'It enlightened me concerning the treatments and products I work with...'
Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry
Director, Body & Soul Beauty Therapy
Using her scientific expertise from her degree for skin and beauty treatments has taken Leonie’s salon Body & Soul Beauty Therapy to a whole new level for her client’s well-being and quality of life.
‘I wanted to be more informed than the average beauty therapist as to how we can prevent aging; the science behind the cell, and not just pampering,’ she says.
Leonie’s business Body & Soul is one of the few beauty salons that use modern scientific products and technologies for more effective treatment of their clients. Along with beauty care such as massage, pedicures, tanning, and waxing, some of the services they provide include light therapy and advanced skin treatments.
‘In particular I specialise in the treatment of problematic skins – rosacea, acne, aging, sensitive – using scientifically founded products and LED and laser therapies.’
Leonie started her career working at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research before raising a family, and later trained as a Beauty Therapist and founded the Body & Soul salon.
After several years running her successful business, Leonie felt a renewed passion for studying Biochemistry to further develop her knowledge of cells and methods of skin treatments.
Her studies centred on the influence antioxidants have on skin age prevention, and epigenetic modification. Leonie’s final year project in her degree examined plaque formation in arteries, and how antioxidants and vitamin E could help prevent oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), a form of cholesterol, into plaque.
‘I find it interesting educating people on how skin functions and therefore what products will actually help clear up, prevent, and manage issues,’ she says.
‘It enlightened me concerning the treatments and products I work with and confirms I was on the right track seeking products that cell signal and can epigenetically modify the skin.’
As her local university, UC gave her the benefit of studying her degree part-time around her business, while also giving her the supportive environment she needed to succeed.
‘I enjoyed the vibe around realising that students are there to be better informed, gain knowledge, and hopefully for most a purpose and a goal aimed for,’ she says. ‘Although it was difficult doing the degree part-time, especially with car parking, I wouldn’t have missed it for anything. It has kept me knowledgeable, fit, and young for my age.’
Another motivation for returning to study was the opportunity to volunteer her skills abroad, already being a sponsor for World Vision Children in Rwanda.
Also an ATM Gold member of Toastmasters, an international programme developing leadership and communication skills, Leonie hopes to have more opportunities to speak and educate about biochemistry in the future, now that she is equipped with her degree.