Saturday, 30 May 2015

Behind The Brand: Mario Badescu



Date of Birth: 1967

Founder: Mario Badescu

History: This iconic American skincare brand was founded by Romanian-born Mario Badescu, a skincare specialist who dreamed big. With a background in chemistry and cosmetology, Mario left Romania, traveled to America and opened his famous New York salon in 1967. Mario Badescu's salon was located at 320 East 52nd street and still exists today. It is a 36 treatment room facility that preforms up to 200 facials per day!

After opening his salon in the sixties, Mario Badescu soon became New York's most sought-after Esthetician, gaining popularity for his classic European-style facials. Mario then began creating his own botanically-based skincare line, focused on the philosophy that skincare products should be gentle, simple and effective. Like his famous facials, the Mario Badescu skincare line became a huge success and, for the rest of his life, Mario continued to conduct research in his laboratory and test his innovative products in his salon. Lucky for us, the results of his never-ending hard work are still available to purchase today.

Mario Badescu Salon

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Thursday, 28 May 2015

Weekly Worship: Treat Nail Polishes


Treat Nail Polish review

Price: $18.00 15ml

This week's worship has to go to the gorgeous  new beauty brand I discovered in the Big Apple. I am talking about Treat, the non-toxic nail brand that hails from ultra-trendy Berlin.

Treat is a little different from your standard nail brand because its polishes are '5-free'; free of formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dibutyl phthalate and camphor. However, although these five nasties are left out of its lacquers, Treat do not compromise on quality. The brand's polishes are highly pigmented, easy to apply and gorgeously glossy. What's more, they come packaged in chic bottles and don't give off that overpowering chemical scent.
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Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Wednesday Wisdom: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


“The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story”

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Tuesday, 26 May 2015

The Tuesday Tip: Eye Cream On Cuticles


Although they get overlooked in the world of beauty, cuticles are kind of a big deal. They are a crucial part of new nail growth as they cover - and protect - the matrix. The matrix is responsible for producing cells that become the nail plate. Because of their importance, cuticles need to be given some TLC on a regular basis. If not looked after, cuticles can become dry and hard, causing them to flake, peel and crack, so it is important we look after them.

To keep cuticles as healthy as possible, do not cut them or pick them and keep them well moisturised. Many people keep cuticles soft and moisturised by applying cuticle oil or cuticle cream regularly, however eye cream does the trick and saves you splurging on extra beauty products. Eye creams are an effective treatment for dry and hard cuticles, as they are ultra moisturising and hydrating. 

Any good quality eye cream will do the trick, however if you're looking for a recommendation, I would suggest the Mad Hippie Eye Cream 15ml ($24.99 madhippie.com). This rich eye cream deeply moisturises the skin, making it perfect for softening cuticles. As for the eye area, this cream is great for those who suffer with dark circles (like myself), as it contains regu-age, eyeliss and haloxyl - three ingredients known to help reduce dark circles and puffiness.

Mad Hippie Eye Cream review

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Monday, 25 May 2015

Review: Skin Laundry



The Promise: "Every Skin Laundry treatment leaves skin deep cleaned and toned. Frequent treatments result in more dramatic improvements in the areas of acne, redness, unevenness, dullness, hyper-pigmentation and photo-ageing"

The Price: £100.00 per treatment (discounts are available to Skin Laundry members)

The Place: 3 West 16th St. (between 5th & 6th Avenue), New York 10011

The Treatment: Appointments at Skin Laundry are super speedy; deeply cleaning and treating the skin in under 10 minutes. Because of this, Skin Laundry is the perfect skin pit-stop for busy gals on the go.

