Ingredients Spotlight: Hydroquinone

Ingredient Spotlight : Hydroquinone (HQ).

What is Hydroquinone?

It is an aromatic organic compound that is a type of phenol, a derivative of benzene. Widely used as a topical application in skin brightening/lightening to reduce the pigmentation of skin for over 40 years. It is a prescription only ingredient POM, and products containing hydroquinone are only available on prescription after consultation with one of our prescribers.

What are the key benefits?

It is used to treat several skin conditions related to hyperpigmentation.  Including

  • melasma.
  • liver spots/age spots.
  • Freckles.
  • Acne scars.
  • Infammation caused by psoriasis or exczema.

How does it work?

It bleaches your skin by decreasing the number of melanocytes present. Melanocytes make melanin, which is what produces your skin tone. In cases of hyperpigmentation, more melanin is present due to an increase in melanocyte production. By controlling these melanocytes, your skin will become more evenly toned over time.

Can I use it every day?

It’s a tyrosinase inhibitor, in a 4% cream, HQ, can be used twice a day safely for up to 6 months. The efficacy of HQ can be enhanced with daily retinol use in conjunction.

Is there an alternative which is non prescription.

Yes creams that contains Arbutin, a bear berry plant extract that improves skin tone, lightening and evening pigmentation issues.

Which products contain it?


Obagi-C Rx C-Clarifying Serum Dry uk - Hydroquinone

Obagi-C Rx C-Clarifying Serum – 4% Hydroquinone.

C-Clarifying Serum Oily reduces hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots and melasma, for a lighter, more even skin tone.

Obagi-C Rx C-Therapy Night Cream UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi-C Rx C-Therapy Night Cream – 4% Hydroquinone.

C-Therapy Night Cream gradually diminishes dark spots with 4% hydroquinone and provides Vitamins C and E to your skin while you sleep.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 6 Sunfader UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 6 Sunfader – 4% Hydroquinone
Sunfader with SPF 15, helps to minimise uneven skin tone and brown spots. Sunfader contains 4% hydroquinone which helps to minimize uneven skin tone and brown spots.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 5 Blender UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 5 Blender – 4% Hydroquinone
Blender is an unique formula containing prescription HQ for the gradual lightening of hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots, sun spots, age spots, melasma, and other types of discoloration.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 3 Clear UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 3 Clear – 4% Hydroquinone
Clear is an effective prescription HQ treatment. Which helps correct hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots, sun spots, age spots, melasma, and other types of discoloration. Also gives a healthier-looking, more even skin tone.

Ingredients Spotlight: Acetyl Hexapeptide-8

Ingredient Spotlight : Acetyl Hexapeptide-8

What is Acetyl Hexapeptide-8?

Commonly referred to as ‘Botox in a jar’, it is a peptide compound used to reduce the appearance of fine lines causes by repeated facial expressions, such as crow’s feet, glabellar lines or nasolabial lines. It is also often referred to by its commercial name Argireline, which refers to both acetyl hexapeptide-8 or acetyl hexapeptide-3.

It promotes the skin’s natural production of type 1 collagen, the crucial protein which forms large, eosinophilic fibres to rebuild muscles, reducing fine lines and wrinkles. This ingredient blocks signals from the nerves to the muscles, these muscles can no longer retract, causing the wrinkles to relax and soften. Wrinkles and fine lines caused by sun damage will not respond to acetyl hexapeptide-8

What are the key benefits?

  • Research shows that it can reduce wrinkle depth by up to 30% when used for 30 consecutive days.

  • Due to its similar structure to botulinum toxin, acetyl hexapeptide-8 in considered an excellent, non-invasive alternative to Botox.

  • Restores the skin’s natural water barrier, and helps bind water to the skin, improving dry skin. It also helps to improve skin elasticity.

How does it work?


Acetyl Hexapeptide-8

With a similar structure to botulinum toxin, it works by controlling the production of neurotransmitters. The structure of the peptide mimics a fragment of the SNAP-25 protein and relaxes the facial muscles thereby smoothing the appearance of the skin.

Which of our FTT Skin Clinics products contain it?


FTT Skin Clinics - Night Cream - Hyaluronic Acid - Glycolic Acid

Recover – Active Night Cream

0.8% Retinyl Palmitate, 1% Hyaluronic Acid, 10% Acetyl Hexapeptide-8

Provides some much needed extra care for your skin to help it repair and renew from the stresses of the day whilst you sleep. It has been specifically developed to help rejuvenate through its antioxidant activity. It also re-hydrates your skin to allow overnight recovery and reveal a softer more youthful appearance for the new day ahead.

