All Posts By:

Emily

  • InUncategorized

    Everything you need to know about purple shampoo

    Did you know that not just blondes can enjoy the benefits of using purple shampoo in their hair routine? Whether you’re blonde, lightened brunette, have highlights, balayage, white or grey hair – purple shampoo works to diminish unwanted yellow or orange tones for all hair shades. To learn more about this, I spoke with Moroccanoil’s Global Creative Director, Antonio Corral Calero, who shared everything you need to know about using purple shampoo.

    Who can use purple shampoo, and what are the purposes for each hair colour? Our Perfecting Purple Shampoo is designed for the unique needs of blonde, lightened (including brunette) or grey hair. Any hair type that needs to cool their hair colour down. Not only does it contain the beautiful cool pigments to cool the hair colour down, but also it contains the ArganID infusing the antioxidant powers of argan oil deep into the cortex of the hair leaving the condition of the hair exceptional.

    Are there any hair types or textures that should avoid purple shampoo? The shampoo is for all hair types. And everyone can benefit from it! 

    How should I use purple shampoo? Wash your hair once with your regular shampoo, then rinse and massage this purple shampoo all through your hair. Leave for 3-5 minutes, rinse, and condition. Start by using it on every third wash, and increase your frequency from there if you’re after a stronger result.

    How often should we use purple shampoo to avoid over-toning or damaging the hair? You would use this as often as needed to cool your hair colour down. When you get to a cool effect that you are happy with, you can then reduce it to once a week or until your hair starts to become warmer again. 

    Wishing you good hair days from now on!

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  • InHair

    How To Properly Care for Your Scalp

    Most people don’t think of their scalp as an area of the body that needs to be ‘maintained’, but did you know that the root of most hair issues usually begin at scalp level? Yes, you read that right. In fact, a neglected scalp can lead to hair loss and an array of issues with your hair (hello dandruff, dry scalp, or the dreaded oil slick). Below, Grow Haircare’s Expert Stylist Tiarne April from Chumba Concept Salon details how to properly care for your scalp so you can reveal your best hair yet. 

    GET TO KNOW YOUR SCALP

    Take some time to really look at your scalp and figure out what is going on. Ask yourself some questions like, “is it looking dry?”, “is there product build-up?” etc to understand what you’re working with. Then, monitor it over a few days to see how your daily activities might be affecting your scalp. Which brings us to the next point! 

    LEARN HOW YOUR LIFESTYLE MIGHT BE AFFECTING YOUR SCALP

    Are you a regular gym junkie or surfie gal? Do you smoke or spend a lot of time in the sun? Well, all of these things can have an impact on your scalp health. Depending on your lifestyle habits, your scalp might require more attention than other people. For example, swimming in salt water or chlorine regularly can dehydrate and irritate your skin, including the skin on your scalp. That means you would need to make up for lost moisture, both externally and internally (with water and nutrition). Or if you’re constantly at the gym it’s likely you’re sweating more than the average person and therefore you scalp would require a deeper clean. Excess sebum, dirt and sweat can all clog the hair follicles which can have an on-flow effect on your hair. Using products like a scalp scrub can eradicate these issues but more on that later! 

    USE GENTLE HAIRCARE PRODUCTS 

    Try to be mindful of the haircare products you use on your hair, avoiding products containing harsh ingredients which might irritate the scalp or strip it of its moisture. Invest in a range that features natural ingredients like Grow’s Thicker Fuller range of everyday use haircare products that strengthen and moisturise hair without all the nasties. Enriched with the highest quality ingredients, these products will help to add volume and substance to each strand of hair, whilst moisturising the hair from within and repairing the appearance of damaged hair.

    INVEST IN A SCALP SCRUB 

    Most people have likely tried a plethora of products in the never-ending pursuit of dream hair; however, a scalp scrub may not be one of them. Touted as ‘exfoliation for the scalp’, a scalp scrub could be the thing that’s missing in your haircare routine. After all, exfoliation can be the key to a luminous complexion, so you best believe that it can lead to luminous hair! A scalp scrub is basically a formulation of exfoliating ingredients that prove the power of exfoliation isn’t just limited to your face. Typically containing ingredients to deeply cleanse and nourish, scalp scrubs are the next best thing in haircare. As the demand increases for healthy, shiny and manageable hair, scalp scrubs can give you that salon experience at home. Allowing for a deep exfoliation of the scalp, it will remove excess sebum, dead skin cells and product build up to allow our natural oils to keep the hair and scalp nourished and healthy. Grow’s Stimulating Scalp Scrub detoxes, refreshes and restores balance to the scalp, making way for fuller, shinier and healthier hair. What’s more, its formulation can help with hair thinning and shedding, by helping to unclog hair follicles. Many people don’t realise that over time the build-up of products, residue and sebum can clog our hair follicles, which can lead to hair thinning. This happens because hair follicles typically have two or more hairs growing from them, but if they become clogged, this can result in less hairs being able to grow through. Healthy hair should always start with the scalp, so ensure your scalp scrub will work hard to lift away impurities and remove product build-up which can keep your hair follicles clear.

    DO A SCALP MANTAINENCE DAY ONCE A WEEK

    Ideally your routine should include one day a week that puts some time and effort into your scalp. Invest in a scalp scrub and get to work by gently massaging it into the scalp. This can further stimulate blood circulation, delivering oxygen to your scalp and encouraging hair growth. Grow’s Stimulating Scalp Scrub contains natural sea salt and peppermint oil which has anti-inflammatory properties that can be known to relieve irritation of the scalp. Upon application, users of Grow’s Stimulating Scalp Scrub can expect a light tingle to the scalp which simply means that the product is working on stimulation blood circulation – better for encouraging hair growth! The Peppermint oil is also great at absorbing excess oil which can be the culprit of clogging hair follicles. Grow’s Stimulating Scalp Scrub will also deeply exfoliate the scalp to remove product build up, dead skin cells, and any residue like air pollution which also has the potential to cause hair loss. The best bit about Grow’s Scalp Scrub is that it doesn’t require shampoo afterwards, making it any easy step to add to your haircare routine.

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Links I Love

    Welcome to Links I Love, 2021 style!

    *Featured image courtesy of The Coveteur

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  • InBeauty

    Review | Embalm Skincare’s 3 Step Skincare Kit

    We are pretty lucky down here in Tassie – I mean, we have great seafood and wines and simply incredible views from so many beaches and mountains around the state, it’s almost silly. But we can now claim to be home of award-winning skincare brand Embalm Skincare, with Mel Driver at the helm.

    This brand was a passion project Mel says, as she “suffered severe allergic reactions to synthetic skincare products and was shocked to find that some of the ingredients I’ve been using on my skin were also used in commercial garage degreaser and brake fluid! I was horrified to discover that countless products targeting women with sensitive skin lacked ingredients that benefit, protect and preserve their skin. Armed with a Diploma in Organic Skincare Science, I decided to create a skincare range that’s honest and transparent – with no hidden ingredients. A range that is 100% natural, and hypoallergenic. A range that women could trust after years of being misled by false advertising of products that promised the world and failed to deliver.”

    I was lucky enough to be gifted the Complete 3 Step Skincare Kit which includes:

    • a konjac sponge and the Uplifting Cleanser, 
    • the Calming Toner,
    • and the Luxurious Face Moisturiser.

    This set promises to offer long lasting hydration, while reducing blemishes/redness and preventing new breakouts, and works to restore, revive and brighten skin. It’s also worth noting that Embalm are of course, PETA certified vegan and cruelty-free.

    I’ve been using this set for almost a month now and feel ready to share my informed opinions about this quiet but cult-worthy Tasmanian skincare range. If I had to pick one product to keep forever, it would be the konjac sponge (read: it’s such a game changer when cleansing the skin), closely followed by the Uplifting Cleanser. 

