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Lifestyle

  • 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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  • 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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  • 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, Features, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Jose Bryce Smith, founder of Original & Mineral

    Jose Bryce Smith has amazing hair. That relaxed wave with some dark roots peeking through gives me the ultimate Cali cool-girl hair vibes, and now I know what products she uses – I too am a little closer to achieving this, right? Probably not as I’m extremely uncoordinated especially with a hair tong – I have burns to prove it! – but either way, I really enjoyed speaking with Jose about her business, her beauty secrets and her morning routines.

    Once a Vogue Beauty Editor’s ‘best kept secret’, Jose Bryce Smith is the original pioneer of ammonia free hair colour in Australia, and the Founder / CEO of clean luxury haircare company, Original & Mineral (O&M). Her haircare line is a powerhouse, stocked across the globe and responsible for the expert colouring and five-free formula of O&M aficionados across 15 countries and several continents.

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

    Growing up my mother and my grandmother were always into organic and natural in food and skincare, when other kids were having chocolate, my mum bought me yoghurt raisins and we were never allowed sugary drinks. She brought me up to be concerned about chemicals and although I loved beauty, I always looked for the cleaner, more natural products.

    What are your favourite O&M products and why?

    I have very fine hair and so I love Fine Intellect shampoo and conditioner as it has lilly pilly which acts like natural collagen and plumps my hair and then I can’t live without Atonic, which is our thickening spray. Project Sukuroi is another, which is our gold smoothing balm which I use on my blonde blow dried ends and I rarely leave the house without Desert Dry which is the perfect mix between dry shampoo and texture, it makes my hair go from flat to fabulous in seconds.

    What are your favourite skincare or haircare ingredients, and why?

    I love macadamia oil, coconut oil and argan oil, they are so smoothing and repairing. I have always done a lot of heat styling and colouring with my hair and it’s about protecting it whilst still living my life and staying blonde. Its so brilliant that natural oils can replace synthetics now.

    Tell me about your hair history, has it been ever evolving? 

    I’ve always been passionate about my hair, I had long hair when I was young and pretty much I’ve had every style from a short crop to a perm, black to blonde and for a decade I had a signature haircut which was a blunt fridge and platinum blonde – that was my trademark. Now in my 40s I’m a bit more relaxed and I am into beach waves for day and glamorous waves for night! For most of my life I have been blonde apart from a few times where I got persuaded to try something different, it never lasted long!

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

    We are always testing new products and so I am very lucky that I get to try lots of whizz bang ingredients – I’m obsessed with clean and I drive chemists crazy with my desire to take out chemicals whilst still delivering performance. For me it’s always about volume, give me anything with volume and I’m a happy girl!

    What do you do when you have a moment for #selfcare, maybe a wellness ritual or something? 

    I’ve learnt over the years that for me my morning ritual is critical for setting me up for a successful day. I wake up early, generally around 5.30am and I meditate for 10 minutes. I then have a breathing routine (5 mins) and then I do EFT tapping which is clinically proven to clear blockages, then some kind of exercise – right now, a lot of walking! And during that time I plan out my day, I find that meditation is the best for creating space and allowing new experiences to come in and the breath is so good at grounding, I have a lot going on and so I try to do things that keep me in my body and out of my head. I also love to relax at night in an Epsom salt bath I do several times a week.

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

    I love Vogue UK and Allure, both which have the perfect mix of beauty and fashion. I’m a podcast and Audible addict so my playlists are never ending and always changing, I’m currently loving Hillary Kerr’s Second Life and UnStyled by Christine Barberich, and have recently also started listening to Behind the Beauty with Bobbi Brown. Some of my Instagram faves include CredoBeauty, WWD and WWW.

    May I ask what’s next for O&M, anything exciting in the works? 

    We are focused on our global expansion, the O&M tribe is growing around the world through the best hair salons, we are in 15 countries and we have several more planned for the end of this year. We also spend a huge amount of time and money on research into clean haircare and we are evolving and constantly looking at ways of reducing harsh chemicals in haircare of the O&M brand. Therefore, we will continue on our mission and we have some exciting new products coming out …

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  • InBeauty, Interview, Lifestyle

    Recycled Beauty

    With everything happening in the world right now, I’ve recently started up my own little vegetable garden in an effort to buy less groceries and reduce plastic packaging and in just a few weeks, I’ve got a handful of delicious herbs and veggies sprouting everywhere! While I am making a positive impact outside, it soon occurred to me that I cannot say the same for my beauty cabinet – I mean, what can be recycled and where would I even begin?

