Right Now: Body Lotions for Winter and Summer

Liz Earle Superskin Body Cream

Since my legs when left to their own devices look like Satan’s tracksuit pants, I am in regular need of liberal applications of body moisturiser. I have recently tried some new good ones that have displaced my usual rota of Nivea, Nivea and more Nivea, so I thought in the interests of full disclosure it was time to divulge.

My new summer time body goodie is by my favourite Aussie brand, Aesop – it’s their Petigrain Hydrating Body Gel, and it’s perfect for hot weather as it’s lighter than a regular moisturiser and absorbs quickly. When it’s hot as a sauna outside, the last thing you want to have is feeling like you’ve had a brisk bath in butter. It also comes in a plastic bottle with a handy pump, so it’s lighter and not as fragile as Aesop’s glass packaging.

Enhanced with Witch Hazel, Grapefruit and Lemon Peel oils it smells delicious (which you expect with Aesop products), and I’m thrilled to have a proper body moisturiser I can throw into my kit for summer shoots, as most of the moisturisers I’ve been using (Palmers Body Gloss, I’m talking to you!) are just too slick and greasy.

Whilst it’s hard to imagine needing some serious body hydration when your limbs are bronzed and it’s hot outside, that time is coming for my Northern hemisphere friends, and oh baby have I found your solution! By now you should all know of my love for Liz Earle’s genius Superskin moisturiser, and she has now released – Superskin Body Cream. I know, right? So all those poor dry, dessicated souls with skin (like mine) that is so parched that it feels like lizard skin, this is for you. It’s amazing, full of Shea Butter and organic Rosehip Oil, Neroli Oil and Cranberry Seed Oil, so it slides on like you’ve been touched by an angel. It smells gorgeous and, quite frankly, sticks everything back where you want it to be (you dry skinned ladies know what I’m talking about).


Right Now: Aesop’s World Domination

Aesop SkincareMy favourite Aussie skincare brand, Aesop, is basically taking over the world at the moment with a gorgeous new counter at Selfridges in London, and four new stores to open in New York by the end of the year. Look how beautiful this installation in Selfridges is – if this doesn’t make you want to go and dive in to their skin loving treats, I don’t know what does.

I am currently loving their Geranium Leaf Body Scrub – it’s one of the few body products I use on a regular basis. It contains pumice and bamboo plus geranium which smells amazing first thing in the morning, let me tell you.

I’m not generally a massive body product fan, mostly due to lack of time. The products in my shower have to be quick and effective, and this not only polishes my skin, it’s even managing to compensate for the fact that I’ve given up coffee (and you know anything that can do that, must be good).


Aesop Selfridges

In My Makeup Kit: Aesop Resurrection Rinse-Free Hand Wash

AESOP Rinse-free hand sanitizerSo I can now die a happy lady. The ONE thing that used to disturb me about my kit was my nasty bottle of chemist dry soap – I have bought it in Paris, and London and the US, and no matter what brands I tried, it just never looked chic. Because when you have all your lovely bottles and tubes of La Mer and Kiehl’s and Chanel laid out, it was always jarring to have a tacky little bottle of Aqium or Purell stuck in the middle. It screamed “Here I am! I’m a hand sanitizer!” Not the first thing I want to jump out at a client when they look at my work table.

But now my prayers have been answered – and at the risk of my blog turning into an Aesop infomercial, it’s the good people at Aesop who have answered them. It’s an alcohol based hand wash to cleanse and refresh hands – so it’s the Chanel of Aqium basically. And best of all – it comes in their classic brown bottles, but, wait for it, IT’S PLASTIC. So there’s no carting glass around (which, whilst chic would also be heavy, and let’s face it, potentially dangerous). And it’s only 50ml, so it’s perfect for planes, or throwing into your handbag for a little on the spot refresher wherever you are. Clean hands without water! And I don’t know about you guys, but I get increasingly germ phobic as I get older. It all started on the Paris Metro when I saw a guy scratch his nose – except he had no nose, it had been eaten away by some devastating disease. Poor man – but then he wrapped that itchy finger back around the Metro pole and I nearly passed out at the thought of what detritus he was leaving everywhere. So at the risk of sounding all Howard Hughes, hand sanitizer is my friend.

