We are always so conflicted with What is currently hot on the runway and Latest Trends, Colour of the season, and What your friends look good in, that we very often forget by just having a few basics in our wardrobes, we’ll get through every season looking stylish.
Basic, classic items are pieces of clothing that is 90% of the time the base of every outfit we put together. These are items that will live on after every trend ever and will never go out of style.
Oooooh, the never endless outfits you can create with a denim. The classic blue denim or black, if you prefer, goes with anything and everything. It works great with sneakers and a sporty, comfy top all the way up the killer heels and bling.
The White Button Up
Work or play, the white button up will transform just about any look to something that looks well thought out & put together.
The Black Coat
A Winter must-have, the black coat. If you are a less is more kinda gal, then this is for you. And even if you are someone that prefers a bit more options, black will always be there to save the day. It also goes with just about anything and everything.
A Leather, or Pleather Jacket
Make your pick – there is such a large variety of classic black leather jackets available that no two is identical. They are always stylish and always trending and adds edge to any look in your wardrobe.
Black Sigarette Pants/Trousers
In this case, one id never enough. Just kidding, but seriously, I own 5. These trousers can be formal and fancy or casual but still chic. No two ways around the fact that you NEED a pair.
Classic Pair of Loafers
Whether they are real Gucci or a Fucci, just make sure when you purchace a pair they are good quality and will see you through more than 365 days. These are great throw on with anything kind of shoes. And even though they are flats, it looks chic and stylish. You’ll always look like you have your shizz together with a pair of these.
These could be a pair of Converse sneakers, or even just a pair from your favourite shoe store. As long as they are plain and simple, which basically means black or white and are super versatile to go with anything in your wardrobe.
PS. The secret to wardobe basics is : PLAIN & SIMPLE!
A Pair of Booties
Splurging on a pair of good quality booties that you know will wear well and look good with your current wardrobe, is no sin! You splurge girl! You can find reasonably priced classic booties at Call It Spring – Woolworths also has a great Winter shoe selection every year.
Basic items for layering
Its hard to have only one thing listed here, so here goes : A minimum of 3 tees, perhaps a white or black one, or both, a soft colour, like light pink or nude and a graphic tee of course. You do need something striped as well. A few basic long sleeves, this all depends on your taste, I would go for a black one, a white one and a striped one. I’ll probably add in a colour or 2 as well.
A Good Quality Black Blazer
My MOST WORN item in my wardrobe straight through the year, my black blazer. Girls, you can’t go wrong here. Light enough to wear on warmer days, and warm enough to wear over your jersey or blouse in Winter. An item like this I would recommend splurging on too – my favourite black blazer is from Polo but Mango is a really great place to shop for classic items too.
A Slip Dress
This also, all depends on your style. If you are a midi length girl, go for something midi, if you are more of an above the knee kinda lady, go for that then. But the style of the dress should be a slip dress. A slip dress is easy to style throughout the year, in Winter adding some layers and in Summer wearing just the dress itself.
In Winter some knits is a must! At least 2 or 3. There are so many to choose from, so go wild. I would make sure one of them is a neutral colour though.
Where comfort meets stylish! While these can look really hobo-ish. It can also look amazingly stylish and comfy at the same time. Grab your timeless blue jeans, with one of your layering items. Throw on your pair of booties and the cardi and you’re good to go girl. Wearing a pair of sunnies and some rings and a necklace will complete a look like this beautifully!
A timeless winter item that I hope NEVER stops being timeless. I can’t get enough of what a turtle neck does for a Winter outfit.
Are your closet Winter ready? If not – we sure it will be after reading our Winter wardrobe classics post!
First things first, if you’re not familiar with active ingredients, your first question is probably ‘What are active ingredients,anyway?’ Well, here’s the low down on everything you need to know about active ingredients, how they work and what they work for!
What are active ingredients?
The short answer : An active is the ingredient in a product addressing whatever skin concern it’s meant to target. An active ingredient has been proven in a lab by research to change the skin in some way and has data behind it. So, in other words, an active ingredient targets a specific concern, for example, congestion, dull skin, dry skin, acne, pigmentation, aging, you name it.
Here’s a breakdown of the most commonly found active ingredients in today’s skincare :
Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs)
Alpha-hydroxy acids are very commonly used and could be one of the following : glycolic, lactic, tartaric, and citric acids. Creams and lotions with alpha-hydroxy acids may help with fine lines, irregular pigmentation and age spots, and may help shrink enlarged pores. It is also recommended for acne scarring.