    Luckily I know a gal whose knowledge far exceeds mine, and Allison McNamara, founder of the clean line of algae-infused skincare MARA Beauty, has kindly shared some information that can help us all begin to limit our environmental impact without sacrificing our much-loved skincare routines!

    First up, I asked Allison what steps we can take right now for a more sustainable approach to beauty, to which she said: “Use less products overall. Invest in multi-hyphenate products, like our MARA Algae Enzyme Cleansing Oil that removes makeup and also rinses super clean. Stop using single use beauty, like sheet masks, makeup pads and cotton balls! Take the time to properly rinse out excess product in your containers and of course, shop local when you can to really reduce carbon footprint. Make sure you’re recycling your beauty products properly – many larger brands and companies (including Credo Beauty in the US and Nourished Life in Australia) have recycling programs and incentives to ensure your beauty products get recycled and don’t end up in a landfill.”

    After another way to use your empty glass bottles?https://www.tiktok.com/@themarabeauty_/video/6820118297661607173

    When it comes to specific products, Alison shared that aluminium and glass are both awesome recyclable materials in your beauty packaging. Unit cartons made from paper and water-based coatings & vegetable inks are also recyclable as well. There are even brands who take measures to be zero waste, making packaging out of biodegradable and compostable materials that break down in landfills. She does warn though, be weary of virgin plastics, which can usually be recycled but are also adding to the plastic already in existence. Post-consumer recycled materials are great because they are made from pre-existing, recycled materials however they are not usually recycled again because of the capabilities of local municipalities.

    Being in quarantine at home for about five weeks now has given me plenty of time to reflect on how I can implement more sustainable practices and this one is especially high on my agenda. What steps do you take to reduce your environmental impact, or reduce, reuse, and recycle? Share with me in the comments!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Beauty During a Pandemic with Sari Hoban, PA-C

    While I appreciate the enormity of the current situation we are in – and one that doesn’t seem to be changing any time soon – I’m still a skincare junkie at heart and always will be. When I was given the opportunity to speak recently with one of Allison McNamara’s favourite skin experts in Sari Hoban, PA-C, it made my week.

    Please see below my chat with Sari on beauty during a pandemic, and why she believes that virtual skin consultations are here to stay!

    Sari Hoban, PA-C is a nationally Board Certified Physician Assistant in Los Angeles, CA specializing in aesthetics: injectables, lasers and skincare. She was recently awarded the Top 100 Injectors in America designation for 2019-2020 voted on by patients and fellow peers in the industry. She is a national speaker for PCA Skin and an educator for medical school programs. Sari specializes in a natural aesthetic and is renowned by her patients for her emphasis on the individualized patient experience and her less is more approach.

    What can patients do at home to stave off fine lines and wrinkles without in-office treatments such as lasers or botox? There is no replacement for in-office treatments such as lasers or neuromodulator injections (botox/dysport), but there are at-home treatments than can help until aesthetic offices reopen. Typically, neuromodulators like botox or dysport are injected into muscles to reduce the muscle’s movements, and therefore reducing the lines those repeated muscle movements cause. An at-home option is to use a topical neuropeptide. This will work similarly to a neuromodulator like botox to reduce the movements on the skin surface causing fine lines. I personally use and love PCA Skin Exlinea. You can also couple this with the use of a retinol, topical vitamin A, which will increase cell turnover and aid in reduction of fine lines, pores, age spots and more. There are many retinols on the market and they are not one size fits all. The key with retinol is to start slow and be patient as it can take 4-6 weeks to see the effects.

    What can patients do to combat acne during these stressful times? First and foremost, be sure to wash your face morning and night. While our normal schedules have shifted, it is highly likely our normal skincare routines have gone out the window. Try to stick to your normal routine as much as possible. Also, add in washing your face right after you exercise even if you don’t shower right away. Look for powerful anti-acne ingredients such as Benzoyl Peroxide and Salicylic Acid in your skincare products. If the world of skincare is overwhelming to you, I am offering virtual skincare consultations to help counsel patients appropriately and get them on a good skincare routine.

    A lot of people are breaking out due to mask wearing. What can we do? By wearing a mask for an hour at the grocery store or a 12 hour shift at the hospital, the mask is trapping air, moisture and heat, leading to inflammation, irritation and acne breakouts. Avoid wearing makeup if you know you are leaving your house and will be wearing a mask as that will only add to clogged pores and congestion. If wearing a mask for extended periods, try taking it off periodically, if safe, like in a private restroom, and wash your face. During this time you can also apply salicylic acid spot treatments to those dreaded acne zones and then replace your mask. At least you have a powerful ingredient helping combat the congestion occurring inside the mask while you go about your day. If you are not a frontline worker, try to opt for a cotton breathable face covering and wash with a fragrance free detergent to avoid irritation.

