I don’t think a day has gone by that I haven’t heard something about Go-To skincare. Whether it be a friend telling me they’re trying a new product from “the new range by Zoë Foster Blake”, or Mecca splashing it via decal on every storefront window, I’m almost certain the brand is here to stay. Following the launch of Go-To skincare in 2014, Zoë’s success as a skincare entrepreneur has catapulted from a lounge room initiative to being stocked in over 400 stores across the US alone. All I can say is – brava.
Our essential guide on what to eat, lather on and do to save your skin from urban pollutants.
Breathe in. Breathe out.
The air you're breathing is composed of more than just oxygen. In that delicious and nourishing fresh breath of air you'll also find nitrogen, argon, carbon dioxide, and trace gases, lingering, manoeuvring and being absorbed by your respiratory system and skin.
The human gut is home to bacteria that make up approximately 80% of our immune system. The bacteria is so expansive that we have 10x more of these microbes than our own human cells in our body. The gut and its overall health packs a punch when it comes to the appearance of our skin - supporting good gut health can help reduce the appearance of skin conditions such as Acne, Rosacea and Psoriasis as well improve the general skin appearance reducing redness and inflammation, dryness, wrinkles and elasticity.
If you have been following Noéma for a while, you will know that as much as we love a good product, we are as big on beauty from within, as we are from the outside. In past articles, we have covered what the best foods are for radiant skin, seasonal routines and best natural skincare ingredients.
Often, we hear about different chemicals, preservatives and additives being terrible additions into our products, most of them classed as a dermal irritant or neurotoxin. To the naked eye, many of these types of reactions would look the same. You may experience inflammation, feel itchy, red, or swollen in a targeted area, or all over your body. It’s easy to confuse what is an irritation, to a sensitivity, to an allergy. It’s uncomfortable feeling in the unknown of it all – knowing when to continue with trial and error, or when to investigate further.
Imbalanced oil production can be caused by many things. It can be a result of diet, hormones, weather, stress and change in seasons. While there is plenty you can do to help minimise the effect these stressors have on the skin there is also plenty you can do topically to help bring the skin back in to balance.
Skin (ahem: the epidermis) is our largest organ. According to National Geographic, some adults carry up to 8 pounds and 2 square meters of flesh. Skin acts like a porous, waterproof shield that protects the body from external damage and prevents infection. It’s also full of sensitive nerves that influence the cranial connection with the outside world. The external influences applied to skin, whether that’s a moisturiser, an oil or a face mask, are eventually reflected on the inside.
When it comes to a night time skin care routine, it really is a case of less is more. Get the basics right removing all your make up, cleansing your skin and get yourself some beauty rest to help achieve that healthy radiant glow in the morning.
During the day our skin is exposed to a whole heap of environmental stressors including environmental pollution, sun damage and general dirt and grime. For this reason, we often need to use heavier products to protect our skin from damage during the day. In the evening our skin gets a chance to rest and heal, this is the time to make sure your skin can breathe, that it’s clean and you can combat some of the damage done by the effects of day-to-day life.
Balance is achieved through many avenues; one way we feel we can attain it is through self-care. The way we strive for this balance is unique to each individual. Self-care practices can be done in the comfort of our homes, while others happen in the wide-open spaces of the outdoors. Through traditional marketing, women have been infiltrated with tangible products to achieve what they’ve been told they need – while men, without the pressure of the cosmetics industry, have looked to alternative avenues to feel balanced, satisfying their needs through a human innate need to connect with nature.
Korres’ Almond Blossom Moisturising Cream for Normal to Dry skin types is a lightweight and effective cream, designed to nourish and smooth any dryness or texture on the skin’s surface. The texture is suitable to be used morning and night, and under makeup. The cream sits on the surface of the skin creating a barrier to protect against environmental damage, however still nourishes the skin with an instant hit of moisture. The cream is targeted to those who have sensitivities as its free from mineral oil, parabens, synthetic dyes and phthalates, however some of the remaining ingredients are questionable in nature, and may not nurture those with sensitivities.
Go-To’s Very Useful Face Cream is in fact, very useful. The texture of this moisturiser makes for an adaptable day-to-night product, perfect underneath make-up and to lock in the moisture of your other hydrating skincare products. Thanks to Apricot Kernal oil, it leaves a silky soft texture on the skin after application. The formula heroes Amla berry, an antioxidant rich ingredient that has 75 times the antioxidant power of goji berries (yes, the superfood), and CoQ10 an antioxidant that protects the cells in your body from damage.
A formulated facial scrub targeting the removal of dead skin cells, the Brilliantly Brightening Facial Scrub aims to nourish, hydrate and brighten after effectively removing the build-up of dirt and grime. Formulated with lightly active ingredients such as Sea Kelp Powder and Acai and Pomegranate Fruit extracts, as well as lightly abrasive Walnut Shell Flower and Lemon Peel granules, the top layer of skin will be lightly buffed away to introduce a fresher, brightened complexion.