Environ Concentrated Alpha Hydroxy
Side effects of alpha-hydroxy acids include mild irritation and sun sensitivity. Sunscreen is SUPER important daily, but if you use products containing AHA’s, it is even MORE important. To help avoid skin irritation, start with a product with a maximum concentration of 10% to 15% AHA. If you are new to active ingredients, products containing AHA’s should be applied every other day and gradually work your way up to every day use.
Beta-hydroxy acid (salicylic acid)
Salicylic acid you will especially find in products that are targeted for acne. This ingredients removes dead skin and can improve the texture and color of sun-damaged skin. It penetrates oil-laden hair follicle openings and, as a result, also helps with acne. Some products containing Salicylic acid are available over-the-counter and others need a doctor’s prescription. Studies have shown that salicylic acid is less irritating than skin care products containing alpha-hydroxy acids, while providing similar improvement in skin texture and color.
Contains Glycolic and Lactic acid along with Salicylic acid
From personal experience and use of products containing Salicylic acid, I do experience dry, flakey skin on the areas I have applied the product to.
Skin care products containing hydroquinone are often called bleaching creams or lightening agents. This will ring a bell if you are familiar with Asian/Korean skincare – they are very much into whitening skincare products. Products containing Hydroquinone are used to lighten hyperpigmentation, such as age spots and dark spots related to pregnancy or hormone therapy (melasma or chloasma).
Products with Hydroquinone are banned over the counter in South Africa and can only be prescribed by a doctor. It is also recommended to be used for a specific period of time only. Again sunscreen should also be used religiously when using Hydroquinone.
Kojic acid is also is a remedy for the treatment of pigment problems and age spots. Discovered in 1989, kojic acid works similarly to hydroquinone. Kojic acid is derived from a fungus, and studies have shown that it is effective as a lightening agent, slowing production of melanin (brown pigment). Prior to using Kojic acid chech the specific percentage recommended for your skin.
Kojic Acid Serum by Skinceuticals
One that gets most, if not all skincare junkies very excited, myself included. Retinol is derived from vitamin A and is found in many over-the-counter “anti-aging” skin care products. Tretinoin, which is the active ingredient in prescription Retin-A and Renova creams, is a stronger version of retinol. If your skin is too sensitive to use Retin-A, over-the-counter retinol is an excellent alternative.
Overnight Retinol Repair by Dermalogica
Environ Retinol in a selection of 3 different strengths.
Here’s why skin responds to skin care products with retinol : Vitamin A has a molecular structure that’s tiny enough to get into the lower layers of skin, where it finds collagen and elastin. Retinol is proven to improve mottled pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, skin texture, skin tone and color, and your skin’s hydration levels. Retinyl palmitate is another ingredient related to retinol, but is less potent. A must in your skincare regime! It is an all-in-one powerhouse ingredient.
This is the only form of vitamin C that you should look for in your skin care products. There are many skin care products on the market today that boast vitamin C derivatives as an ingredient (magnesium ascorbyl phosphate or ascorbyl palmitate, for example), but L-ascorbic acid is the only useful form of vitamin C in skin care products. With age and sun exposure, collagen synthesis in the skin decreases, leading to wrinkles. Vitamin C is the only antioxidant proven to stimulate the synthesis of collagen, minimizing fine lines, scars, and wrinkles.
Lamelle Vit C Corrective
Skin care products containing this substance are often used with vitamin C products to assist in effective penetration. Hyaluronic acid (also known as a glycosaminoglycan) is often touted for its ability to “reverse” or stop aging. In the big, big world of beauty, you might have heard of hyaluronic acid as the “key to the fountain of youth.” This is because the substance occurs naturally (and quite abundantly) in humans and animals, and is found in young skin, other tissues, and joint fluid. Hyaluronic acid is a component of the body’s connective tissues, and is known to cushion and lubricate. As you age, however, the forces of nature destroy hyaluronic acid. Diet and smoking can also affect your body’s level of hyaluronic acid over time. Skin care products with hyaluronic acid are most frequently used to treat wrinkled and also dehydrated skin.
Hyaluron Complex by Doctor Eckstein
Lamelle HA Plus Corrective – This is an absolute stunner of a product.
Copper peptide is often referred to as the most effective skin regeneration product, even though it’s only been on the market since 1997. Studies have shown that copper peptide promotes collagen and elastin production, acts as an antioxidant, and promotes production of glycosaminoglycans (think hyaluronic acid, as an example). Studies have also shown that copper-dependent enzymes increase the benefits of the body’s natural tissue-building processes. The substance helps to firm, smooth, and soften skin, doing it in less time than most other anti-aging skin care products. Clinical studies have found that copper peptides also remove damaged collagen and elastin from the skin and scar tissue because they activate the skin’s system responsible for those functions.