FTT Skin Clinics Update -31012021

How have you all been this week? I’ve had a really good week  & hope yours was too. Mine started off well as you know with Obagi Ambassador of the Year win and Burns night was welcome distraction to our routine.  The highlight of the week, wasn’t Obagi award, it was finding a wee cafe that’s local to my dad in Fort William who home delivers.  It was a tight rope of negotiations and subterfuge to bring home the bacon, literally. To put you in the picture, he’s a very independent, 87 year young, widower with rubbish cooking skills and heavy reliance on his slow cooker who doesn’t like a fuss. You get the idea.  So my sister and I had the genius idea.  As a celebration of my daughter, Lilli, being offered her dream place at the university of her choice, we’d get grandad involved in the celebrations too.  So, together with their Oban cousins, his grandchildren fronted the whole ruse with grandad. He didn’t suspect a thing & was over the moon with his hearty, afternoon tea delivery with home made soup.  Consequently, he’s also tucked into delicious hone cooked, wholesome, hot meals, soup, sandwiches with cakes from with no resistance. Only wish I’d thought of it sooner.That’s me finished my Dimagra Keto diet 21 days.  I’m delighted to have lost 12lbs and like I said it’s not the weight loss that was my goal it was the visceral fat around midriff that had to go.  Its not good for your health.  It had to go.  And it has.  I can fit into clothes that I haven’t been able to. I feel much, much better and look better too. Look good, feel good, right? Lots of you have asked about it and here’s the most common questions you’ve asked with my honest answers.Is it difficult? Honestly, it couldn’t be easier. It’s 3 shakes a day, with meat & vegetables for lunch, 2 litres of water a day and two supplement drinks. I would say it’s strict. Don’t go in half hearted. Commit and do it.

We’re you ever hungry? No, never. Opposite as I actually struggled to eat the daily food allowance.

What’s different about it? It started off its life as a preparation for patients about to undergo Bariatric surgery. It was so successful that for many, they didn’t need to go ahead with bariatric interventions.

Did you feel sick or ill? No, not at all. Bit of a headache on day one, that’s all. I think the supplementary drinks twice a day really help with keeping everything in balance.

Top tips?  Go in 100%. Take each day as it comes, one day at a time. A week in with 14 days ahead was a bit of a hump. How do you eat an elephant? One day at a time!

What now? I’ll carry on with no / low carbs / keto as it seems to suit me. Must be my meat and two veg upbringing (sorry potatoes, you don’t get an invite)

How much is it? Just shy of £200 for 21 day kit box. I had in my head, okay that’s under £10 a day, how much are the daily bacon rolls from Pete’s cafe and the coffees from my favourites Roasted & Gro?

Anyway, here’s my before and afters.  If anyone has any questions, I’ll do my best to answer them and we might do an Instagram live Q&A if there’s enough interest.

So that’s me for this week folks, February tomorrow and fingers crossed, wee Nicola has got some good news for us on Tuesday and we get to see your lovely faces sooner rather than later.

Til then, take good care of yourselves and I’ll see you all soon.

Frances and team xx

FTT Skin Clinics
p: 01698 458954

FTT Skin Clinics Update -26012021

How have you all been?  Sorry I’m a day (or two) late but we had home schooling meltdowns with Higher Chemistry that took precedence.  All sorted now after some emergency Google Scholar shenanigans and I am happy to report daughter no.1’s assessment was handed in, not quite on time but it’s been accepted.  As one of several Obagi Ambassadors in the UK, I had planned to be on a Zoom conference + awards ceremony with Obagi Medical UK and USA this morning, but priorities change so rapidly and unexpectedly these days.  Fast forward to lunch time with a message from Obagi Medical representative that I have won Obagi Medical Ambassador of the Year for Scotland for excellent, consistent, clinical results and outcomes for patients, and exponential growth year on year.  It’s a team effort and we’re all very happy.

In other news, the broadband gods have delivered this week, sort of.  No, we haven’t suddenly had super-broad band hooked up to our house but a dongle thing arrived on Friday and I’m happy to report from our Covid jail, that things have improved.  Perfect harmony its not but hey it’s a lot more peaceful as the broadband gigabyte pie is bigger than it was last week.  So much so, that all my video chats with you have been, well, seamless.  It’s been great to catch up with you for reviews, skin care chat’s, and treatment plans.  If you’d like a complimentary catch up just click on here. 

