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Beauty collective - licorice

Could Licorice Be The Answer To Your Skin Care Woes?

If I mention licorice to you, you probably picture that black sweet goodness that comes in a bag and leaves your tongue blue. However, did you know that licorice is a wonderful skincare herb?

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), a leafy green plant which yields small blue flowers, also grows long tap roots which can extend down well over a metre. It is these roots which yield the characteristic flavour we know as licorice.

But did you know that Licorice has been also been used for thousands of years to treat skin ailments?

This fascinating herb is a firm favourite of the skin care industry because it contains various cosmeceutical compounds, including glycyrrhizin, glabridin, and liquiritin, that do some remarkable things.

Glycyrrhizin

Glycyrrhizin helps to reduce inflammation because it mimics cortisol in our bodies. Cortisol is a steroid hormone which is released in our body in response to stress. So, when you think of all those skin conditions that require the use of a topical steroid cream; eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis to name a few, a natural alternative such as licorice is an exciting prospect.

Glabridin

Licorice also contains a compound called glabridin which is a phytoestrogen. Phytoestrogens are plant-derived compounds with biological activities comparable to the human hormone oestrogen. It is well known that oestrogen stimulates the body to make collagen and hyaluronic acid – two essential components of the skin which form an important part of the connective tissue and keep our skin looking young.

This is also proven!  Studies have found that topical application of phytoestrogens was found to reduce the depth of wrinkles and increase general tone and hydration of the skin.

But glabridin does more than just providing anti-ageing properties! It also helps to reduce hyper-pigmentation and prevents UV-B induced pigmentation.

What’s not to love about Glabridin!

Liquiritin

By now you’re probably thinking – what more can this miracle herb do for my skin?!  Well, bear with me because I’m not finished.

Licorice also contains a compound called liquiritin. This chemical is particularly useful for treating melasma. Unlike glabridin, it doesn’t prevent it so much as it fades the existing patches.   Put them together and you have a very effective lighting ingredient that is more effective than previous chemical ingredients.

So, to sum it up, not only is licorice anti-inflammatory but it also contains compounds that enhance skin penetration, provide skin lightening properties, and treat melasma. And I’ve only covered three of the main constituents of licorice, there are many more!

Here are some of our favourite Licorice rich products and why we think they are worth a try!

Pevonia RS2 Collection

The RS2 line; Cleanser, Lotion, Concentrate, and Cream are rich in licorice extract and work in harmony to reduce inflammation, even the chronic inflammation associate with Rosacea, to balance the oil and moisture levels in the skin and to even the skin colour.  We love the great results for sensitive skin but also love the natural signature scent of French Rose Extract in this heavenly line!

Beauty Collective - RS2 line

Pevonia Lumablanc Cream

A water-based lotion that is applied at night to brighten, whiten, and lighten the skin.  It’s ideal for mature skin with sun-spots, skin suffering from Chloasma or Melasma, or for fading the hyper-pigmenation that occurs after skin trauma.  It uses a Pevonia exclusive retinol delivery technology which means it gets down deep into the skin where it’s needed to fade those pesky patches.

Pevonia Lumablanc Cream

ELES Luminous Defence Brightening Day Protection SPF  50+

It’s so light you can barely feel it on your skin but it offers an abundance of benefits including the highest level of UVA and UVB sun protection.  Licorice Extract of course to help reduce inflammation, stimulate collagen formation, and fade dark patches.  It also contains peptides and Lotus Flower Extract to help elevate hydration give the skin a great glow!

ELES - Luminous Defence Brightening Day Protection 50

13 skincare mistakes habits that are ageing you

13 skincare habits that are ageing you

Let’s face it, we are all on the quest to radiant, youthful skin and many of us will invest both time and money perfecting our daily beauty routine, but there are still a number of mistakes or bad habits should I say, that we are likely doing daily that can and will make us look older than our years! Eek.

So read on to find out what they are, and if you are currently committing any of them, you know to stop now!

  1. Not updating your skincare as your skin changes

You might have been loyal to the same moisturiser for many years but sadly the skincare you’ve used in your 20’s really won’t cut it in your 30’s, 40’s and beyond. This is because as we age our skin’s needs dramatically change. Skin becomes thinner, drier, more sensitive, and loses elasticity as collagen and elastin start to deplete, while fine lines and wrinkles start to form. Therefore anti-ageing skincare rich in ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, collagen, and vitamin C become essential. For more info on this read about the top 5 skincare ingredients as recommended by the experts and adjust your products accordingly.