    What safety measures will need to be in place when aesthetic offices reopen? Aesthetic offices are seeing a shift in the way they conduct business. Most offices have been closed for 5-6 weeks and may be closed for at least 3-4 more weeks. Telemedicine or virtual consultations have become increasingly popular and are likely here to stay. For in-person visits when the time comes, it will be common for patients to be prescreened before their appointments, to arrive in masks, have their temperatures checked at the doors and to come to their appointments solo (rather than with a friend or family members). It is also likely offices will not see as many patients each day and will need to stagger the volume of people coming through their doors, so wait times to get on the schedule may be slightly longer. I also think virtual consultations will be here to stay. There is a good amount we can cover prior to the appointment date, and it is wise to decrease the time spent in face to face interactions. If everything has been covered virtually, then you can just get to business when it is time for the appointment!

    Are you taking virtual consultations? Yes! While I cannot inject or perform lasers at the moment, I can conduct a consultation virtually to discuss your aesthetic goals and come up with a treatment plan for when the office reopens. I can also provide a comprehensive skincare plan and ship products to you!

    You can find Sari Hoban on Instagram @goseesari or her site www.goseesari.com.

    Please remember that medical information provided by Sari Hoban, PA-C, in the absence of a visit with a health care professional, must be considered as an educational service only. The information should not be relied upon as a medical consultation. This mechanism is not designed to replace a physician’s independent judgment about the appropriateness or risks of a procedure for a given patient. 

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Links I Love

    Who would have thought the majority of us would have so much time to ourselves; to be productive or simply chill, without the need to wear a watch or keep track of the time (and days!). While it’s a weird time, it’s also allowing us to place a pause button on life and for that, I am ever so grateful.

    Here are some interesting links I’ve found recently, which I hope you too enjoy:

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  • InBeauty, Interview, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Erin Cook, Beauty Director at Gritty Pretty

    Gritty Pretty is one of my favourite digital beauty magazines, and with Eleanor Pendleton at the helm – it’s no surprise why. Every time a new issue alert arrives, I push everything to the side and immediately dive in. Erin Cook is the resident Beauty Director who I’ve followed on Instagram from what seems like forever now, and I was thrilled when she accepted my offer to feature in this series on my blog – I mean, Erin knows beauty and knows it well. I always make a point of reading her articles (a recent favourite here) and if truth be told, I might stalk her on the regular to keep myself up to date. That out of the way; let’s chat makeup, skincare and beauty with Erin Cook!

    Where did your love of beauty and skincare come from, has it always been there? Growing up, my number one true love was magazines. I was obsessed with the beauty, fashion and pop culture pages of Total Girl and then Dolly and Girlfriend before graduating to Cosmo, Cleo, Nylon, Yen and Frankie. For a long time, I loved fashion and beauty equally but beauty obviously won out – I think that’s because I always felt a little excluded from fashion. I grew up in a small town where I didn’t have the money or the resources to really delve into the world of fashion. (This is before online shopping.) Whereas beauty on the other hand… It was easy to walk into Priceline and pick up the hot new $15 eyeshadow palette from Revlon and try my hand at Cosmo’s latest smokey eye tutorial. Was it pretty? Absolutely not. But it was accessible to me.

    What are your favourite skincare ingredients, and why? Hoo boy! I hate to choose between my children but I think everyone secretly has a favourite child. (Mum, dad, if you’re reading this – it’s me, right?) I douse my skin in hyaluronic acid day and night. It’s so great for drawing moisture to the surface of your skin, making it look and feel super plump and super juicy. Bonus points if the hyaluronic acid-based serum has some niacinamide in it to calm my skin when it’s pissed off because I tried a new product that claimed it was going to change my life. Speaking of hydrating, squalane is so good(!) and I think we’re going to see more and more of it! Where hyaluronic acid is more of a surface hydrator, squalane can delve a little deeper for longer lasting hydration. Great for my dehydrated skin.

    Retinol is almost unparalleled when it comes to anti-ageing and creating smooth skin and small pores. Almost every dermatologist I’ve interviewed swears by it and they’re the real experts here. I get really cute hormonal acne on my chin once a month that I’ve just come to accept and treat as I go. For these guys, I love a salicylic acid spot treatment. Salicylic acid is the business for pimples – it’s anti-inflammatory and unclogs pores and calms redness and just try it already.

