Friday, December 22, 2017

Daily delight: Naomi Campbell for S Moda



Top of the blocks: the best suncare right now


Finally we’re seeing a little sun of late, which for me is a reminder that summer is - maybe? - on its way and new sunscreen needs to go on the shopping list. Whenever I’ve asked beauty experts – be they dermatologists, make up artists or cosmetic surgeons – for their pick when it comes to anti ageing skincare, they all agree that the most important thing you can do to keep your skin looking good well into old age is wear a sunscreen. Daily. No arguments, no forgetting on a cloudy day. Add to that the fact that an estimated 90 per cent of all melanomas in Australasia are caused by direct sunlight, making daily sunscreen use an absolute no brainer. Most sunscreens last twelve months max after being opened too, so if you’re still got some sitting around in your beach bag or glove box from this time last year then chuck it - ASAP!
One formula I love is Cosmedix Reflect, which combines a high performance sunblock with skin-loving ingredients. A physical, oil-free, spray-dispensed sunscreen that won’t clog pores and is gentle enough for even the most sensitive and oil-prone skin types, it provides broad-spectrum UV protection that absorbs quickly leaving a matte finish. Whilst it’s protecting your skin a combination of science and botanical ingredients help firm things and smooth lines, whilst free radical-fighting antioxidants defend skin from environmental stress that can cause inflammation and damage to collagen and elastin. Pretty impressive stuff! It is also formulated free of petroleum-based oils, and for those with severe gluten sensitivities or Dermatitis Herpetiformis, Reflect is gluten free. 
A new natural formula I have discovered of late is Natural Sunscreen from Eco By Sonya Driver - a vegetarian, reef-friendly sunscreen to protect the whole family. Sitting on the skin’s surface and staying out of the bloodstream, this formula creates a physical barrier between your skin and the sun by actively deflecting the sun’s UVA rays that have an ageing effect on the skin, and UVB rays that result in burning. It is up to three hours water resistant thanks to ethically sourced beeswax, and I love that the reef-friendly formula means you can snorkel without the associated guilt that many sun protection options bring. It is in fact formulated without any harsh synthetics, but has loads of yummy ingredients like Vitamin E, Green Tea, Rose Hip, Jojoba, Cucumber extract and Safflower to boost its efficacy on the natural front.
Another formula for their face that also doubles as a moisturiser is Aspect Gold Hydra Shield SPF 15, a lightweight yet super-hydrating little number with physical sun protecting benefits. Hydra-Shield SPF15’s ingredient list includes potent skin protecting antioxidants, skin hydrators and nourishing botanical oils, and the non-greasy formula is suitable for all Fitzpatrick skin colours and all skin conditions, including sensitive. It doesn’t leave a chalky look on the skin after application either, making it perfect for under makeup.
For those of you old enough to get nostalgic about tanning oils, Australian sun specialists Bondi Sands have created one that has the same vibe but won’t fry your skin. Called Protect & Tan Oil, it may be this summer’s go-to for those wanting to fast-track their natural tan, as it has a faux glow aspect too. Handily containing both a self-tanning and SPF factor in a global first, it even comes with a signature coconut scent that smells like pure, unadulterated, lazy summer days.
A product line that combines delicious scents and sun protection is COOLA, a collection of organic sun essentials out of Southern California that I have unabashedly preached about here before. Highly recommended is the brand’s high performance Sunscreen Spray SPF30, which comes in scents like Piña Colada and Citrus Mimosa. A “Farm to Face” sourced spray with zero nasties; it effectively reproduces that feeling of lying prone on a towel on the sand, but is formulated for the rigorous demands of sport and is water resistant for 80 minutes.
Lastly, NZ Sunscreen Company released Pure Shade Moisturizing Brightening SPF 50+ Sunscreen and Pure Shade Moisturizing Brightening Antipollution After Sun Repair earlier this year. Sunscreen-skincare hybrids, the company calls them a “two-step skincare system designed to be used together for ultimate skin protection and rejuvenation”. The Moisturising Brightening Sunscreen has an SPF 50+ - one application reportedly protects your skin for over 8 hours - and its ultra light illuminating formula won’t leave your skin white, chalky or greasy. 
Last up, one of the best beauty brands on the block according to Allure magazine is France’s La Roche-Posay. Recently arrived in New Zealand, its core ingredient is also therapeutic thermal water – one that contains a high concentration of Selenium, which has demonstrated anti-free radical, anti-irritation, soothing and healing properties with undeniable therapeutic virtues for the skin. The water is used at the La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water Centre in France, which treats over 10,000 patients a year for a variety of inflammatory skin diseases and injuries from eczema to burns. Their Anthelios suncare range is legendary, packed with beautifully light formulas that are fragrance-free, paraben free, non-comedogenic and water resistant. La Roche-Posay also offers the first connected wearable UV patch to encourage safer sun behaviour and help minimise sunburn. Called My UV patch, it is a transparent adhesive containing photosensitive dyes that change colour when exposed to UV rays to indicate varying levels of sun exposure.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Daily delight: Kim Kardashian for S Moda



