The Ethical Guide to Shopping Beauty

Shopping ethically and environmentally-conscious is on most people’s minds these days. Greener is better.

Make-up and skincare products have a dark history of testing on animals. Many consumers are challenging beauty houses to reconsider their practices regarding animal testing. A few years ago, beauty giant MAC was called to task about selling their products in China, a country that does mandatory animal-testing on all products.

But it’s not just the brutal testing on animals. Consumers are also looking to purchase products that have minimal environmental impact. This includes zero-waste, recyclable/compostable packaging, ethically sourced materials, avoiding controversial ingredients like palm oil or plastic micro-beads. And of course – shopping locally!

INDICATORS OF ETHICAL & SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTS

Sustainable Jungle proposes that the following are good indicators to look for when buying beauty/skincare products.

Ingredients:

Cruelty-Free: Cruelty-free generally refers to whether the product has been tested on animals. Despite being “cruelty-free” this is no indicator of whether animal by-products have been used in the making of the product.

Vegan: Vegan products contain no animal by-products. Common animal products used in cosmetics and skincare are gelatin or honey/beeswax and many others. Vegan beauty products attempt to look at plant-based alternatives to these ingredients.

Non-Toxic: Products that do not contain any GMOs, manufactured herbicides, artificial fertilizers, preservatives, parabens or any other toxic ingredients.

Palm-Oil Free: Palm oil is found in a number of different products from cosmetics to food to fuel. This is due to its extreme versatility, but the ecological impact is devastating. It is a huge contributor to deforestation and threatens the habitat of many endangered animals, such as the Orangutan and Sumatran Rhino. 

Business Practices:

Zero/Minimal-Waste Packaging: These days it is impossible to be ignorant of the plastic pandemic. Many countries are cracking down on the use of single-use plastics. A lot of companies are also looking at ways to make packaging that is recyclable and re-usable. I found this Kickstarter for a soap company that makes a shampoo bottle out of soap itself. Amazing!

Ethical-Sourcing: sourcing ingredients from suppliers who are local or that have policies in places to reduce their environmental impact ensures that the product you are purchasing is ethical in every step of its manufacturing.

Waste Management: when making any product, waste is inevitable. It would be counter-productive to have a plastic-free product if the production itself is damaging to the earth. Look for companies that have policies regarding minimizing their carbon-footprint, as well as responsible waste disposal.

Charitable Giving: Many ethical companies invest in eco-charities that combat deforestation, saving endangered species and research into sustainable living.

SHOPPING ETHICALLY

Now this seems like a lot to take into consideration when buying a product. A brand may not be able to tick all of the boxes above, but even if they only get some of these things right, they are making a big difference. Being knowledgeable as a consumer allows you to make an informed choice with your purchasing and every small change counts.

Luckily, many companies are getting on board with producing ethically-made products – many consumers already purchase cruelty-free products as a standard. With more companies trying to minimize their ecological impact, the more accessible and affordable it is becoming to find brands that can be purchased guilt-free. 

BEAUTY WITHOUT CRUELTY

Within South Africa, Beauty Without Cruelty is “an animal rights organisation with a primary objective to educate and inform the public about the exploitation, abuse and suffering of animals and to offer humane,  non-animal alternatives to replace cruel and harmful lifestyle choices.”

They offer accreditation to companies who match their strict criteria for ethical products. For the consumer, looking out for the BWC rabbit logo on the back of products is a good step towards purchasing wisely.

Included on their site is a long list of local brands who have accreditation with them. These brands cover beauty, skincare, hygiene, household and pet products.

CRUELTY-FREE BRANDS – BWC APPROVED

Rain: Since their beginnings in 2005, Rain has opened stores not only across South Africa but also in Ireland and USA as well. Their production uses solar-power, locally sourced ingredients and their packaging is made by trained crafters. In addition to being certified with Beauty Without Cruelty, they also have World Fair Trade Organization – one of the few skincare brands to have achieved this globally.

African Extracts Rooibos: After recognising the many benefits of Rooibos tea, African Extracts set out to create an affordable skincare range. Their classic Moisturising Day Cream SPF15 is South Africa’s top-selling 75ml essential care daily moisturiser. 

Love My Hair: It’s hard to imagine hair dye without chemicals, but Love My Hair have achieved just that. Not only is it great for those looking for ethical hair dye, but also for those who may be allergic to PPD, which is found in most commercial hair dyes.

Bella Baci: a brand that we have featured before, Bella Baci is a company that focuses on the benefits of cupping. Not only a product for spas, but they also offer home cupping kits. Bella Baci offers plant-based products that are 100% natural.

Soil: Both approved by Beauty Without Cruelty and The South African Vegan Society, Soil produces essential oils as sustainably as possible. Unlike many companies, they farm and harvest plants themselves. No petrochemicals, no parabens, no synthetic fragrances or colorants.They also make use of biodegradable and recyclable packaging.

Aside from these brands, we also recommend Faithful to Nature as a great online store that has a strong focus on ethical products. Their search options allow consumers to select a number of categories from “100% Plastic-Free”, “Cruelty-Free”, “Certified Organic” and so on, making it very easy to find brands suitable for you.

Everything you need to know about oil cleansers and balms

For those who struggle with acne and problematic skin, the instinct is to do everything possible to dry out those pesky pimples. From “oil control” cleansers to those at home recipes that your mom swears by, and the aim of the game is to reduce the amount of oil your skin produces in order to reach that goal of clear, healthy glowing skin. 