    What are your favourite beauty treatments? I’m not loyal by any means but the top spot at the moment goes to HydraFacial! HydraFacial is the Real Deal – and you can find it at skin clinics all over Australia which is great. It exfoliates, sucks all of the gunk out of your pores and then infuses a bunch of potent antioxidants (tailored to you) back into your skin. There’s no down time and you walk on out of there with skin that is noticeably glowy. Where’s the lie? I don’t like any treatments that are too extreme. Anything that requires downtime or involves layers of skin shedding off my face isn’t for me. I want to treat my skin nice and keep my skin barrier intact.

    In regards to skin therapists and dermatologists, whose opinion or knowledge do you trust and believe in? As a journalist, I want to speak to the experts that are well respected and at the top of their game. To become a dermatologist requires many years of study at a university level, same goes for scientists and cosmetic chemists. However, there are some very knowledgeable skin therapists out there too. I look at academic credentials and experience before reaching out to experts.

    What’s your thoughts on botox and fillers etc? You do you! If you’re going to do it, go somewhere reputable. I don’t have anything in my face at the moment.

    What would you like to try next; product, service or treatment? I’m obsessed with CHANEL makeup – their global makeup artist Lucia Pica is so cool and makes me want to work on my makeup stills. I just ordered MegaBabe deodorant online this morning because apparently it’s a natural deodorant that actually works. Time will tell! Treatment-wise, I really want to get a bit woo woo and get a super relaxing facial, preferably with crystals involved. Mostly for my brain but if it helps my skin too – great!

    What is your favourite beauty magazine, and/or who are you listening/watching to in podcasts, Instagram or Youtube? I love Porter and Vogue UK at the moment – they’re similar in that they offer super high-end visuals with in-depth reporting on topics that haven’t already been done to death. As for websites, I’m into Into The Gloss, The Violet Files (part of Violet Grey), Man Repeller, Goop (with a grain of salt), The Cut, Byrdie, The Coveteur and The Strategist. Violette (Estee Lauder’s global makeup artist) is the coolest person on YouTube in my opinion! As for podcasts, Fat Mascara are my OG beauty podcast (I feel like I know them at this stage). I’ve just started listening to Allure’s beauty podcast, Goop Beauty Closet is worth a listen too – plus, The Glossy Beauty Podcast and The Beauty Brains.

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  • InBeauty, Interview, Lifestyle

    5 Minutes with Carrie Barber, Contributing Editor of Violet Grey

    Carrie Barber is a freelance Creative Director who caught my eye some time ago on Instagram, thanks to her effortlessly stylish French-girl hair (read her haircut story) and eyebrows that are the closest thing to perfection I’m yet to see. As well as contributing to Violey Grey (the industries beauty edit), Carrie has worked with  brands including Glossier, The RealReal, Sephora and Augustinus Bader – so there’s no surprise that I wanted to ask Carrie all the beauty questions.

    Warning – skin goals ahead …

    • Where did your love of beauty and skincare come from, has it always been there?I have always been interested in makeup, throughout middle school I was adamant about wearing four shades of blue eyeshadow, but my Mom was always very natural with a routine of drinking a lot of water and wearing sunscreen.  I didn’t get obsessed with beauty until I worked at Sephora right after graduating college. Once I started, I was hooked and it felt like where I was always meant to be. As I have gotten older, and been in the industry for almost a decade, I am now more obsessed with skincare and wear less makeup every day.
    • What are your favourite skincare ingredients, and why?  For me, it’s about the product texture and how it finishes on the skin. That being said, I want my products to work so I look for a high percentage of active ingredients. Currently I use two hydrating products in the morning, SkinMedica HA5 and Biologique’s SERUM AMNIOTIQUE with Dr Sturm Face Cream and Sun Drops. At night I use U Beauty’s Resurfacing Compound and La Mer Creme de La Mer. If I wear makeup it’s Westman Atelier or Koh Gen Do.
    • What are your favourite beauty treatments? My favorite treatment to get is Lymphatic drainage at Ricari Studios. It’s like a two for one: it detoxes your body and feels like a massage. Its so relaxing, I fall asleep every time. For facials I see Camille Fields or Biba in Los Angeles.
    • In regards to skin therapists and dermatologists, whose opinion or knowledge do you trust and believe in? Honestly, I trust my beauty editor friends the most. They are the most skeptical and have seen it all, so if they really like someone, they mean it. I think its important to find someone who you connect with and that takes care of you, regardless of their celebrity or social following.
    • What’s your thoughts on botox and fillers etc?  I personally have done both, and am really happy with the results. This isn’t everyone’s opinion but I think wait as long as you can to do either, and keep it conservative. Make sure you see someone with the right credentials, fillers is not a place to be thrifty.
    • What would you like to try next; product, service or treatment?  I really really want to see Joomee Song.
    • What is your favourite beauty magazine, and/or who are you listening/watching to in podcasts, Instagram or Youtube?  I will always and forever read Into The Gloss. My favorite magazine is Self Service Magazine. My favorite instagram is @cyndlekomarovski and I am not much a YouTuber but love watching Katie Jane Hughes do makeup.