All about: Fernz Stem Cell Rejuvenating Face Masks

Like the cushion foundation, the sheet mask trend began in Korea – and erupted all over Instagram. They are available for whatever beauty issue ails you, and they range from the seriously expansive to insanely affordable, so there is no excuse not to jump on the bandwagon!
An all new, New Zealand option is Fernz Stem Cell Rejuvenating Face Masks, which are powerful sheet masks that promote balance in the skin at a cellular level, resulting in improved elasticity, reduced inflammation, intense hydration and the rejuvenation of the skin’s barrier. 
Perfect for replenishing loss radiance over the party season, these little wonders harness the benefits of New Zealand Manuka Honey, New Zealand Bee Venom and Swiss Apple Stem cells for  a multi-faceted approach.  An excellent moisture booster, Manuka Honey offers skin intense hydration and delivers antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, while New Zealand Bee Venom works to stimulate circulation and plump the skin’s surface. To complement the hive sourced ingredients found in the Fernz Stem Cell Rejuvenating Masks, the addition of Witch Hazel and Horse Chestnut also support hydration and oxygen retention, strengthening the skin barrier and protecting against pollutants. Magic.
The cell support comes from stem cells derived from a rare Swiss apple and aid the skin’s own stem cells in the process of cellular regeneration and tissue renewal, resulting in visibly smoother skin. 
They are designed to be used 2-3 times a week but realistically, most of us don’t have that much free time, so the fact that they are super high performance is a bonus! They are the perfect boost of care before an event or during long haul travel, and with an RRP of $28.80 for five definitely won’t break the bank.
These handy, super charged masks are in store now -  to locate your nearest stockist visit www.fernz.co.nz. 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Daily delight: Gigi Hadid for Vogue Germany



All about: M.A.C Cosmetics X Jade Jagger


When I heard that one of M.A.C Cosmetics’ latest collabs was with model and jewellery designer Jade Jagger I just knew that it would be seriously rock n’ roll, and I wasn’t disappointed. Blue bloody rock royalty, her boho-esque, party girl style is legendary, and the capsule collection she has created with the brand is all that and more. 
The limited edition eight-piece capsule collection is made up of eye shadow quads, lipsticks and iconic Skinfinish powders, and arrives in store in New Zealand in less than a week. There are two shimmering metallic eye shadow quads (Burning Nights and Golden Shine), two blush options (Moon Shimmer, and Perfect Bronze, a golden Skinfinish powder and three lipsticks; Opal Beach, a peach nude, Sunset Pearl, a rosy brown and Rolling Red, a striking scarlet. Each product drips with the cool glamour of the designer’s vision, which you can read a little more about here…

Can you share with us your inspiration for the collection?
Maybe I’m not quite as young and adventurous as my daughters are with makeup, but my inspiration speaks truly to the gold tones since they suit everyone and are universally accepted no matter the time of the day. 
I love the lipsticks and the eye shadow palettes because the application is so buildable. I can go quite natural during the day and while I’m in the car going to an event at night I can use that same lipstick or palette to create a more defined or daring look. 
The jewel-like tones and reflective pigments in my M∙A∙C collection were inspired by the precious stones used in my jewellery designs. M∙A∙C’s Mineralize franchise was the obvious choice for my products because they contain over 70 minerals and properties that promote extra hydration in the skin while imitating my designs perfectly. 

