Comforted by the homely, luxurious decor my senses were heightened by the sounds, smells and tastes of Gazelli House, Gazelli Skincare’s latest venture. But as I sat, gold plated pen in hand, sipping my grapefruit infused mineral water I soon realised I was about to be outed as a fraud, as I attempted to answer a range of in depth questions about my distinctly not so ‘in depth’ skincare regime. In its current state my routine consisted of a dab of micellar water and the occasional wet wipe; needless to say that said routine was a far cry from the skincare practices preached at Gazelli House. I had a lot to learn.
Nestled down a quiet tree lined backstreet in the heart of Kensington, Gazelli’s perfectly formed beauty oasis is revolutionising the way that men and women approach skincare. By stepping back and looking at the bigger picture, Gazelli House is promoting a pioneering practice, encompassing the mind, body and soul. In her own words, co-founder of Gazelli, Jamila Askarova, describes the Gazelli movement as an outlook that reaches beyond the expected conversation.
“We wanted first and foremost to bring a positive and informed attitude to skincare, and also offer consumers a brand founded on the important principles of honesty, education, care and emotional support. It’s our belief that to deserve the loyalty of the modern customer, we must offer not only powerful and innovative formulations, but also an educational approach with a strong and trustworthy philosophy and ethos.”
And yet despite this serious and well educated approach I was not once judged or made to feel inadequate due to my novice approach to skincare. Armed with their wealth of superior knowledge I was invited to lay my cards on the table and open up about worries, fears and ambitions. I was no longer sitting in a treatment room discussing products with a facial expert, I was opening up to a friend in a tranquil setting that felt familiar yet new and refreshing all in the same breath.
“We wanted the house to feel like a home, and this was very important when designing the look and feel of the space. For us, a home is where you feel most comfortable, and this is what we wanted to achieve decoratively for our guests. When you’re at ease, you’re more likely to open up and address what’s really going on in your life. This interaction between the space and our guests reinforces our philosophy to support, inspire and empower people in every way.”
The key to Gazelli House, and what sets them apart from the rest, is the overriding sense of understanding and acceptance. We so often go through life ticking boxes and filling out forms to determine which ‘category’ we fit into within society. But at Gazelli House I had the comforting sense of being an individual. They understand that everyone’s skincare needs and requirements are different and not only are they catered for, they are celebrated. And through this encouragement I felt inspired to begin my journey.
For Jamila, true beauty and wellness can only be achieved through finding an attainable and realistic road to your goal and supporting it with your full commitment and dedication. “To obtain a beautiful mind, body and soul, it’s important that people address themselves and their lifestyle as a whole. That’s why we house Skin Experts and Practitioners who specialise in physical and mental wellbeing. Gazelli is there to provide you with specialists that care and listen and that will help you build that road, stone by stone, and walk behind you until you reach that goal.”
By extending the parameters of what skincare means, Gazelli have managed to re-evaluate the concept as a whole – encompassing our mindset into their innovative vision. For Gazelli co-founder Dr Hamzayeva the dream was to apply her extensive research into the effects that emotions, hormones, and lifestyle can have on the body, and lead a shift in the way we think not only about skincare, but also our cultural attitude towards beauty and wellbeing. Put simply, we would be naive to believe that products alone can amount to healthy and happy skin; no matter how high the price tag or which celebrity it’s endorsed by. For Dr Hamzayeva a person can only achieve a beautiful health and glow once they are balanced, fulfilled and confident; a mindset that cannot be attained through purely superficial means.
It is the importance placed on wellbeing that means that Gazelli’s treatments and products, while incredible in their own right, become just another piece to the skincare puzzle. It is the relationship between guests, practitioners and the House that is of utmost importance to Gazelli; encouraging and building a sense of community. For Jamila, the collaborative environment would be non- existent without the dedicated House team.
“They are there to help guests map out their journey within the House, and in the same way a friend does, they can recommend the best treatment for you, or perhaps a workshop that they think will uplift and motivate you to achieve your specific goal. It’s all about conversation and a two-way relationship, and in many ways our guests shape the House and help it to evolve.”
Thoroughly preened, pampered and relaxed I departed with a sense of acceptance, a wealth of knowledge and a better understanding of myself. And while I may well have walked into a house, I walked out of a home.