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Video tutorial: Gua Sha Facial Massage

    I recently wrote about the benefits of gua sha, of which which there are many, but as I wrote that piece I began to wonder where I could find the correct way to physically hold and maneuver the tool for comfort and maximized results, which lead me to Wildling Beauty who have created a culture of self-loving beauty through sophisticated self care rituals.

    They explain that technique is everything, and the most important thing to remember is to keep the gua sha facial massage tool at a 15-30 degree angle to the skin at all times, which maximizes the surface area of contact between your skin and the tool. To explain this better than I can, below I’ve popped a detailed tutorial with Wildling’s co-founder Britta Plug, describing how to use their Empress Stone for lifting, toning and brightening of the face, neck, and decollete. Watch this video first, then follow it with the How to Practice the Empress Ritual.

    As well as Youtube, Wildling Beauty have quite an array of IG videos from improving skin texture with gua sha, to TMJ relief for those suffering from jaw pain or tension. There is even one on softening frown lines with gua sha – which just goes to show a few minutes creating a self care ritual each day can go on to have long term benefits for the mind and body ….

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    New | Customised Solid Fragrances

    For someone who has become quite a fragrance whore lately, it’s no surprise that I’m thrilled to be playing with a newly released solid perfume, in Narrative Lab. For those who aren’t aware, a solid fragrance is just a concentrated version of your usual spray on perfume/aftershave or eau de parfum, but it’s suspended in a natural wax base rather than alcohol which means it provides additional skin nourishing benefits when you apply it to your skin.

    How do you use it? With your fingers, apply as liberally or as little as what suits you. There is no right or wrong way to use solid wax perfume.

    Each solid fragrance palette comes with three fragrances, built upon the same keynotes of the base fragrance. I choose Rose Above, a floral rose, with the scent of wild berries with fresh rose, magnolia and woody patchouli base tones. I find the scent lasts a good couple of hours, and because I’m slightly addicted to the clicking open the case, it’s no hassle to reapply as needed. They also offer the same scents in a roll-on perfume oil, which is just as travel friendly as the pots. It’s worth noting that the pots are comparable to a 50ml perfume spray, which is quite a lot considering the tiny size.

    Narrative ingredients are as natural and organic as possible with no nasties – vegan and not tested on animals. Narrative has worked with industry experts, formulators and product developers over many years to create these scents, but they’re also very selective with the factories and packaging materials they use, ensuring they are trading both to a high-quality manufacturing standards, but also with ethical working conditions. Where possible, Narrative use FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified or recycled paper and make sure all other materials used is either reusable or refillable.

    For reference, the Narrative Roll On Oils are $59 AUD and the Solid Fragrances are $99.

    Good for the earth and our noses!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Conscious Beauty

    While the beauty industry was once prone to excess, and some may say over consumption, recently there has been a change to more sustainable approach to products and tools. Nadia Eizadi, conscious beauty guru and owner of Bat Your Lash, an eco and sustainable beauty salon, has taken her next steps in challenging wastage in today’s beauty industry with the launch of Pandoo, a one-stop-shop for sustainable beauty tools.

    “My inspiration to start the range started when I realised how much waste the beauty industry creates. To be hygienic we had a lot of single use tools such as mascara wands, lip applicators and cotton ear buds. We were using and disposing so much in a day. To know the effects of what plastic does to the environment and our planet was disheartening and worrying. So I made the decision to swap the tools that I could from plastic to bamboo. What I couldn’t buy, I created”, Nadia said.