How was the creative process with M.A.C and what was the key concept you wanted to deliver?
The creative process with M.A.C was nothing short of amazing. Everyone was so creative, inspiring, and kind hearted, really making sure to take my visions and bring them to fruition. I really had to understand that there was an entire process to learn when it comes to creating a makeup line and deciding on what the packaging would look like. It was great to have creative liberty and really make something that I feel so proud of.  

What was your first memory of M.A.C?
One of my first memories of M.A.C was when I was in New York and I saw a billboard with the brand’s name on it. I can’t quite remember who the VIVA GLAM spokesperson was, or it could have been for a store opening, but it really caught and kept my attention. M.A.C is still as striking, memorable, and bold to this day. 

What does beauty in fashion mean to you and how does it resonate in your M.A.C collaboration? 
To me, beauty and fashion should be something ageless and timeless like style. It needs to be something that appeals to people of all ages and from all facets of life and I think we did just that with my M.A.C collaboration.
For my personal take on beauty and fashion, I create ensembles and make sure everything goes with one another. I try to decide what the topic of my look will be. Will it be a bold lip, or a piece of jewellery I want to show off, or perhaps a dress that’s a show-stopper? It’s so important for me not too clash and understanding that too many good things can end up being wrong. 

Who is Jade Jagger and who are her role models/strongest influences? 
Jade Jagger is a mother and a designer and a strong willed and sexy person to me. I’m influenced by so many things in the world and we are so fortunate to be alive. Different points in nature and the insurgence of cultures really brings indigenous beauty to the forefront of my mind. I love getting inspiration from modern people and architecture and studying the simple things like the shape of a leaf or the colour of the sky. 
Finding influence in these ways has always been a big part of me. It’s so hard to remember everything that I’ve been inspired by but Andy Warhol played a huge part since he was so intimate with his work yet it appealed to such a huge culture. 

What are the similarities and differences in launching this collection and designing your pieces?
Designing my jewellery pieces is quite similar to developing my collection with M.A.C when it came to gathering ideas and understanding the needs and the wants. 
The main difference that I found was that with my M.A.C collaboration, we are creating so many products that are being launched as a collection. There needs to be elements that connect each piece to one another and create this comprehensive makeup story that we are trying to tell. When it comes to my jewellery designs, I’m not necessarily looking at it as a collection, but rather I make a lot of unique one-off pieces that create individual stories of their own.

How do you keep your designs refreshing and unique?
Each year we go through a regeneration process. We get influence by bringing all of these different experiences together whether the basis is architecture or the garden, I’m able to determine these new concepts based on everything I’m exposed to. I’m always keeping notes and doing sketches, so delivering unique pieces is a stable yet growing and organic process. 

The full collection drops on December 17, 2017 at select M.A.C locations: Auckland - Smith & Caughey’s Newmarket and Smith & Caughey’s Queen Street, Wellington - David Jones, Christchurch - Ballantynes.




(photo at top by Pamela Berkovic)

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Daily delight: Taylor Swift for Vogue UK