My Skin Laundry experience began with a helpful (and lovely!) Physician Assistant providing a step-by-step run-down of what the treatment involves (which, FYI, is a combination of a YAG laser and a IPL). I then had to lie down on a table, pop on a gorgeous pair of safety goggles and prepare for the treatment.
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Friday, 22 May 2015

Long Haul Flight Skincare Routine


I recently flew to NYC and, stupidly, did absolutely nothing to treat my skin during the flight. A shocking confession from a beauty blogger, I know. Nothing was applied to my skin skin before, during or after my flight and I suffered majorly as a result. From the moment I stepped off the plane, my skin was dull, dry and flaky for an entire week. It took nightly applications of the Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask, as well as an Elizabeth Arden Signature facial and Dermalogica facial to get my skin back to normal.

So, as you would expect, everything changed when it came to flying home. This time I stepped on-board prepared, and, thanks to a solid skincare routine and arsenal of amazing skincare products, I was able to keep my skin in perfect condition.


Before I had even arrived at the airport, I consumed a liter of water and drank another during my flight. Once the plane took off, I got to work applying my skin saviours...
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Thursday, 21 May 2015

Win: One Of Three Burt's Bees Cleansing Sets


Burt's Bees is one of my favourite American beauty brands, as it is affordable, 99% natural and great at treating the skin.

Burt's Bees hero products include the Beewax Lip Balm, Almond & Milk Hand Cream, Peppermint Foot Lotion and Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream. However, for me, Burt's Bees cleansers are the highlight of the entire range. I love them so much, that I've teamed up with the brand to give three of you the chance to win a cleansing set. Made up of four skin-cleansing classics, the set is worth over £40.00 and even includes the amazing Beewax Lip Balm!

Burt's Bees competition

The first cleanser in the set is the Orange Essence Facial Cleanser. Made with orange oil, soap bark extract and olive oil, this cleanser deeply cleans the skin, leaving it problem-free and super soft. Next up is the Peach & Willow Bark Deep Pore Scrub; an 100% natural scrub that gently exfoliates the skin without causing irritation. The set also includes the Facial Cleansing Towelettes With White Tea Extract, for speedy makeup removal, as well as the Soap Bark and Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream. This gentle cleanser is perfect for acne-prone skin, as it contains aloe and menthol which help to soothe skin and reduce inflammation.
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Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Wednesday Wisdom: Audre Lorde


"I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood. That the speaking profits me, beyond any other effect"

Audre Lorde quote

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Tuesday, 19 May 2015

The Tuesday Tip: Achieve Maximum Benefits From A Face Mask


Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant review

Whether my skin is dull, dehydrated or breaking out, I will raid my face mask drawer for a quick skin fix. Quality face masks are great at treating specific skin concerns, however did you know that a mask can be even more effective if the skin is prepped properly before use? Well it can, and exfoliation is key.

Angela Kell, a Skin Therapist from the Dermalogica Skin Centre in Soho, NYC, explains that exfoliating your skin before using a mask is essential, as it removes both the dirt and dead skin cells blocking your pores. Once your skin is fully unblocked, a face mask can properly get to work, penetrating the skin much deeper to help deliver maximum benefits.

One of my favourite exfoliators is the Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant (£41.75 dermalogica.co.uk / $54.00 ULTA). It is a rice-based powder exfoliator that requires water to activate it. It is the perfect exfoliator to use before applying a face mask, as it deeply - but gently - cleanses the skin.

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Monday, 18 May 2015

Review: Caption Nail Polish


Caption Nail Polish review

The Promise: "Caption Polish is a next generation nail polish with LacQ3 Technology. It air dries 3 times faster than traditional nail polish without a UV light, wears with gel durability, and removes without soaking"

The Price: $12.00 10ml

The Stockist: captionpolish.com

The Colour: Dark purple

The Application: This Caption nail polish, named Never Ask Permission, applies like an absolute dream, thanks to its amazing brush. Unlike most nail polish brushes, Caption brushes are flat with rounded edges, making it easy to cover the entire nail with just one stroke.

Caption polishes have a quality formula that applies evenly and dries very quickly. The polish I used is so highly pigmented that I could get away with applying just one coat.
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Sunday, 17 May 2015

Behind The Brand: Tarte


Tarte brand history

Date of Birth: 1999

Founder: Maureen Kelly

History: It was a desire to use pure, healthy cosmetics that were both pretty and powerful, that lead Maureen Kelly to create Tarte. "Everything I found was full of unhealthy, icky stuff, and whether it was from a department store or one of the very few "healthy" makeup lines I could find, the packaging was so unglamorous that I hardly wanted to buy it let alone take it out of my purse in public!" says Maureen.