 

Over-cleansing with products that promise to reduce oil production in the skin can often be quite harsh and drying on the skin. This results in stripping your natural skin barrier which will cause more problems than it will solve. Your skin is meant to act as a natural barrier that keeps out the nasty stuff such as free radicals and dirt while maintaining the lipid layer of the skin as well as the good bacteria that lives there . By using these stripping products the natural balance of your skin is disrupted which results in aggravating your already existing acne.


Read more: Dermalogica: Back in Touch

But, we’re here to tell you that the one skincare product that you need to add to your routine is… cleansing oil! Yes, you heard that right. Using a cleansing oil might sound really counterproductive to anyone looking for a sensible skincare routine but never fear, we’re here to give you all the information you need to change your mind. 

 

Just think about it, like attracts like. Therefore, cleansing oils are currently being researched and results show that  they are extremely effective in breaking down make-up and free radicals from environment pollution than most water-based cleansers. Not only that, an oil based cleanser also hydrates your skin and helps calm skin that is prone to acne.

 

Introducing oil cleansers to your skincare routine

WHAT WILL OIL CLEANSERS DO FOR ME?

 

  • lift excess sebum, the oily substance produced by glands on your skin
  • clean out clogged pores like blackheads and whiteheads
  • remove dead skin, pollutants, and makeup


Read more: Dangers of Microneedling at Home

 

Introducing a cleansing oil gives you a much more gentle first cleanse that always leaves you with really soft, hydrated skin. If you’re concerned about leaving behind an oily residue you can follow with a gentle foam or gel cleanser afterwards especially if you adhere to a Korean Beauty routine. 

 

OIL CLEANSER OR CLEANSING BALM? WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?

 

The difference between an oil cleanser and a cleansing balm is essentially texture. An oil cleanser is often found in a simple pump bottle and can be used as an ordinary cleanser. Some oil cleansers lather up really well as you massage it into the skin while a cleansing balm tends to be a little richer and has the texture of Vaseline. After scooping a little bit between your palms it quickly melts into a silky, luxurious liquid that emulsifies the more you work it into your skin. When you’re done simply wipe off with a warm damp cloth and follow up with your favourite moisturiser.

Mix your own cleansing oilCHOOSE THE RIGHT OIL CLEANSER/BALM

 

Because of the rising popularity of using oil cleansers, many brands are starting to include them in their products line so you have the option to either buy a formulated product or mix one for yourself. 

 

If you choose to buy a premixed formula then remember to always look for non comedogenic products that will not clog your pores. Make sure to read on to the end for our pick of great oil cleansers that have been tried and tested by our very own Beauty Warriors beauty team.

 

Alternatively, try mixing your very own DIY recipe right from the comfort of your own bathroom. A good beginner option would be a 1:1 ratio of olive oil and castor oil blend. Over time you can vary the combination based on the needs of your skin.

 

Olive oil is a great antioxidant for your skin and increases hydration while castor oil is antibacterial and effective as an astringent cleanser. You could also use jojoba oil if you have acne-prone skin as it has been shown to help reduce oil production in the skin.

 

 

 

 

The information on this website has been compiled from published sources and is provided only as a guide. Although every effort has been taken to ensure that information published on this site is correct and up to date, Beauty Warriors cannot guarantee the accuracy of all information presented, and accepts no liability in respect of any omission or error.  The customer should always satisfy themselves as to the ultimate suitability of a product for an intended application. Beauty Warriors accepts no liability in the unlikely event of an adverse reaction occurring when using  products.

Beauty and Wellness Trends to Look Out For In 2021

With the new year already in full swing, there are a few words that are shining strong in what is the new normal, world such as prevention, immune-boosting as well as mental and physical wellness. With this in mind, we spoke to Marisa Dimitriadis, Managing Director at The Spa Consultants and Chief Business Coach of Spa Professionals Guild for all the trends expected this year in the beauty and wellness industry.

REDEFINING WELLNESS

Wellness is set to take on a different, more dynamic and all-encompassing shape going into 2021. The consumer will be focused on all types of self-help and ways to prevent illness rather than cure it. It will not just be about mindfulness and treatments that promote wellness and holistic interventions but will include far more such as fashion and science looking at what fashion styles, fabrics and colours can do for wellness as well as how science is evolving artificial intelligence, modern medicine and the digital space to offer solutions for all to be healthy and well.

Also see: Cupping Your Way Into The New Year

AT-HOME SOLUTIONS

Relaxing baths re a beauty and wellness trend for 2021Whilst visits to spas and salons will still happen we predict that the consumer will continue to look for more at-home solutions. Some examples to look out for are: spiritual cleansing baths, bath teas for different outcomes such as detoxifying, sleep-enhancing, skin smoothing, remineralising and more. At-home skin peeling solutions, a wider variety of masks, special eye treatments to assist the reduction of swollen or red eyes and any blue light protection products as the consumers spend more time in front of their computers and devices.

ONLINE

Set to be the biggest growing trend in beauty and wellness for 2021 is the online space as consumers spend more time looking online instead of in-store or face to face. Set to show a big boom is virtual online skincare or body care consultations where your qualified aesthetician will help you achieve your skincare or body care goals in the virtual space. The professional skin and body brands you are used to buying at your salon will be available for home delivery at the prescription of your qualified therapist. More online events such as wellness workshops and webinars to improve physical and mental wellness will be on the rise this year.