Marula oil has been coined ‘the elixir of youth’ for its effective treatment in anti-ageing products, as well as combating really dry skin. The harvest of Marula oil comes from the fruit seed kernels of the Marula trees, indigenous to Southern Africa and Madagascar. The nutrient profile of Marula oil is that it is rich in proteins and essential fatty acids, making it a deeply nourishing moisturiser for even the most damaged skin types. The ability of Marula oil to sink into the skin makes it a key component to reducing trans-epidermal water loss (in other words, a miracle oil in reducing appearance of skin redness and scarring, minimising fine lines, and healing external dryness).
This light-weight water-based serum is applied after cleansing to drench the skin with hydration and ultimate moisture. The formulation accounts for two different hyaluronic acid molecules, Sodium hyaluronate for deeply penetrating the skin’s surface and Hyaluronic acid to target surface-level dryness. The added benefits of mineral-rich seaweed extracts aid in minimising the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by supporting a smoother, firmer complexion.
The Gut-Skin connection has been a topic of conversation for health practitioners for years, and recently has carved its way into the beauty industry to educate consumers on getting to the bottom of inflammatory skin conditions that cleansers, toners and moisturises simply can’t fix. Chances are, if there is inflammation on the skin, there’s inflammation in the body. And so, the birth of edible skincare such as inner beauty powders and elixirs were born.
A pea-sized amount of The Blue Cocoon is an adaptable beauty balm that provides calming relief for irritated or inflamed skin and eases feelings of emotional anxiety due to the aroma of blue tansy. This product releases heat from the skin, leaving it even-toned, nourished, and relieved.
The balm is an oil-based concentrate that melts into the skin in fluid form, effective as a moisturiser or targeted skin treatment. For the most problematic skin-types, this formulation will help in alleviating any inflammation, resulting in a complexion that is calm. This can be focused on areas of sensitivity, as well as an effective eye contour. The investment into this product is well worth the price-tag.
The A+ High-Dose Retinol Serum is an advanced-strength retinoid serum that delivers exactly what the title suggests – a high-dose solution, 6.5% in fact, of stabilised retinoid blends and botanical retinol-alternative extracts. Although this is recommended for normal, dry, combination and oily skin types, the main concerns this serum aims to target are fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, dullness, and uneven texture.
Nuori’s Vital Foaming Cleanser uses a creamy foam to deliver the power of fruit enzymes and radish root to gently exfoliate the skin, removing impurities and make up. Whilst the naturally-derived betaine, oat kernel extract and plant based glycerin provide the skin with antioxidant protection and hydration. This cleanser is perfect for those combination skin types out there especially during change of season when our skin tends to need a little extra loving.
Bursting with fruit enzymes, the Evolve Miracle Mask is as naturally active as they come. A blend of alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) from blueberries, lemons, oranges and sugar maple, and Glycolic acid from sugar cane gently removes dead skin cells, plumping the skin and lends the complexion a radiant appearance.
Galactorarabinan is a highly functioning polysaccharide obtained from larch buds visibly smooths the skin. Peruvian Maca stimulates cell renewal and ensures a radiant complexion, and the papaya extract is packed full of vitamin A for help in unplugging pores, evening out skin discolouration, and restoring vibrancy to the complexion.
This Australian made and owned brand, The Jojoba Company, has developed a range based on Australian made Jojoba. The golden liquid wax produced from the jojoba bean is native to Southwestern North America, and is praised by Native Americans for its skin restoration properties. The molecular structure of Jojoba wax esters to human sebum gives this oil the ability to penetrate deep into the skin for ultimate moisturisation and to add protection to our external environment.
Suitable for any skin type, this product is cold-pressed and filtered fourteen times to ensure purity while retaining the vitamins from the original beans. This product is not heat-filtered or refined.
Sunday Riley’s Luna Sleeping Night Oil is a restorative treatment for correcting lines and wrinkles, as well as sun and pollution damage to skin. The formulation is a retinol based, with cold-pressed avocado, chia and grape seed oils to leave a glowing complexion to the skin. With the rich blend of high-fat oils, this repair treatment aims to combat dryness and rough textures, as well as minimising pores. The potent synergy between natural botanicals and a powerful retinol application works so harmoniously due to the inclusion of a new retinol formulation known as Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate.
A cult favourite – the Activator 7 Oil from Sans [ceuticals] is a multifunctional reparative, potent vitamin oil that boosts the skin’s hydration levels, stimulates cell repair, increases collagen production and improves skin tone. Recommended to treat scars, stretch marks, dry skin, sun damaged and acne-prone skin, this bathroom staple is a necessary staple product in the bathroom for daily use.