 

  1. Going to bed with makeup on

Well here’s one you’ve heard many a time before! Right? From a few too many wines to being just plain old exhausted, sometimes it hard to peel yourself off your bed to go and remove your makeup but remove your makeup you must!

Cleansing your face especially at night to remove not only your makeup but any remnants of the days sweat, dirt and grime is imperative for healthy skin. Not removing your makeup means your skin is unable to regenerate effectively while you sleep, pores clog, and fatigue (ageing!) signs start to appear.  For a fantastic makeup remover which effectively melts away makeup and grime with minimum effort try Phytomer’s Doux Contour Eye and Lip Waterproof Makeup Remover. Combining the effectiveness of an oil (a trio of oils in fact) and the gentleness of a lotion, this ultra-hydrating makeup remover, eradicates even the most stubborn of lips and eye makeup fast!

To read more about sleeping in makeup and what it really does to our skin click here.

Phytomer - DOUX CONTOUR Eye And Lip Waterproof Makeup Remover

 

  1. Skipping on your moisturiser

It’s that time of the month and a few pesky pimples have reared their ugly head, or you are often prone to adult acne or simply suffer from oily skin, so think it best to lay off the moisturiser which must be exacerbating the issue right? Wrong.

While you are likely not alone in thinking lathering up on moisturiser seems counterproductive, everyone, no matter what your skin type or concern, needs to apply a moisturiser daily! This is because moisturiser maintains skin hydration throughout the day and therefore assists in fighting premature fine lines and wrinkles too. In fact, applying moisturiser will greatly reduce your chance of developing extreme dryness, skin sensitivity, or oiliness! Why? Dehydrated skin can lead to issues like inflammation, premature skin ageing, and even breakouts. When your skin becomes dry, your body responds by making more oil! And we all know excess oil can clog pores leading to more of those darn pesky pimples.

When searching for the right moisturiser for your skin type they do tend to be categorised by skin concern so you just need to research and find the right one for your skin’s needs. Just be sure to opt for lighter moisturisers by day, especially in the warmer months, and richer creams at night.

For oily skin types, we highly recommend Phytomer’s Oligopur Hydra Matifying Control Cream. It’s an ultra-light cream that controls oil and breakthrough shine throughout the day. No shine, no greasy feeling, no heaving feeling!

Phytomer - Oligopur Hydra-Matifying Control Cream

If your skin is prone to pimples try Phytomer Acnipure Blemish Solution Fluid, it’s a lightweight gel-cream that fights acne without clogging pores or irritating skin. It also helps eliminate shine, diminishes the appearance of blemishes, and prevents future breakouts!!

Acnipur Blemish Solution Fluid

 

  1. Wearing SPF only during the summer

Hands down the no. 1 contributor to skin ageing is skipping your SPF.

Yes, it’s easy to remember to apply it when you’re headed to the beach, or out and about on holiday, but so many of us skip this vital step in our everyday lives and not because we are necessarily lazy but because we don’t understand the long term affect not wearing it will have on our skin! Being exposed to UV rays will make your skin age quicker, creating fine lines, wrinkles, sunspots, and more…Applying sunscreen daily all through the year will assist in keeping skin looking younger. Just remember the higher the factor the better especially in the warmer months.

Pevonia Hydrating Sunscreen

 

  1. Thinking that the SPF in your makeup is enough to protect your skin

Unless your makeup has an SPF factor of 30 or above it’s unlikely to ward off premature ageing if worn alone. This is because the majority of makeup will protect against UVB rays but won’t block UVA rays which is what causes skin damage. Layering your skin with a high factor SPF moisturiser and then foundation will give you the best chance of maintaining skin’s youthful appearance, but if you are in love with your daily moisturiser which doesn’t contain sun protection, still use it and then apply a lightweight SPF like the ELES Luminous Defence Brightening Day Protection SPF 50. Not only does it protect skin against the sun’s harmful rays, it also helps prevent discolouration while diminishing existing dark spots and calming and brightening your complexion at the same time!

Still be sure you use a foundation with SPF for that extra protection and coverage though, as chances are when you apply sunscreen, you’ll skip vital spots that you won’t do with your foundation. The ELES best-selling Liquid Powder Mineral Foundation SPF15 is an institution. It’s a silky, mineral-enriched liquid formula with broad spectrum sun protection that literally glides on to skin and sets to a soft powder finish. Loved by everyone who tries it you won’t be disappointed!

