Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Daily delight: Eva Green for W magazine




Love it: Bobbi Brown Sunset Pink 2016 Summer Collection







It goes without saying that I am a huge fan of Bobbi Brown, both the woman and the brand. Both are beautiful yet practical, with the end goal being making every woman look the best she can be.
The latest highly covetable collection to be unleashed by the prolific yet considered brand is the Bobbi Brown Sunset Pink 2016 Summer Collection, which is all about sunset colours, getting that elusive tawny glow and the gorgeous luminous light created by the late afternoon sun. It’s the golden hour and I don’t know about you, but I want to look like I’m right there in the thick of it! That golden hour lighting is where everyone looks more beautiful, and Bobbi Brown Sunset Pink is all about recreating that beautiful light as the sun is going down wherever you are.
Bobbi herself says, “this collection is inspired by the incredible twilight glow of Telluride skies at sunset,” reportedly Bobbi’s favourite place.
As usual the new collection is full of Limited Edition products you will quite likely fall in love with on sight, and at the heart of it is the most gorgeous compact. No eye palette here, but Bobbi’s second favourite thing, a compact powder that is key to that “glow” and then some. The lovely Highlighting Powder (above, top) is high-impact, light reflective and will create a luminous, flattering glow, and it comes in three shades to suit most skin types. I have been pairing mine with the brand’s equally lovely Sheer Color Cheek Tint (above, bottom) for a little depth on grey days, and I love it.
The full line up is:

Highlighting Powder – Limited Edition
01 Telluride
02 Sunset Glow
03 Afternoon Glow

Sheer Color Cheek Tint
Shades:
01 Sheer Lilac
02 Sheer Pink
03 Telluride

Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner
01 Bronze Shimmer Ink
02 Sapphire Shimmer Ink
03 Twilight Night Shimmer Ink
04 Steel Ink

Long-Wear Cream Eyeshadow
01 Ash
02 Nude Beach
03 Stone Pink
04 Velvet Plum

All are absolutely gorgeous in my humble opinion, and available 11 July 2016 at all Bobbi Brown counters and at www.smithandcaugheys.co.nz/BobbiBrown.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Daily delight: Kaia Gerber for Miu Miu's Fall sunglasses campaign


Love it: the M.A.C X Brant Brothers collection



I don’t think gender-fluid/anyone can wear it makeup has ever looked as good as M.A.C Cosmetics's killer new product line created in collaboration with the fabulous Brant Brothers, Peter and Harry. The pair of pretty much flawless on the regular NYC socialites – and sons of the legendary supermodel, Stephanie Seymour - first teamed up with the beauty giant last year for an initial line of products meant to be worn by anyone, gender identity be damned. Now that line has expanded, and I for one have fallen in love with more than a few of the offerings hitting counters in New Zealand on August 8.
In an interview with M.A.C about their debut collection, the boys revealed they first began playing with make-up when they were teenagers, having a damn good time rifling through their famous mother's cosmetics case whenever they got the chance. “We would always help her get ready and watch her make herself up so beautifully,” they said, adding: “it was something fun we did together, and some of our favourite memories as kids were in her dressing room.” The boys say they want their make-up line to give people – all people - confidence in their appearances, with Harry adding: “the point of the whole collection is that it’s for you. It’s not about doing it for anyone else, to please anyone else, it’s just because you like the way it alters your appearance. It's hot." 
New additions to the unisex makeup selection this year include lip stains, brow gels, neutral eye shadows and more. And in a key difference between the brothers' line and many other makeup brands, the collection’s packaging features the Brant Brothers’ signatures in modern matte black on glossy black background for a totally gender-neutral vibe. "Most makeup is packaged for women, which is why men feel embarrassed about owning it," Peter told Allure about the line's black matte cases. "There's no difference between makeup for men or women—it's all packaging."
M.A.C’s newest creations along with the young bon vivants of New York society are:
EYE KOHL
Smolder - intense black
Paragon - champagne gold
El Dorado - bold gold
SRP $40.00

FLUIDLINE BROW GEL CREME
Neanderthal - deep, rich brown
SRP $38.00

BROW SET
Clear
SRP $36.00

BRUSH
208 Angled Brow
SRP $56.00
163 Flat Contour
SRP $94.00

PRO SCULPTING CREAM DUO
Tryphaena and Cleopatra
Climax - light white highlight
Crevasse - taupe contour
SRP $70.00