The next FTT Virtual Clinic dates are


So, onto Dimagra Keto diet update. I’m happy to report that my weight is down to its lowest for hmm, too long but the reason I am doing this 21 day programme is to junk some of the chunk round the middle which we know is not good for health as well as to have a better silhouette when not wearing “lounge-wear” aka my pj’s.  I really want to have the best possible healthspan, that is, a life spent in good health, free from the chronic diseases and disabilities of ageing.  I’ll pop some before and after’s up if anyone is interested?

Last week we introduced you to Re-Collagen, a daily collagen supplement. It’s gone down a storm.  It will replace Skinade in our clinics now and its available direct to your door.  And, I’ve persuaded Re-Collagen distributors to give us 60 day supply RRP £200 for our GiveAway on Instagram.  Click the link to be in it to win it. 

We’ve another new product to introduce to you this week and a pretty exciting one at that.  Here’s the background.  We have been trialling GF2 Mist for the past few months on a variety of skin issues as well as “normal” skin:  perioral dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea, maskne, cold sores, acne as well as on what’s called Inflamageing skin, which is essentially ageing skin.  It’s not a scientific experiment, we know, but we test out all treatments and products to make sure it does what it says on the tin and oh my goodness it does.  Nurse Gillian in Inverness trialled it first for her pesky peri-oral dermatitis and can’t get over the difference.  We all want youthful, wrinkle-free, glowing skin not least to look to our best.  Many of us do have annoying chronic skin conditions that are almost always our skin’s inflammatory response. Enter GF2, which is suitable for all skin types and layers perfectly under any skincare products – even Retinol’s without any issues.  It’s so powerful that it reboots your skin’s DNA to specifically treat chronic, inflammatory skin conditions.  It’s £41 for 100mls and its been used twice daily by us all, even the teenage dirt bags.  I highly recommend you add this to your skin care regime.  Hope you all have a good week ahead.  Stay safe and warm.  All the best from my home to yours. Hope you had a good Burn’s day.  Lang may yer lum reek.  All the best,

Frances and team xx

FTT Skin Clinics
p: 01698 458954

FTT Skin Clinics Update -17012021

How have you all been this week?  It’s not easy is it? I find myself trying so hard to be as upbeat as possible, trying not to cast shade on those I speak to during the week, usually in the park walking Lulu our dog.  I find myself hoping to see someone I know every day and not to worry if I don’t know you, I will greet everybody I see now.  Are you chattier with strangers now?  I am really craving social, fun, spontaneous, interactions preferably involving a group of friends, music, banter and a bit of dancing thrown in for good measure. Parties? Remember them?  I confess to finding myself having a party for one, dancing in front of the telly of a Saturday night.  My son said, “You are so Gaff Hungry mum”. That did make me laugh.  That’s apparently west coast Scotland urban slang for “desperate for a party in someone’s house”. You’re so right son aka manchild aka big handsome. More on him later.

This week we also celebrated our middle daughter, aka mature beyond her years and avid Stevie Nicks devotee, 18th birthday in house.  I am relieved to report it was a resounding success.  She was delighted with her afternoon tea in the kitchen, in house movie bonanza in the living room finished off by her self-penned family quiz “How well do you know me”.  Thankfully, I managed a very respectable second place on the scoreboard.  Phew.

Big handsome is 19 and has been home from his university Halls of Residence since early December.  His coming home to our Covid jail has mixed up household dynamics up a tad, especially with his voracious appetite for broadband gigabytes.  I find myself in the middle of a Live Instagram struggling to get connection with a “whoops sorry, I forgot, never mind eh”?

This has challenged the patience of his already short of patience younger teenage siblings who are both self-home schooling and demanding their fair share of the broadband gigabytes.  Hopefully, Monday brings a rescue mission from our broadband provider after another plea for upgrade which seemed to fall on listening ears at last. We are the only house in our street without access to "SuperFast" broadband. First world problems I know but I have found myself using diplomatic skills akin to Kofi Annan’s (Secretary General of the United Nations), holding peace talks in the living room with big handsome whilst simultaneously negotiating a cease fire with daughters in the kitchen and discussing terms of amnesties and reconciliation.  I think I’ll hold off the gigabyte hungry Insta Lives until Mr Broadband delivers so apologies for the quality, but the chat was good as ever with Susie Cormack Bruce on IGTV.