ELES Liquid Powder Mineral Foundation SPF 15

 

  1. Focusing only on Wrinkles

While we are all concerned about fine lines and wrinkles as we age, dark spots and pigmentation can actually give our complexion a dull, devitalised and in turn much older appearance too! In fact, dark spots and uneven skin tone can make us look 10 years older! So if you suffer from hyperpigmentation ensure you introduce products specifically to help with this like concern. We promise it’ll positively impact your complexion and protect your skin too. Try Vie Collection’s Mela White Radiance Brightening Essense, a triple-action daily cream that effectively acts against dark spots, free radicals, and UV. The results will speak for themselves.

Vie Collection - Mela White Radiance Brightening Essence

 

  1. Rubbing Your Eyes

The area around your eyes is the most delicate on your face, fact. When we are tired it’s easy to fall into the trap of rubbing our eyes, or when applying eye makeup with precision. We’ve all been guilty of pulling at our eyes I’m sure, but tugging, rubbing or pulling at your eye area can cause tiny blood vessles to break resulting in dark circles that make you look tired All. Of. The. Time. Instead, start applying an anti-ageing eye cream morning and night pronto! I am currently loving Vie Collection’s Chrono Eyes Puffiness-Dark Circles Wrinkles Cream. It’s a beautifully fine cream enriched with moisturising ingredients to nourish the eye area while reversing puffiness, dark circles and wrinkles! Seriously!

Beauty Collective - Vie Collection Wrinkle Dimension Hyaluronic Acid Concentrate

 

  1. Ignoring Your Neck and decolletage

Oh, the forgotten area! And the area of your skin which can actually age you the most! Exposed to sunlight just as much as your face, if your neck and decolletage aren’t cared for daily or protected with SPF, they can end up crepey and wrinkly so much earlier than they should! Whatever you do for your face you should do for your neck and decolletage too.

There are neck and chest specific products you can use, I personally use Pevonia’s Age Correction Rapid Restore Neck and Chest religiously, it’s a 2 in 1 serum and cream which hydrates, nourishes refines and brightens skin for a more youthful appearance while smoothing wrinkles too! But there is also nothing wrong with using your daily moisturiser or a hydrating body cream instead! Just start doing it now!

Pevonia - Power Repair Rapid-Restore Neck & Chest

 

  1. Avoiding exfoliators

It’s not just fine lines and wrinkles that make you look older, having a dull uneven skin tone can easily add years to your face as well!

As we age our skin’s natural ability to shed dead cells declines, so without weekly exfoliation skin can become uneven, dull and lacklustre. This is why exfoliation is so imperative, and not a step that should be ignored. Many people are scared of exfoliation because they think their skin is too sensitive, and it will just aggravate an existing issue, but that’s where natural enzyme exfoliators can be the answer.

Phytomer's Vegetal Exfoliant with Natural Enzymes

Both Phytomer’s Vegetal Exfoliant with Natural Enzymes and Pevonia’s Enzymo Spherides Peeling Cream are formulated with natural enzymes which basically melt away dead cells so no scrubbing is needed.  Just remember removing dead skin cells helps your skin properly absorb moisturiser which in turn keeps fine lines and dehydration at bay, as well as brightening skins radiance. Now, who wouldn’t want that!!

Pevonia - Enzymo Spherides Peeling Cream

 

  1. Or simply going overboard with exfoliating

If you tend to sway the other way and love to exfoliate your skin a little too much i’m here to tell you stop it now! Over exfoliating can actually slow cell turnover, cause chronic skin irritation and inflammation which can lead to accelerated ageing. Stick to exfoliation once a week for the best results. If you ilke to use an exfoliator with grains or microbeads but skin tends to be a little on the sensitive side give Pevonia’s Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser a go. it’s great for those who love physical exfoliators with granules but want to steer clear of facial scrubs which could be a little harsh on the skin. It gently polishes your complexion with its unique creamy yet granular texture, formulated with jojoba beads, saponaria and chamomile, revealing a softer, smoother and brighter complexion every time! And in the month of September if you purchase Pevonia Vitamin C Complexe (the perfect  skin-brightening summer serum) you’ll receive a full size Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser for FREE

 

  1. Not drinking enough water

As I’m sitting here writing this, I can hold my hands up and say today so far I’ve only drunk 2 glasses of water when I should have in fact consumed at least a litre by now! Yes, it’s fact, water, or lack of should I say is a real skin ager!! And I know I must practice what a preach! The thing is I do, but some days I will admit it’s easy to forget! And when I do, I get cross with myself as I can see it in my skin! It’s drier, duller and devitalised. This is because drinking ‘enough’ water helps the body to flush out toxins while increasing blood flow to the skin which gives it an even tone and dewy appearance! And dewy skin equals youthful skin after all!