SUSTAINABLE TRAVEL/STAYCATIONS

Meditative beauty and wellness trend 2021We will definitely see a rise in local travel which are renaming “responsible travel” where the aim is to support our local economy to get back on track whilst still recharging and regenerating. With overseas travel taking a back seat completely in 2021 the sustainability focus for the coming year is supporting the local economy.

Prescriptions will change shape in 2021 with nature as the main remedy. This year will see a rise in nature-based anything from hotels, treatments in the outdoors, guided nature meditation sessions and so many more offerings.

SLEEP BETTER

Quality of sleep has deteriorated and it’s becoming more a question of quality over quantity. Beauty/spa services will have a focus to enhance better sleep even perhaps including treatment that works at it’s best at night. Silk sleepwear, sleep yoga, satin pillowcases are all set to be a growing trend in the coming year in the beauty and wellness industry.

Also see: Stop the Clock with Good Nutrition

IMMUNE BOOSTING

Anything you can do to support the immune system will be the name of the game in immune-boosting ingredients as well as techniques will be seen in massage, in body wraps and exfoliations, in skin treatments and even energy healing concepts.

SKIN IS THE FOCUS

With increased time on zoom calls and online meetings where the focus is the face and neck well there, you have it. Treatments to enhance natural glowing skin and flawless complexion is a top priority for the workforce going into 2021. A focus on natural makeup is also a huge 2021 beauty trend with makeup for online meetings lessons being a top of the list.

QUALITY OF AIR

Quality of Air was already a focus from 2019 but will see a new shift in 2021 with much more than air purifiers and specific plants that improve the air quality. Have a look at something very interesting that will start to make some way this coming year especially in the workplace where people have to come to a public place to work and also, the hospitality industry that services the business traveller.

Cupping Your Way Into The New Year

Cupping therapy has been on the rise over the past few years. Modern techniques have reinvigorated an ancient practice, and discovered even more benefits. Karin from Bellabaci demystified the practice for us and made us eager to include it in our regular wellness routines!

TRADITIONAL CUPPING: WHERE IT STARTED

Cupping Therapy is an ancient treatment method of creating healing in the body through negative pressure by means of suction. It stems from China, Egypt and Greece.

The main principle is to create a surge of blood flow underneath the cup, to an area of disease. This action stimulates white blood cells, pain relief receptors and localized healing takes place. The “cup” during the ancient times were animal horns, which then progressed to bamboo and eventually glass cups. The negative pressure is created by dipping a piece of cotton wool, held by long tweezer, into alcohol. When it catches alight, the practitioner puts it into the cup for a few seconds as this “sucks” out the air. It is then placed on the skin immediately to create suction.

The negative pressure and suction reaches up to 10cm into the soft tissue, attachments and organs. It pulls out toxins and inflammation from the body to the surface of the skin where the lymphatic system eliminates them. Once an adhesion or congestion is pulled away from its source, fresh blood, energy and fluids rush in to expedite healing.

DRY VS WET CUPPING

Wet cupping is only performed by trained physicians. The skin in the area of concern is scraped with a sharp object, and the cup is placed over the scrapes. The cup then fills with blood. The blood is dark and almost “sticky” as the toxins, mucous and de-oxygenated blood is pulled into the cup. After 10-20min, the doctor will remove the cups and wipe away the excreted fluids. Please note that wet cupping should not be performed by anyone that is not trained and has the necessary credentials.

Dry Cupping, also known as static cupping, is where the cup is placed on the skin for 2-10 min on an area of concern. The cups are removed afterwards and there is no scraping or bleeding.

MODERN CUPPING – THE BELLABACI WAY

Bellabaci Int is the original creator of the hand-squeezable silicone cups for face and body. The system is used by professionals and at home around the globe and is currently available in 25 countries in many luxury spas and resorts. Oil is applied to the skin which serves as the medium that the cup gently glides on the body or face. The treatment offers from superficial to deep muscular therapy, and is a wonderful and natural solution for anyone needing from pain relief to anti-aging.

WHAT CONDITIONS ARE TREATED BY CUPPING?

There are few conditions cupping cannot treat. Examples are pain, stiffness, spasms, headaches and migraines, fluid retention, digestive issues, sprains, strains, skin ageing, cellulite, insomnia, and the list goes on!

Regular cupping treatments should be the go-to to provide relief for anything from bloating to headaches. Cupping also works on the nervous system to calm and relax those suffering from stress or anxiety. Increased blood flow to the brain can help boost serotonin production, which is your much needed “happy hormone”, aiding those who suffer from depression.

FACIAL CUPPING

Facial cupping is becoming increasingly popular as the negative pressure massage addresses many concerns with one action. The cups are never used for stationary cupping on the face unless used by a practiotioner for bell’s palsy or other medical concerns. The cups provide a deep cleanse by dislodging dead skin cells and congestion, provides collagen stimulation for wrinkles and reduces fluid retention to kiss away eye bags.

CUPPING FOR CELLULITE

Mechanical manipulation is probably the most effective method to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Just a 10min massage at home while watching TV or having a professional course with your local spa will provide jaw-dropping results in just 2 weeks. From the very first treatment, a result will be seen and felt, and cumulative results will be on the cards if you are consistent in your treatments. It is much like exercise, the more you do, the better your results.

DOES IT HURT?