PRO LONGWEAR LIPSTAIN MARKER
Boysenberry Blush - berry plum red
Bitten Lip - dirty coral red
Sunset Boulevard - coral brown
The Jamie  - mid-tone red blue
SRP $44.00

EYE SHADOW X 4:4 PILLARS
Mother’s Milk - soft matte beige (satin)
Sandstone - soft matte taupe (matte)
Mystery - muted plum-brown (veluxe pearl)
Carbon - intense black (matte)
SRP $88.00



Available New Zealand August 8, 2016 at select M∙A∙C locations



Thursday, June 23, 2016

Daily delight: Kendall Jenner for Marc Jacobs


Love it: RMS Beauty's magical "un" powder


I recently read that although best known as a top makeup artist and the organic beauty mogul behind RMS Beauty, Rose-Marie Swift (above) has a secret side hobby: astrological readings. She told the New York Times she gives one-hour readings to clients and friends in the fashion and beauty industry, including the incredible Linda Rodin. “Usually people come to me when there’s a drama that they can’t answer,” said Swift, who believes astrology can explain almost everything. “I’m an Aquarian; therefore, I’m a future thinker,” ergo her beauty line. “My rising sign is Libra, which rules the beauty industry,” she said. “My moon is Sagittarius, so I’m a truth seeker — this is why I mouth off; my Mars in Aries makes me feisty.” How cool is that?
Clearly one smart cookie, she also gives some great insight into natural and organic beauty solutions, stressing that we mustn’t be affected by marketing, product claims and brand names: “just get cleaner makeup”. There are a lot of brands out there now that don’t have all those chemicals in there, and she recommends you do your research on sites like EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database, which has a list of safer sunscreens and toxicities of brands (the people behind it are chemists and scientists).
All of which bring me to her line, RMS Beauty. It is essentially an original, pure, organic colour cosmetic line that performs and then some. Based on living and organic principles, each product is created to hydrate and illuminate vital, radiant skin and is the perfect choice for the best ever ‘natural’ look. RMS Beauty is dedicated to transforming the way women use makeup, creating a product that is not only non-toxic, but actually heals and nourishes skin. Consider it skincare with mineral colour - giving make-up a whole new meaning.
I have been lucky enough to have a play with the brand’s "un" powder – which they like to call “the one and only powder you will ever need”. Available Down Under at Mecca Cosmetica, it is an ultra ULTRA fine, light reflective powder designed as the ultimate finish for perfect looking skin. It looks virtually invisible powder but dramatically minimises the appearance of pores, softens the skin and absorbs oil. Amazing!
Talc free, silicone free, perfume free and paraben free, it works with pretty much every skin tone as far as I can tell, and importantly it leaves behind no white residue. I’ve been applying it with both a soft makeup brush and the supplied powder puff just on my T-zone area, and so far so in love. The included puff is recommended by the brand for a better controlled application as it tends to deposit less powder onto the skin, making a small pot of powder go a long way.
So, are you ready to look radiant? This baby will set you back $60.00 and is available in Mecca Cosmetica right now. Head to http://www.meccacosmetica.co.nz/ for more. 


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Daily delight: Elle Fanning for V magazine