Beauty news: M.A.C announces the all new VIVA GLAM X Sia


Long before it was de rigueur to do so, global make up giant M.A.C were heavily involved in the fight against AIDS, through the sale of their Viva Glam lipsticks and other less high profile support like staff collections and helping out at various HIV/AIDS-related organisations. To say that the brand has made one hell of a difference for those living with HIV and AIDS would be an understatement - they are awesome and totally committed.
The VIVA GLAM campaign is the heart and soul of M.A.C’s fundraising efforts for the cause, and has also spawned a collection of seriously fabulous lipsticks and glosses to boot. The latest celebrity face (or perhaps not?!) to be named as a VIVA GLAM spokesperson is the enigmatic Sia, who blew fans away at her concert in Auckland last night. The cosmetics giant and Aussie-born musical wunderkind most famous for hits like "Cheap Thrills" and "Chandelier" have teamed up for a very special collab, which features just one stand-alone product: a M.A.C. VIVA GLAM lipstick, which will be available in February next year. The singer's team took to her official Instagram page to announce the new partnership, which comes with a super wearable, warm red shade of lipstick that is destined to be a hit. 
As with every VIVA GLAM collection, every cent from the selling price of Sia’s Viva Glam lipstick will go to the M.A.C AIDS Fund, which helps women, men and children living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. Helping to drive fundraising for the M·A·C AIDS Fund have been a cadre of celebrity spokespeople.  Each connected with a specific shade of VIVA GLAM Lipstick, these spokespeople have made public appearances and appeared in advertisements to raise money and awareness for the fight against HIV and AIDS.  The inaugural VIVA GLAM spokesperson was performer, RuPaul. Since then, others have joined the ranks, including k.d. lang, Mary J. Blige, Sir Elton John, Shirley Manson, Lil’ Kim, Missy Elliott, Boy George, Linda Evangelista, Chloë Sevigny, Christina Aguilera, Pamela Anderson, Debbie Harry, Lisa Marie Presley, Eve, Dita Von Teese, Fergie, Cyndi Lauper, Lady Gaga, Rihanna and Miley Cyrus… and now, Sia.
Viva Glam Sia will be available online and in-store, February 2018.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Daily delight: Zöe Kravitz for ELLE Magazine




All about: Bobbi Brown’s new Luxe Eye Shadow



It’s a crazy busy time of the year for most of us, with lunch and evening goings on and barely enough time to zip up your dress/pants let alone apply a face of celebration- worthy makeup.
Lucky for us then that Bobbi Brown have made things a hell of a lot easier with the release of their new Luxe Eye Shadow, which is in store now. 


Key to their beautiful – as per – holiday gifting collection, the high-impact shadow formula delivers gorgeous, multidimensional colour, and comes in three dramatic and distinctive finishes depending on how much you love to sparkle. There is high-shimmer Rich Lustre, molten foil Rich Metal, and super-charged Rich Sparkle, and the cream/powder finish means it goes on super quick by giving full, intense pigment with just one swipe. This makes it perfect for those events when day turns to night, and you can even amp things up further by adding a drop of water to your brush for a liquid metal look or to line. I love that! I’ve tried the latter and can confidently say it looks major, and it lasts and lasts.
Luxe Eye Shadow offers all-day wear that won’t crease or fade, and some pretty crazy technology is at work to ensure that your application is flawless:
• The Ultimate 3-D Effect: Chroma pigments are coated in a flat, plate-like layer that allows for extra light penetration, resulting in highly pigmented multidimensionality for the ultimate 3-D effect
• Perfect Pigment Expression: Highly-concentrated pigments deliver true-to-colour, deeply saturated shade intensity and clarity for dramatic colour payoff
• Velvety Smooth Texture: The hybrid formula combines the best of baked, pressed, cream, and liquid formulas to create a velvety, bouncy, and aerated texture that allows for pick-up and payoff
Available in 12, extremely wearable lust-worthy shades, the new formula can be patted on or smudged across the eyelid for instant, luxurious colour in one swipe, as well as layered for your own custom colour.
Bobbi Brown’s new Luxe Eye Shadow is on counter now with an RRP of $70, in twelve beautiful shades. Six are limited edition and all are extremely covetable, so I say get in there now!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Daily delight: Margot Robbie for Vogue Australia