The cup will leave a “cup-kiss” which may be misconstrued as a bruise. The mark has no sensation of pain and is purely an indication of the high level of toxins present in the blood. Relief can be felt immediately after the cups are removed.

MASSAGE THERAPY AND CUPPING

Cupping massage is versatile in the fact that it can be combined with basically any form of massage to increase on results.

Cupping massage can leave the client feeling like what we call a “Bellabaci Zombie”. This is because cupping provides the deepest sense of relaxation and It may take the client a bit longer to get changed after the massage! It is normal to feel thirsty after the session due to the massage being highly detoxifying. A fantastic feeling of release can be experienced on a physical, emotional and mental level.

If the suction is too much, there may be a pulling sensation as the upper layers are not prepared yet. Do tell your therapist to use less suction, it should never feel painful.

Massage cupping treatments are available at Sediko Bush Spa, One and Only Spa, Life Day Spa.

CUPPING TREATMENTS AT HOME

Home care for cupping is essential to assist with acute bouts of pain and to build cumulative results.

The Bellabaci 3 Step Rituals contains everything you need to perform a professional treatment at home. In the box you will find a set of cups in 2 strengths, which are soft and hard. The soft cup is used for the first month to treat the body gently, from the outside in. The upper layers of skin will need strengthening first, before you move on to the hard cup. If you begin with the hard cup and work to deep, it may be painful and lead to bruising. After one month, the hard cup is used on the firmer parts of the body and the soft cup for the more sensitive areas such as the inside of the upper arms and thighs. The massage oil should be applied liberally to aid the cup for smooth gliding.

10min a day, 2-3 times per week is more effective than a longer session once a week. Do consume 8 glasses of water per day to help the detoxification process along. It should never hurt or feel uncomfortable. Just adjust the suction to achieve a comfortable depth. Consistency is key, as with everything in life in order to achieve results!

Bellabaci home kits are available from Faithful to Nature, Yemaya Spa & Vitasoul.

ARTICLE BY KARIN VAN DER MERWE AT BELLABACI

International is a leader in modernised Cupping Massage Therapy and handcrafted health and wellness products. Bellabaci uses the latest in technology, science and eastern medicine to create superior quality products for luxury Spas and health-conscious consumers in USA, UK, Europe, Brazil, The Baltics, The East, Africa and more.

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All Eyes On My Brows

It’s all about  Brow Lamination, Lash Lifting and Henna Tinting – if this is the first time you’re hearing these words, don’t panic. They are all simple and painless processes that will leave you feeling fresher than ever! Trending at the moment, it will help us end our 2020 with a BANG….and banging brows and lashes!

These days’ people look at your eyebrows before they even look at your shoes. Due to wearing masks, the main focal point of the face has been eyes. Are you on board with the trend? Or are you like many of us looking for the easy solution to great brows and lashes.

All we seem to be doing is juggling Zoom meeting after Zoom meeting. One thing’s for sure you may get away with track pants and slippers but from shoulder up you need look picture perfect every day. Or shall I say “Zoom perfect” and you want to do it without spending hours in front of the mirror.

Beauty Warriors Hack: All you really need to have done are your brows and lashes and it changes your whole face as well as boosts your confidence.

NO MICROBLADING FOR YOU?

Beauty Warriors did some research into brow filling. How we could better improve our morning routine?

It takes a lot more work than expected to create a ‘natural’ beauty look every morning. Semi-permanent beauty treatments, such as eyebrows and eyelash tinting can streamline morning routines and avoid you having to add layers of make-up every day. There are days where you want to experiment with your look and then there are days when you just want to get going. We are here to help you get ready quicker so you can look effortlessly beautiful with minimal effort. A semi-permanent brow treatment seemed a natural progression and fit with our ‘less fuss’ beauty philosophy.

BROW LAMINATION

Brow lamination is a process whereby the brows hairs are “relaxed” and set into the desired position or style that the client is looking for. Whether it be a fluffed up brow or something more controlled, a brow lamination is a great way to be able to do your brows without worrying about it being permanent.

It typically lasts between 6-8 weeks and the results are insane! Brow lamination can be done on all sorts of brows. It can control or tame wild/course brows or give a fuller look to someone with minimal brow hair.

The process is about 45 minutes to an hour and is completely pain free (I know right? How exciting!) the brows are then shaped and tinted for a fuller brow effect.

Your old brows are history!

LASH LIFTING

Lash lifting is a process whereby the client’s lashes are folded back (curled) onto a silicone pad with the eyes closed and are relaxed and set in this position. The lift is essentially a “perm” without all the old nasty ingredients originally related to perming. There is actually a treatment in some brands products that strengthens and builds your lashes.

The lashes are then tinted to really bring out the eye. The desired curl can be achieved depending on what the client wants. It can also be done on most lashes and will last between 6-8 weeks!

This process takes about an hour and a half in combination with the brow lamination. The outcome of the process allows for the eye to have a “lifted” effect and the lashes look longer and fuller. Mascara look without having to use mascara.

HENNA FOR YOUR BROWS?

Until now, we have been filling in our brows with makeup pencils and brow gels. We tried this semi-permanent eyebrow treatment myself and we must say that we were very happy with the results. Our model chose a dark brown henna, that is a shade darker than her hair colour. Beauty therapists always advise you to go for a more natural look but when it comes to brows, our model is all about the drama.

