Beauty di­rec­tor se­crets

Michelle Brown­lee Smith shares what she’s learnt – and buys

Glamour (South Africa) - - Contents -

i’ve worked on the beauty beat for al­most 20 years, a job that has al­lowed me the priv­i­lege of try­ing al­most ev­ery­thing by way of prod­ucts, from luxe to lo­cal, sci­en­tific to nat­u­ral. It’s an ex­cit­ing pro­fes­sional en­vi­ron­ment, as each day is dif­fer­ent, but there are three fun­da­men­tal and un­change­able truths I’ve learnt along the way: 1 Don’t be swayed by mar­ket­ing hype and pretty pack­ag­ing (although it can some­times be ir­re­sistible). 2 Price isn’t al­ways a re­flec­tion of the re­sults achieved. 3 There re­ally is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Just ask my hus­band, Tony, who wants to know if I re­ally do use all 10 vari­ants of sham­poo in the shower. (An­swer: I do!)

So here it comes: my roundup of what’s worth it, the prod­ucts I’d buy again and my ca­reer high­lights.

Treat­ments that are to­tally worth the hype

Laser hair re­moval A course of laser treat­ments has saved me from years of stub­bly growth, war­rant­ing the in­vest­ment. And the good news is that laser tech­nolo­gies have im­proved so much that the process is nearly pain free, you can see re­sults af­ter the first ses­sion and it works on a wide range of com­plex­ions.

Retinol This po­tent in­gre­di­ent gets a bad rap be­cause skin needs time to ad­just to its ef­fects, which is why some women give up when they see the ini­tial ir­ri­ta­tion. “Retinol is the best way to fight signs of age­ing, but the key is to in­tro­duce it slowly,” says Dr Des Fer­nan­des, the world-renowned sur­geon who pi­o­neered its use in sk­in­care, in­clud­ing in his own En­v­i­ron brand.

Dr Diana Howard, vice pres­i­dent of re­search and de­vel­op­ment at Der­ma­log­ica, agrees: “I don’t be­lieve in Bo­tox or fillers but I do be­lieve in retinol, which helps build col­la­gen, in­creases cell turnover and evens out dis­coloura­tion.”

Sun­screen You’ve heard this so of­ten that you’ve prob­a­bly al­ready tuned me out. But stop and stew on this: in a John­son’s study, women ditched their mois­turis­ers and used only sun­screen for a year. And with no other wow in­gre­di­ents, their sun spots, skin tex­ture and clar­ity changed vis­i­bly. “By pre­vent­ing the con­tin­ual ac­cu­mu­la­tion of more and more dam­age, we al­low skin to heal on its own,” says Dr Steven Wang who co-au­thored the study.

Pro­bi­otics Although there is still a lot of re­search to be done, this is an ex­cit­ing beauty fron­tier. SA sci­en­tist and the de­vel­oper of Esse Pro­bi­otic Sk­in­care, Trevor Steyn ex­plains, “The mil­lions of mi­crobes that live on and in our bod­ies play an im­por­tant role. On our skins, they help pro­tect the skin bar­rier.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.