New To Aesthetic Treatments? Startwith A Lite Version

A doctor with an interest in aesthetic treatments gets real about trying such treatments for the first time and advises how you can go easy with them.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

These days, if you’ve had “some work done”, it’s nothing to be ashamed about.In fact, it’s now all about #selflove and being the best version of yourself. But what if you feel intimidated about going into an aesthetic clinic for the first time?


Dr Low Chai Ling’s philosophy is this: If you wantsomething you’ve never had, then you must do something you’ve never done. “Many people may be intimidated by the idea of stepping into a clinic because they associate the term ‘aesthetic clinic’ with painful injections and exorbitant bills,” she says.

“These are misconceptions,” Dr Low adds. “First, treatments at aesthetic clinics are not limited to injections. For example, SW1 Clinic has a variety of no-downtime lunchtime beauty fixes that can improve your complexion and target-treat skin concerns. These range from LED light therapies to help skin healing, to mini-lasers to treat pigmentation problems.” Pain-phobes can ask that numbing cream be applied to make the treatments more comfortable.

Dr Low also suggests checking out aesthetic clinics that offer medical-grade facials, which are a great starting point for people who want to dip their toes into aesthetic treatments without overcommitting.

Whatever your concern, know that you don’t have to make any hasty decisions. You should always have a consultation with the clinic’s doctor first, and Dr Low says you should never feel any obligation to commit to buying anything.


Most women go for facials at a beauty salon fairly regularly. However, it’s not unusual for women to feel that the usual exfoliation, extraction and mask treatments they go for aren’t yielding the same benefits after a while.

Dr Low says that this is because our skin changes over time. “As tempting as it is to stick to your favourite facial, your ‘perfect’ facial at 20 may not work as well for you when you are 30,” she says. Moreover, advancements happen quickly in aesthetic treatments. New technologies mean newer and better ways to treat skin concerns with less cost, pain and downtime. Imagine using an outdated phone to take a photo – it will never have the same quality as a photo taken with the latest model.

New facials don’t stop at just clearing existing comedones and pimples with exfoliation and extraction – they go a step further by incorporating cutting-edge technologies such as photobiomodulation light to accelerate skin healing (in SW1’s Deep Red facial, for example); AHA peels to speed up cellular turnover (like in the Monroe Hydrafacial); and Sygma Lift HIFU technology to tighten sagging skin (as in the 24K Uplift treatment).

Dr Low says that these innovations allowed her to design a special system of bespoke facials called “Facial Cocktails”, only available at SW1 Clinic at OUE Downtown Gallery. Clients can create their own Facial Cocktail by choosing addons to give them their desired outcome. You now have facial options that can deliver your ideal result, from achieving that out-of-the-shower glow to lightening acne marks and firming skin.

SW1 Clinic is at #13-01 to 06 Paragon, tel: 6817-8888; and #02-19 OUE Downtown Gallery Tower 2, tel: 6817-8882.

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Dr Low Chai Ling is the founder and medical director of SW1 Clinic, which offers both non-invasive cosmetic dermatology and cuttingedge plastic surgery. She also gives back to society by being actively involved in the education and rehabilitation of disadvantaged children and women, and people with disabilities.


The OUE Downtown Gallery branch of SW1 Clinic offers “Facial Cocktail” treatments. The idea behind them is that not everyone likes everything offered in cookie-cutter facials; some may have specific needs that they want addressed. “Our Facial Cocktails let our clients pick and choose which mini add-ons they want, to create their very own bespoke facial,” says Dr Low. Each facial can be as short as 30min or as long as 90min, depending on your schedule and needs.