5 MIN TO GREAT BROWS

Henna brows are applied just like a regular brow tint would be. You paint the product on, wait 5 minutes and then gently remove. Henna is a natural plant pigment from the Hina tree making it perfect for sensitive skin types. I would still recommend trying the tint on your arm first before applying to your face just in case you do have a reaction or experience sensitivity. It’s less intense and less-permanent than micro-blading and lasts for up to four weeks with no pain or downtime.

The process was quick, easy, and painless. Once our model was done her beauty therapist handed her the mirror to assess her new brows. On inspection, they’re darker than my usual brow tint and I love them! I feel so beautiful.

Having gently cleansed my face that evening, and again the following morning, she examined her brows in the bathroom mirror and surprisingly, they’re as perfect as if I’d spent five minutes filling them in. They’re bold, defined and appear completely natural. I only needed to brush them up before I’m out the door.

HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR HENNA BROWS

Avoid cleansing the brow area on the day of treatment. My boyfriend commented on how great they looked and best of all, three weeks later and I’ve only just rekindled my relationship with Elizabeth Arden Brow Gel which I glide over my brows for a more defined shape. It seems henna brows are right in line with my busy business woman routine. I highly recommend this experience.

These brows cost our model R350 and our model went to a lady who works from home in Pretoria. I recommend inquiring about this treatment at your nearest beauty salon today.

3 MAKE UP TIPS FOR GREAT BROWS

  1. Map your brows out – see that they start and end where they are supposed to and that they are both equal, otherwise clean up the extra hairs or fill in the gaps where you need to
  2. Find a product that works for you – it could be powder, pomade or pencil but you will see what gives you your desired effect 
  3. Your brows should always be a shade darker than the hair on your head to bring out and frame your eyes 

Thanks to Bianca McCann, professional make-up artist, for her contributions to this article. Follow her on Instagram.

 

Your Ultimate Spa Ritual Guide

Is it just a ‘so called spa’ or is something totally more?

Be inspired by the rituals of the spa! Why do we use the word ritual, which evokes religion, even a sect – to be brief, notions far removed from our intention? Quite simply because spa treatments are organised according to definite protocols, every act leading steadily and smoothly to another. Step by step, mind and body thus learn to adapt to a rhythm different from that of the outside world.

And human beings we need rituals. In days gone by, life was punctuated by a multitude of small rituals that regulated daily living. Nowadays, the only rituals that remain are those concerned with birth, marriage and death. Not much to support one through a whole life. With the loss of these rituals, we lose part of the experience, these are meant to enhance it. Modern society expects individuals to find the meaning of life in themselves.

Yet never has the demand for perfection been so insistent. We are expected to fill simultaneously various roles on different levels – professional, social and parental. Is it surprising therefore that our existence is regulated by the logic of fragmentation? Fragmentation of one’s personality, but also of time.

Breaking down, what typically goes on at the Spa

The merits of spas is the way they have reintroduced an approach that views the individual as a whole, enabling us to rediscover the centre of our being, bringing together our disparate parts.

In an exceptional setting, one can at last become whole again, in tune with oneself. For one, two or three hours, one concentrates exclusively on one’s own well-being. The succession of treatments and rituals prepares one in an almost hypnotic fashion to be touched, to be caressed in the best sense of the word, without any sexual connotation. In short, faced with individual anguish and solitude, one is allowed to “let go” without fearing the judgement of others.

And in this way the ritual of the spa brings about a gradual and progressive calming effect.

FIRST STEP: THE RECEPTION

This must always be peaceful and personal. In a spa, you are not just another number. You are escorted to the place where you will change, where you will leave your “fragmented” personality. When you put on the garment (gown, kimono or sarong) you clothe yourself symbolically in the habit of a novice undertaking a spiritual quest.

SECOND STEP: THE STEAM BATH

The second part of the ritual process is an optional step, but it has many advantages. Sweating is an indispensable physical function to eliminate toxins. Moreover, by pouring water on hot stones, large quantities of negative ions are released into the air, which combat fatigue and tension.

THIRD STEP: THE BODY SCRUB

This involves the exfoliation of the skin to get rid of dead cells. But the body scrub is much more than this. By rubbing the skin with various substances, from Guerande sea salt to apricot kernels, via unrefined brown sugar, honey, cinnamon or spices, one also gets rid of all the nervous tensions that have accumulated. It constitutes an ideal transition between the outside world and the start of the massage.

FOURTH STEP: THE WRAP

As an alternative or supplement to the body scrub, the application of mud reconnects us intensely to the earth. Organic compounds of plants and various minerals, muds are of diverse origin. Muds from the Dead Sea are among the most sought-after. Similarly, a seaweed pack reconnects the individual to the ocean of all origins. The action of muds is similar to that of hydrotherapy: exchange of minerals, penetration of amino acids, proteins and steroidal lipids.

FIFTH STEP: THE MASSAGE

Set free, relaxed after the preceding steps, the body is now ready to receive a massage. The choice of massage technique is thus not insignificant. Besides the attitude regarding nudity, which differs from one continent to another, you must be able to go along with the massage, welcoming it without becoming tense.

SIXTH STEP: THE BATH

In the West this is usually scheduled before the massage. In Asia the opposite is true. Both philosophies have merit. In the first instance, one gets to the massage relaxed, at peace, almost drowsy. On the other hand, to soak in a bath of sweet-smelling flowers, after the impressive ritual of an Asian spa, constitutes an ecstatic experience.