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    The sponge lathers up instantly and moves over the face effortlessly, without a tug or pull to be seen. It’s so gentle but so easy to get in the groves around the chin, nose, neck etc and is simply a joy to use. I’ve found using this of an evening (I don’t cleanse of a morning, I just don’t find my skin needs it – don’t come at me) my skin is clearer than ever, which I’ve put down to the effective nightly cleanse.

    The cleanser is black, which I’ve not seen before, but again foams up nicely, without the skin feeling tight or dry, and works in tandem with the sponge. The toner, which reminds me more of an essence than a traditional toner, is light and hydrating and allows the moisturiser to glide on smoothly. I will say though, as it’s still Summer in our part of the world, this moisturiser is enough on it’s own but I think for my skin, I’ll incorporate an oil in with the moisturiser throughout the Winter months – that is, unless it’s empty by then! 

    I’ve met Mel a few times now over the years, and I can truly vouch for her passion and drive to create beautiful, luxurious skincare that really works. The brand has won countless awards in the last few years, and it’s easy to see why when just three products can be so easy to use but produce amazing results. 

    Embalm Skincare be found online and at various stockists in both Tasmania and New South Wales. For new customers, Mel also offers the opportunity to try five samples of her natural skincare products for the perfect first experience, in the Skincare Trial Pack

    Do yourself a favour and get yourself some of these Embalm Skincare products today!

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  • InBeauty

    Beauty Hacks to Save you Time This Year

    I don’t know about you, but I feel that life gets busier and busier each and every year, and any bit of free time I do have – I want to savour it. So, with that in mind, we’ve collated some of the best time-saving beauty hacks to make your life just that bit easier of a morning and get you out of the door quicker!

    Consider laser hair removal

    Toss out your razor that has seen wayyyyy better days, as the benefits of hair removal lasers are seriously game changing. And why not save some coin while you are at it, as most clinics have specials where you can purchase a package of say 3 or 6 sessions at a discount. This part is especially great because your appointments are booked – that’s one less to thing worry about in the early morning rush around. 

    Invest in a proper skincare routine

    If you’re new to skincare or looking to upgrade your regime, consider booking in to see favourite skin clinician / aesthetician or dermatologist for a professional skin analysis. Not only will they put together a personal skincare plan with treatment options (including the best skincare brands for you), they’ll also recommend treatments to work alongside and in tandem with your particular skin type or the condition you wish to treat. 

    Consider products with dual purpose

    Make your skincare work even harder for you, by purchasing dual-purpose products like moisturisers with adequate built-in sun protection, or a cleanser that can also be used as a mask. A cheek stain can multitask as a lip tint, or even eyeshadow. Less products equals less in your cupboard, and of course translates to less impact on the environment. 

    DIY your own tinted moisturiser

    This hack is as simple as adding a few drops of foundation into your daily moisturiser, and viola! Remember to stay protected from the sun and always apply your appropriate SPF before your makeup application. 

    Turn your lipstick into your blush

    The best part about this one is we all usually have at least a few (or 7 in my case!) lipsticks floating around in handbags, so you can dab on a bit of colour to your cheeks while waiting for your train to arrive at the station. 

    Use your lip balm as a brow gel

    Lastly, if you are all out of brow gel or pomade, why not try using your clear lipbalm over unruly brows for a groomed look almost instantly. You can also use a clear mascara here too, take your pick!

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  • InBeauty, Interview

    An Expert Reveals How a Skincare Product is Really Formulated

    I’ve long been a skincare junkie, but never have I been exposed to the behind the scenes of creating a product – other than the odd podcast listening to brand founders. I find this all extremely interesting, so when I was introduced to the founder of Biologi, Ross Macdougald, I knew this was my chance to learn, and in turn share with you.

    Ross Macdougald is an Australian entrepreneur who is the founder of Biologi, phytoverse and Plant Extracts. As an experienced industry chemist, Ross is a on a mission is to prove through science that ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ can not only work, but are better than synthetic manmade chemicals.

    Born and educated in Sydney, Ross moved to Byron Bay to work with Thursday Plantation, and Southern Cross University. Throughout his career, Ross has developed over 300 products and formulated active ingredients for large cosmetic companies. Ross can be credited with many revolutionary formulations and active ingredients which are currently sold in many brands globally.

    Ross shares: “Depending on the brand, skincare products can be formulated in a range of different ways, using an array of different processes and ingredients. One of the key areas to get an understanding of skincare formulations is learning to decipher what is written on the label. Skincare labels are typically confusing and unfortunately can slightly misleading if you’re not sure what you’re looking for. What’s written on the label can help you to understand the key ingredients, along with the percentage levels in the formulation. That can be a good place to start if you want to get a better understanding of the formulation.”

    The key thing to note when it comes to understanding the structure of an ingredient list is the order that the ingredients come in. Typically, the first ingredient listed on the back of the pack is the ingredient that contains the highest concentration. All of the ingredients in concentrations of 1 per cent or more should be listed in descending order, typically starting from greatest amount to least amount present in the product. Ingredients in a concentration of less than 1% can be listed in any order. Ingredient labels can be confusing because brands don’t need to stipulate the percentages of each ingredient. This means that you can often find that the active ingredient comes in a really low concentrate (which won’t do much for the skin). Or worse, that the first ingredient on the label is water and other filler ingredients – meaning that your product is likely made up of ingredients that don’t actually do anything for the skin.”

    Marketing tactics are always a hot topic on Instagram – I always wonder if it’s real hype or just a bunch of influencers pooled together, to which Ross notes, “The other thing to be really aware of is knowing the difference between catchy taglines and marketing gimmicks that will often gloss over the questionable contents of cosmetics containers. A great example is taglines using ‘natural’ or ‘naturally-derived’ – this doesn’t necessarily conform to our traditional understanding of the word. Whilst the TGA regulates labelling of ingredients and therapeutic claims, marketing of skincare packaging is largely unregulated. This means manufacturers can use the word ‘natural’ or ‘pure’ and if it’s not the case, there is no consequence. Remember, that every single ingredient on the planet is derived from a natural source in some form. Even petrol once started as a natural ingredient – but you absolutely would not put that on your skin. It’s therefore up to you, and you alone, to cut through taglines and decipher the truth about the ingredients. 

    Some products can contain a whole host of ingredients so it can be hard to decipher what the percentages are of each ingredient. But as a general rule, if you’re buying a product for an active ingredient and it appears further down the ingredient list, chances are there really isn’t going to be much efficacy in that product. Sure, it might feel nice on the skin, but that’s often more of a placebo effect from the water and filler ingredients putting a film over the skin. I believe this is a big issue in the skincare industry because consumers aren’t being given all the facts. That’s one of the reasons why I created Biologi  – because I wanted consumers to be able to buy a brand that contained 100% active ingredients (compared to brands that usually only put around 2% active ingredients). The active ingredient in a product is the thing that works on the skin, so you need it to be in a high concentrate for it to do anything. Because we don’t add activating agents, stabilisers, emulsifiers or even water or fragrance to our product, we don’t dilute the potent plant-power of the plant serums, and all our products remain 100% active.”