In other news, I have started the Dimagra Keto diet to junk some of the chunk that I have acquired since pre-Christmas.  I always do quite a bit of research first with new products then try them out first before I introduce them to our clinics. So far so good.  7lbs in 7 days.  I’m not so fixated about weight to be honest its more about getting rid of the visceral fat around the midriff that seems to like hanging around no matter what I do.  The first couple of days were a bit headachey other than that quite easy.  I’ll keep you posted as I progress.

Another new product to clinic is Re-Collagen a daily collagen supplement. We’ve had different collagen supplements in the past in clinic and this one is next generation.  Gluten free and vegan friendly it tastes just fine, comes in wee handy travel 12 ml sachets (oh the irony) which can be taken on their own or added to water each morning and is delivered direct to your door.  I’m holding on to that collagen for as long as I can and make it as strong as I can from the inside out as well as from the outside in.

Have a great week ahead whatever you’re up to. Stay safe and warm.  All the best from my home to yours.

Frances and team xx

FTT Skin Clinics

FTT Skin Clinics Update - 03012021

Hello there,

Hope you are all well. As promised, I’m back to you with FTT Big barometer: what’s in and what’s out for 2021.

Trend predicting is tricky business.  Who would’ve guessed that face masks would be the biggest selling item in 2020 or that Zoom face would be a thing?  I always like to have my finger on the pulse of what is happening in medical aesthetics and my normal information sources is attending all big international and national conferences, trade shows, presentations, seminars, training events and meetings that I have had the privilege of attending for many years so that I could bring all the marvels of modern medical aesthetics back to Scotland and to our clinics.  But where one door closes another is sure to open and so the virtual online world has definitely come into its own for giving and receiving information much more so than ever before.  I spend much more time “creating content” for all our social media platforms, to inform, educate and maybe even entertain you at times?  For those that didn’t know we have 2 Facebook platforms, one for North of Scotland, Inverness  and one Central Scotland.  We also have two Instagram platforms, FTT SKIN CLINICS  and FTT SKIN.  Anyhoo, my point is we’d like to hear what you would like to know more about what you would like to hear from us.  Thank you for your feedback so far on the stories we’ve posted on our social media platforms as to what you would like more of and some great ideas of content for 2021.

  1. I predict there will be a strong move away towards a more natural look enhancing, upgrading what nature has given you rather than one size fits all filler packages. Some practitioners have lost their way a bit with some quite unnatural almost masculine looks looks and we’ve noticed a big uptake with more younger patients coming to us for our signature, artistic, beautiful, undetectable rejuvenation. 
  2. Restart, Reset and Rediscover your own best version of yourself.  Already lots of people looking for alternative to just volumizing and freezing.  
  3. There will be a far greater emphasis on skills not mils as well as a move away from non medics in unregulated premises as people want the security of a safe, regulated, registered medical clinic with trained medical staff.  People want to feel safe, secure, and cared for. 
  4. I do see more combination treatments for face and body being popular more so in 2021. More people have a better understanding about medical aesthetics and that your face is made up of different layers that is fat pads, skin, muscle, ligaments and bone and these needs are taken into consideration in your treatment planning.  Skin tightening, lifting, filling, smoothing of faces.  Body treatments are similar in that they take into consideration, diet, lifestyle, height, weight, skin, and fat to get the best results for you.
  5. Our FTT Bespoke facials will go from strength to strength and we will be adding in other treatment modalities to the 20 treatments already available at FTT for your results driven 1 hour treatment including Photo Therapy and Obagi Blue Radiance peels. 
  6. At home Skin Routines twice a day with our help, support, guidance and advice over the phone or by video with our expert team have been hugely popular. People are going to the shops much less and want great results for their skin without leaving home.  You don’t want to make expensive mistakes so you are discussing your skin with us who can diagnose, assess, prescribe if required. This will be even more popular in 2021. 
  7. FTT Bespoke Body Treatments that include weight loss and fat loss are already popular but this will explode too as more people are aware of obesity as a disease and want to do something about it.  We will be launching Dimagra Keto Meal Replacement as well as Prescription weight loss pens available on line and in clinic Fat Freezing, Skin tightening to all body areas as well as fat dissolving injections for face and body.  We will also be offering referrals for liposuction and bariatric services with our surgical partners.
  8. More specialist treatments such as Collagen stimulating injectables, such as Sculptra are relaunching in Q1 which we are already very familiar with and very excited to be bringing to you.  Long lasting and very natural with new methods of delivery. Ellanse will boom too in 2021 as more and more younger people recognise and understand about collagen and want to keep theirs for as long as possible whilst looking great but without the over filled look of over use of dermal fillers.
  9. Thread lifts will be massive in 2021 with Silhouette Soft threads increasing in popularity with an younger market from 30’s onwards as they already recognise that they want to look as good for as long as possible lifting and stimulating skin and facial tissue rather thanvolumizing on its own.
  10.  PDO threads will be immensely popular as we innovate their use in areas such as noses, temples, eyes, lips, necks, and body.
  11. Anti wrinkle treatments will increase in popularity again as more people realise what an amazing prescription treatment used widely in general medicine and in medical aesthetics for rosacea, sweating, lip flip, gummy smiles, teeth grinding, pebble chin, downturned mouth, neck bands and is phenomenal when used in conjunction with other treatments. 

