Felicidad Carrera, the woman who revolutionized aesthetics in Spain: “Silicone on the face was a disaster”
Someone named Happiness has to be born with a special, extra gift to make people happy. That’s what the people around him must think, at least. Happiness Career (71 years old), expert in aesthetics and director of the center that, for more than 40 years, has become the spearhead of treatments and appliances in the search for beauty which, as she recognizes, “in many cases is also seeking happiness.”
If someone reads in any magazine in Spanish, English or Russian, that an aesthetic treatment is the latest in the US or the UKAt Felicidad Carrera they are already testing it, analyzing it and only if it has completely convinced them, buying it. They have been doing it this way all their lives and they continue at it, as with Ultherapythe star lifting treatment without surgery that is sweeping and Felicidad Carrera is the one that does the most in all of Europe.
“When I started there were not many aesthetic medicine centers. They were simply beauticians. From the first moment I opted for technology, I had some friends who began to distribute equipment and brought it to me to get my opinion. So we started bringing in equipment that was not common. ANDIn the first center, we brought one of the first lasers to treat the skin, scars, the scalp… My husband’s colleagues, who were engineers, came to see what laser was,” explains Felicidad.
With more than 70 years written on her card, not on her face or on her skin, Felicidad continues to be at the foot of the canyon of a space through which more than 50,000 Spanish women have passed, “from all the provinces of Spain”and from abroad, with a concept engraved almost in fire in every hallway, room and stretcher: “Natural and healthy beauty.”
That’s why the laser was followed by the first electrostimulation, high-frequency, pressotherapy devices… and their first decisions to always continue on the path where health and beauty go hand in hand.. “They left me a bed of grape rays when they started arriving and one day I tried it. I came out with rough and dry skin and I returned it. It was new but it dehydrated the skin and what I wanted was to hydrate it.”
“I was 30 years old and I worked for a multinational. I was going to get my cleaning done at a center with my colleagues and I loved it. So much so that I left the company, I looked for good training, because the first aesthetic academies had just arrived in Spain. , and I installed a stretcher at home to perfect what I was learning every day,” he says.
Shortly after, his first ‘Felicidad Carrera’ was born, in the heart of the Pilar neighborhood, which became a temple for those who wanted to try the latest and greatest in aesthetics. “That began to fill up very quickly. Many people came from the La Paz Hospital, which we were close by, and they were high-level clients because they were the ones who had money to invest in taking care of themselves. Then the topic of aesthetics began to come up a lot in magazines and became more popular.
It was a time when, as this expert recognizes, “there was even more emphasis on beauty, to improve the quality of the skin.” “What was sought was to take care of the skin, not deform the face. Three or four years after opening the center, clients who had injected silicone in other medical-aesthetic clinics began to come. It was a general disaster with fillers that then left lumps, people who have had to have surgery to remove them…”.
After more than forty years in the sector, Felicidad is aware of the thousands of women who have entrusted her not only with their face but also with their body and their total well-being. AND Although he never gives names, he knows that politicians, businesswomen, actresses, models have passed through his hands… in search of that comprehensive aesthetic medical treatment for which her daughter is now also very much to blame Leticia (44 years old), who after graduating in Pharmacy, Biochemistry and Nutrition, was clear that Felicidad Carrera was also his destiny.
“I have a lot of responsibility because she has reached very high levels, with a lot of effort, and I want to maintain it,” he says.
If asked what is her first memory linked to aesthetics, Felicidad Carrera’s daughter responds instantly by returning again to the beautiful health. “The sunscreen. We went to the beach and no one put on sunscreen and my mother carried bottles for all. You had to apply the cream half an hour before, nothing on the beach. He would put us all in line and come protector,” she jokes.
Felicidad smiles under the mask that is maintained throughout the center within the strict security protocol to warn that the sun is one of the biggest sins against the skin that Spanish women commit. “At first there was only factor 2, 4 and 8 protector and I asked people to use 8 but people bought 2. No one wanted 8. I insisted on the spots, but everyone wanted to be very tanned. And now that fashion has returned again“.
Leticia has introduced her knowledge of nutrition into all treatments that have to do with the body and skin. She assures that “to a large extent, we are what we eat” but also that, as in everything, we are increasingly aware of it and avoid “processed foods, sugars, fats…”. “We have to eat healthy because that ultimately has a huge impact on the skin”.
She knows herself to be “a super supporter of nutricosmetics” and in fact has just launched the first supplement under the direct name of “Felicidad Carrera” which could not be other than collagen.
“Nutricosmetics greatly complements the diet we eat because we do not eat enough vitamins or proteins. I wouldn’t mind eating based on pills because I don’t find much time for food. and it’s easier for me to take some pills and move on,” he explains with a laugh.
Of course, like everything when it comes to aesthetics, you have to differentiate between the bad and the good and never abuse it: “You can’t take everything on the market.”
That’s why Felicidad follows him: “Be careful, we also inject hyaluronic acid but always little by little, without overdoing it. Because the person has to look beautiful but not changed.” Leticia sums it up: “We are in favor of small touch-ups that you see, but no one else”.
They have been working together for years but, as they confess, if you add family and professional life to it, they will have argued once or twice in total. “This year my mother hasn’t been coming because I was panicking, I have missed her a lot and she called her on the phone all the time,” admits Leticia.
The secret of their relationship is to combine experience with solid training, courage with patience to end up agreeing on a double thoroughness that has become their work rule. “Leticia can spend a year testing devices until she finds the machine that does what it claims to do.“Insists Felicidad with the calm that transmits not only her but everything that surrounds her.
He gives that same feeling of calm when asked about his secret to avoiding the passage of time. “My beauty routine is very long. I shower with hot water and then cold to stimulate circulation. Cream all over the body. Double face cleansing, toner, cream, contour, mask and massage. “You have to always do it and above all use a good amount, you can’t add a little bit of cream like some companies say.”
Leticia recognizes that hers, with two small children at home, is much shorter. “I am more practical… cleaning and a product that I love, from a German doctor, which is a unique cream. “A lot of quantity, yes, but all in one.”
After the pandemic
The center located in the heart of the Salamanca neighborhood is a coming and going of people. Normality after the pandemic has brought back the usual clients and many who have been greatly affected by this confinement. “People have become fatal from the pandemic. The worst is the neck area but also with fluid retention, loss of firmness… The ones that are most noticeable are women between 40 and 50 years old who have suffered the stress of work, home, children…“, explains Felicidad.
As a nutritionist Leticia knows that habits have changed in these months and now it is difficult, when we talk about diet, to try to eliminate some excesses such as alcohol or tobacco that became part of our daily lives during the lockdown. “External agents influence a lot but a disordered life, with lack of sleep, stress, poor diet and alcohol are the great sins we commit. With alcohol we have a problem and it is the first thing we have to eliminate“.
In the 16 booths that welcome clients, it is difficult to find a search for that false beauty that travels through the networks, creating almost perfect and duplicate images that are worth only a moment.
“I’m terrible at Instagram. I don’t like it at all and I think it does a lot of harm to us, especially young girls. We are positioned in the sector within naturalness so they do not ask us for lips that they have seen on Instagramnor the super-marked cheekbones or slanted looks… but a solution would have to be put in place to prevent damage to teenagers,” says Leticia, who already has a client waiting for her lying on a stretcher to have an Ultherapy treatment.
“Don’t worry, they are giving her a massage and they are preparing her”… They just need to say ‘to enjoy’.
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