    Things of note:

    • Some red flags are obviously water as the first ingredient (especially if the product is expensive!). You don’t want to be paying hundreds of dollars for a product that contains mostly water. Consumers often view water or aqua as hydrating and good for the skin, but the real reason that it’s in the product is so manufacturers can charge less making it more consumer friendly. Water also dilutes the activity of natural plant extracts leaving the work to be done solely by synthetics.
    • Another red flag is fragrance appearing towards the top of the list. Even natural fragrance such as essential oils can irritate delicate cells causing pain and discomfort. Fragrances are often made up of a myriad of irritant synthetics, but because ‘fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ is considered the main ingredient, there’s no law requiring the fragrance ingredients are listed on your bottle. Another issue is that we don’t really know what that fragrance is and because some newer preservatives can be listed as a fragrance it can make the product look like it is preservative free when it’s not.
    • Another thing to be aware of is substitute ingredients that are replacing bad ingredients with other ingredients that are just as bad for the skin. Since parabens became a dirty word in Australia, paraben-free skincare is on the rise. Unfortunately, what the manufacturers don’t tell us is what they’re replacing parabens with. Benzyl alcohol and polyaminopropyl biguanide are common ingredients used to replace parabens as a preservative and they are not good for the skin. Other ingredients to avoid are synthetic irritants like Silcones, Glycols, ethanol, phenoxyethanol and acrylates which can cause damage to your skin and overall health.

    “The good ingredients to look out for are obviously 100% active pure plant extracts, because they’re the ingredients that work to repair, rejuvenate, hydrate, protect and nourish cells. Plant based ingredients are always a winner so long as they haven’t been manipulated with synthetics. There’s actually some amazing actives found in natural plant extracts which can sound bad but are actually good. Things like Tryptophan, Ferulic acid, Gallic acid, Tartaric acid, Quercetin – all these ingredients work wonders on the skin even though they can sound a little dubious. We just launched our 100% natural cleanser – Bc Refresh Cleanser – which is made of the single ingredient soap berry extract. Within that extract you can find things like Amino acids, Phenolic acids, Triterpene glycosides and amines – Again they can sound a little scary but these naturally occurring ingredients work in synergy to remove all traces of dirt without disturbing the skin’s natural oils and moisture essential for hydration.” – Ross

    Like me, if you’re not sure about a product formulation or a brand’s process, be sure to do your research on each ingredient, ask the brand directly, or feel free to reach out to the team at Biologi. Ross explained their brand promise at Biologi is to help consumers learn about the ingredients in everything they put on, and therefore in, their skin so they can make informed choices about their products!

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  • InBeauty, Hair

    It’s a New Year, Why Not Celebrate with New Hair?

    How exciting is a new year, especially after the year that was twenty twenty – right?! I have already booked an appointment at my hairdresser to chop off my old, dried ends and start this year with a fun bob – I mean, growing out my hair is so last year! 

    With that said, I recently reached out to Bex Gold, the founder of Department of Brands (which includes KYN, Bar None, Brite Organix and Spot Medic) who shared her opinion on 2021 hair trends – and thank goodness I am bang on trend with my shorter locks. Let’s jump into it!

    “Short hair is all the rage at the moment, especially short hair with loose waves. Achieving this look is incredibly easy with one key product in your routine – the Kyn Sea Salt Spray. It’s a non-drying spray that will moisturise while adding volume and emphasising loose curls.” – Bex

    “A ponytail is always the ultimate day-to-night look, however a textured ponytail gives you the extra added edge that’s on trend this upcoming season. Simply secure your hair in a ponytail and then use Kyn’s Texture Spray on your mid-lengths and ends and use a thin comb to tease it through. This will add volume and texture giving you a thicker and fuller look with extra shine.” – Bex

    “Everyone loves a statement look, and there’s no better statement to make than blunt bangs. The key to this style is ensuring that your hair is hydrated, moisturised and frizz-free. The Kyn Overnight Hair Mask is the perfect addition to your routine to achieve this look. It’s a repairing mask that restores both your scalp and your hair, moisturising while removing build-up and leaving you with silky hair free of any flyaways or frizz!” – Bex

    Which of these are your favourite, and what are you doing to your hair this year?

    Share with me in the comments!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Let’s Talk Sun Protection

    We all know why we need to wear SPF daily, and of course re-apply (hint: wearing sunscreen prevents premature aging from the skin and lowers your skin cancer risk) but preaching this message often in turns creates a lot of questions, especially in regards to skincare and application. To avoid any confusion, I asked the extremely knowledgeable team at much-loved clean beauty brand Grown Alchemist to answer all your burning (bad pun, sorry!) SPF related questions. 

    When in our skincare routine should we apply SPF, and do we apply to damp or dry skin?

    “We advise that our invisible and lightweight Grown Alchemist Natural Hydrating Sunscreen SPF30 should be applied on moisturised skin, which means it should be applied after your preferred moisturiser, and is the last step of your skincare routine.”

    As well as our face, where else should we be applying our sun protection?

    “Our body is our largest organ and therefore should be taken care of. We should be applying sunscreen to our face and body before we expose ourselves in the sun.


    The rays that are most damaging to our skin are called ultraviolet (UV) rays presented in sunlight. There are two types of UV rays: UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays play a role in skin cancer formation. Besides, the UVA rays penetrate more deeply into the skin and play a greater role in premature skin aging changes including wrinkle formation (photoaging). UVB rays are responsible for producing sunburn. The UVB rays also play the greatest role in causing skin cancers, including the deadly black mole form of skin cancer (malignant melanoma). However, there are approximately 500 times more UVA rays in sunlight than UVB rays. Therefore, in addition to protecting your skin from the effects of UVB rays, it is also just as important to protect from the damaging effects of the more numerous UVA rays. Sunscreen can help protect our skin from UVA/B rays, only when you choose the right one.”

    How often should we be applying SPF, during a normal day and/or a day at the beach?

    “We should avoid constant exposure to the sun for a prolonged period of time. Normal day or a day at the beach, it is recommended to wear sunscreen to protect your skin.“

    Is it possible to avoid our makeup piling when applied over SPF?

    “We recommend using a good primer to lock in your makeup so it doesn’t move around, Grown Alchemist Anti-Pollution Primer is the perfect to use after our Natural Hydrating Sunscreen SPF30. It creates a velvety texture that’s invisible on the skin and helps reduce the slight sheen from the sunscreen and holds the makeup longer.”

    Stay safe this silly season all, and remember to look after your beautiful skin!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Meet Silvi, The World’s First Silk Pillowcase That Works to Prevent and Improve skin Whilst You Sleep

    I’ve long been a lover of sleeping on silk, beyond being the most luxurious rest of your life, there are some serious beauty benefits including; like being naturally hypoallergenic and suitable for all skin types, reducing friction between your hair and pillowcases which in turn prevents split ends and breakage, and ensures blow outs last longer. 

    But new skincare brand Silvi has taken sleeping with silk one step further by creating a pillowcase treated with anti-bacterial silver ions, which naturally kills acne-causing bacteria and will help prevent:

    • Breakouts (pimples)
    • Dry or oily skin
    • Blackheads & whiteheads

    I spoke with founder, Ben, to learn more about why the addition is silver is so important, who said: “Antibacterial silver has been used for decades in the medical and cleaning industry as a safe way to stop odours and bacterial spread. Upon learning that our pillowcases are teeming with bacteria that are actually the underlying cause of most common acne/breakouts, we thought wouldn’t be great to take the same silver technology to the bedroom and combine it with the most beneficial fabric known to our skin: silk. It’s the first time this has ever been done. The result is what we believe (and our customers) to be the most comfortable pillow case that’s also the best for your skin and hair.”

    Ben explains that “the health benefits of silk far outweigh any other fabric on the market. This is because it’s dense with natural proteins, particularly sericin, which gives silk it’s skin regenerative and anti-ageing properties by promoting collagen production. Beyond that, it’s naturally hypoallergenic, so no waking up with stuffy noses and skin irritations – also fantastic for combating common acne and breakouts.”

    Silvi’s pillowcase and eye mask are made from 22 Momme 100% Mulberry silk (6A, the highest possible grading), which has been treated with anti-bacterial silver ions, reducing bacteria by 99.97%.