Love it: the RMS Beauty Luminizer X Quad

Celebrity makeup artist and the organic beauty mogul behind RMS Beauty, Rose-Marie Swift has been a make-up artist for over 35 years, so when I was given the chance to get up close and personal with her a few months’ ago I was beyond excited. 
Swift’s work has been featured in Vogue (French, Italian, American, Nippon, China, Russian) W, Harper's Bazaar, I.D., Self Service, V, Allure, Numéro, Marie Claire, Glamour, Interview, and Elle. Her make-up has appeared in ads for the likes of Diane Von Furstenberg, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Louis Vuitton, and her photographic partners over the years include Mario Sorrenti, Peter Lindbergh, David Simms, Annie Leibovitz, Arthur Elgort, and Patrick Demarchelier. The words “industry legend” have been bandied about, and with good reason.
She was visiting New Zealand for the first time when we met as a guest of Mecca Cosmetica, who stock her products exclusively Down Under. I’d used a few of the pieces from her collection (like the amazing Un-powder) since its arrival in New Zealand, but it was Rose-Marie who really introduced me to the powers of the brand’s Living Luminizer, which I have worn religiously ever since. 
Ask any international beauty editor their favourite highlighter, and you can bet you will hear RMS Beauty Living Luminizer come up more than once. The perfect every day highlighter for those that don’t do the Full Kardashian, the coconut-oil based beauty is the minimalist's solution to the blinding strobing trend, and it really does give the seemingly elusive glow-y goodness to pretty much any skin tone. If you haven't tried it then I urge you to do so, and ASAP.
However.... dropping just before the end of the year in New Zealand is the RMS Beauty Luminizer X Quad, in which the all-natural brand offers up four freshly minted shades nestled inside a super sleek, compact palette.  An innovative twist on the cult-classic, these four high-impact luminizers can be worn alone, blended for a custom glow or mixed into any product for a boost of super duper luminosity.
The palette is made up of:
LUMINIZER X: an Xtreme version of the Living Luminizer 
LUMINIZER NUDE: a subtle, radiant copper 
CHAMPAGNE ROSÉ: a warm blush champagne 
CHAMPAGNE FIZZ: a glam opalescent shimmer 
You can easily layer shades for a custom glow or wear individually to highlight cheekbones, inner corners of eyes and cupid's bow. A light application will give you a dewy highlight, while a more layered application is perfect for even the fullest face of makeup. Because they're cream, you can even pop your favourite powder highlighter over them, using them as a base that will last and last. 
This is a palette that's worth getting, no matter how many highlighters you own. Every shade will come in handy, and  the compact white palette is perfect for on-the-go use. RMS Beauty, you’ve done it again!
The RMS Beauty Luminizer X Quad has an RRP of $76, and arrives just in time for New Year’s on 26th December, exclusively at Mecca Cosmetica and online at meccabeauty.co.nz

Monday, November 27, 2017

Daily delight: Karlie Kloss for Calvin Klein X Amazon Fashion



All about: YSL Beauté Dazzling Lights Collection


Every Christmas, YSL Beauté releases an immediately covetable, exquisitely designed limited edition collection for the holidays, and this year is no different. Called the Dazzling Lights Collection, YSL Beauté’s offering for December 2017 just may be the year’s most gorgeous holiday release, with an explosion of fireworks on each and every super wearable piece.
Each year the brand creates a travel-friendly multi-use palette in limited edition packaging, and the Dazzling Lights Collector Palette is guaranteed to be my go-to over the silly season. With four sparkling eye shades, a rosy pink blush and two lip shades with a subtle shimmer, it is a pretty universal palette with a party-friendly appeal thanks to the aforementioned shimmer and some pearlescent effects.
The four shades of Dazzling Lights Rouge Pur Couture Dazzling Lights Lipstick are also gorgeous, and each shade as wearable as the next. You’ll want one of each just because of the packaging! With dazzling fireworks on every barrel, they are simply too cute to stay in your makeup kit, and I think No. 13 Le Orange – a fiery orange – will be the pick of the bunch for showing off a subtly bronzed tan. It’s the same great, satiny finish lipstick that you know and love, but all dressed up for Christmas.
As this year has been all about the YSL glow, the cult Touche Éclat Pen also returns in a limited edition design. It is available in the two usual shades – #1 Rose Lumiere and #2 Ivoire Lumiere – and destined to become collector’s items as per.
There are also two limited edition La Laque Couture nail polishes in the collection, all of which is in store now and looking fabulous. So what are you waiting for?




Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Daily delight: Gwen Stefani for Marie Claire US



All about: the Redken Clean Maniac Micellar collection



Summer for me usually means oilier roots, which are then smothered in dry shampoo and all kinds of styling products after hours. It’s when I look for detoxifying shampoos and the like, but we all know they can’t be used ALL the time.
The same goes for skin, but again, you can’t strip the skin every time you wear a face full of makeup, which is where micellar water waters come in. Whether removing waterproof makeup or quickly refreshing the skin, these gentle cleansers do it all. 
All of which brings me to Redken’s latest clean-touch haircare range, which is one of the first to hit the market calling upon the cult-like popularity of micellar water. Called the Redken Clean Maniac Micellar range, it brings removing-dirt-magnet technology into the world of haircare and by golly, does it do it well. 
Both formulas are sulphate and silicone-free but powered by micellar technology, which brings a new type of hair cleansing experience that gently washes away dirt, grit, pollution, product build up and excess oils, leaving hair ultra clean. It also makes them safe if you’ve had a keratin or straightening treatment, and safe for colour.
Unlike a typical clarifying shampoo, Clean Maniac Micellar can be used each time you wash your hair, making that out-of-the-shower fresh hair feeling a more regular option that I am so behind now the temperature is rising.
In addition to micellar technology, Clean Maniac Micellar showcases Redken’s first neutralising scent, Neofresh, to enhance purified freshness in any environment. The optimising neutralising scent repels odours like cigarette smoke, car exhaust fumes and other environmental pollutants to keep your hair feeling and smelling fresh all day long. 
In salon right now, Clean Maniac Micellar Clean-Touch Shampoo (RRP$35.00) and Clean Maniac Micellar Clean-Touch Conditioner (RRP$35.00) are a warm weather must have.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Daily delight: Kate Moss for Vogue China




All about: the Earth, Wind & Indigo collection



I am mad for crystals, and have been since I was a little girl. Before they were mainstream they were big news in the slightly-hippy community that my parents ran in, and as long as I can remember I’ve always had some on hand.
Inspired by the unmistakable energy and beauty of one of nature’s most precious resources, the first collection of wearable crystals from Earth, Wind & Indigo was unveiled a few weeks ago, and I was lucky enough to be one of the first people to see the lineup. Was I impressed? You bet, not just with the stones but also with the love behind the brand.
Earth, Wind & Indigo is the brainchild of Megan Sanders, former advertising executive turned entrepreneur who just exudes great energy. The collection is reportedly the realisation of Megan’s own belief in the life-altering potential of crystals to help centre, revitalise and realign an individual’s everyday living, and if I can even get half of the sparkle in my eye that woman has, I’m winning!
“From ancient Eastern medicine and Cleopatra’s crushed crystal eyeliner used for empowerment, to crystals being used to build technology and improve scientific space exploration, crystals can hold the key to really improving everyday living,” said Megan. “I have surrounded myself with crystals for a long time and witnessed the incredible power and beauty of them to make my own life better.”
“Women in particular are excellent at giving energy out but not great at bringing energy back in to their lives. Earth, Wind & Indigo is all about recognising where you need a bit of help and simply adding something small but powerful to your life to realign where your energy is out of whack.”
An avid student of internationally acclaimed crystal gurus Robert Simmons and Judy Hall, Megan has launched Earth, Wind & Indigo with seven beautifully crafted ‘Power Packs’ and 22 energy bracelets that feature crystals sourced from the world’s best mines in Brazil. Free from uniformity or over-processing, each crystal is a totally unique shape and size, just like the wearer, and finished by hand to preserve the integrity of the crystal.
The Power Packs contain a wearable crystal on a chain, accompanied by a pocket-sized Buddha crafted in Bali and an affirmation card. Presented in the most beautiful box (hint: perfect Christmas gift alert) they are available as:
Bright Eyes: a Lapis Lazuli for the third eye chakra to boost mental clarity and ability to reflect.
Time of Your Life: an Amethyst for the crown chakra to improve physical energy and mental drive.
Let’s Hear It: a Blue Lace Agate for the throat chakra to reboot the nervous system and self-expression.
Every Beat of Your Heart: a Rose Quartz for the heart chakra, to get the love flowing in and out.
You Got This: a Yellow Citrine for the solar plexus chakra to realign self-confidence and willpower. 
Bring Your Sexy Back: an Orange Calcite for the sacral chakra, to nurture sex drive and fertility.
Find Your Feet: a Red Garnet for the root chakra to help you slow down your pace and stay grounded.
The Earth, Wind & Indigo collection also features occasional limited edition pieces, including clear quartz on leather necklace exclusively for men, available at launch. 
Absolutely unique and totally up my alley, Earth, Wind & Indigo pieces are available exclusively online at www.earthwindandindigo.co.nz 


