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How do I keep my skin taut and get rid of the puffiness around my eyes and on the face?

French cosmetics label Clarins’ skincare international training manager Denise Barthe-Marti, who was recently in town to train the brand’s advisers, shares the secrets to a fresher and slimmer-looking face.

Clarins pays plenty of attention to its skincare application ritual as the brand has its roots in a skin institute specialising in beautifying massages.

The Clarins Method was developed by brand founder Jacques Courtin-Clarins for his customers to extend the benefits of the institute’s treatments on their own. The DIY massages are applied with three kinds of touches:

GENTLE TOUCH – One applies just 50g of pressure. It is usually used during cleansing.

NATURAL TOUCH – The weight of one’s hands, or around 100g of pressure, is used during product application.

BOOSTING TOUCH – Up to 3kg of pressure is applied on the face for a comforting DIY massage. It is used to stimulate lymphatic circulation, reduce muscle tension and puffiness.

For skincare application, start by warming some of the product between both hands, then wrap the hands around the face to gently press the product onto the skin using the Natural Touch method.

This promises to maximise the benefits of the skincare products.

Continue with these lymphatic drainage moves, which help to get rid of excess fluids and puffiness:

1. Place both hands on the cheeks, just by the sides of the nose and make sure your middle finger is positioned in the centre of the under-eye area. Apply the Boosting Touch, then lift hands off the skin. Repeat while moving hands towards the ears in three steps.

2. Place both hands on the brow bones, apply the Boosting Touch, then lift hands off skin. Repeat while moving hands towards the hair line in three steps.

3. Apply the Boosting Touch on one side of the neck near the jawline, then lift hands off skin. Repeat and move hands down towards the decolletage in five steps. Repeat the steps on the other side.

4. Warm one pump of eye cream between the tips of the index, middle and ring fingers of each hand. Then press those three fingers on the bone under the eyes with the Boosting Touch. Lift fingers off skin. Repeat and move fingers towards the temples. Do the same on the brow bone, from the inner brow out.

Remember to go slow; pause for around two seconds for every move, as the lymphatic circulation moves slowly. And never pull on the skin while massaging as that can cause wrinkles and sagging.

This article was first run in The Straits Times newspaper on January 30, 2014. For similar stories, go to sph.straitstimes.com/premium/singapore. You will not be able to access the Premium section of The Straits Times website unless you are already a subscriber.