SEVENTH STEP: THE REST

This is a step that ought never to be omitted. After a spa ritual lasting an hour and a half, one should ideally lie down and rest for half an hour and even fall asleep. This is why an urban spa without a rest room is a heresy. The spa being, by definition, a place where time stands still, nobody must ever hurry you to the door.

In a classic salon, it is not always easy to respect all the steps of this ritual. Nevertheless, respect the order of the steps, leaving out only those that the facility does not cater for and you will very quickly notice the benefits.

This article was contributed by Dr Nadine de Freitas – Managing Editor Les Nouvelles Esthetiques & Spa, South Africa.

Les Nouvelles Esthétiques, now published on 26 countries, with head office in Paris, France, has been an international leader in providing up-to-date beauty and spa information for the past 68 years through their international network of magazines, conference and exhibitions. The South African magazine edition of Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Magazine launched in October 2002 and the Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Conference and Spa Award in 2005 and has grown from strength to strength, as we focus on providing the industry with important information on new trends and up to date knowledge in the world of spas, encompassing all aspects of professional skincare, bodycare and spa therapies, spa design, spa management and spa lifestyle. They can be followed on Facebook & Twitter.

Tel: 083 267 2773

FaceGym: Don’t skip face day!

With exercise showing benefits that go far beyond the gym and a healthy heart rate, people are looking for new workouts and all the physical, mental and emotional benefits they bring. There are no shortages of ways to strengthen our bodies but do we ever consider our most visible muscles? The ones we think to exercise the least? FaceGym (also known as face yoga) just may be a good, safe alternative to traditional facelifts.

WHAT IS FACEGYM?

FaceGym was developed in London in 2016 to help people tone their facial muscles, improve skin elasticity, and work towards a more vital appearance.

Workouts use a variety of kneading, flicking and pressure techniques to warm up the muscles before the fun begins. The workout includes cardio-simulating massages, mild impulse therapy with the FaceGym Electro Pro, and a cool-down session with stone rollers. From start to finish, the process follows the warm-up, exercise, and cool-down arc of any other effective muscle exercise.

But strengthening and toning are only part of the benefits of FaceGym. As with all muscles, regular stretching and exercise aren’t just about strength and fitness, but also flexibility. Working the facial muscles helps to lower strain and improve blood flow. This is linked to fewer migraines caused by tension in the face and neck.

FaceGym workouts also help produce collagen: a natural protein in the body responsible for skin texture and reducing inflammation.

WARM-UP

It starts with removing all makeup and cosmetics. You can come in with your game face already on or have it cleared at the centre. The important thing is to make sure your skin is ready for the essential oils, moisturisers and contact from expert hands.

The session starts with a stress ball massage to stretch and warm up the muscles. Every major muscle in the brow, cheeks, jaw, temple, neck and upper chest is stretched. Although this is an exercise for the facial muscles, stimulating blood-flow from the chest up ensures a more effective workout.

CARDIO & TONING

The cardio session ramps up the stimulation with a deep tissue massage to the face’s major muscle groups. The heat and pressure of strong circulation also carries more oxygen through the vessels, releasing energy into the muscles. This part of the process has many of the same sensations as a good jog.

The middle third of the main workout focuses on toning. This is done mainly through an electric pulse device called the FaceGym Electro Pro. The mild electro-pulses help the muscles contract and flex and is painless for the most part. Electronic impulse devices are mostly used to firm up targeted muscles, but have also been used to relieve chronic pain.

The main workout ends with a skin IV treatment. Your FaceGym trainer starts with a deep cleanse of your skin to remove impurities and prepare it for the final part. The treatment is done through a high-pressure air IV that pushes an exfoliating solution into the skin without the need to break through the skin barrier.  One of the main benefits of this solution is its anti-oxidising agents, which help to prevent cell damage.

COOL-DOWN

With the muscles warm and energised, it’s time for the final part of the FaceGym treatment. The trainer cools and stretches the muscles one last time with jade rollers. Not only does this help to lower lactic acid build-up, but cooling the muscles post-workout lowers the risk of strains and kick-starts the recovery process.

IS FACEGYM FOR ME?

Like with any exercise, you have to decide what works best for you.

Many people would like to tone their jawlines and improve contours around their cheeks.  One of the biggest struggles with working out is that we can’t actually target where our bodies burn or store fats. That’s just down to genetics. That said, one of the key benefits to muscle workouts is that stronger muscles burn more fat and help give a more toned look overall.

The other good news is FaceGym’s health benefits aren’t just based on aesthetics. Cardio workouts in the face and neck have shown to relieve tension headaches by relaxing the muscles and stimulating blood flow. There’s also something to be said for the relaxation that comes with a trained professional helping you through the entire process.

If you have sensitive skin, however, you should sit with a trained professional to discuss any potential side effects. As with any exercise or treatment, it should be safety first.

Currently, the official FaceGym centres are only available in London, New York and Los Angeles. There is, however, a growing number of wellness centres offering similar treatments in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Images courtesy of https://www.instagram.com/facegym.

Piercings: An Artful Expression

Getting a new piercing? Not sure how many to get? Not a clue on how to care for them?

Love them or hate them, they have become a valid form of artistic expression of the individual in the 21st century.

AESTHETIC ART: EAR CURATION

As early as 10-15 years ago, having any piercing beyond the single piercing through the lobe was still seen as risqué. Treating piercings as an art form has led to the rise of a trend known as “Ear Curation”.