    Encouraging consumers and professionals alike to replace their plastic tools with a more eco-friendly, sustainable solution, Pandoo provides an alternative to the often-overlooked plastics in our beauty routines. Nadia says: “We chose bamboo because of its many benefits. It is 100% natural, biodegradable, anti fungal and antibacterial. It absorbs greenhouse gases, not to mention it’s amazing growth rate compared to other natural resources. Knowing that plastic takes 1000 years to decompose and bamboo only takes 2-3 months, it makes it the eco-friendliest option. My aim is to try to reduce landfill as much as we can, so switching to bamboo (although it is slightly more expensive) is really a no-brainer.”

    Pandoo is launching with three key products; Ear-Buds, Lip Applicators, and Mascara Wands all made from the super-powered plant, bamboo. Nadia says “Since Pandoo is bamboo based it has many benefits as mentioned previously, additionally we have also made the swap from using plastic to using biodegradable satchels to post our products. Not only are our Pandoo beauty tools promoting and supporting an environmentally conscious way of life, but so is the packaging in which customers are receiving their products. It’s a win/win!”

    Here’s to saving the earth, one beauty product at a time!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Hand Care Advice for Summer 2019

    We’re all about skincare, especially of late, but are you one to actually take your care of your hands? I must admit, I strive to be that person but I often fall short. I consider it a good effort if I remember to apply cuticle oil and hand cream before bed, but most notice I admit, I forget.

    With this in mind, I enlisted the knowledge of Enbacci founder and skincare expert, Yong-Li Zhou, to shed some light to how I can adopt a serious #handcare routine, and more importantly – where to even begin.

    As Yong-Li Zhou says “Our hands are constantly exposed to environmental pollutants. They are exposed to harmful UV rays while we are walking down the street, driving the car, talking on a phone, and playing most outdoor sports.”

    This means that as the skin on the hands and wrists are susceptible to photoaging much like the face (crows-feet anyone) they require the same level of care and attention as the skin on our face. Enbacci have a dedicated hand care range, designed for all skin types, ethnicities, genders and ages; and is available nationwide online and via the brand’s flagship store located in Melbourne’s city fringe.

    To cleanse, Yong-Li Zhou suggests Enbaci’s Nourish Hand Wash to effectively clean and disinfect without leaving hands feeling dry, taut, or irritated. This gentle formula repairs damaged skin, restores moisture and offers antimicrobial properties to protect skin from harmful surface bacteria. Once dry, Yong-Li Zhou recommends applying the Brightening Hand & Nail Cream SPF15 to nourish and protect your hands, keeping the skin looking youthful for longer with this Vitamin A and E rich cream.

    It’s worth nothing that while freckles on the hands and fingers are not always a cause for concern, they can be a precursor to certain skin conditions and cancers. “Taking the right skincare precautions and having regular check-up’s with your GP or dermatologist will ensure your hands stay youthful and healthy for as long as possible,” said Yong-Li Zhou.

    Hands up who is ready for summer 👐

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    For The Friend Who is Obsessed with Monogramming

    Monogrammed items are everywhere right now, from iPhone cases to handbags. We all love a personalised piece, especially when it’s a gift so let me introduce you to Beysis, formally known as Say It With Polish. From humble beginnings with the launch of a single customisable nail polish line, the Beysis team has recently expanded into an extensive range of thoughtfully designed beauty and lifestyle essentials, including personalised and refillable perfume atomisers, candles, makeup cases and compact mirrors. They’ve even curated a range of stylish and practical water bottles, while still creating their stand-out nail polish range.

    Name them, monogram them, make them yours!

    Featuring minimalistic, classic designs, Beysis create products that are sustainable and functionable, which you can order in just a few clicks. I remembering gifting my bridesmaids a nail polish each with a personalised message before my wedding in 2016, and it was such a treat for both them and I, creating such a beautiful memory.

    Australian owned & designed, all of Beysis’ beauty products are also certified cruelty free by Australia’s leading body, Cruelty Free Australia, with their polishes also being ‘10 Free‘ which you can learn more about here but basically, this means that their polish is free of all the nasties commonly found in nail-polish, all without compromising on quality or performance.

    For the friend who has everything, or even if you’re in the mood to #treatyoself, make Beysis your first stop. 

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  • InLifestyle

    What I’m Lusting After This Week

    Inspired by the weekly edits published by British Vogue, I thought I’d start to share my week in review as a way to further connect with you, my reader. I also would love to know what you’re doing, listening to and eating this week so please pop a comment below and share!