Not a huge fan of water? Try a good herbal tea instead.

 

  1. Extreme water temperatures

How many of us are guilty of indulging in a hot shower or simply washing our faces with water set to a high temp. But really for best and healthy results we should be washing with lukewarm water. This is because extreme water temperatures will strip healthy natural oils from your skin quickly, making it dry and therefore age much faster. Water that’s too hot can also dilate your capillaries leading to spider veins.

 

  1. Not getting enough sleep….when you could get more

If I had a dollar for every time I said to my husband I must get to bed early tonight because I need more sleep and am fed up of looking old and tired, I’d be a rich woman. While they say practice what you preach, I am a testament that not getting enough sleep (when I could indeed fit in another 1-2 hours a night (darn netflix!) literally does age you.

Poor sleep is quite literally to blame for premature ageing, dermatitis, eczema, acne, loss of collagen and more! Scary right? So let’s make a pact and try for that 8 hours + we really do need nightly.

Now be sure to follow our advice to be sure you slow down the signs of ageing naturally!

9 things you need to stop doing to your skin now

9 things you need to stop doing to your skin now!

You might well think you are following protocol and doing all the right things for your skin – applying SPF daily, using the best products for your specific needs, drinking your two litres of water a day, exercising but not too excessively, getting enough shut-eye… the list goes on, yet still, your skin isn’t where you want it to be, but why? Most of us spend each day taking the right steps, all the while damaging our skin without even realising it! Read on to find out nine things you might be doing which could well be impacting your skin’s overall health;

 

  1. Touching your face

If COVID-19 has taught me one thing, it’s to be vigilant about touch! And I have to admit I did not realise just HOW often I touched my face!! Eek.

Each time you touch your face, you’re exposing your skin to bacteria, so repeatedly touching it with your fingertips, resting your face on your hands, or simply rubbing your head can introduce dirt directly to the skin and in some cases cause pesky pimples and worse! So try to be more wary of your actions, and thoroughly clean your face with a good cleanser at the end of every day!

 

  1. Hitting the pantry at night!

Yes it happens to the best of us! You’ve been healthy all week, diligently consuming your super foods but this evening you caved and hit the panty for those sugared treats, surely it’s not that big a deal? Unfortuantely it can be! This is because consuming sugar affects our bodies’ collagen stores. Collagen is the magical protein that our bodies produce which helps our skin to remain supple and well, simply look younger. Unfortunately the sugary foods we consume break down both the collagen and elastin in our skin, causing dullness and wrinkles over time, so if it’s possible, it’s best to cut down sugar intake where you can, especially at night, which happens to be the worst possible time! There goes my late night feasts.

 

  1. Going to sleep with makeup on

I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of having one too many in our time, or simply hopping into bed exhausted only to realise you haven’t removed your makeup and have little to no energy to get back up to cleanse your face, so to bed with a full face of makeup we go! But I can’t stress enough how failing to remove makeup at the end of every day is a major missed opportunity for your skin to be able to regenerate while you sleep! Not removing your makeup means the skin ceases to breathe freely, pores clog and fatigue signs start to appear.  Two of my favourite makeup removers, which both effectively and effortlessly melts away the day’s makeup and grime, are Phytomer’s Doux Contour Eye and Lip Waterproof Makeup Remover and ELES Cosmetic’s Transformation Cleansing Oil.

Phytomer - DOUX CONTOUR Eye And Lip Waterproof Makeup Remover

Combining the effectiveness of an oil (a trio of oils in fact) and the gentleness of a lotion, Phytomer’s ultra-hydrating makeup remover, eradicates even the most stubborn of lips and eye makeup fast! While the ELES Transformation Oil literally melts away makeup with jojoba oil, safflower oil, olive oil, squalene and vitamin E! What’s more for the month of August when you purchase the Transformation Cleansing Oil, you’ll receive a set of 3 muslin cleansing cloths (for swift and easy removal) for Free!

To read more about sleeping in makeup – what it really does to our skin click here.