    “The benefits of silk and silver are really for everyone! Being 100% natural, no chemicals and safe, our silk not only results in cleaner, clearer skin, but it’s also great for your hair (reduces knots and split ends), improves skin collagen (perfect for fine lines and wrinkles) and fantastic for those with allergies – oh, and our silver helps eliminate odour! And if you’re a guy, who doesn’t like having less smelly sheets?” Ben, founder of Silvi.

    Silk in itself is a great material for acne sufferers and anybody with skin irritations as it’s naturally hypoallergenic. It’s also classed as a moisture wicking material, meaning the sweat build up that cotton pillowcases experience overnight doesn’t occur – and bacteria, dust mites and fungi LOVE this moist environment. Less nasties = cleaner, clearer skin.

    While I had Ben, I had to ask just how often should we really be washing our bedding, especially our pillowcases? He replied “Studies have shown that our pillowcases have over 1000x more bacteria than a toilet after just 3 days without washing! So, in reality, the ideal amount of washing is daily to prevent any of the bacteria, dust mites, and makeup/skincare remnants from potentially clogging our pores and causing breakouts. We know daily washing is extreme and even weekly washing of bedsheets often doesn’t get done, so the fact Silvi needs to be washed every 12-14 days makes it convenient as well as being an all-around better product.”

    Will you try Silvi, and do you use silk bedding? Share with me in the comments!

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  • InBeauty, Interview, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Brittany Stewart, Beauty Podcaster

    I’ve been obsessed with podcasts, specifically beauty podcasts for years now and a high point of each week is episodes of Beauty Island. Beauty Island tells stories of memories sparked by beauty products, which is hosted by Brittany Stewart, and personal favourite episodes include interviews with Kathleen Hou, Paula Joye, Sarah Humphries, Stephanie Darling, Kristen Carriol and Lisa Patulny to name just a few!

    Brittany Stewart is an award-nominated beauty podcaster, journalist and copywriter. She’s the founder and host of award-nominated podcast, Beauty Island, and writes a regular beauty newsletter called It’s A Beauty! Her published work includes The Age, Sydney Morning Herald, news.com.au, Mamamia, Adore Beauty, The Australian, The Times (UK), Oz Hair and Beauty and Beauticate. Find her @britttanybeautybts.

    The questions that Brittany asks allow the listener to really get to know the interviewee, and it’s almost like listening to a conversation between friends who just happen to love lipstick and perfume as much as I do.

    With all of that said, I think you’re going to really enjoy this article so without further ado – enjoy!

    Where did your love of beauty and skincare come from, has it always been there?

    I think about this a lot because it’s partly what inspired my beauty podcast, Beauty Island, as I believe those early memories can really shape how we view and feel about beauty. For me, I can trace some of my earliest memories to my Mum. Unbiased view: she is one of the most stylish and glamorous people I know. She never leaves the house without her hair done and sporting a bright red lip. I remember sitting on her bed when I was little watching her get ready. She’d always use a YSL red lipstick (one of which I have kept for sentimental reasons!) and leave with a spritz of perfume – I think it was Chanel Chance. It really was a ritual.

    Since then, it’s really in the last decade that I’ve developed a passion for beauty that has turned me from a just a consumer into it becoming part of my career. I can be a bit of a magpie – ooh shiny! glitter! fancy packaging! – but I’ve become much more discerning in the last five years as I consider the other factors in beauty besides the material things, such as the cultural, environmental and mental implications of the wider industry. I love that the impact of makeup is instant, but I appreciate the science and research and power of skincare much more than I used to.

    What are your favourite skincare ingredients, and why?

    I have quite dry skin so I love anything with hyaluronic acid as my skin responds really well to it. I’m also quite partial to chemical exfoliants like AHAs and BHAs. They were also some of my first ‘proper’ ingredients in fancier skincare or that I really studied to understand why and how they worked or were suited to my skin, so it’s a bit of a soft spot, too. For anyone who’s a bit nervous or intimidated by all the talk of retinol and more aggressive acids, these are great entry level ingredients that make a noticeable difference.

    What are your favourite beauty treatments?

    I have long, curly hair so I love treating myself to a professional blowdry at places like The Blow. I love my curly hair, but it’s nice to sometimes have something a little sleeker. (Also I’m a sucker for a scalp massage.) If I had an endless budget (one day!) I’d never wash my hair myself! I don’t do it religiously but I do think a lash lift or eyelash extensions can feel truly transformative and save so much time in the morning. I’ve had them done a few times and could see myself getting addicted to them. Home-wise, I love a luxurious bath or shower using the ‘fancy’ products in my cupboard and doing a hair mask – Philip Kingsley Elasticizer does wonders for my hair.

    In regards to skin therapists and dermatologists, whose opinion or knowledge do you trust and believe in?

    As a beauty journalist, I’m lucky enough to have spoken to hundreds of beauty experts over the years. Some of my go-tos who I’d trust my life with (or at least my skin!) include: 

    • Dermatologist Dr Shyamalar Gunatheesan. Incredibly knowledgeable and always explains things in such an accessible way. Talking with her is like a lightbulb going off in your head.
    • Dermatologist Dr Leona Yip – again, makes complicated skin things seem much more understandable.
    • Melanie Grant – skin expert to the stars (for good reason!) and someone I love speaking to for stories. 
    • Michelle Wong (Labmuffin Beauty Science) – More of the science background but her facts only, no-bs reviews and explainers on all things skin are brilliant. 

    What are your thoughts on botox and fillers?

    It’s a really interesting one. I know so many people (who you might not expect/realise!) who get botox and fillers and I’ll admit; they look great. I’m firmly in the camp that you should be able to do what you want to your skin without judgement. Do what makes you feel good – and if that means getting botox or fillers, then good for you. But I think, particularly if you’re someone in the public eye, you have a bit of a responsibility to be open about it rather than claiming that the results are all down to Mother Nature or some miracle face cream. Because no topical product will achieve the same results as injectables. Despite what the label promises. But it can be so easy to forget that.  

    On a deeper level, however, I also know these desires to look a certain way don’t happen in a vacuum. And I do worry – and know from my own experience – how easy it can be to get caught up in thinking that there’s something wrong or needs fixing because you don’t look like that naturally. So I think the reason you’re doing it comes in to play as well. If you’re going to the right person (qualified, experienced etc) with the best results we shouldn’t really be able to tell – other than you look like you’ve had a week of eight hours sleep!

    Personally, I’m absolutely terrified of needles so I can’t see myself getting any for cosmetic reasons any time soon!

    What would you like to try next; product, service or treatment?

    Because we’ve been in lockdown, it’s been less about new things and more about having all the things I love again: a massage, a pedicure, a blowdry. I’m in Melbourne so hairdressers are all booked out for months – so I’m excited to finally get my hair cut and coloured again! 

    Of treatments I haven’t had before, I would love to try treatments at either Venustus in Sydney or Herbario in Melbourne. They’re both places my guests regularly rave about on Beauty Island. So Valli’s Signature Treatment at Herbario and a massage/treatment at Venustus are absolutely on my beauty bucket list!

    I’m also excited to try and focus more on innovative Australian-made brands. The other side of my job is copywriting and strategy for predominantly lifestyle brands so I’m always on the lookout for brands that are truly doing something new and exciting rather than a carbon copy of what already exists. 

    What is your favourite beauty magazine, and/or who are you listening/watching to in podcasts, Instagram or Youtube? 

    So many! I love the beauty content that people like Gemma Watts, Ali Whittle, Rowi Singh, Hannah English, and Flex Mami create on Instagram. Also Jessica Defino who’s a beauty reporter that really challenges the industry for a different lens on beauty.