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Daily delight: Bella Hadid for Marie Claire China



Love it: James Read Coconut Melting Tanning Balm


A few years ago when I was visiting London, a very respected makeup artist friend gave me some sample bottles of his favourite self-tanning products – James Read Tan. He's an incredibly fussy sort so I knew they would be good, just how good pretty much blew my mind.
James Read himself is a self made "tantrepreneur" whose products now regularly sell out on Net-a-Porter and whose skill at creating honey hued limbs is legendary. The go-to guy whenever a celebrity or model needs to take the pallor out of her skin, Read’s client list reads like a Who’s Who of the red carpet, from Mariah Carey to Lady Gaga and Lara Stone. It was inevitable that he would go on to create his own self tanning range, and in 2012 it launched in the UK and in 2015 Down Under thanks to Mecca Cosmetica. Hurrah! 
"I have dreamed of having my own product range from the very first day I started working in the self-tanning industry 11 years ago," he told UK Vogue back at the time of the James Read Tan collection’s release. "I wanted to create a range of luxury products that give the skin a natural, healthy-looking colour, but also protect the wellbeing of the skin by using anti-ageing ingredients in the formulations."
Read worked on the range - which includes fragrance-free liquid, gradual and wash-off tans, as well as an innovative gradual tanning pen - for two years, with the help of former Vogue beauty director Anna-Marie Solowij and her business partner Simon Turnbull. The end result is a carefully curated collection of essentials that are beautifully formulated, highly effective and – most importantly – super easy to use. Read has formulated his products with conditioning ingredients to suit every skin tone in one universal shade, and the possibilities really are endless.
The company is always revealing incredible new innovations, the latest of which is a deliciously moisturising Coconut Melting Tanning Balm. The first of its kind, the balm melts upon contact with the skin to create a natural golden tan. Enriched with 100 per cent organic coconut oil, it is the company’s most natural tan yet, and an absolute winner for those with drier skin like me. There is no need to moisturise like mad and then wash it all off prior to application as the organic coconut oil in the formula gives your skin all the nourishment it needs, and the patented Tantone Technology™ ensures the most natural result for your skin tone. 
As with any self tanner, it is recommended that you exfoliate thoroughly prior to application, and wear the gloves supplied to avoid any staining on the palms. Open the pot and using the spatula provided, give the balm a really good stir to soften. Continue stirring until the balm is smooth, thick and creamy. Then, carefully scoop a little of the creamy balm into the palm of the hand and apply to the skin. Starting at the ankles and working your way up, apply to the body in circular motions. The balm will transform into a super-hydrating oil upon contact with the skin, then leave it to develop for 6-8 hours. 
Over summer it is recommended that you keep the product in the fridge, and if it’s too firm to use let it soften in a bowl of warm water before you get your stir on. Easy, and the end result is subtle but really quite magnificent! 
James Read Coconut Melting Tanning Balm has an RRP of $58.00 and is available at www.meccabeauty.co.nz