Cosmetic Facial Acupuncture: What It Is & Where To Try It

Cosmetic Facial Acupuncture: What It Is & Where To Try It

Google searches for cosmetic acupuncture are on the rise. When you list all the supposed benefits (think bouncier skin and improved glow) it’s easy to understand why. With a permanent residence at Harvey Nichols and a small team of highly trained therapists working under her, Sarah Bradden is one of the foremost facial acupuncture experts out there. Here, she explains more about what the treatment entails, who it’s for and why the results are so impressive…


What is facial acupuncture and how does it work?

“Underlying health issues can directly affect how someone looks and acupuncture techniques on the face are designed to counteract this. The treatment works by relaxing facial tissue to encourage better definition and renewed circulation – both of which contribute to a better glow. It rejuvenates and re-energises your skin by stimulating, repairing and renewing the mechanisms within the dermis. This results in a more invigorated and youthful appearance – especially as it also minimises the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. To do this, special needles are inserted into specific points on the face, neck and head to increase the volume of elastin – as well as increase blood supply. The result is better muscle tone, sculpted features, tighter pores and a healthier pallor.” 

Can you run us through the process? 

“I always start with a full consultation, followed by a tongue analysis. Using the tongue helps me to see where there might be any disharmony within your system. Then, the finest quality, specialist needles are inserted into the skin of the face, neck, ears and body. I’ll follow up by using activated oxygen over the skin, medical-grade LED lights, reflexology, reiki and facial massage, too – it’s all about a well-rounded approach.”

Is facial acupuncture suitable for everyone?

“It’s suitable for everyone and at every age. There are no real downsides to it, aside from some light bruising. However, we try to avoid this by taking a very gentle approach. There are – like any treatment – some risks which you should discuss with your acupuncturist beforehand, but they will never proceed without doing a full background check first.”

Does bruising imply the treatment is painful? 

“It’s not painful at all, and actually this is something I wish more people knew. There may be some sensitivity with some of the needles, but overall it’s a relaxing procedure and most of my clients fall asleep in the sessions. If you’re nervous about needles, talk to your practitioner – we always work very gently. The treatment itself is about aesthetics, but it’s also designed to make you feel better, so we want it to be a pleasurable experience.” 

Where do you insert the needles?

“Everyone is treated individually, so the needles used depend on the individual client and their personal circumstances. To give a few examples, we typically use needles on the forehead for conditions linked to the gall bladder, while the cheek area is linked to the stomach. Around the nose and mouth is linked to the large and small intestine. Finally, the eyes are linked to the bladder. Generally, for premature or general skin ageing conditions, we treat the kidneys, for muscle tone, it’s the spleen, and for skin conditions, we treat the lungs. For skin colouring and varicosity, we treat the heart.” 

When can you expect to see results & how long will they last?

“Most of my clients see and feel a difference after their first treatment. When you create harmony within the body, your face and body feel lighter, brighter and lifted, too. As for results, they vary with each client, and it very much depends on their lifestyle and health. Typically, you’ll see results continue for at least a few weeks – if not a month.” 

Do you advise booking a course of treatments, or is one or two enough?

“I always recommend regular treatments because we are working with the healing cascade of your skin and cellular turnover, which is where we see longer-term changes – not just in the look of the skin, but in our health too. One treatment can have a significant result in terms of how a person feels and looks, so even if you can’t commit to a course, or regular sessions, sometimes the body just having a little nudge in the right direction can do wonders.” 

Finally, can you recap the key benefits and anything else worth knowing?

Facial acupuncture comes with a number of benefits – too many to name – but the ones that stand out are…

  • Reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

  • Lifting and toning sagging muscles and skin (this is often referred to as a natural face lift)

  • Reducing puffiness and bloating around the face, eyes, throat and body

  • Improving your complexion, giving a fresher glow due to increased blood flow to the tissues

  • Improving skin discolouration (including sun-damage pigmentation)

  • Improving acne scarring and the pitting effect

  • Tightening pores while also hydrating skin

  • Improving or resolving skin problems

  • Improving sleep, hormone balance, digestive issues, relaxation and many more health benefits

  • Reduced side effects and no downtime as opposed to fillers, injections and chemical peels 

How To Book:

Sarah Bradden’s Signature Acupuncture Facial Treatment costs £300 for 90 mins, available within the new services space at Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge. To book, call 0207 259 4410.


Follow @SarahBradden and @HarveyNichols


DISCLAIMER: We endeavour to always credit the correct original source of every image we use. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please contact us at

Fashion. Beauty. Culture. Life. Home
Delivered to your inbox, daily