I'M NO BEAUTY BLOGGER BUT......
From the moment the alarm goes off, it’s mayhem. Mac my youngest son ever hopefully asks ‘Is it the weekend yet?’ and never likes my response. My eldest son Jay is at that age where he refuses to get up at all… sounding familiar? Before I drive my children to school and make sure the house is clean (I have a rule that the house must be a certain level of live-able before we leave), I am left with a window of no more than 7 minutes and 30 seconds to shower, get dressed and pull together some sort of beauty 'look' for the day. But somehow after all these years, I have managed to simplify the process. Because let’s face it, our time is precious.
Far from my usual tips and tricks for ‘consolidated wardrobe choices’ and ‘coping with dressing freak-outs’ I often get asked what skin care and hair products I use. During my career I have worked with many brands in the beauty space. I’ll be the first to admit, I would be happy to spend my money on shoes and handbags over beauty products.
I realise this goes against the booming beauty industry. Driven by the selfie-culture and constant photo opportunities, we need to look our best at all times. Doesn’t it feel like someone is launching a new ‘latest and greatest lifechanging product’ daily? Don’t get me wrong, my bathroom cabinet is full of amazing cult products. Like everyone, I get sucked in buying products I know I may never use, with amazing packaging promising me younger and flawless skin. Realistically, even though I love being surrounded by beauty products, I don’t have the time in my morning routine to spend a hour using these products. Some of my friends and colleagues spend 20 minutes just on their foundation base or 10 minutes on their eyebrows.
While a friend to many, botox is not a viable option for me. When I say a “severe phobia of needles”, I tried to synonym a more descriptive than ‘severe’ and I can assure you that there isn’t one. I was recently in ER with abdominal pain, hooked up to a heart rate and blood pressure monitor. One mention by the doctor of ‘blood work’ and I was showing signs of cardiac arrest. In the flurry of doctors and nurses, my husband had to calmly explain what was wrong with his crazy wife. I can assure you there is no better way to embrace the natural ageing process than being too scared of the alternative.
Rather than pretending – I’m confessing. I am no beauty blogger and I never will be. BUT I have developed my own 'chic yet simple' beauty regime with the combination of limited time and restrictions of my crazy phobia, and I’m excited to share these tips with you:
(The advice I am giving is based on what works for me. A beauty expert may read what I am saying and agree or not. So you know, I am just sharing some insight. This is not sponsored content.)
SKIN / BODY
One of the things I have noticed changing over the years more than anything, is the hydration of my skin. I am now trying not to use fake tan. I was addicted to a weekly spray tan, and found it was clogging my pores leaving my skin dull and looking dirty rather than tanned. In addition, I always felt I was looking an interesting shade of orange! I got advice from my doctor, and am now trying to safely get about 30 minutes of late afternoon sun twice a week for a very light natural colour....and some vitamin B! And when I am out in the sun, I use a toxic free sunscreen like the We Are Feel Good Inc ones.
I like to do an all over body scrub twice weekly for an intensive skin clean, and use body oils top-to-toe morning and night. I use the Thank You coffee scrub as it's about $14, an affordable choice for how often I use it. The Le Labo one I use as a special treat for my skin - it is beautiful to use, and your skin not only feels incredible, the smell is addictive.
I discovered body oils when I was pregnant as would religiously use them to stop any signs of stretch marks. Rather than moisturises, I now only ever use body oils. They increase skin elasticity and hydration and improve skin texture and appearance...and they don't leave you feeling oily at all. As I use so much with each application, it was becoming an expensive habit. I found from the chemist a pure oil by Vatea, that was cheaper than the designer ones, but still as effective. But I use the Grown Alchemist Body Treatment Oil mainly just on my chest and arms, as it is a divine product but a little too expensive to use everywhere. I think it is very important to focus on chest, shoulders and arms, as they are on show and tend to age faster than other 'hidden' areas. I have watched my skin improve dramatically by using these body oils, so I highly recommend them.