ELES Transformation Cleansing Oil

  1. Not getting enough shut-eye

If you are like me and one for being guilty of going to bed too late, or simply not getting enough sleep (we are talking the recommended 8 hours a night) know that your skin WILL suffer. This is because it affects the moisture levels in your skin, depleting them, as well as lowering your complexions pH levels, and when your skin’s pH levels drop, they create an imbalance which means your skin isn’t able to produce the moisture it needs, resulting in dry, lacklustre skin. It can also create unnecessary redness, leave skin uneven and even trigger breakouts. To understand more about what really happens to your skin while you sleep click here.

  1. Having a hot shower

Ok, so no one in winter is going to say no to a hot shower right? It’s one of life’s little luxuries but it does come at a cost to your skin believe it or not. Unfortunately, hot water can strip the skin of its essential moisture and deplete its natural protective barrier which can lead to impairments in the skin’s moisture. We know you aren’t going to stop having those steamy showers of a morning but try and turn the heat down a little, limit shower time and ensure you replenish skin immediately after with a good hydrating moisturiser! I’m currently loving Phytomer’s Hydra Original Thirst Relief Melting Cream, it’s deliciously rich and delivers intense and lasting hydration to my skin!

Phytomer - Hydra Original Thirst-Relief Melting Cream

  1. Not frequently changing your bedding

We are accustomed to washing our clothes after every wear but why is it at the end of every day, we fall into bed without giving our sheets a second thought? Unfortunately clogged pores can occur when we don’t wash our bedding weekly. This in turn can lead to blemishes and breakouts. Why? Because there is a build up of bacteria and oil on our sheets, especially pillowcases caused by sweat, saliva and dead skin cells. Yuck.

 

  1. Over exfoliating

You are doing as you think is right and exfoliating your skin once or twice a week but could you be over exfoliating? Using exfoliators with AHA’s and BHA’s when it’s not necessary can cause your skin to become dehydrated and dry. If you notice you are developing dry patches or flaky skin you could well be over-doing it. This is why it’s important to use the correct exfoliator for your skin type and always follow exfoliation with hydrating and moisturising creams.

 

  1. Spending too much time in front of a screen

I know I speak for so many of us when it comes to too much screen time these days. Whether it be our laptop, tv, iphone or ipad, screen time does effect our skin and here’s why; All devices (now labeled the silent anti-agers of our generation!) emit ‘blue light’. This light creates a free radical that damages our DNA, by penetrating all the way to the dermis where our collagen and elastin live causing loss of firmness, increase in visible lines as well as inflammation and dark spots! Scary stuff. Your best defence? Try to cut down your time and use targeted skincare and makeup products!

Using products containing iron oxide can help neutralize and repair blue light damage. Try Pevonia’s Youth Renew Tinted Moisturiser or ELES Mineral Sheer Tint SPF 20.

Pevonia - YouthRenew Tinted Cream

The skin naturally contains antioxidants. These are quickly damaged and depleted when exposed to free radicals. By applying a topical antioxidant containing Vitamins C and E you can assist in counteracting the damaging effecting of blue light. Try Medicalia’s C Serum with Oxyzomes which protects and infuses the antioxidant deep within the skin for maximum anti-free radical benefits and collagen-boosting effects.

Medicalia C Serum with Oxyzomes

I also love Pevonia’s Stem Cells Phyto-Elite Intensive Cream. It is rich in Vitamins C, E, Marine Collagen and Retinol! It deeply repairs any damage caused to the skin, effectively minimising the most common signs of premature ageing. And if you purchase this cream in the month of August, you’ll receive the full size matching Stem Cells Foaming Cleanser for Free!

Pevonia Stem Cells Phyto-Elite Intensive Cream

  1. Using dirty makeup brushes

Your makeup tools are meant to be washed. Besides bacteria, both brushes and sponges also accumulate dead skin cells and oil which can clog your pores leading to skin irritation and pesky pimples! Also if you apply your makeup with a dirty bush the end result can be a streaky and patchy complexion! Clean brushes definitely make for a smoother makeup application so get cleaning them at least once a week! For “green” and allergy-free brushes, opt for taklon bristle brushes, this smooth synthetic fibre is ideal for makeup application as it does not absorb or trap pigment, making it so much easier to keep clean too!

ELES Cosmetics makeup brushes

Beauty Collective - Manicure

Fun for all the family: 6 simple steps to the perfect at-home manicure

Who doesn’t love a manicure? Half an hour, to an hour of ‘you’ time to be pampered and preened, and at the end, you come away with fabulous looking fingertips! Sadly though, with social distancing still in place, that frequent visit to your nail salon isn’t an option for now, but it does make for the perfect time to master your DIY manicure skills!