    LISTEN 

    This last week was spent catching up on episodes from both The High Low with Dolly Alderton and Pandora Skyes, and Glow Journal with Gemma Watts. On Dolly and Pandora’s recommendation, I’m about to start reading Bridget Jones Diary to relive the 90’s once again through Bridget’s hilarious antics. I don’t recall previously reading the book, only watching the movie oh, a million times. I always had such a crush on Daniel Cleaver, or maybe it was just Hugh Grant?

    In the nail studio of a weekend, I’ve playing the Spotify playlist ‘Work Chill’ by Helene Raynor but while I’m tapping away at the computer, I constantly have the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood soundtrack on repeat during the day while I dream about living life in carefree and fun 60’s…

    PURCHASED

    I recently purchased a fresh supply of Ultra Violette but changed from the Queen Screen to the Supreme Screen SPF 50+ Hydrating Facial Sunscreen, and finally bit the bullet and bought The Ordinary’s Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion (Previously Advanced Retinoid 2%), which came highly recommend by the internet.

    LUSTING

    Currently lusting over Estee Lalonde’s newest collection with Daisy London, while daydreaming about my two weeks of leave in late October and wondering if a quick jaunt to NYC or London may be in order? Either way, I am in desperate need of a pedicure as I’ve neglected my totsies for far too long this winter.

    EAT & DRINK

    My husband and I enjoyed the most beautiful brunch on Sunday at Hill Street – I of course chose the smashed avo – but this dish had so much extra flavour in the dukka and pesto, oh and maybe the side of bacon too. I’ve decided I’m over the taste of wine lately, and have deemed my drink of choice to be vodka + cranberry which is going down a treat. Add a slice of lime and it’s almost a cocktail in your kitchen.

    We spent our Sunday wandering the local markets where I picked up a latte and some homemade kombucha, while we debated between a homemade carrot cake and an apple + rubarb cake – the apple won out – and smelt the delicious wafts of french style crepes from the food truck. Speaking of delicious, my husband made the most incredible vegetable lasagne without my favourite part in the cheese sauce and it was one of the best meals I’ve ever eaten. We’re always trying to increase our veggie intake, and this is one of the best ways to do in my book!

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  • InBeauty, Lifestyle

    Ever Imagined What It Would Be Like Working for a Luxury Beauty Website?

    Ever wondered what it would be like to work for a luxury beauty website? Well wonder no more, as I’ve been lucky enough to speak with Amber Cotterell and Beth O’Keefe, who both work for luxury independent beauty platform Calissa. Calissa prides itself on its edited selection of premium and niche brands. As a British brand, they’ve cherry picked the best products from home as well as sourcing favourites from all over the world. The team is always on the lookout for the next big thing in beauty, and orders will be delivered to you quickly, reliably and in award winning recycled and recyclable packaging (almost) anywhere in the World.

    For serious #workenvy, just scroll down …

    What does a general day look like for you, and what aspects are beauty related?

    Amber: Everyday of the week I do something different. One day I will create banners for the website, as well as creating social media posts and another day I’m coding images into the background of the website. A typical day for me would be to come into work in the morning, look at my emails first thing and see what I need to reply to and if I need to do anything from those emails. I then focus on the workload that I have to do, each day I have a different lot of workload to do (I keep a schedule on what I do on what day.) For example; Monday would be creating all the images you can see on the homepage. Tuesday would be changing the banners and then editing our descriptions. Wednesday I would be creating a blog for the website. So each day is different, however the average week is the same.

    With the beauty aspect, it’s quite hard to see what’s beauty related. We sometimes get our brands to come in and give us training lessons, where we learn more about the products, and we get to try the products out. We also sometimes get given free samples that we can take home and use, and this is all to help with the descriptions of the products because if we’re writing about a product we need to know about the product. We also do a lot of research on brands and up to date beauty trends for blogs. I would say that’s the kind of beauty related stuff we do.

    Beth:  As Amber said every day is different! My day typically consists of designing website banners, email campaigns and any visual content you see on the website. When I’m not designing I am usually researching the beauty industry for the latest trends and topics that we can feature in a blog post. As many of the brands we stock have an amazing back story when they invite us to training days I often convert this information and share our knowledge through a blog post. The creative aspect of my role consumes most of my week however there are still marketing responsibilities me and Amber have to keep on top of, for example discussing a marketing strategy for the following months. As my role is very creative I would say about 60% of my tasks are beauty related, I am constantly learning about brands, ingredients, trends – the list goes on!

    What involvement do you have with Calissa, and how closely do you work alongside the team?

