beauty

Oprah's facialist on the one skincare product that works against you.

A week ago, skin expert Jennifer Brodeur was at the Golden Globes. Today, she’s sitting opposite me about to share all her skincare secrets.

Counting the likes of Oprah (OPRAH!) and Michelle Obama (MICHELLE OBAMA!) among her clients, “knowing her stuff” is an understatement.

An aesthetician and entrepreneur who has been in the industry for over 20 years, Brodeur has her own skincare company JB Skin Guru and is the brains behind LED Light Therapy machine Max + which is used around the world.

And did I mention she tends to the skin of Oprah (OPRAH!) and Michelle Obama (OBAMA)?

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Image: Getty

"When I work with them, prior to that day I'll be looking at snippets or photos that have been shown about them in social media or print. I always want to see what their makeup is looking like," she tells me after speaking at the dermaviduals International Symposium in Sydney last week.

"Virtually every six weeks I change it up for them because I like it when the skin is guessing. I'll ask them lots of questions - how their skin has been going, do they have a lot of engagements coming up, because if they're doing a lot of appearances, it changes my game plan."

That's not because skin necessarily gets used to product, but rather it's constantly changing.

"Skin changes every day, hourly and by the influence of the weather, pollution and stress. I don't believe there's necessarily one recipe you should have all year round," she says.

Listen: Some more great beauty advice. Post continues after audio.

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Instead of analysing skin type, Brodeur focusses on skin condition, splitting the face and neck into several zones which she will treat separately.

"Let's say you have two blemishes on your forehead but you look at your skin and think you have acne. I can't treat you like an acne client because you have two blemishes. So by cutting it up in sections I'm much better able to ascertain what we need to do," she says.

As a result, she's been "multi-masking" her clients for years before it became a 'thing'.

Not all products are made equal.

Having seen a lot of products and trends, there's one skincare product she advises clients to steer well clear of.

"I honestly believe that anything that promises you instant results, theoretically is a waste of time. Because if it sounds too good to be true, it is. Everything takes time," she says.

"Antibiotics will take up to 21 days to feel the full effect. Think of skincare in the same way. Everything will take time so we have to stop believing in this instant gratification."

She also advises to steer clear of consistently using some tightening products.

"If there's one thing I'm really scared of it's all those products that do the tightening effect. If you're going to use that once because you have an event, that's one thing. But literally what it does is cause an accelerated cellular death to the skin to create that effect," she says.

The skincare sin she can't understand.

And it couldn't be simpler.

"I don't understand why women are telling me they're still not taking off their makeup. That would be the one thing I wish women did more of. It's fascinating to me. Tiredness is not a reason and it makes such a huge difference to the skin," she says.

The biggest skincare concern.

It doesn't matter who or where her client is, chances are they share the same skin insecurity.

"Ageing. It's so interesting because my whole thing is ageing is the best thing ever. It's a privilege to age denied by so many women and I think we need to stop this rhetoric or this idea because we look at youth as being so good, but you were young once too!" she says.

"When women first come see me they're so concerned with fine lines and wrinkles and I'm like it's nothing. And then if you start educating them on pigmentation and redness, and sometimes they come in and they're like red like a tomato and they say they're concerned about fine lines, not redness! It's that whole education process.

"But globally, worldwide that's the same concern women share."

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