/ thicker the hair is, the longer it can take to remove. Those with darker skin tones may require more treatments or top ups.

Your age may also impact the rate in which your hair grows, and therefore the number of sessions and top-up treatments you may need. The younger you are, the more likely your hair is to grow a little faster than somebody older.

In some cases, laser hair removal may even stimulate further growth, but your practitioner should ensure you understand, and let you know if your hair type is not suitable.


After treatment, you may develop some minor irritation, such as redness and swelling. This should go down within a few days. One of the other complications of laser hair removal is pigmentation. This is a fairly rare complication, but one that you should be mindful of nonetheless.

If a laser is not used correctly, they can cause lighter skin tones to develop dark patches, and vice versa. This is why it is so important to see trained professionals for treatment who can explain the risks to you properly, and know what to do in the event of any rare or unexpected complications arising.

You cannot go to the gym afterwards

The heat from the laser will remain in your skin for around 24 hours following treatment. This means no gym, hot showers, saunas, or swimming because this will ultimately create a warm environment for bacteria to thrive, multiply and can result in spots.

Be sun savvy

Be mindful of any upcoming holidays you may have. Treatment usually cannot be carried out on a new/active tan, and you may need to avoid sun exposure as much as you can, both before and after treatment as your skin will be more sensitive.

Your laser hair removal specialist at Cosmex Clinic should talk to you about this before the procedure. Don’t be afraid to ask for their advice – that’s what they’re here for.


It can be a little uncomfortable in some cases. Laser hair removal works by sending the light of a laser through the pigment in the hair. This light converts to heat, which damages the hair follicle. With the right cooling in place, treatment shouldn’t be painful, but it may feel uncomfortable – particularly on areas with thinner skin.

Laser hair removal machines like the Stratum Quantum 2 system are fully equipped with a high power laser, suitable for any skin tone and a unique cooling tip to reduce discomfort.

Contact us

If you are considering laser hair removal, contact us today for a consultation where our trained experts will advise and help you decide if it is right for you. Remember: only undergo laser hair removal treatments with experts you can trust, using devices that have been rigorously tested for safety and efficacy.

a woman using moisturiser to try and help her acne

Did you know over 80% of women use moisturiser on a daily basis?

Primarily, the function of moisturiser is to make the skin feel moist, relieve dry skin and tightness, and provide a basic level of protection against environmental damage. However, while moisturisers are often pitched as miracle creams, what’s the truth behind such claims?

From a scientific standpoint, moisturisers are usually a mix of water, mineral and plant oils designed to trap water in the skin. Moisturiser is a key player in the skincare industry, costing around £549 million per year and making up around 59% of all skincare sales. While moisturisers are a popular and important part of a skincare regime, some people with skin concerns like acne react to specific products. A prime example of this is adult acne.

In recent years, there has been a surge in cases of adult acne, which among other things could be down to our overuse of moisturiser. The thick, oily consistency of some moisturisers can cling to dead skin cells, and clog the pores creating an oxygen-free environment in which acne causing bacteria can thrive. Overtime, this may contribute to acne and rosacea.

What can you do to help with acne?

Naturally, the surface of the skin replenishes every six weeks but as we age, this process slows down and causes dead skin cells to gather on the skin’s surface. This can cause the skin to feel a little dry and appear duller than usual. So what can you do? It’s all about being skincare savvy and understanding your skin.

You could opt for a good exfoliating treatment. Exfoliators can help to stimulate collagen production, and promote new cell turn over to keep your skin healthy and glowing. For best results, we recommend exfoliating around 2-3 times weekly, and opt for products that contain salicylic acid, lactic acid or glycolic acid to help regulate sebum production and remove any acne causing bacteria from the pores.

When you shop for a moisturiser, you should be mindful of your individual skin needs. When we artificially saturate the skin’s surface with thick, heavy moisturiser, it can send a signal to the cells to stop producing natural oils. These natural oils are there to help add moisture to the skin and protect it, without them the skin will become dry, dull and show signs of premature ageing.

Opt for a moisturiser that is lightweight, and full of skin loving ingredients – moisturisers that  contain peptides which help collagen synthesis, protect the skin and restore natural moisture.

You could also incorporate hyaluronic acid (HA) into your routine. Hyaluronic acid is a powerful humectant with a large molecular structure that helps to trap moisture within the skin. Liquid HA’s that contain Glycerin and Glycogen effectively draw water to the outer layers of skin to help improve skin tone and radiance.

If you are suffering from acne, we recommend following a good skincare regime designed with your skin in mind. Every evening, you can incorporate a double cleanse system to thoroughly remove any bacteria from the surface of the skin, and from the pores.

Following up with a vitamin A treatment, can help stimulate healthy skin cell renewal, and treat breakouts. For hydration, opt for a hyaluronic acid which attracts moisture to the skin whilst promoting even skintone and a youthful complexion.

There are also advanced facials available, such as the Stratum Synergy, which can effectively treat all layers of the skin simultaneously and offer deep cleansing, exfoliation, hydration, leaving the skin feeling fresh and pores, bacteria free. It also promotes oxygen enrichment and skin cell nutrition which will help to brighten your complexion. Ideal!