We chatted to Gavin Middleton, a body piercing at Parkhurt’s Black Betty Designs.

Continue reading “Piercings: An Artful Expression”

Are Facials Safe In COVID-19?

Would you feel safe chancing a facial with COVID-19 being at its all-time high?

We did some deep diving to see if it really is possible to be safe while visiting a spa. You can only delay your regular skincare treatments for so long before it becomes an urgent necessity. Believe me, I have tried!

Face masks have become a permanent feature, activing all sorts of unnecessary complications for our skin. We developed new COVID-19 term for skin ‘Maskne’ – breakouts caused by wearing a mask for extended periods of time. Taking care of our skin is a bigger concern than before.

are facials safe in covid-19THE RISKS

  • Proximity of close human contact
  • Lying down without a mask
  • Being in a high-traffic space
  • Unsure is correct sanitization protocols are in place

“Salons must be fully compliant to the highest standards of excellence in order re-open their doors”, says Esna Colyn, CEO of Imbalie Beauty, which comprises of Placecol Skincare Clinics, Dream Nails salons and Perfect 10 Studios.

 
 
 

WILL SPAS SAFELY MAINTAIN SAFETY PROTOCOLS?

Let’s be honest, this is a self-regulatory industry. How do we really know that protocols are being upheld consistently without compromise? We asked some of the industry’s largest spa and salon groups to weigh in, and also visited establishments to investigate for ourselves.

John Lambrou, Managing Partner of Life Day Spa, Cape Town assured us.

“Before any staff members are allowed to start doing treatments, everyone had to pass a COVID exam. This included frontline staff, managers and attendants. This takes place after they have attended a half day training session on COVID protocols”.

Sorbet have also implemented an examination prior to staff commencing work. Linda Sinclair, Sorbet CEO said, “We have provided online and in-store training. We are also educating them about COVID-19 and sharing updates with them weekly.”

Regardless of the current pandemic, there have always been high hygiene standards in the personal care. That’s just nature of the industry. Exams are great in instilling and reinforcing safety precautions, but in practise how will this translate to clients’ safety?

CLIENT SAFETY PROTOCOLS

Sinclair adds, “We have implemented a list in excess of 20 additional hygiene and social distancing protocols.”

Upon investigation, all three of the spa & salon groups mentioned above use shoe spray as you enter, disposable bedcovers, and therapists wear masks, face shields and disposable aprons over their uniforms. There is also a lead time between clients for complete sanitization of the treatment room.

“We ask clients to bring own pillow and blanket to feel completely at ease while they have their facials”, says Lisa Leibov, Principal Educator of the Imbalie Beauty Training Academy. “Each client receives a sterile and sealed facial kit with her own sponges, tissues and cotton wool. Nothing is reused.”

are facials safe in covid-19Team Beauty Warriors visited a local Durban beauty salon to witness how these safety standards played out. Skin Tone Beauty & Laser Studio sent us their safety protocols and guidelines upon confirmation of our facial booking. They encouraged us to leave all belongings in the car, and wait in the car until our appointment time.

We completed a screening form, had our temperature checked and shoe spray applied. A therapist wiped down surface while they ushered us into the room.

It was a little scary when they removed our mask just before facial cleansing. The beauty therapist, however, was fully kitted-out with gloves, mask and facial shield and was very relaxed and confident, which eased the situation.

My next question was to steam or not to steam? Having researched it, it seems that steam is actually encouraged. It keeps the nasal cavity and throat moist which mitigates some of the chance of infection.

The facial went very smoothly and the care to minimize chances of infection was a constant, present factor throughout.

MAINTAINING PERSONAL TOUCH AT A DISTANCE

With all these safety protocols in place and the ever-present odor of sanitizing cleaning products, masked therapists and screens between staff and clients, would the relaxing, tranquil nurturing experience feel sterile and cold. Colyn stated that it was a concern of the Imbali group too.

“Our purpose as a group is to connect to the hearts of all of our customers. Just because our environment has become so sterile, does not mean our hearts have. The power of touch is so important to human life and once such stringent protocols are in place, our therapists can truly connect to their customers with love and empathy and care. Renewing not only body, but mind and soul.”

are facials safe in covid-19Ferzana Moosa, owner of Skin Tone Beauty and Laser Studio stressed that, “Our bond with our clients makes it difficult for our warm personalities. We have implemented a ‘no touch’ policy, but safety comes first. We are still here to nurture and care for every one of our clients”.

She added, “For clients, especially those that are high risk, we offer free online consultations to help them stay safe while still maintaining self-care.”

In terms of client feedback, Sinclair says, “We have received positive feedback from our guests, in-store and on social media. Clients say that they are satisfied with the safety measures in place, praising Sorbet for keeping their guests safe.”

Lambrou adds, “Every client gets a ‘rating survey’ after every visit, and we have included a section on COVID safety. So far, not one client has felt unsafe at the spa and is really impressed with our COVID protocols.”

It does however come down to your comfort levels and personal risk factors. We can CONFIDENTLY say that we are most certainly impressed by the precautions, safety and hygiene standards put into place by the personal care industry.

To be honest, there is most likely a greater risk visiting a pharmacy or going grocery shopping.

Beard Grooming with Jack Black

During lockdown, a lot of men have embraced the beard – and why not? Beards are great and no one enjoys the process of shaving. Of course, while we are all working from home, it’s very easy for things to get wild, especially if you are unable to see a barber, so we spoke the folks at Jack Black on how you can best maintain your beard during this time.