Face oils vs moisturises ? I know there is a scientific study and every brand has a reason for or against. BUT - I have struggled with bumps and spots for years. Being an adult with bad skin, I always found uncomfortable. I felt like people would glare at the bumps on my face (hidden underneath layers of makeup) rather than listening to what I was saying. But now I am using face oils - I do not get congestion under my skin, bumps or pimples! And I am very excited! Oils give skin a softness and smoothness that is immediately addictive. They are packed with essential nutrients, fatty acids and antioxidants. I have noticed my skin is repaired and very hydrated. And using face oils honestly has given me that dreamy skin I always imagined I wanted. I only just wish I knew about them sooner!
My favourite face oil is the Rodin Olio Lusso Lavender face oil but at $246 for 30ml I needed to find a cheaper option.....but it is honestly my favourite, and why I became addicted to face oils in the first place. I am now using the Grown Alchemist Antioxidant oil and think it is a lovely product also. Once a week for a nourishing mask I use the Aesop Blue Chamomile masque. I like using for additional hydration and a radiant complexion the Guerlain Abeille Royale Youth Watery Oil - it's a serum and oil and really plumps my skin. The Guerlain skin range is actually very beautiful, and I am in the process of trying more products from this brand....I will give you an update soon!
Ok... just in this week - I got a sample of the new La Prairie Platinum Rare Cellular Night Elixir that everyone is talking about. - at $1,560 for 20ml apparently it is my dream needle free facelift while I sleep. I am currently at day 2, so will give you an update in a few weeks.
I also wanted to share my love of the La Mer The Moisturizing Soft Lotion - I use this under my makeup, as it is important to have very hydrated skin before applying foundation. It also is good if you don't have time for the face oils to sink in before putting foundation on. I know La Mer is expensive, but it really is a wonderful product.
So even though I can't bring myself to plump my lips with injectables, I would still like my lips to look hydrated. The KNC collagen-infused treatment with moisturising rose flower oil, cherry extract and vitamin E, deeply conditions with a subtle tingle. I use these twice a week and my lips do feel smooth and a little more plump than usual.
This Blaq mask is not for the faint hearted. However I am very taken by this product. But be warned - it really hurts when you pull the mask off....but very worth it! In fact, I enjoy putting it on my husband's face as even he will put up with the pain (while I am in hysterics watching his reaction) because also finds it really good for his skin. There is something gross (seeing what comes off) but wonderful with how clean this mask makes your skin. ....if you try it, you will know what I mean.
I am really into essential oils which are revered for their natural relaxing and calming properties. Also for concentration, can be extremely beneficial. I have little 'calm + focused' roll-on bottle for when I am working, I spray my pillow before bed with a lavender oil and spray Aveda Chakra oils on my kids, husband and myself before we leave the house each day.
There are some things we like about ourselves, and things we don't. One of the great things I inherited from my mum was good hair! Everyone always likes to grab my hair to check it's real, which I used to find really odd, but people are geniunly intrigued and think it must be fake! When you have long hair like me, you do have to look after it and understand what products work for your type of hair. So for me, these are my styling 'must' products. My hair although very very thick drops the moment it has been blow dried. So in order to give it lasting volume, I have to add lots of product in - while making it look as natural as possible. These are 3 products I use religiously. The Label M products you can only buy from Toni and Guy salons are brilliant!!! The brunette dry shampoo and texturising volume spray I use daily. You can make a blow dry last up to a week using these products. And then for the ultimate 'beach bounce' that doesn't move - the Aveda volume hair spray is the ultimate hold..... and smells beautiful too. I use the Ouai hair oil mainly because I like the smell, and when my 'ends' are looking a little dry and needing love, this is good to rub in.
BEAUTY FROM THE INSIDE
Lastly, with all the products I use on the outside - my main priority is focusing on the inside. Everything you eat becomes a part of not only your inner being, but the outer fabric of your body as well. The healthier the foods are that you consume, the better your skin and hair will look. I eat well, exercise daily, rest and take vitamins. This helps with my mental health and how I deal with stress. It also helps me be a calmer mother and ensures I am kind to myself. I drink green supliments like The Super Elixir daily greens which actually tastes nice. Or Vital Greens is also wonderful and like fuel for your body. For healthy skin and hair I take Flaxseed oil each morning and drink Kefir which is a friendly bacteria that is very good for digestion.
Everyone has their own style of the 'beauty process' but my style is just as I dress. Classic, simple, natural and not over styled or over done. And also achievable whist running out the door after two kids!
I will share my make up tips coming soon!