Beauty how to: Gigi Hadid on the red carpet, 2016 Much Music Awards


Maybelline New York spokesmodel and next level ‘it’ girl Gigi Hadid looked stunning on the red carpet at the recent Much Music Awards in Canada, pretty much killing it as per. Her makeup was the work of Patrick Ta, and is surprisingly easy to re-create when you know how.
Ta said after the event, “I was excited Gigi and I got to do this awards show together this year as she was the lead host. Gigi loves a fresh and natural look, but still glam at the same time. The inspiration for her look this year came from Gigi herself, which I was able to execute and make it my own. She wanted a bronze and beautiful eye with a bold aspect to it which was the red lip”. It’s a look I wholeheartedly get behind on a regular basis, and it’s pretty transseasonal and timeless as a look to boot.
When it comes to face, contour, and cheeks, Ta applied a moisturising oil to give Gigi’s complexion a luminous and smooth base.  Any extra hydration allows the makeup to lie beautifully on the skin. To ensure her skin appeared flawless, he then applied Maybelline New York Baby Skin Pore Eraser (RRP$16.99). Ta wanted her complexion to look clean and bright without looking too heavy, so he applied the new Maybelline New York Dream Velvet Foundation (RRP$24.99). Using a dark shade in the same foundation, he lightly contoured the hollows of the cheeks and added Maybelline New York Fit Me! Bronzer (RRP$19.99) to really accentuate the cheekbones. To highlight, Ta applied a concealer two shades lighter than the base foundation under the eyes. For this, he used the superstar Maybelline New York Better Skin Concealer (RRP$22.99). He then added a highlight similar to Maybelline New York Master Hi-Light (RRP$19.99) to the high points of the cheekbones for extra glow. To make the skin dewy in all the right places, Ta lightly powdered the t-zone with a powder like Maybelline New York SuperStay 24HR Waterproof Powder (RRP$25.99). Finally, he applied a bronze blush to the apples of the cheeks and sprayed the face with Maybelline New York Master Fix Setting Spray (RRP$19.99) to give her skin a natural and luminous finish.
Gigi wanted the eyes to look bright and clean, but boy did they pop. To get the look, Ta used Maybelline New York The Nudes Palette (RRP$29.99), which is one of my personal faves. He applied a light brown color in the crease and a skin tone color on the lid, and then added in a gold shade to finish off the look. He curled the lashes and coated twice with mascara. To recreate a similar look use Maybelline New York Colossal Go Extreme Leather Black Mascara (RRP$24.99). To create a thicker, more defined brow, Ta applied a product like Maybelline New York Eye Studio Brow Precise (RRP$18.99).
To complete the look, Ta applied a flesh colored lipstick to compliment the colour on her cheeks. He used shades similar to Craving Coral (685) and Siren in Scarlet (690) from the Maybelline New Color Sensational Creamy Mattes range (RRP$19.99) to create the perfect hue. I haven’t tried either but now seriously want to!

So there you go, too easy yes? Get to it!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Daily delight: Gigi Hadid for Max Mara Fall 2016




Beauty news: affordable, certified organic baby care from Little Skinfood

Now over thirteen years old, the Skinfood brand was one of the first in New Zealand to offer locally made skincare that was paraben free and used natural-based ingredients at an affordable price that often had to be seen to be believed. I fell immediately in love with it for all of those reasons, and the fact that the products worked was an added bonus.
The skincare experts behind the brand announced a long overdue makeover for Skinfood back in 2013, which was still around but had been swamped by the influx of similar products from overseas and a slew of eco-friendly beauty options. They took the makeover pretty seriously with all that in mind, re-launching with new look packaging alongside updated recipes and some exciting new developments. They took inspiration from the fantastic innovations and resources in natural skincare that the industry has welcomed over the past decade, with the end result being even more premium quality, yet affordable skincare inspired by nature, and made with the finest food and natural-based ingredients.
Now they have unveiled their latest innovation, which will see the baby care aisle of your supermarket get a whole lot greener. The highly praised, sustainable and cruelty-free beauty brand has just released its first ever range for babies and young children, which will be stocked in all good supermarkets nationwide.
With products that are 100 per cent natural and certified organic by ECOCERT, looking after your little ones – and yourself, as some of the products are definitely mama friendly - using the best ingredients is now not only easier, but also more affordable. 
 “The idea for Little Skinfood came about after members of the Skinfood team had babies over the past two years, says Skinfood General Manager and Little Skinfood collection founder, Alex Gage-Brown. “We quickly realised there was nothing out there that we felt comfortable putting on baby’s skin at an accessible price point.  And after talking to our Skinfood consumers we realised they felt the same, as many of them are mothers themselves.
“Skinfood is already renowned for its efficacious, natural and organic formulas so when we uncovered this gap in the market, it was a no brainer for us to find a way to fill it and broaden our offerings in this new area.”
As little skin is thinner, more delicate and more permeable than our own, it was imperative that Little Skinfood products, like their adult Skinfood counterparts, be hypoallergenic, and free from synthetic preservatives, fragrances and colours. “We wanted all the goodies - and zero baddies - to be found when you turned over to look at the ingredient list,” says Gage-Brown.
Little Skinfood’s beautiful new products care for little bodies top to toe, and their collection comprises six products including Little Body Wash, Little Head Shampoo, Little Body Oil, Little Body Lotion, Little Body Powder, and Little Bottom Balm. My seven-year-old son Wolf has been all over using their ECOCERT Organic Certified Little Body Wash, which has an RRP of just $14.99. Also ECOCERT Organic Certified is the Little Head Shampoo at the same price point, which is plant based and super safe for little scalps, skin and hair.
My mama friendly favourite is the heavenly Little Body Oil, made up of sweet almond oil, sunflower seed oil and vitamin E help to nourish any skin. It has been the perfect, nourishing and neutrally scented body oil now the temperature has dropped, and I am definitely going back for more! 
Last but not least, the packaging is goddamn adorable - check it out above.
So, if you have little ones - or hey, even if you don't! - I highly recommend you check this offering out.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Daily delight: Victoria Beckham for ELLE Hong Kong