Beards can include the classic, full, bushy, biker, Viking, short, faded hair cut with beard, curly hair with a beard, man bun and a beard, pompadour with a beard, messy hair with a beard, beard and moustaches and patchy beard styles of all ethnic groups and all ages and colours. Even if you have stubble-looking-almost-no-beard-growing type look, you will most likely need to shave, and you need to take care of the skin and the hair, no matter how short.

THE JACK BLACK GUIDE TO BEARD CARE

There are so many ways a man shaves – or doesn’t shave – and JACK BLACK stands apart from the competition in this category with unique product forms to provide the smoothest, closest shave he loves or that full, soft, silky beard she loves.

BEARD WASH

Beard Wash multi-functional formula that helps cleanse, condition, and soften facial hair by removing dirt and oil while conditioning the hairs and skin underneath. The gentle formula also breaks down build-up, softens, and leaves facial hair with a natural shine. While we are living through the pandemic, it is important to keep your beard clean more often, however you should take care not to use a product that is too harsh on the skin and may cause sensitivity.

BEARD LUBE

A unique pre-shave oil, shave cream, and skin conditioner in one easy step. The see -through texture lets you see where you are shaving, to avoid nicks, cuts, and visibility when shaving around facial hair. This way you can groom your beard to look like you had it professionally done. All you need to so apply a small amount to wet hands, work it into lather, and massage into beard and rinse off with water.

For men who shave the entire beard area, Beard Lube uses the highest quality natural oils to create a protective cushion for a smooth, effortless glide and exceptional skin hydration. It is so easy to use. You simply work a small amount into your slightly damp beard every time you shave—in the shower, or immediately after showering. For areas with heavier, coarser whiskers, allow product to remain on skin for 120 seconds before shaving. Glide razor over face. Rinse with cold water. DONE!

SUPREME CREAM TRIPLE CUSHION SHAVE LATHER

A rich, luxurious shaving cream that provides three protective and hydrating layers for a close, irritation-free shave. Perfect for use with or without a shaving brush and this nourishing cream enhances skin’s moisture content leaving it soft and smooth.

Start with a slightly damp face. Apply an even layer of SUPREME CREAM over your face and neck with your fingertips or a shaving brush. Activate SUPREME CREAM by working it to a rich, creamy lather using circular motions. Shave with a sharp, clean blade, rinsing the razor frequently. Afterwards, rinse your face with cold water.

This luxurious shaving cream lifts hair up and away from the skin for a smooth, close shave that leaves your skin soft, hydrated, and refreshed. Three hydrating layers create a protective cushion between the skin and blade, helping reduce razor burn, irritation, and nicks for a pain-free shave. Now doesn’t that sound like something you would prefer rather than that razor burn afterwards?

POST SHAVE COOLING GEL

To finish off, a soothing, fragrance-free, alcohol-free aftershave treatment. It soothes razor burn, irritation and redness due to shaving. Not that you are going to have this because you used either the SUPREME CREAM or the BEARD LUBE. The POST SHAVE COOLING GEL is lightweight and non-greasy, it will leave your skin feeling cooled and refreshed. Furthermore, it is fragrance-free, with light botanical aroma, it won’t compete with your cologne or fragrance.

BEARD OIL: A MUST-HAVE

Above we have covered shaving your beard, but what about the grooming involved of a full, bushy, classic beard. We need to tame and control that hair! BEARD OIL with Kalahari melon oil & vitamin E, is an exclusive blend of certified organic natural oils, potent antioxidants, and vitamins with a pleasant, light aroma and super sheer texture, not overly greasy and heavy.

It reduces beard itch and minimizes flakiness by hydrating and conditioning the sensitive skin under the beard. Remember the secret to a healthy looking beard is making sure the skin underneath is also healthy! Furthermore, it tames unruly beards and adds a natural condition and shine. It is specially formulated to moisturize skin and prevent irritation caused by dryness, ingrown hairs, and irritating bacteria.

You only need to pump 2-3 drops (1/2 pump) of Beard Oil into your palm. Rub your hands together and massage upward into facial hair, making contact with the skin underneath. To finish, groom your beard downward with your fingers or brush and style as usual. You can reapply it as many times as you need.

NOTHING COMPLICATED, NOTHING COSMETIC, JUST SUPERIOR SKIN CARE

Living in a modern world that is forever changing, you need a brand that will take care of your beard and your skin that you can rely on to not change. When we say NOTHING COMPLICATED, NOTHING COSMETIC, JUST SUPERIOR SKIN CARE, you can count on that staying the same. What does that mean?

NOTHING COMPLICATED defines the fact that there is a product to suit your specific needs. Do you have a full face beard that has its own mind, we can take care of that. Do you get breakouts from shaving your beard, or suffer from razor burn, because you like a clean shave, again, we have the solution. Would you like to have one product for every area or do you like to change it up and use different products? Guess what, we have got you covered… literally!

NOTHING COSMETIC describes that JACK BLACK does not just smell great and sit on the surface of your skin, the carefully selected ingredients in every single product will work on all of the levels of your skin, and is developed specifically for testosterone-driven skin types. Yes, that means it is specifically designed for a male skin.

SUPERIOR SKINCARE indicates, and not subtly I might add, that YES, JACK BLACK is superior in every single way. From the ingredients, to the functioning of the products and even the results are superior.

You can find Jack Black on Facebook & Instagram.