This one smells gorgeous, and has Mandarin Rind and Rosemary Leaf in it, plus unlike its nasty chemist counterparts, it contains moisturizing agents to ensure skin is left clean but not dehydrated.

So now my kit looks classy AND clean. Delish.


Current Obsession: Facial Oils


I’m having an oil moment (that sounds wrong, doesn’t it?) But it’s true, I am – I have fallen in love with not one but THREE facial oils, so I consider it my sworn duty as a beauty blogger to tell you all about them.

AesopThe first is from my Aussie wonderbrand favourite, Aesop – really is there anything that this brand can’t do? I have yet to try a dud product from them. It’s their Parsley Seed Facial Cleansing Oil. It’s great for combination, sensitive and dry skin (which would certainly be myself), and has skin-calming properties combined with anti-oxidants.

Then there is also the latest addition to the Parsley Seed family, which is their new Parsley Seed Facial Cleanser (out this month). This one is a gel cleanser (that feels like an oil), but this one is special – it EXFOLIATES whilst it cleanses. How does it do that? I hear you ask (well even if you didn’t, I’m going to tell you anyway), it combines a softly lathering gel cleanser with lactic acid to gently exfoliate and brighten the skin.

So as a pre-makeup cleanse for shoots and clients, it’s amazing as it gently stimulates blood flow, giving you the all-important GLOW. Yes, that GLOW, the one every makeup artist knows about as it’s what you strive to impart to someone’s skin before you start putting makeup on, since makeup going on a crusty, dry flakey surface just looks like ass, and makes your job much more difficult.

It probably seems pretty counter-intuitive to use oil to wash the face, but Japanese makeup artist Shu Uemura pioneered this in the late 1950’s when he realized that an oil cleanser effectively removed all traces of heavy makeup, whilst maintaining the delicate acid mantle of the skin. He created the Shu Uemura High Performance Cleansing Oil in the early 60’s, which is my second facial oil pick. I’ve had this in my kit for oooh, around 10 years now as it softens the skin and is miraculous at removing makeup. So now I have two oils to use – the Aesop for pre-makeup cleansing- for the GLOW, and Shu for afterwards for it’s makeup melting properties. (Especially when you’re on a job where the girl is wearing an extra head full of makeup, you need something with some serious grunt to take it off. I do love my Crealine but sometimes you just need the Makeup Removing Big Guns – that’s when my Shu comes into play).

And last, but by no means least, Jurlique Skin Balancing Face Oil. This has a different purpose – I use this sometimes on dry, dehydrated skin to perk it up and impart some serious moisture before starting the makeup. It can also be mixed into foundation to give it extra slip and shine – lovely when your skin is feeling the cold (ie the whole of the Northern hemisphere at the moment).
Jurlique is another favourite Aussie organic brand of mine, as their products are just plain yummy. This oil has biodynamic and organic Chamomile, Calendula, Marshamallow and Rose, and Rose Hip oil to give the skin elasticity.

Even in the heat of summer the skin can get dehydrated and can benefit from oils. However if your skin is very oily anyway I would advise using oils with caution – don’t discount them, but try a sample before you invest in them. Sometimes those with an oily finish to the skin actually have very dehydrated skin underneath (*cough* don’t ask me how I know that).




Aesop Open New Shop in Tokyo

My favourite purveyor of fine skincare products is opening a new store in Tokyo. In line with their ethical stance all the wood in the store was reclaimed from an old house in Tokyo, so the whole store smells faintly of Japanese cedar. So if you’re in Aoyama Tokyo, why not swing by!