Maureen started Tarte in her one bedroom apartment in 1999 and, since then, Tarte has become a leader in healthy, eco-chic beauty. The brand offers cruelty-free cosmetics that are formulated with powerful, skin-benefiting ingredients, such as superfruit and plant extracts, vitamins, minerals, essential oils and other naturally-derived ingredients.

Tarte founder

Motto: "Be green, be smart, be tarte!"

Giving Back: Tarte supports cooperatives in the Rainforest, contributes to women's health organisations and develops eco-friendly & healthy programmes

Offerings: Tarte offer everything from lip tints and palettes to beauty tools, self tanners and skincare

Hero Products: Amazonian clay 12-hour full coverage foundation SPF15, tartelette Amazonian clay matte palette, tarteist clay paint liner and tartelette Amazonian clay 12-hour blush



Availability: Tarte is available around the globe. If you are based in the US, you can find in Sephora and ULTA. If you reside in the UK, Tarte can be found at QVC

Website: tartecosmetics.com

Price Points

Foundations: Up to £33.00/$39.00

Mascara: Up to £21.50/$23.00

Blushers: Up to £25.00/$28.00

Lipsticks: Up to £15.00/$17.00

Skincare: Up to £38.50/$48.00


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Thursday, 14 May 2015

Review: Indeed Labs' Fillume Volumising Serum


Indeed Labs' Fillume Volumising Serum Review

The Promise: "Fillume volumising serum is a unique formula of 5 clinically proven peptides designed to work on the skin’s matrix, helping to improve the appearance of skin aging"

The Price: £29.99 30ml

The Stockist: Boots

The Skin Type: Suitable for all skin types

The Key Ingredients: Uplevity™, Matrixyl Synthe'6, Syn®-Hycan and PatcH20

The Application: Fillume has a thick, gel-like consistency with an ultra-smooth texture. It applies well, however absorbs so quickly that you have to do a speedy application to ensure an even application. Not only does it absorb almost instantly - which is amazing - it also feels soft on the skin with absolutely no tackiness or feeling of heaviness.
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Tuesday, 12 May 2015

The Tuesday Tip: How To Achieve Curlier Lashes



Heating your eyelash curler with a hair dryer before using it will create longer lasting, curlier lashes. Be sure to only blast the eyelash curler for a few seconds as you don't want to burn yourself! I would advise testing the heat of the curler on your hand or wrist before going in for the kill!

To create even more impactful lashes, curl at the roots, in the middle and near the end of the lashes. One of my favourite eyelash curlers is the iconic Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler (£20.00 www.shuuemura.co.uk / $20.00 www.shuuemura-usa.com).
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Monday, 11 May 2015

Interview: Mordechai Alvow


During a recent trip to NYC, I was fortunate enough to visit the Yarok Beauty Kitchen and meet Yarok's fabulous founder, Mordechai Alvow.

In addition to creating one of the world's best organic haircare brands (available at yarokhair.com and abeautifulworld.co.uk), the sought-after hair stylist has worked with numerous designers, photographers and celebrities. His work has graced the pages of Allure, ELLE, InStyle, Marie Claire and VOGUE (to name but a few), and his celebrity clients include the likes of Melania Trump, Naomi Watts and Vanessa Lachey.

Mordechai founded Yarok out of a desire to create organic haircare products that perform as well as their synthetic ingredient-packed counterparts. He succeeded in his mission and, today, Yarok offers a variety of haircare products that are not only organic and safe to apply, but provide amazing results and smell amazing.

I am a huge fan of Yarok, so you can imagine how excited I was to chat all things hair and beauty with Mordechai...

Mordechai Alvow interview

What inspired you to work in the hairdressing industry? And how did your career journey begin?