The Kakadu Plum Vitamin C face serum is one of Rohr Remedy’s most sought-after products. The Kakadu Plum itself is reported to contain 55 times more Vitamin C than oranges, stimulating collagen production and smoothing out fine lines and signs of ageing. It’s prized for its medicinal and food value by indigenous Australians, finding it’s way into brightening and anti-ageing products alike.
The added benefits of Aloe Vera and Vitamin E bring healing qualities to this product, while Tamarind seed extract - a natural source of Hyaluronic Acid - smooths fine lines and plumps the skin with added hydration.
The Signature Mineral Mask is an award-winning mineral clay mask designed to soothe, strengthen and refine the skin. This product is a miracle-worker in reducing redness and evening out skin tone, with the ability to deliver instantaneous results after just one use.
It has one key ingredient in the product - Kaolin Clay; its mineral composition rich in Silica and Aluminium, including traces of Iron Oxide, Sodium, Potassium, Calcium and Magnesium. Kaolin Clay is less drying on the skin surface, absorbing less water than other clays; a more suitable option for those who suffer from dry, irritated and sensitive skin.
When I lived in New Zealand, I called a little town with an abundance of fresh produce and backyard farms home. Every few weeks, my neighbour (a keen beekeeper) would come to my house and gift me a small jar of Manuka honey. In addition to her affable personality, her complexion was insane for someone that spent hours in the sun and sea over a lifetime. After a few of these neighbourly visits, I had to ask her the inevitable: her skincare secret.
Honey. Lots of honey. On the skin, in her food, and in her life.
Did you know that chia, the absolute darling of the health world, is revered among skin aficionados for its naturally moisturising and healing properties?
The word ‘chia’ is derived from the Nahuatl language. Chia in Nahuatl means oil - a hint of the beneficial powers of chia seeds. The pressed oil from chia seeds is packed with omegas and antioxidants that shield the epidermis from external disruptions. The oil absorbs rapidly, boosts hydration, and protects the lipid layer of the skin. Long story short: you can have your chia pudding and eat it too.
It’s no wonder Blue Tansy is a miracle ingredient for so many people. This little flower is native to Morocco, and commonly referred to as Moroccan chamomile, as it comes from this family of plants and also shares many of the properties. Its original flower state is bright yellow and purple on a stem - however once the flower is extracted and steam distilled, the chemical reaction that occurs turns the extraction that bright blue colour.
No matter your skin type, or skin concern, Blue Tansy can be incorporated into your routine in some way for its maximum anti-inflammatory benefits. If you live in a city particularly, the protection it can offer is unparalleled to alternative oils.
A new generation of acid exfoliators have made their way into the mainstream. In the past, this type of exfoliation was something skin specialists and beauty therapists only could provide, however with the ban of micro-beads and sensitive skin types on the rise, chemical exfoliation has become the go-to in sloughing off those dead skin cells in the comfort of your own home.
If you’re interested in Vitamin A, chances are you’ve gotten here because you’re suffering from acne, hyperpigmentation, or trying to reverse the signs of ageing. The skin condition I’m going to focus here on is acne – even though there has been incredible research on Vitamin A for the latter two. This is because I’ve noticed how much concern there is for acne-sufferers to try a highly active ingredient such as Retinol – particularly when such an inflammatory skin condition can cause sensitivities.
Regarded as the ‘healing clay,’ bentonite has been used internally and externally to cure ailments for centuries. Clay is general is known for its detoxifying, anti-inflammatory and nourishing properties because of its ability to pull metals and toxins from the skin. Found in many skin products, especially face masks, bentonite clay is a natural and effective ingredient for fresh, detoxified skin.
Light green in colour and bulbous in shape, the Kakadu Plum resembles a standard pear. Found in the rugged Northern Territory of Australia, the small, sour fruit is gaining notoriety in the health and wellness scene because of its healing properties and surprising skincare benefits.
Kakadu Plum is also known as gubinge, bush plum, billy goat plum and salty plum.
Activated charcoal is equally a buzzword as it is a potent ingredient for internal and external cleansing. You’ll recognise it by its dark appearance moonlighting in everything from ice cream, to cocktails, to toothpaste. As the health and wellness worlds’ darling, charcoal is revered for its detoxifying properties and aesthetically pleasing colour. Activated charcoal has been linked to whitening teeth, cleaning hair, promoting a healthy digestion track, clearing skin and reducing bloating.
You probably haven’t heard of Magnesium Sulphate as a common ingredient found in your products. Perhaps Epsom salts rings more of a bell? The chemical name for Epsom Salts is Magnesium Sulphate - these are the mineral salt flakes that makes your muscles relax and free of any pain, what usually goes into luxury exfoliating products, and what you can buy in bulk at the health food store to have a maximum chill-out session in the bathtub.