Fragrance Friday: Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose 2016

Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf is a major modern fragrance icon, and to call it a success of epic proportions would be putting it SO mildly! Women all over the world absolutely love it, and it is one of the fragrances I hear constantly named as a signature scent by women from all walks of life.
Landing on Monday is Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose, the Northern Hemisphere summer version of Flowerbomb fragrance that comes out every year as a limited edition in a different bottle. That isn’t to say it can’t be worn in the depths of the Southern Hemisphere winter – it has me already dreaming about spring!
The fragrance is a sparkling floral bouquet that has been best described as “opening with accords of bergamot, mandarin, pink pepper, green tea and grapefruit”. The heart is a bouquet of rose, jasmine, lily of the valley, red berries and orchid, laid on the base of amber, cashmere and patchouli. In other words, delicious.
Available as a 50 ml Eau de Toilette, the newest incarnation of the fragrance is a slightly spicier version of the original sweet floral; giving Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf fans an alternative to their favourite scent that I can pretty much guarantee they will love.
It starts off with a refreshing fruity, lightly floral scent, then after a little while the elements of pink pepper settle down into a floral bouquet while the scent of rose rises up on the skin. By the end of the day it has a distinctly woody fragrance on my skin, which I absolutely love.
So to wrap it up, I reckon Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose EDT differs from the original in that it is naturally lighter and less sweet, but still has a true Flowerbomb feel about it at heart. For those that haven’t worn the original but have heard about its intoxicating qualities, I think the spicy, woody after-hit will be a real surprise.
The lighter scent allows Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose eau de toilette to be worn anywhere as well – no chance of flooding the room with your signature scent if you work in a closed office, but plenty of sexy subtlety when people get up close. I love that!

As aforementioned, this beauty is on counter June 20, with an RRP of $143.00 for 50ml. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Daily delight: Freja Beha Erichsen for Vogue UK



Beauty news: Lizzy Jagger shoulder tapped by Redken 5th Avenue


Redken 5th Avenue has announced the heavenly model, actress and producer Lizzy Jagger as their newest brand muse – a major coup if ever there was one.
Jagger joins the impressive Redken collective of muses and trend creators that includes actress Suki Waterhouse, Lea T., Soo Joo Park and Redken Global Creative Director Guido.
Born Elizabeth Scarlett Jagger in NYC, Lizzy is the eldest daughter of 1970s supermodel Jerry Hall and Rolling Stones front man Mick Jagger. Her statuesque beauty and gorgeous red hair make her a perfect choice for Redken, who have her seriously challenging her fabulous mum in this super hot shot.
"Lizzy’s signature, striking red hair and unique style epitomize the Redken spirit,” says Shane Wolf, Global General Manager of Redken 5th Avenue. “She represents a modern approach to beauty that’s confident and enviable.”
“I am so honored and excited to be joining the Redken family. I had such an amazing time shooting with them and absolutely love any time I get to work with Guido,” says Lizzy.
The contract is far from the 32-year-old’s first serious outinh. She made her runway debut at Thierry Mugler in 1998 and also has starred in campaigns for Lancome's LCM range, Mango, and Marks and Spencer.
Lizzy makes her Redken 5th Avenue debut in September 2016 appearing in print and digital campaigns for the launch of New Heatcure Professional, an exclusive salon service that instantly restores the look and feel of damaged hair for up to 10 washes. She also features in the re-launch of Redken’s Heat Styling collection.