    The only magazine I still buy regularly is British Vogue, but online I enjoy the beauty coverage by The Cut as it balances smarts with shiny things.

    For podcasts: Beauty Island, Glow Journal, All Bases Covered, That Beauty Podcast, Beauty IQ Uncensored, On Reflection with Funmi Fetto. A more recent discovery is Beauty Is Political – I love how and what they cover within the beauty sphere.

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Heal and Strengthen your Skin with Probiotics

    If you’re anything like me, you’ll know that probiotics in skincare is nothing new but esmi’s Probiotic Skin Mylck is. This silky moisturising lotion works to assist with healing and strengthening hyper sensitive skin, and can also boast being formulated with 100% Australian made probiotics.

    To learn more about this product I’ve been using for a little over a month now, I asked Meg Lovett, skin consultant at esmi Skin Minerals to share why this is a product you need to learn more about!

    Name: Meg Lovett
    Age: 36 (still feeling 25!)
    I’ve been working for esmi Skin Minerals for 2.5 wonderful years

    Meg, why are we now seeing probiotics in skincare products, and are these different to those found in the food/drinks we consume? “Our skin needs good bacteria to survive, and the abundance of bad bacteria can lead to skin issues such as redness, sensitivity or irritated/reactive skin. As such, applying probiotics topically is an excellent and vital part of your routine to ensure good bacteria takes over, and your barrier functions at optimal health!”

    A strong and functioning barrier is essential for skin health. Without it we can be exposed to UV and free radical damage (premature ageing) which can increase the risk of infection, and sensitive/reactive skin.

    When should this product be used, and where in your skincare routine? “Our Skin Mylck Probiotics are lightweight lotions used as your moisturiser, they can be applied after cleansing or layered with water based serums. Cleanse, apply serums, following with a pea size Skin Mylck– both AM & PM. *Never forgetting SPF in your morning routine! If your skin is quite dry/impaired and you do feel as though you need a little extra nourishment, you can also follow with a drop or two of your favourite Oil Based Skin Treat/moisturiser.”

    “Our Skin Mylcks contain Lysates which are a concentrated dose of probiotic function. They differ slightly to the strains which are ingested via oral powders, but nonetheless, work in perfect synergy with the skin when applied topically – and they don’t have to be refrigerated which is an extra bonus!

    Which skin types will benefit from this product and new range of products? “Any skin type can benefit from probiotics. Our Probiotic Skin Mylcks have been formulated specially for sensitive/reactive skin types, as well as acne, rosacea, dermatitis/eczema and help strengthen, repair and restore skin, promoting a healthy barrier function. They are also ideal for those who have damaged their skin from the overuse of active or harsh ingredients – most of us have been guilty of this, at one time or another! Probiotics will help the skin recover faster, increasing the skin’s good bacteria – eliminating the bad, allowing it to thrive and flourish.”

    For any advice or assistance, esmi’s Skin Service team is available to guide and answer questions you may have about any of their skin care products via chat or email at skin@esmi.com.au. It couldn’t be simpler!

    P.S – If you’re looking to treat your skincare obsessed best friend (or even yourself!) this Christmas, make sure you check out esmi’s Advent Calender, its incredible!

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  • InBeauty, Home Decor, Interview, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Amber Sargent, Beauty & Lifestyle Influencer

    While Amber Sargent is one of my newer people to follow on Instagram, she’s quickly cemented herself as a firm favourite with her cosy yet luxurious style – whether it be home, beauty or lifestyle content. Self-described as a twenty-something with a love for neutrals, beauty and interiors, Amber has a knack for curating the most gorgeous of Instagram feeds – seriously go check it out. And I don’t know how she does it, but she has inspired me so much this year, especially when it comes to her cooking – I’m a new convert to roasted cauliflower steaks!

    But you know I’m a big old beauty fanatic, so after I had watched yet another of her GRWM videos on Stories, I decided it was time to invite Amber to participate in my favourite blog series ‘5 Minutes With…’ to kick off the week with a bang!

    • Where did your love of beauty and skincare come from, has it always been there? I remember first getting into beauty during my freshman year of college. I got my first macbook and started watching beauty tutorials religiously on youtube – mind you, this was back in 2009, so think Blair Fowler, aka Juicystar07 and Tanya Burr (my favorite at the time). I loved all the beauty chats, learning more about how to take care of my skin, and recreating tutorials in my bedroom. Been hooked ever since!
    • What are your favourite skincare ingredients, and why? I tend to be on the dryer side, so I love incorporating oils to help nourish my skin. One of my favorites is the Kora Organics Noni Glow Face Oil. It’s filled with oils that are rich in fatty acids and antioxidants (noni, rosehip and pomegranate oils). Equally as important are exfoliating acids. I typically go for AHAs, like lactic and glycolic acids to help peel away dead skin and help with any texture and/or fine lines. Nourishment + regular exfoliation = happy glowing skin!
    • What are your favourite beauty treatments? I don’t get too crazy with beauty treatments (I’ve never even had my brows waxed!) but I love a good face and hair masking session in the bath. For my face I love a charcoal mask (Origins Clear Improvement is one of my favorites), and for hair, I love Olaplex and the Joico Moisture Recovery mask. Another tried and true beauty product is my Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant, it’s truly a skin saver. Got chapped lips, sun burns, dry skin? It’s a cure all! I have had one by my bedside since college, an oldie but a goodie.

    • With regards to skin therapists and dermatologists, whose opinion or knowledge do you trust and believe in? I think many people can benefit from seeing a dermatologist, but my best advice is to do your research and be your own skin advocate. No one knows your skin like you do. So do your research, experiment with different ingredients, diets, read scientific articles online (they’re so many available these days!) to get a better understanding of what works for your skin.
    • What are your thoughts on botox and fillers etc? Although I haven’t dabbled in the botox and filler world myself, I know others who have and are extremely happy with their results. I like the idea of keeping your natural features, but if you feel the need to amp something up, why not! Do you!
    • What would you like to try next; product, service or treatment? Just this week I started incorporating retinol into my routine. I’m about to turn thirty in less than six months, so figured it’d be a good time to start!
    • What is your favourite beauty magazine, and/or who are you listening/watching to in podcasts, Instagram or Youtube? I’m a big fan of Into the Gloss, definitely my go-to online beauty magazine that I’ve read for years. I also love listening to the Him & Her podcast hosted by The Skinny Confidential, watching Sandra on youtube, and Dara Kaye on instagram! I love hearing their thoughts and product reviews across the mediums.

     

     

     

     

     

    *This post may contain affiliate links for which I receive a commission at no extra cost to you, which assists to support and maintain my freelance writing and this website.

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Introducing Skincare For Use Post Cosmetic Injectable Treatments

    After many years of debating back and forth, last month I finally bit the bullet and popped into my local clinic for some new lips thanks to a little something called lip filler. Full disclaimer: it freaking hurt so much and I was bruised for almost a week BUT the results are so worth it. As you can see from my before and after, I had quite asymmetrical lips which have now been softly evened out and slightly plumped perfectly.

    Speaking of bruises, I wondered if there was something to assist with this and help care for my skin and of course once the bruising had subsided (Murphy’s Law, right), Arnicare was introduced to me – Australia’s first range of Arnica formulations designed for use post cosmetic injections.

    Arnicare was founded by two sisters Ashleigh and Sam Pomeranz who have over 15 years’ experience in the healthcare and business industries. Ashleigh is a nurse practioner and owner of Toxbar, an aesthetic medicine clinic, and De Tox Superfood Bar, a smoothie/açai bowl bar, both located in Geelong, AUS. Sam’s background is as a Nurse Manager of Cardiac Services at Alfred Health and most recently have transitioned into operating services management at Barwon Health in Geelong.

