Dr Yannis Alexandrides MDFACS American and European Board- Certified plastic surgeon an founder of 111 Harley St., 111SKIN, 111CRYO and 111SPA/Clinic, founded his plastic surgery practice at number 111 on London’s Harley Street 20 years ago. 10 years later, he launched skincare brand 111SKIN, which has continued to grow from strength to strength globally. As he celebrates both milestone anniversaries, we get his opinion on the evolution of his business and where the UK aesthetics industry stands today.
Aesthetic Medicine: In the 20 years since you opened your practice, what are the biggest changes you’ve seen in aesthetics?
Dr Yannis Alexandrides: “At the beginning of my career, patients were very apprehensive about coming to a plastic surgeon’s office and asking about or moving forward with aesthetic procedures overall. This was a big difference from my practice in Miami where plastic surgery was hugely popular, even 20 years ago, and patients were very open about it. At the time, there was a stark difference between my American and British patients from a cultural perspective.
In the early 2000s, patients in the UK started to embrace non-surgical treatments like botulinum toxin. This helped normalise aesthetics and plastic surgery to address aesthetic concerns. Since then, there has been an accelerated recognition of the psychological and physical benefits of plastic surgery, with various progresses made through the implementation of the care quality system, the review of plastic surgery standards and the overall advancements of non-surgical treatments to support plastic and reconstructive surgery.
Initially, non-surgical treatments like toxin and fillers were only used in very specific areas of the face – the forehead wrinkles with Botox, for example. Now, with research and innovation, we have expanded the use of injectables to help balance facial dimensions to provide volume and rejuvenation. There is now also more of a progressive combination of treatments to achieve optimum results, while advancements in non-surgical treatments have replaced some surgical procedures, as they give great results with minimal downtime.
AM: Why did you want to develop your own skincare brand?
YA: During my first year of practice, I was always interested in finding products that would accelerate the healing process for my patients and improve their results. I began testing various skincare products on the market but found most to be aggressive and complicated to apply, leaving the face overly and unnecessarily sensitised with redness and irritation. This gave me the inspiration to create skincare products rooted in science yet applicable to even the most sensitive skins.
From these goals, I developed my original Dramatic Healing Serum, which then grew into our Reparative collection that launched at Harrods ten years ago with eight products. The Reparative collection includes our patented compound NACY2, which has been proven to accelerate the healing of the skin and address wrinkles and pigmentation.
AM: How has the brand evolved over those 10 years?
YA: We have since expanded 111SKIN to include five more collections – Radiance, Intensive, Regenerative, Clarity and Treatment. We started with eight products and now have over 50. We are also focusing on skin health holistically with our three Beauty Dose supplements, which help support healthy skin from within.
AM: What was the thinking behind 111CRYO as a standalone arm of the business? What’s so special about cryotherapy?
YA: From the first moment I tried cryo years ago, I knew it was something my patients needed to experience. It provides an immediate release of tension in the body, and research has shown it offers a multitude of benefits including increased metabolic activity, improved sleep quality and collagen production. It helps relieve muscle discomfort and helps you train harder for longer due to enhanced blood circulation to your muscles. We have clients that use our 111CRYO chamber regularly for all these benefits.
AM: What advice would you give junior plastic surgeons starting out in private practice?
YA: You have to understand both the medical and business side of the practice. This is important not only for success, but also to provide the best service to your patients. Support one another by creating small teams so you can cover for each other, remain open to new technologies and continue to learn. Offer your patients the best advice, honesty and solutions, and if you are ever presented with a case out of your depth, you should feel comfortable referring to another surgeon who specialises in that area to better assist.
AM: What do you see as the biggest challenges and opportunities in the UK aesthetics industry right now?
YA: We’re working in a challenging environment of increasing regulatory costs in synchronicity with increased competition from other specialities which are not experts in the field. There are also doctors and medical clinics in countries outside of the UK that are offering the allure of cheaper plastic surgery procedures, but much of this is unregulated. However, there are opportunities in the advancements in technology, especially with non-surgical treatments, that mean we can offer patients more treatment options to meet their needs effectively, without compromising their safety, time, or busy lives.