Daily delight: Stella Maxwell for Vogue Japan



Love it: Yves Saint Laurent Les Sahariennes Bronzing Stones


Even during the cooler months I like to add a little bronzed glow to the makeup mix, and know for sure that I look better with the hint of a tan – faux, of course. We all strive for that natural tan glow for our skin type - you know the one, that looks like we were kissed by the sun? Well YSL’s newest beauty offering - Les Sahariennes Bronzing Stones - does just that, no word of a lie!  It even comes in three gorgeous matte shades, 01 Sunstone, 02 Fire Opal, and 03 Jasper, so you can be sure to find one that works for you.
A silky-matte bronzer that instantly gives your skin effortless, natural-looking radiance without the shine, Les Sahariennes Bronzing Stones really is one of the best bronzer/blush products I have tried in the longest time. It really feels as if you were wearing nothing at all due to the fact that its creation uses a whole new type of powder technology that involves micro-milling machinery for a completely transparent end result. There are also light enhancing agents to add to the luminous finish, and squalane for its moisturising qualities. So think matte but never dull, and luminous but not shiny. Magic!
The ultralight matte powder blends seamlessly into skin when you sweep it onto your face using the softly rounded brush that comes in the pouch along with the YSL Cassandre branded compact.
Sun Stones is the lightest of the three colours and great if you have fair or light skin, or if you just want to add an ever-so-slight touch of colour to your complexion. Fire Opal is the mid-bronze shade that I have been using due to the olive nature of my skin, whilst the darkest shade, Jasper is perfect on naturally dark complexions or on mid-toned skin for contouring.
I have always loved the way YSL Beauty package their products and this is no different – it just screams that little bit of luxury we all need/want in our lives and is the perfect treat-to-self at any time.
So there you have it – this beauty is on counter next week with an RRP of $105.00, I highly recommend…


Sunday, June 12, 2016

Daily delight: Anja Rubik for Grazia France



Beauty destination: Takapuna’s Ikoi Spa

It’s not often that I venture out of my neighbourhood for a massage, facial or the like, but when I was invited to try one very special treatment at Takapuna relaxation haven Ikoi Spa I made an exception.
When I arrived at the Huron Street destination I was instructed to remove my shoes at the door as per Japanese tradition, but it was also a little like drawing a line in the sand when it came to leaving the chaos of the outside world behind and entering a heavenly, super luxe, cosy space. To say that it was revelation would be an understatement – Ikoi puts the spas in many of our city’s five star hotels to shame.
The majorly exciting USP that I was lured there to experience is a Japanese enzyme bath, a therapeutic body treatment from Japan found nowhere else in New Zealand. Ikoi’s signature service, it uses a unique traditional method that combines nature and science. It involves a special blend of rice bran, pinewood sawdust and a special Japanese enzyme derived from organic fruits and vegetables grown in Hokkaido, Japan. This warming, dry spa is not only relaxing and tension releasing, but it also invigorates and softens skin. Ticks all the boxes then, and I couldn’t wait to get stuck in.
The fermentation bathing ritual involves immersing your entire body in a mixture of soft and fragrant ground pinewood and rice bran that is enhanced with living enzymes that stimulate metabolic activity inside and out. Buried literally up to your neck in what feels like a warm sand pit, the feeling is a little weird to begin with but soon a total body relaxation begins to take over and you literally melt into the “bath”. The treatment offers myriad health benefits from improving circulation to relieving joint and muscle pain, and the living enzymes also reportedly deeply clean your skin. Unlike other modes of heat therapy like saunas, an enzyme bath works together with your body’s own processes, creating a unique synergy. Because the heat is generated biologically through fermentation, your body is able to absorb - rather than defend against - the warmth, allowing it to permeate your centre, charge your core organs, and stimulate healing from within. The whole time you are attended to by one of the spa’s therapists as well, helping keep your face cool and adjusting levels around your body according to how you feel. The sensation is one of being completely and utterly cared for, and the relaxation factor afterwards for me was totally profound.
From what I can tell, the first the first known modern enzyme bath was established in the 1940s in Hokkaido, Japan, but its history dates back centuries. In its contemporary form, it received international attention in 1972 when it was offered at the Olympic Games in Sapporo, Japan as an opportunity for athletes to quickly recover from the stress of exertion. Over the past half century, many parts of Japan have adopted it, often in clinical environments that promote its therapeutic benefits.
Ikoi Spa Executive Manager Isabella Jin tells me when I am there that the practice is still quite unknown outside of Japan, but not so the enzymatic drink that you are given to sip before and after the treatment. Called Super Ohtaka Fermentation Health Drink, it has been around in Japan for over 90 years. It is created using a special cultivation method, using a unique selection and blend of all natural and organic fruits and vegetables. The formulation and fermentation technology are a result of science patented in Japan and the USA, where the plant extraction and fermentation method has been continuously passed through to this day.
My full experience at Ikoi was the Enzyme Spa Combo, which is a 130 minute treatment made up of a 60-minute Japanese enzyme spa followed by a 60-minute Shiatsu-style dry massage. This combo includes a Japanese enzyme drink prior to the treatment, as well as a 10-minute detox and relaxation time with Japanese tea and delicate Japanese sweets.
Isabella tells me that Ikoi have sole rights to the Japanese Enzyme Spa in New Zealand, so any new ones rolled out will be under their brand and management. The beautiful space also offers Thalgo facials and nail services, but nothing like waxing or the like as their focus is primarily on relaxation. Also, Isabella tells me that almost all of the therapists employed are Japanese and trained by a masseuse flown over from Japan for that purpose, meaning that “the Japanese way of relaxation is maintained at all times in the spa”.
Last but not least? Ikoi Spa is open seven days a week and until late, so busy people can come by after work or on weekends when many spas are closed. And my suggestion? Do so, and reap the benefits.