    Sam says: “Ashleigh was finding her clients always asked the same questions during consultations, ‘will I bruise?’ and ‘what can I do to minimise the appearance of bruising?’. Patients would then be referred onto a pharmacy for Arnica cream to use. Arnica has been used for centuries to minimise bruising, inflammation, decreased pain and as a general first aid tonic. Patients were achieving great results with their Arnica products however traditional Arnica creams contain a high proportion of menthol as they are traditionally used for pain relief or broader body bruising. But unfortunately the high amount of menthol is quite drying for the skin and the smell overwhelming when used on the face, so we were able to identify a gap in the market and develop Australia’s first range of Arnica formulations designed for use post cosmetic injectable procedures.”

    Furthermore, their Arnicare range contains a healing balm which is perfect for use on lips and cheeks, and a healing cream for use on face and broader body bruising, as well as customisable lip shaped icepacks. Sam says, “All of our range contains additives like curcuma longa extract to aid further in reducing inflammation, niacinamide to minimise fine lines and wrinkles along with hyaluronic acid to support hydration of the lips and skin post treatment. Arnicare was developed with aesthetic medicine in mind, however our healing cream can be utilised for any generalised bruising, and in fact a large proportion of our customers are from the circus industry.”

    If you are looking to nourish your skin after injectables, you will want to investigate these products!

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  • InHair

    Growing Your Hair Out? You’ll Need This

    While I am normally championing the cause for a bob or lob – the shorter, the more fun – but earlier this year, I decided to grow out my hair and enjoy longer locks that I can more with. I am so excited to be able to wear a top knot without strands falling out everywhere!

    Speaking of which, I also spent my period in isolation slowly training my hair from being washed-every-single-day to every second day, which feels like a massive achievement after 15+ years. I’ve since become interested in learning about how I can support my hair for increased growth and health, and when I noticed Apotecari Bioactive Hair Care on my Instagram feed, I knew this would a brand to know about.

    Apotecari™ hair nutrition is Australia’s only complete 3-part hair care system for health and growth from within. Apotecari’s Hair Food is suitable nutrition for all ages and health conditions, and within 3 months,  they advise you should notice a change in the condition, volume and overall health of your hair and scalp.

    I spoke to Simone Abaron, founder of Apotecari Bioactive Hair Care to fully understand how a hair supplement can impact the health and strength of your hair. I asked: Why do we need to be taking hair supplements? Simone explains: “While supplements should never replace a balanced diet, we live in a fast-paced world where our diets may not provide adequate amounts of key nutrients. With pace, stresses and exposure to daily pollution, our bodies have to work harder to remove potential threats. This can use up the valuable nutrients we store, and the ones we need to have every day as part of a balanced diet. It’s well documented that modern-day living can use up key nutrients that we need for health and wellness, which is why the Australian Government has set guidelines for the recommended daily intake of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. In a 2017 survey undertaken by the Australian government, many Australians are not meeting their daily intake for some of the key vitamins required to be healthy. Supplements are an excellent way of boosting your nutritional intake of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.”

    Just like the skin, hair strands are the first place any stress within the body will show on the outside. 

    I then asked Simone, when would you take your supplements? “We’d recommend taking your Mane Event and Crowning Glory with your breakfast or lunch. Some people find that the B vitamins in these supplements can give them energy, so if you tend to be on the more sensitive side, it may be best not to take them before bed. Hair Food can be taken at any time of the day. If you’re powering your Apotecari supplementation and taking more than one product, for practicality’s sake, we’d recommend taking everything together, so you don’t miss a dose.” It’s worth sharing that Apotecari hair and scalp supplements are certified vegan, with the exception of Crowning Glory, which, given the nature of its plant-based omega oil contents, requires a soft-gel capsule casing.

    Of course, I couldn’t resist asking Simone for advice on promote hair growth and health? She replied: “Avoid high heat tools if you can, or if you need a little heat in your life, adjust the heat setting on your flat iron and curling tong – it should be on the very lowest temperature setting. Styling may take a little longer, but not as long as it will take to counteract the damage caused by high heat in the long-run. Wearing your hair in a very tight braid, bun, pony tail too often is also a big no-no, it can result in hair breakage which will seriously delay those hair goals. A good scalp massage each week might seem a little decadent, but is helpful at distributing your natural oils and stimulating blood circulation for increased health and consequent growth.”

    Here’s to healthier and longer hair, and the fact that 2020 is almost over!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    The Benefits of Essential Oils

    While this year overall has been weird to say the least, these last few weeks have been a little harder than most with my anxiety feeling sky high of late. Without going into too much detail, a lot has been going on in my personal and professional life so when I was reminded about the benefits of essential oils, I knew this was something I look into. 

    Ben Phillips, Brand Manager of Buckley and Phillips explains, “many essential oils are renowned for their ability to lift your mood and improve your outlook on life.  Some common feelings that people may be experiencing during this period of isolation and uncertainty are anxiety, frustration, lethargy, lack of focus, melancholy and loneliness. Additionally, essential oils are a terrific companion to a good sleep preparation routine.”

    But how you ask? Ben says: “On a physiological level, when an aroma is inhaled the molecules enter the nose and are registered by olfactory nerve cells. These pass the information to the limbic brain. And it is the limbic system deals with emotions, memories and stimulation. This explains why certain scents have the ability to trigger memories and influence our moods.”

    I know for a fact that I am a much more ‘together’ and alert person when I sleep well, and when I’m anxious the first thing to go is sleep quality, to which Ben shares that by foregoing stimulants like sugar, caffeine, late eating and device use before bed improve your chances of falling asleep more effectively.  

    “There are several essential oils that are ideal for calming the mind and relaxing the body before bed.  They are perfect for vaporizing in the bedroom or for a really relaxing treat – can be added to a carrier oil and massaged into the back, chest wrists or temples.  The best oils for sleep are Lavender combined with other oils like Sweet Orange, Ylang Ylang, Patchouli, Marjoram, Clary Sage and others. For those who have never tried aromatherapy before and are bit daunted by the choice, I recommend started with a ready-made blend. Our pulse point roll-ons are a great way to incorporate essential oils into your sleep routine, reduce the impact of stress and headaches or balance your mood.

    Please see below some other effective ways that essential oils can be employed:

    • Adding a few drops of lavender oil to your pillow before sleep  making your own diluted pulse point blend and applying with a roller. Try uplifting grapefruit, lime and mandarin or grounding sandalwood, patchouli and frankincense.
    • Make your next bath a decadent one – add a few drops of rose, jasmine and chamomile oils to a tablespoon of full fat milk and then disperse in the hot water.  You could even sprinkle on some rose petals. Alternatively you could try adding a few drops of your favorite oils into ½ a cup of Epsom salts, stirring to disperse, then sprinkling into the bath.
    • For sore muscles and joints try a hot compress. Add 3-4 drops of Ginger, Cypress, and Juniper to a shallow bowl of hot water and disperse well. Soak a flannel, wring out well and apply to relevant part of the body. Repeat 3 times after the compress reaches body temperature.
    • As the cold season continues to linger you might consider diffusing Buckley and Phillips’ Immunity blend at work or in your home. For sinus congestion Eucalyptus and tea tree oils are ideal for steam inhalation. Add 3-5 drops to a large bowl of boiled water, cover head with a towel and breathe through the nose.

    Ben explains, “I recommend anyone interested in learning more, pick themselves up any book by Valerie Ann Worwood or Julia Lawless. There’s also a really terrific book for beginners titled Neal’s Yard Remedies – Essential Oils.”

    What is your tried and true method for reducing stress and anxiety? Share with me in the comments!