    Amber: So our team is a pretty small, Beth and I work in the Marketing Team. There is one person who specialises in Customer Service, one person in accounts and the two directors of the company, so we are a very small team. However, because we’re a small team we do a lot of things together. For example if there was a customer service query, I might be asked to help out answering the question, or if I need a price list then the accountant will be able to provide it for me and might even complete the task that I want done. It’s quite nice to work in a smaller team as you get to know everyone individually, and it’s easier to ask for someone to do something. With Calissa, Beth and I have 100% involvement within the website, we create the website content as well as the banners, category pages and images alongside that. We also are in charge of looking after all of the social media platforms and emails. So regarding the Digital Marketing aspect of Calissa we have 100% involvement.

    Beth: Calissa is 100% mine and Amber’s responsibility. We design the visual content, the written content and ultimately make sure the site is running to the best it can! As Amber said our team is very small and we are all there to help each other when we need it however the teams have very different job roles, as Amber and I are the marketing team we work very closely with each other to ensure the website looks and feels the way we believe our customers want it to look.

    What are your ‘ride or die’ beauty products, and is beauty a huge part of your life?

    Amber: I’ll be honest before starting here I never really focused on beauty products, I had a big part of makeup but beauty wasn’t something that I had really thought about. As I started learning about different brands and products I started becoming more interested in things I had never thought about, like vegan products. I’m not a vegan and never thought about buying vegan or natural products. However when I started working here, I became a bit more aware of the benefits of buying vegan or natural products, so I try to buy more products within that range.

    I have a few favourite products that I think now I’ve started using I don’t know what I’d do without. The first one is the Caudalie Beauty Elixir, I absolutely LOVEEE this product, I use it everyday after putting on my makeup. It’s great as a waking up mist and I love it as a setting spray. The next product is the Electric Ink Tattoo Daily Moisturiser, I have a few tattoos and especially in the summer they can look a bit faded from the sun, so I like to add some of the daily moisturiser to give it that extra glow and makes it look fresher. My final product would be the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray, at first I’ll admit I couldn’t use it, I’m not a good sleeper, I wake up a lot during the night and most of the time have 4 to 5 hours maximum. However once my body got used to the smell, I fall asleep with the click of the fingers. It relaxes me so much.

    Beth: I would say beauty is a huge part of my life but i’m quite settled in my ways, other than the samples that are featured in our posts I don’t try as many new products as I perhaps should! That being said when I started working for Calissa I was very pleased to see all of the vegan, organic and sustainable brands – this is the reason I am quite reluctant to try new things. Being particular about the ingredients and morals of brands has made it more tricky in the past that however now is starting to change with my role here and I can’t wait to try some of the products we will hopefully be bringing to our customers in the near future!

    My “Ride Or Dies” would be:

    1. Dr Hauschka Lemon Lemongrass Vitalising Body Oil– this smells amazinggg! Every morning it’s the perfect moisturiser after my shower, the scent wakes me up and my skin remains soft throughout the day.
    2. Caudalie Vinosource S.O.S Intense Moisturizing Cream– honestly the texture of this face cream is out of this world! Never have I used a face cream so velvety in my life and now i wouldn’t be without this product for the world!
    3. Emma Hardie Moringa Renewal Treatment Mask– Once a week I used this as an overnight mask and in the morning it rinses off my face so easily!  leaving my skin with an even complexion and super smooth! I don’t feel the need to moisturise after using this and my skin stays smooth and hydrated all day!

    What’s the biggest beauty tip you could share with my audience?

    Amber: See I don’t have that many beauty tips, I have one makeup tip which works for me but it does look weird. My tip is once you’ve applied lipstick, and you’ve got a tissue and dabbed off the excess of the lipstick you can get some translucent powder and dab it onto your lips and it sets your lipstick. Not too much powder only a tiny bit to set it, so it’s not too sticky and doesn’t come off. That’s my tip, I do it every time I wear lipstick so it doesn’t come off and I think it makes lipstick last longer. The only other tip, which I’m not sure is a tip, is that some beauty products can be stored in the fridge so the products themselves last longer. I don’t know if these are new tips or if people already knew them but those are my tips.

    Beth: I am very simple with my makeup, using the same stuff everyday and my routine is quite hard to break! The only bit of advice I can think of would be using a brush to apply foundation rather than your fingers! I must admit I am guilty of using my finger in the past but now I’ve converted to a brush I would never go back! As finger tips are grooved you actually waste most of your foundation! With a brush you can achieve a smooth finish and still have foundation left in your bottle when you’re done! Foundation is a key part to most peoples makeup routine, while on the topic I would say primer! Works a treat.

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