Ikoispa.co.nz

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Daily delight: Miranda Kerr for Gritty Pretty magazine



Love it: Clinique Take The Day Off Eye Makeup Remover Stick


Clinique constantly knock it out of the ballpark when it comes to cleansers, a skincare staple that so many people overlook. A great cleanser is the way to kick off the journey to great skin, and not all are created equal.
The terms “allergy tested”, “fragrance free” and “dermatologist developed” are all a given when it comes to the beauty megabrand, and the latest releases I have tried from Clinique have been amazing to use and high performance to boot. Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Oil hasn’t left my bathroom sink, and its solid counterpart - Take the Day Off Balm – has recently joined it there.
Now added to the mix is Take The Day Off Eye Makeup Remover Stick, a highly portable version of the balm that makes the elusive smokey eye an absolute cinch even for novices.
A super delicate and smooth balm, it transforms into an oil to effortlessly remove what the brand call even the “boldest eye looks” (see Fei Fei Sun on the cover of Vogue Italia, above). The portable, quick fix stick allows for fast and easy touch-ups during the day as well as thorough makeup removal at night, and it feels so light and soft that you just know it isn’t dragging the delicate skin around your eyes.
Working to effectively remove everything from a simple shimmer to longwearing formulas, its clever formula contains moisturising agents that help remove makeup and aid in hydrating skin, especially the aforementioned super delicate, thin skin around the eye area. Perfect for travel and your handbag, it allows for targeted and clean touch-ups when changing looks - think liquid eyeliner muck ups, mascara fall out – as well as removal at the end of the day/night.
I have found that when you are using it to remove a small area of makeup, it is best to wet your fingertips a little after applying the product and then massage the whole lot in gently all around the particular spot. For full eye makeup removal, use Take The Day Off Eye Makeup Remover then rinse with warm water and lightly pat-dry afterwards. Magic.

Take The Day Off Eye Makeup Remover Stick is available at Clinique counters nationwide and online at www.smithandcaugheys.co.nz and www.farmers.co.nz from July 18th 2016 for a suggested retail price of $48.00. Get in there ASAP!