And finally,  Video consultations are back on line.  It’s been a joy catching up with you and hope to see more of you on line soon.  If I don’t see you on line through the week, I’ll see you on the socials.  You take care of each other and keep that glass half full.  If there’s anything you’d like to know more about then do let me know.

Speak soon

FTT Skin Clinics

FTT Skin Clinics Update – 31122020

Hello All

Seasons greetings to you and yours.  I hope you all had an amazing time wherever you were.  It certainly was different that’s for sure. So now were in the last few hours of 2020 and I’ll wager that you, like everyone else is so hoping that 2021 is a better year for everyone.

Thank you for all your in credible support over 2020 and I’ll be back in touch with you very soon with the Big barometer: what’s in and what’s out for 2021.

All the best

Frances and FTT team.

Saveface COVID19 Safety Charter Video

Saveface Covid19 Safety Charter Video

FTT Skin Clinics team are delighted that, after the months of lockdown that we are ready to open our doors to you our patients and wish to share the saveface COVID19 Safety Charter Video.  As both a Health Improvement Scotland (HIS) registered medical aesthetic clinic, and a SAVE FACE registered clinic please be assured that we have gone above and beyond with all our protocols, procedures and policies as well as practical additions to ensure your safety without compromise on the pleasure of your experience.  We are fully committed to doing our very best for you, as always. Please know that our warmth and friendliness will surround you as always whilst we observe safety first.

To our longstanding patients that we have missed over recent months, welcome back. To our new patients and followers we have yet the pleasure to meet, we hope that you are reassured that our very best efforts to keep you safe and sound are in place for your peace of mind and safety and we look forward to meeting with you soon.


Ingredients Spotlight: Glutathione

What is Glutathione?

Glutathione is tripeptide composed of 3 amino acids, cysteine, glutamic acid and glycine; these work together as a powerful antioxidant. It was originally prescribed as an immune boosting drug; however, doctors noticed the skin brightening and lightening effects and it is now also a popular skincare ingredient to help those with an uneven skin tone due to sun damage. It also neutralizes free radicals, boosts the immune system and reduces pigmentation.


What are the benefits of Glutathione?

  • Brightens and evens skin tone
  • Maintains skins moisture level
  • Helps maintain skins elasticity
  • Breaks down melanin, reducing pigmentation
  • Removes free radicals, reducing the effects of photoaging


How does it work?

It inhibits melanin production by inhibiting tyrosinase activity, this activates the pheomelanin pathway, and reactive oxygen species generated from UV exposure. It lowers the skins melanin production, by producing lighter skin tones, the skin will gradually appear more like it’s original tone, very similar to the skin on your inner arm.

It  improves overall skin health, it is a powerful antioxidant and removes free radicals, preventing free radical damage and restoring the skins natural moisture barrier.


Which of our FTT products contain Glutathione?



FTT Illuminate Skin Brightening Serum - Alpha Arbutin / Azelaeic Acid /Glutathione

Illuminate –Skin Brightening Serum

5% Azelaic Acid, 2% Alpha Arbutin, 2% Glutathione

This highly active serum provides a poly-focal, clinical, approach to areas of skin discoloration. It contains, azelaic acid to help calm inflammation, alpha-arbutin and glutathione to inhibit melanin synthesis, the main cause of pigmentation, together with vitamins E (and) C to provide antioxidant protection.