Need a bit more help? For advice on your skin, or your skincare routine, contact Cosmex Clinic today for a full skin assessment and consultation where we will help identify your skin’s individual needs, and recommend the best treatment plan for you.

man holding his face after skin rejuvenation treatment

Now more than ever the team at Cosmex Clinic are being asked about skin rejuvenation treatments for men. With lockdown now over and life returning to normal, we’re seeing more and more patients that wish to undergo aesthetic treatments; most notably we’ve seen an increase in male patients seeking our help.

The days of it only being women looking to refresh and rejuvenate the skin are in the past, and 2021 has been a busy year so far for us at the clinic, as we welcome new patients including men. That trend looks set to continue as we approach autumn and our clinic fills up with men (and women) looking to look and feel more rejuvenated.

Why are more men seeking non surgical skin rejuvenation treatments?

We’ve always welcomed male patients at our medical aesthetics clinic here in Cambridge but we’ve seen a rise in men seeking treatments for a range of issues, from lines and skin laxity to unwanted hair or tattoos.

A large part of why skin rejuvenation treatments for men are on the rise is down to acceptability, with self care and wellbeing being a growing trend across the UK.

What treatments can men undergo at Cosmex Clinic?

We offer most of the same treatments to our male patients as we do our female patients. Popular skin rejuvenation treatments for men include muscle relaxing injections, skin tightening, hydrating facials, dermal fillers and chemical peels. We also have a range of skin rejuvenation treatments for the body for concerns such as unwanted tattoos, or laser hair removal which is becoming increasingly popular among our male patients.

Is this the right clinic for me?

The key is a thorough consultation to make sure you have a tailored treatment plan, and a holistic, well rounded approach to your care plan. We’re a medical clinic and we take patient wellbeing and safety very seriously – you’ll only be offered treatments that are suitable for you personally. We base this on age, facial anatomy, skin type/indications and various factors; this ensures you get the treatment (or combination of treatments) that’s best for your bespoke needs. We don’t offer a blanket approach – we get to know all of our patients and we work to ensure your care plan is tailored to you.

Are skin rejuvenation treatments right for you?

Which treatments you want or require is entirely dependent on your concerns and what you hope to achieve in undergoing skin rejuvenation treatments for men. From hydrating Profhilo or muscle relaxing injections, to energy-assisted skin tightening treatments or hair removal; there’s something to suit most clients looking for advanced skin rejuvenation without cosmetic surgery or invasive procedures.

Get in touch

If you would like to know more about any of the skin rejuvenation treatments for men we have available, or you wish to book a consultation, please contact us. Our reception team will guide you and offer information to help you start your journey with Cosmex Clinic. Find out more about the non-surgical cosmetic treatments we have available for men here.


close up of a wrinkle on a womans face

There are numerous reasons why a patient may seek wrinkle reduction treatments – mainly because these skin rejuvenation treatments offer such diverse results.

Whether you’re a man or women, 35 or 65; chances are there is a non-surgical facial rejuvenation treatment available that can help to improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles from the face, improve your skin firmness and even reduce pigmentation.

Natural looking results

One of the main benefits of choosing non-surgical skin boosting treatments – such as muscle relaxing injections, dermal fillers and chemical skin peels – is that in the hands of a top nurse prescriber like our Clinical Director Lou Sommereux they offer excellent natural looking results.

Unlike invasive cosmetic surgery procedures (such as facelift surgery) to reduce the appearance facial lines and skin laxity, non-surgical skin rejuvenation treatments offer subtle results, which can help to refresh both the patient’s appearance and self-esteem in a more natural, holistic way.

Versatility of wrinkle reduction treatments

The undoubtable popularity of non-surgical skin boosting treatments is their versatility. Whether used as individual skin rejuvenation treatments or as part of a combination therapy using multiple treatments, non-invasive anti-ageing treatments can offer clients a variety of uses.

For example, injectables can not only be used to smooth wrinkles around the eyes and mouth, but also to improve the volume of the cheeks or lips. It’s this versatility that makes them one of the most popular forms of non-surgical cosmetic treatments at Cosmex Clinic.

Longevity of skin rejuvenation treatments

Far from offering results that simply last week or two, most non-surgical treatments we have available can provide clients with short to mid-term solutions to variety of skin concerns and the effects of aging on the skin, such as laxity and volume loss.

With muscle relaxing injections lasting around 3-6 months and dermal filler injections are staying anywhere between 9-12 months onwards, the benefits of facial rejuvenation treatments exceed patient expectations more often than not.

Although follow-up treatments are required to maintain the rejuvenated result, most patients at Cosmex Clinic feel that this is a fair trade for non-surgical anti-ageing treatments which in some cases can rival that of the surgical counterparts. Why choose a face surgery when you can have a non-surgical facelift alternative?

Safety is key

There is no getting away from the fact that surgical procedures like the facelift – whilst offering a long-term solution to ageing concerns – are invasive, can be painful, and often involve long periods of recovery time and extensive bruising before the final result can be seen. Contrastingly, non-surgical wrinkle reduction treatments are considered minimally-invasive and (comparatively to surgical options such as facelift) are relatively low risk and offer lower complication rates.

In most cases a day or two recovery time is all that is required, although this does depend on the type of facial rejuvenation treatment or combination therapy (we call this the global approach) you choose to undergo. Before you choose to undergo any form of cosmetic treatment at the clinic you will be given full information during a consultation on the risks, recovery and side effects which may be associated with your chosen treatments.

Contacting Cosmex Clinic

Information can be found on our treatment pages or if you wish to book a consultation please contact a member of the reception team who will be delighted to assist you.