Thursday, June 2, 2016

Daily delight: Kate Moss for Alberta Ferretti AW 16



Beauty destination: Michelle Cook's Rosenthal Skincare


As a beauty writer I’m always keen to give a new treatment a bash, but a lot of women I know are scared of facials due to the likes of allergic reactions to the products used, resulting in a week hiding indoors with a scarf over your face. No joke. Some will also only stick with one particular type of facial as they like the products used and would rather not try another brand – and I’m sure that I’ve personally missed spending some quality time enjoying the skills of some very talented facialists, purely because I don’t fancy the snake oil that they’re pedalling.
One way to avoid all of the above is by having a facial of sorts executed without the use of any products at all, which you can do with Michelle Cook at Rosenthal Skincare on Auckland’s Jervois Road. Tucked away in a cosy room above the Annie Boyd gift shop, it’s a definite “destination” for those looking for a facial, but it’s a well-kept secret that I am more than happy to share.
What she specialises in is the Radiance Facial, a technique first introduced many years ago by Stanley Rosenburg as far as I know, who called it “Face-lifting Massage”. He was a firm believer that “your face is the mirror of your soul”, and that through the process of releasing our old facial tensions, we free up new reserves of physical, mental and emotional energy. It is essentially a super relaxing treatment for your face, head and neck that reduces and prevents the ageing process, releasing stress dramatically and bringing your whole self “back into radiance”. Practitioners say the main reason that your face will be really rather transformed after a few sessions is that around 80 per cent of stress is held in the face and neck, which adds to the ageing process and interrupts the other processes in your body. In other words, the likes of lines, furrows and sagging are the consequence of muscles that retain accumulated stress from a lifetime of events and emotions. When this stress is worked on and somewhat released, the blood flow to your face, circulation and lymphatic flow are increased, making for increased collagen production (the thing all of those wonder creams promise to do but don’t often deliver) and super clear skin.
The delicious treatment lasts an hour, and Michelle explained to me that it can complement any skincare range and facial treatments, including the healing process post cosmetic surgery. It also helps Botox and fillers go that much farther I’ve heard, with clients reporting that they can often give them up once they start of a regular Facial Radiance programme.
So what will you see after a Radiance Facial with Michelle? I only had one, but I did notice immediately how plump and toned my skin looked, which is amazing considering not a single cream or serum was applied. After a series of treatments – many recommend five over a five-week period –the area around the eyes will look more toned, fine lines will be minimised, lips will appear fuller, cheekbones more accentuated, your jaw line sculptured, neck muscles tightened and skin rejuvenated. It also promotes sleep, and I must say I got a good, solid nine hours’ worth after seeing Michelle.
Along with her facials Michelle offers a selection of beautifully blended oils created under the Rosenthal Skincare name. The line up is:
Rosenthal Glow Serum
Designed to be used on it’s own or under your favourite moisturiser, this luxe elixir fuses decadent base and essential oils like Baobab Oil, Camellia Oil, Argan Oil and Frankincense to nourish and soothe. These deeply emollient oils soften, treat and hydrate leaving skin soft, calm and supple. Not just for dry or mature skin, this gorgeous blend is super light and perfect for all skin types. 
Rosenthal Renew Cleanse
Gentle enough to be used morning and evening; this is what Michelle calls the optimal first step to any daily cleansing regime. It is designed to both heal and hydrate; and gently yet effectively dissolves impurities, makeup and excess sebum, deeply cleansing the pores without disrupting the skin's natural balance. Argan helps to fight acne inflammation and irritations, Rosehip works wonders on scars and is excellent at regulating the production of sebum and protecting the skin; while Jojoba unblocks pores. Hazelnut is highly suited for oily and combination skin-types, and helps tone; tighten, and maintain skin elasticity.
Rosenthal Restore Cleanse
The most luxurious way to cleanse your skin, according to Michelle. Using a decadent blend of restorative base oil, and the highest quality essential oils; this hand-blended facial oil feels beautiful on the skin and enlivens the senses. The one-step cleanser leaves your skin feeling smoother, softer and gorgeously refreshed; and it is gentle enough to use both in the morning (to awaken) and evening (to restore) removing impurities - including makeup.
Rosenthal Man
One just for the boys, Rosenthal Man is a blend of the highest quality carrier oils that are designed to feel lightweight when used - helping to soften, hydrate and condition your beard as well as look after your skin. Acknowledging those that respect the minimal, the oil is unscented allowing the earthy aromas of the natural oils to be embraced. This blend can be used as either (or both) a facial oil and beard oil.
If you’re in the market for a facial or a new skincare discovery then I highly recommend you check Rosenthal Skincare out – you’ll find Michelle at 87 Jervois Road, Ponsonby and on 021 088 30942