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  • InUncategorized

    Introducing the natural skincare that is good enough to eat

    If you’ve seen their aesthetically pleasing pumpkin mask on Instagram, you’ve probably heard about Andalou Naturals, a brand that combines natural ingredients with Fruit Stem Cell Science to create an effective range of natural skincare. When you consider that skin is our largest organ, and we apply products topically all day every day, it’s crucial to know exactly what is in our products for peace of mind. This is why Andalou Naturals’ formulations are powered by the fusion of nature and science, and are 98% nature derived, with no unnecessary nasties.

    natural-skincare-ingredients-andalou_1

    In 2011, Andalou became the first beauty brand to achieve 100% Non-GMO (non-genetically modified) Project Verification on every single product, which allows the brand to create quality, efficient formulas with nutrient rich ingredients, without the use of pesticides and unnecessary harsh chemicals.

    Meet natural skincare derived from food

    Andalou’s unique and innovative ingredients, most of which are derived from nutritious foods we eat such as Turmeric, Kombucha, Pumpkin or Avocado, can be found in their best-selling products, such as the Brightening Pumpkin Honey Glycolic Mask. Speaking of turmeric, which works to help improve skin tone and prevent signs of ageing, I suggest you try the Brightening Turmeric + C Enlighten Serum for maximum benefits.

    We all enjoy a glass of kombucha for gut health, so why not try kombucha in your skincare? The Clear Skin Acai + Kombucha Oil Free Moisturiser uses Kombucha and Acai together to fortify and soothe the skin. Additionally, kombucha is also found in the Clear Skin Citrus Kombucha Cleansing Gel and helps brighten and detoxify the skin after a long day.

    natural-skincare-ingredients-andalou_2

    Avocado is chock full of antioxidants that nourish the skin (and hair!) and Andalou Naturals smartly included this star ingredient in their Age Defying Avo Cocoa Skin Food Mask for your plumpest skin yet!

    Vitamin C is a buzzword – and ingredient – of late,  and rightly so with many benefits to boast. So why not indulge in the Brightening Clementine + C Illuminating Toner for your first foray into a natural skincare brand?

    natural-skincare-ingredients-andalou_3

    If you’re concerned about the effects of pollution on your skin, or anti-pollution skincare ingredients, I recommend you try the Cannacell Dreamy Night Cream which uses potent antioxidants like hemp stem cells to  counteract oxidative damage and pollution assisting skin to achieve optimal health while you sleep! For the day, try the Cannacell Happy Day Cream for an extra boost of the good stuff.

    Treat yourself to natural skincare now

    Andalou Naturals’ products are all cruelty-free, gluten-free, and nature-derived, along with a range of vegan options. If you’re not sure which products to start with, I recommend taking the Andalou Naturals’ Skincare Quiz to find the best skincare for your individual skin type and/or skin concerns, and while you’re there – make sure to grab 15% off your first order!

    To learn how to effectively begin to switch to cleaner, more natural skincare, Andalou Naturals have made it easy to understand the different ingredients and their skin benefits so that’s one less thing to worry about this year, which I’m sure we can all appreciate!

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  • InBeauty

    Grown Alchemist is Here to Save Our Winter Skin

    Well, it’s officially Winter in Tasmania. I mean, it is often colder than most places in Australia but the last few weeks, it has been icy. And of course, my skin has had a freak out already (never misses a beat!) which lead me to reach out to Jeremy Muiji, the founder & CEO of Grown Alchemist, to help assist mine – and your skin – through Winter 2020 during a global pandemic. Let’s jump into it!

    (Jeremy Muiji, the founder & CEO of Grown Alchemist)

    Winter to me means drier skin all over that feels tighter than normal and can err towards scaly. How can we combat this, and preserve our lush facial skin and limbs? “Wintertime poses a special problem because humidity is low both outdoors and indoors and thus, winter air is so much more taxing on our skin than summer where the humidity is higher. Our house and office heating systems absorbs moisture out of the air, and as most of us are staying indoors more this season, our skin is extra prone to dryness, irritation and redness. Our general lifestyle – what we eat and drink, sleep patterns, exercises, and skincare routine – all contribute to changing skin conditions. We are increasingly spending much longer time periods using digital devices and thus are exposed to longer periods of blue rays and free radicals which are damaging to our skin, increasing the likelihood of oxidisation. While maintaining a healthy lifestyle is always important, introducing products that protect our skins natural barrier, add nourishment and extra hydration to the skin, soothe redness, irritation, and rosacea, and repair our skin at a cellular level are important in our skincare regime to combat dryness during winter. Looking after our body is equally important as looking after our facial skin. Going into winter we are using much hotter water to shower or bathe, that may strip away much of the skin’s layer and cause it to lose moisture. Using a thicker body cream will help seal moisture, soothe itchiness and dryness on the body.”

    What products or ingredients should we look for, and avoid, during winter? “With all that said, the best practice is to transition to a skincare regime for winter, featuring a thicker, richer moisturiser and serums that have high dose of hydration and nourishment for our skin than what we would use in the summer. Products that feature a combination of ingredients such as Collagen, Peptides and Hyaluronic Acid that really plump and hydrate the skin, are what you should look for in your skincare. Collagen smooths and firms the texture of our skin; Peptides builds collagen and elastin, making our skin more resilient and stronger; and Hyaluronic Acid increases dermal hydration to maintain the moisture in our skin. Other powerful ingredients you should incorporate into your skincare are Antioxidants. These protect our skin against free radicals and help to heal the skin. Powerful antioxidant ingredients include Ylang Ylang, Rosemary Leaf and Tocopherol (Vitamin E).”

    So, what should we avoid using on our skin? For the health of our skin and our body, we should avoid using products that contain harmful chemical ingredients, and consider products that use plant-based ingredients, that are organic, toxic-free, and that are considered clean beauty. Why? Plant-based ingredients are higher and richer in essential nutrients than synthetic ingredients. At Grown Alchemist we use plant-based and organic ingredients that are 100% compatible with human biology and are highly efficacious because our body can easily recognise the molecular structure of plant-based ingredients and utilise nutrient contents.

    How can we combat the effects of the ever-applied hand sanitizer and handwashing? “Like our face, body and hair care routine, a nourishing hand care regime should be adopted. At Grown Alchemist, we understand healthy hands are more than hand sanitiser. As much as hand sanitisers have become our new normal, we advocate creating a ritual for hands. That is, each time we apply hand-sanitiser, we are applying hand cream. We should be aware that most hand sanitisers we see on the market contain a very high percentage of ultra-drying synthetic alcohol. This not only dries our skin but is also harmful to our body on a cellular level. Also, the vast majority of hand care products such as hand wash and hand cream contain very harsh chemicals, such as Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, Petrochemicals (derivates of coal, oil and gas) and Glycols. These are also disruptive to our body on a cellular level. Instead we should look for products that contain clean, plant-based anti-bacterial agents, that protect and hydrate the skin.”

    I also asked Jeremy to recommend some winter product suggestions from Grown Alchemist for face, hands and body:

    • Age-Repair Intensive Moisturiser as a nourishing day cream to protect against the harsh elements.
    • Age-Repair Treatment Cream as an ultra-nourishing moisturiser, especially for a more mature skin type. The Treatment Cream is particularly good for skiers prone to windburn or people spending long periods outside.
    • Pure Rosehip Oil is great to add with any moisturiser for extra hydration, but also great for soothing redness, irritation, rosacea etc.
    • Age-Repair Sleep Masque is full of powerful hydration / skin repairing ingredients such as Oligo- Peptides (builds collagen and Elastin) and Hyaluronic Acid (increases dermal hydration).
    • Body Treatment Oil is a deeply nourishing body oil, which can be used as a body moisturiser, a massage oil or put some into a warm bath for an aromatic and nourishing bath!
    • Hand Wash is a gentle gel handwash with skin softening and nourishing ingredients that leave skin thoroughly cleansed (thanks to the sage), refreshed (sweet orange) and soothed (cedarwood).
    • Grown Alchemist Hydra-Gel Hand Sanitiser – an advanced antiseptic hand sanitiser formulated with 70% Ethyl Alcohol extracted from Cane Sugars, Hyaluronan and Antioxidants to instantly sanitise and hydrate, protecting the hands from being stripped of moisture like most alcohol-based hand-sanitisers do.
    • Soothing Hand Cream – our newest launch. A highly aromatic, anti-bacterial hand cream, comprise of healing and smoothing active ingredients, deeply hydrates hands and cuticles while leaving them softly scented.