To give you a bit of background on how I grew up… I was born in Israel in a city called Jaffa. Jaffa was also known as the city of oranges and everyday I woke up across from an orange grove. It fragranced the air and I always felt lucky that it was my scenery.
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Sunday, 10 May 2015

Ingredients 101: Kiwi Seed Oil


Natural or Synthetic: Natural

Origin: Kiwi seed oil is a natural protease enzyme that is extracted from a kiwi fruit (aka Chinese gooseberry); an edible berry. The kiwi fruit was organically name the Chinese gooseberry (and still is!). However when New Zealand began commercially cultivating the fruit, the country changed its name to 'kiwi fruit' after its national bird.

Location: The kiwi fruit is native to the Chang Kiang Valley in China and is recognised as the national fruit of China. However, kiwi fruit is now cultivated all over the world, mainly in New Zealand, Italy and Chile.

Beauty Benefits: Kiwi seed oil contains high amounts of vitamin E, vitamin C and omega-3 fatty acids. So kiwi seed oil keeps skin healthy and deeply moisturised and helps to boost collagen production. Being packed with antioxidants, kiwi seed oil is also able to fight free radicals that lead to premature ageing (pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles). The wonder ingredient also contains natural AHAs (alpha-hydroxy acids), which are a group of natural acids used topically to moisturise the skin, as well as exfoliate the skin. AHAs are very effective at treating oily or congested skin, acne, wrinkles and pigmentation.

Because of its many benefits, kiwi seed oil is the perfect skincare ingredient for those with mature skin, dry skin, acne and certain skin conditions (such as eczema and psoriasis).

Warnings: Kiwi seed oil is considered safe to use topically

Found in: The Antipodes Worship Superfruit Antioxidant Serum 30ml (£33.99 cosnatural.co.uk). This water-based serum is packed with kiwi seed oil, as well as boysenberry, blackcurrant and the unique antioxidant-rich ingredients, Vinanza Oxifend Plus and Vinanza Grape. Its main purpose is to protect the skin from free radical damage, keeping it healthy and youthful. I absolutely love it! It leaves my skin soft, hydrated and problem-free. Oh, and it smells absolutely amazing!

Antipodes Worship Superfruit Antioxidant Serum  review

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Tuesday, 5 May 2015

The Tuesday Tip: How To Stop Cravings


When dieting, there is nothing worse than craving something sweet to throw you off track. Luckily for us, Zana Morris, the founder of The Library - London’s hottest gym, has a tip that will help take out the temptation.

The tip is simple: avoid sugar at the start of the day.

Consuming sugar at breakfast can cause an insulin surge in the body that is difficult to stabilize throughout the day. An insulin surge can not only cause the accumulation of fat around the abdomen, it can stimulate the release of another hormone, ghrelin, which can cause cravings and hunger. So opt for healthy breakfast alternatives that are low in both carbohydrates and sugars. Zana suggests things like poached eggs with toasted rye bread or natural unsweetened yoghurt with a fistful of berries.

How To Stop Cravings

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Sunday, 3 May 2015

The Beauty Myth: Oil Should Not Be Used On Oily Skin


Verdict: False

The idea that oil is bad for oily skin is a complete myth. The absolute key to controlling oil is to use oil based products. This is a homeopathic approach whereby ‘like treats like’, therefore if you use products with a similar makeup to your own sebum, then you naturally produce less oils and your skin is healthier and more balanced. So, if you suffer from oily skin, give a face oil a try. I would recommend applying face oils in the evening if you're a little nervous about using them.

One of the best face oils available is the Perricone MD Chia Serum 30ml (£62.00 Selfridges / $75.00 Sephora). It is an antioxidant-rich face oil that is packed with - you guessed it - chia oil. Chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids strengthen the skin cell membrane of the epidermis and improve the texture and quality of the skin. This has been my staple face oil for the past three months and I am absolutely obsessed. I don't know how my skin would cope without it!

Perricone MD Chia Serum review

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