Making yourself over from the inside out
Luxury services in Prague offer five-star transformations from head to toe
Posted: September 14, 2011
Try as we might to achieve physical perfection, we are rarely satisfied with how we look.
On a good hair day, you might hate your clothes. In your favorite outfit, you might hate your skin. And if you feel your waistline growing, nothing feels right.
"[The link between makeovers and self-confidence] has more to do with having realistic expectations," said Mike Johnson, head of psychology at the University of New York Prague. "If your goal is to look your best, you can succeed every day, but if your goal is to look perfect, you can only fail. Nobody's perfect."
For those who are striving to improve their physical appearance, Prague has a number of makeover options that can help transform a person both inside and out.
While known for many of its plastic surgery procedures, GHC Clinic has many treatments - from non- to minimally invasive - that are popular for people seeking to improve their features without going under the knife. The most popular for both men and women is fat reduction.
"Our non-invasive liposuction is one of our most popular treatments because it is painless and bloodless," said Martina Vlková Fialová, marketing manager at GHC. "It means no cuts, no punctures, no scars. Our other two fat-reducing treatments are popular as well, but are minimally invasive in comparison."
There are many clinics in the city center that offer similar non-invasive liposuction procedures, but they don't guarantee results, Fialová said. As one of the first private clinics in Prague, opening it's doors in 1996, GHC has been offering clients the most state-of-the-art medical procedures in a luxurious environment.
The most popular and least invasive is Accent XL, which uses thermal heat to tighten the skin and create contours in the body.
Another option, albeit slightly more invasive, is Plasma Therapy (PRP), which regenerates skin cells and supports collagen production. PRP can be injected as a filler, or the doctor can apply it by mesotherapy. According to Fialová, people like this procedure because it's a more natural form of Botox.
"The procedure is meant to copy the healing process of the body," Fialová said. "Anyone can use this treatment since it regenerates aging skin that has become tired and saggy, and it can also be used to prevent the aging of skin."
The third, and possibly most popular, treatment is electrolipolysis, a method of disintegrating fat, a procedure the clinic has done for more than 12 years. Small needles, like those of acupuncture, are attached to a machine and inserted into the fat-laden areas helping to increase metabolism and flush fat out through the kidneys. Treatments are dependent on the individual, but can be performed up to twice a week, Fialová said, On average, people usually have about five treatments and start seeing real results after two weeks.
Hair & makeup
Anyone who has had a drastic haircut or color knows how much it can change one's appearance, but Bomton Salon takes it a step further by offering complete "transformations" in a package called Top Image.
"It's an exclusive service where clients spend almost half a day in the studio with our expert stylists, makeup artists, hairdressers and beauticians getting consulted, then we proceed with what they want," said Romana Tinglová, art director for Top Image. "This service is something that clients like for either personal or professional life, and as an added benefit, our clients tell us they feel younger."
Bomton has been running Top Image as a makeover service for eight years, and it has grown in popularity, especially with women 30 to 50 years old. The service can range from 7,200 Kč to 8,200 Kč and includes haircut and color, manicure, cosmetic and makeup treatments - all to fit the customer's personality. The service is offered in three of the Bomton studios, which typically performs up to 10 makeovers a month, so booking in advance is recommended.
Keeping up with the latest fashion trends is hard enough. But actually knowing what colors work best for your skin tone, what shapes and styles you should avoid or embrace, or even just finding the time to shop are some of the pitfalls people face when trying to update their look. But it doesn't have to be difficult - it could possibly be enjoyable, especially if you have a personal shopper.
Personal shoppers do more than their title may suggest. Rather than simply take orders and deliver, they advise customers on the latest fashions and also explain what looks good - and what doesn't - on each client with individual attention that is not available in most shops. They can assist in picking out an outfit for a special occasion or an entire wardrobe for a particular season.
Anna Nandrážiová, a certified image consultant for the Image Institute in Prague, offers services such as color analysis, enabling the customer to understand which colors suit them best, not just shapes. Nandrážiová has been guiding men and women, as both individuals and in groups, since 1995.
"I don't tell my clients what to wear; I show them," she said. "I want them to decide how they want to look, how they want people to see them and who they really are. It's not about making people over into someone they're not; it's about accentuating what they are."
Nandrážiová gives a two-hour consultation, costing 1,500 Kč and 600 Kč each additional hour, during which she discusses makeup, hairstyles and clothing with clients. She has color wheels and hair color samples to show clients what works best for their skin tone. After the color consultation, she proceeds to shapes and sizes for the client's body type and, finally, budget.
"Learning about your outside image helps motivate people to continue improving from within in terms of health, wellness and confidence," she said. "The relationships I have with my clients are very intimate because it's always more than just looking good on the outside."
Veronika Steinmetzová, a personal shopper for the Czech-based international consulting firm Arrangenius, agrees that a way a person dresses affects more than just their image.
"When you dress well, you feel better and your self-confidence rises," Steinmetzová said. "It is closely linked to feeling good, and it gives immediate satisfaction."
The company provides everything from style advice to the actual shopping. Prices are based on needs and are therefore individualized, Steinmetzová said.
"How someone dresses is as important for a makeover as hair, makeup, even surgery," Steinmetzová said. "How would you feel if you get a makeover and look younger and more beautiful, have a great haircut, but your dress doesn't suit you at all? If you concentrate only on a piece of the puzzle, you'll never get the whole picture." l
Megan Battista can be reached at
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