    A reminder to self – add an oil to your skincare both morning and night this time of year, it’s totally worth it!

    Stay safe + well,

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Erika Geraerts, Founder of Fluff Casual Cosmetics

    Meet Erika Geraerts. As one of the co-founders of communications agency Willow & Blake, Erika also co-founded skincare company frank body, which went on to become a huge international beauty brand. In 2016, Erika left Willow & Blake and frank body, and has since been working on her new venture in beauty, Fluff. This one is her favourite. Erika likes to spend her time around plants, dogs, good friends, and good food and coffee.

    Fluff was founded by Erika Geraerts who thinks that makeup is fun, but not necessary. We want you to create and accept beauty, making it up for yourself.

    Where did your love of beauty and skincare come from, has it always been there and did this help create Fluff? I would say I am the least beauty obsessed person I know. My entry into this industry came through writing – I love people and connecting with them through brands, and the stories they tell. It’s only in the last five years that my interest in clean formulas and better packaging experiences has really come into focus, however Fluff’s message — of beauty being more than makeup —  has a far greater meaning for me.

    What are your favourite skincare ingredients, and why? What are your favourite beauty treatments? I am obsessed with oils; jojoba, coconut, olive. I strongly believe they are the foundation for every beauty routine, and perhaps, all we need.

    In terms of treatments, I am quite passionately against anything that strips or peels away the skin, laser, needling, or drying ingredients like clays. I believe our skin experiences moisture imbalances, and this is always the focus of any treatment I have or product I buy.

    In regard to skin therapists and dermatologists, whose opinion or knowledge do you trust and believe in? My go-to skin therapist is Stacie and her team at Little Company in Melbourne and Byron Bay. They know what my skin needs, they don’t push any unnecessary treatment on me, and I trust that they want me to look like me, not someone else.

    What are your thoughts on Botox and fillers etc? I personally do not like Botox or lip fillers. I believe society and social media (both brands and influencers) have placed an increasing amount of pressure (of which I have felt), particularly on young people to conform to this unrealistic standard of beauty, and as a result we have a group of people looking increasingly more like each other, instead of themselves. Age gracefully – it’s beautiful. Lines tell stories.

    What would you like to try next; product, service or treatment? Fluff is working on a moisturising mask which I am excited about. I just bought Josh Rosebrook’s Antioxidant Cacao Mask and Nourish Shampoo and Conditioner and Serum Spray. I go to Little Company every few months (I wish more often) for a treatment. I love their LED light therapy and I am looking forward to doing that again.

    What is your favourite beauty magazine? Who are you listening to in podcasts, or watching on Instagram or Youtube? I don’t really read beauty magazines, I usually find out about products by browsing in a few stores I like, e.g. The Lab Organics, as I trust their product selection and offering. I love Gemma Watt’s podcast on beauty, as well as Beauty Island. But my favourite podcasts are Mark GrovesTim Ferris, and Ezra Klein. I’m not really across Youtube but on Instagram I love BalenciagaIjeoma OluoJena CovelloNY Times, and of course, Britney Spears.

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  • InBeauty

    Mastering the At-Home Manicure

    While in some places of Australia nail technicians are slowly reopening, for us here in Tasmania we are looking at another 3 weeks at least. Whether going to a salon is not an option or you need to take a few minutes of self-care, now is the time to master an easy at-home manicure and enjoy the relaxing benefits of painting your own nails.

    Here’s what you’ll need before you start:

    • A nail file for filing the free edge
    • A buffer
    • Orange sticks, or a cuticle pusher
    • Cuticle remover *optional
    • Base coat (to protect your nails from staining)
    • Your desired nail polish shade (generally 2 coats of colour work best)
    • Top coat (for sealing in all your hard work)
    • Nail polish remover, cuticle and hand cream *optional

    I’ve been enjoying using Mavala nail polish whilst in isolation, but absolutely any brand will work – the hard part is choosing a colour, right? I find it best to set everything up before I start and if you’re worried about making a mess, just pop down some paper towel under your hands.

    Mavala answers your FAQ manicure questions HERE

    Many nail polish brands contain some of the most toxic and harmful chemicals. Mavala Nail Polishes are worry free – they contain no formaldehyde, no phthalate and no toluene.

    Step 1: File your nails in your desired shape, gently and without creating a friction that may cause nails to burn. The video linked below is a great visual to work with!

    Step 2: Buff the surface of the nail gently, removing ridges where possible and creating a smooth canvas to paint.

    Step 3: Apply cuticle remover and gently push back cuticles with the orange stick, or cuticle pusher if you have one. Generally, I advise not to nip or cut cuticles after this step unless you’re specifically trained in using nippers, but you do you babe!

    Step 4: Using three strokes (start in the middle, sweep from side to side) apply your base coat to the entire nails, avoiding the cuticle and/or touching the skin. Let dry for a few minutes.

    Step 5: Apply two coats of your desired nail polish, painting one finger at a time and painting all ten before you start applying your second coat. Again, use the three strokes (start in the middle at the cuticle, sweep up and sweep side to side).

    Step 6: Apply top coat in the same fashion as above, painting the entire nail without flooding the cuticle – this can cause lifting and will mean your manicure will not last as long as it should!

    Step 7: This step is optional but I do highly recommend – especially if you’re going to post a snap on Instagram – and that’s to wrap a tissue around your orange stick, soak it in your nail polish remover and then gently go around the edges to clean up any mistakes to give you a salon-ready finish instantly. For an extra special step, apply a cuticle oil and hand cream once your polish is dry to feel like you can take on the world.

    What are you wearing on your nail this week? I’m wearing Mavala in Quito for a classic red nail that always look chic – ala Alison Rice!

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  • InBeauty

    Why You Need To Be Using Vitamin C

    Vitamin C is one of my favourite skincare ingredients, and when you break down the benefits of daily usage – it is no surprise why.

    Vitamin C (sometimes known as L-Ascorbic Acid or ascorbic acid) is a powerful dermatologist-recommended ingredient that is frequently used in anti-aging products to improve radiance and skin texture while reducing the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and crow’s feet.

    Skincare expert and founder of Australian natural Minenssey skincare brand, Cheryl Ross, is well aware of this cult ingredient, which is why their newest product launch, the nutrient-rich Rejuvenating Range is centered around two main ingredients; pomegranate and kakadu plum. Minenssey is best known for using all natural ingredients derived from the ground to boast botanical goodness through one’s complexion.

    Cheryl says: “The Minenssey Rejuvenating range is centered around two main ingredients pomegranate and kakadu plum.  When applied to the skin kakadu plum, it can reduce swelling, redness and even help get rid of a bacterially-induced acne. It is recognised as the world’s highest natural source of vitamin C, with concentration more than 50 times that of an orange. Vitamin C firms the skin, fade dark spots. It restores the skins natural barrier. Most importantly it protects our skin from environmental damage.”

    I’m most excited to introduce the Nutritious Facial Essence into my daily routine after it recently arrived on my desk – remembering essence is applied after toning but before moisturiser – especially as I’m still working from home, my skin will be looking fab once we start returning to a normal life, right?

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