Copper Peptide by Dermafix
You may have heard of alpha-lipoic acid as “the miracle in a jar” for its anti-aging effects. It’s a newer, ultra-potent antioxidant that helps fight future skin damage and helps repair past damage. Alpha-lipoic acid has been referred to as a “universal antioxidant” because it’s soluble in both water and oil, which permits its entrance to all parts of the cell. Due to this quality, it is believed that alpha-lipoic acid can provide the greatest protection against damaging free radicals when compared with other antioxidants. Alpha-lipoic acid diminishes fine lines, gives skin a healthy glow, and boosts levels of other antioxidants, such as vitamin C.
Alpha Lipoic Activator by Nimue
If you’ve heard of fish referred to as brain food, you can thank DMAE. This substance is naturally produced in the brain, but DMAE is also present in anchovies, salmon, and sardines. DMAE boosts the production of acetylcholine, which is important for proper mental functions. DMAE in skin care products shows remarkable effects when applied topically to skin, resulting in the reduction of fine lines and wrinkles.
We hope after this post and the breakdown of each active ingredient, you have a clearer understanding about what each of them are and what purpose they serve.
We all love a boss lady! Today’s post is a Q&A with the beautiful Marisa Dimitriadis, spa consultant, CEO and business coach.
1. Your fullname:
MARISA DIMITRIADIS. Facebook: Marisa Cachero Dimitriadis, Instagram: Marisa Cachero, Linked In: Marisa Cachero Dimitriadis
2. Your occupation:
SPA CONSULTANT, CEO, BUSINESS COACH
3. Links to your brand’s website/ social media accounts/ Youtube account, etc.
Facebook: Spalicious, Six sensational skincare, The Spa Consultants
Instagram: @spaliciousbody, @sixskincare, @thespaconsultants6
4. Please give us a quick overview of what you do for a living.
Where do I start? I have a few businesses. The Spa Consultants is the spa design, building and operations company. At any given time we are building 2 or 3 spas either in SA or neighbouring countries and we operate or run around 3 to 4 spas per month for a 2 to 3 year period at a time. Six Skincare and Spalicious are two professional brands that I started in 2010 which are the fastest growing professional brands in SA and we are looking to export in the coming year. Grumer is an Uber for Beauty Service app that is going live in the next few weeks where you can book on location services at your preferred time. And lastly my new project about to launch too is an online business coaching platform for Spa Professionals to get effective and results driven advice on any aspect of the spa and salon business from making effective bookings to how to structure and write up an SOP manual. This is going to change how professionals can grow their business and access tried and tested information with over 20 years experience in Industry knowledge
5. How did you first get into the beauty industry?
By mistake really. I needed money to pay off my car whilst studying and landed up as a receptionist for a cosmetic company. I was bitten then by the Industry and grew very quickly within the business.
6. What is one of the biggest beauty or skincare myths, in your opinion?
Definitely that you don’t need sunscreen if your moisturiser or make up contains an SPF. First of all, moisturiser is supposed to nourish and feed your skin whilst SPF is supposed to be a layer of protection. That alone contradicts using a moisturiser with a combined SPF plus sunscreen should be UVA and UVB resistant or Broad Spectrum so be sure to apply it as its own layer to fully accomplish its purpose.
7. Please talk us through your daily beauty routine?
Morning: cleanse, tone, serum, eye cream, moisturiser, SPF and make up. Evening: Double cleanse, once with an oil then with a wash, make up removal with Micellar water as I wear eye lash extensions, exfoliate with rice enzyme powder every second night, tone, serum, moisturise, eye cream. I mask twice a week.
8. What’s your favourite beauty treatment, and why?
Right now it’s a treatment called a Hydrafacial with AHA, BHA and hyaluric acid.
9. What is your favourite professional beauty product, and why? (By professional beauty, we mean a product that is available via spas and salons only).
I would need to be totally biased and say its my own range for the reason that I develop products by benchmarking off the best and then improving that formula to create a perfect product. We also use a very percentage of active ingredients in our serums and moisturisers which give instant results on the skin.
10. Your top 3 skincare must-haves/ must-dos?
SPF – not negotiable ever. Serum – more important than moisturiser as it goes much deeper in the skin and has the ability to correct and lastly a very good and efficient cleanser.