At-home manicures can still be a relaxing activity, as well as a lot of fun if you get your kids or whoever you might live with, involved. While you may not be able to give yourself or each other a gel manicure or a professional shellac, (best to leave those to the professionals) you can still try and recreate a full nail salon experience at home, it just takes a few simple steps and the right products.

Read on for our step by step on how to perfect an at-home manicure;

Step 1 – Remove old polish

If your nails are baring the remanence of regular polish, you simply need to remove it with a good polish remover, but if you’ve been sporting a gel or shellac manicure for some weeks now, a little more effort is involved – but still easy to do! Simply use a fine-grit nail file and very gently file the top coat of the gel, next pour some pure acetone into a bowl, and soak nails for three to five minutes. Finally use a birchwood stick or similar to gently remove the remaining gel. Alternatively, you can soak some gauze in acetone, apply to fingertips and wrap in aluminum foil for 15 minutes.

Step 2 – Determine the best nail shape for you

While there is no wrong nail shape so to speak, there are a couple of rules of thumb which you should follow when deciphering which nail shape would be best for you.

nail shapes

If you like maintaining longer nails, it’s best to opt for an oval shape as this way your nails are less likely to snag. Oval nails also tend to be the most flattering as they create the illusion of slimmer, longer fingers no matter their size or shape. A more square shape tends to work best for short, neat nails, but just be aware that this can be the hardest nail shape to wear too, as it can make your hands appear stumpy! So your other option for short nails (even nail biters!) is rounded. It’s a simple shape, extending only slightly past your nail bed and in line with maintaining your nail’s natural shape.

Step 3 – Trim, file and buff your nails

Once you’ve decided on your perfect shape it’s time to get filing! If your nails are really long and you are vibing shorter nails this time around, it’s best to trim them slightly with nail clippers.

See-sawing back and forth with your file can actually weaken the nail and cause it to split and/or peel. Instead file from the outer edges of your nail toward the center in one direction. Just make sure you use a good quality file.

Finally, buff the tops and sides of your nails with a nail buffer. This is an important step as it’ll help create a smoother surface for polish application but it’ll also prevent the build-up of natural oils on your nails.

Step 4 – Exfoliate your hands

Exfoliate hands, wrists, and forearms with a scrub that eliminates dead skin cells while replenishing moisture. I love Pevonia’s Silky Skin Scrub. Its creamy formula gently polishes away dead skin cells and impurities with jojoba beads, rosemary, sage, and allantoin. Unveiling smooth, radiant, and silky-soft skin. Heavenly.

Beauty Collective - Pevonia Silky Skin Body Scrub

Step 5 – It’s time for some hand pampering!

All hail the hand massage! – just because you’re not in the spa or at your favourite nail salon doesn’t mean you can’t be pampered for a minute or two or three! Even when my four year old daughter has a go at this step it’s honestly a little luxury, and she loves playing beauty therapist! Research has also proven that a hand massage can not only increase hand strength and elevate any aches and pains but also reduce feelings of stress and anxiety!

Now first things first you want to indulge your hands and nails in the spa treat they deserve so choose wisely!  I highly recommend Phytomer’s Oleocreme Ultra-Nourishing Hand Cream. Enriched with a blend of skin-loving ingredients, this luxurious treatment soothes, softens, and deeply nourishes hands. Also unlike many other hand creams, it absorbs super-fast to instantly condition hands and nails without leaving them sticky and slimy.

To start your massage gently stroke your hand (or the hand of your mani-partner) to relax and warm it. Now take your cream and gently rub it between your hands to warm it up a bit, then start by rubbing it into your arm with long smooth motions from wrist to elbow, this is to warm up the muscles. Next, use your thumb to lightly rub the back of your wrist and hand applying moderate pressure as your thumb nears the wrist. Now move onto your fingers taking time to massage each finger individually. Give each finger a gentle twist in alternating direction then give a quick but not too firm full to finish. Repeat this for each finger and your thumbs.

When you have finished focusing on each finger turn your hand over. Use your thumbs to apply pressure to your palm. Then interlock your fingers and slowly rotate your hands. Alternate directions and stretch it out. Finally, cup your hand around your forearm and gently move it all the way down the arm from the elbow to fingertips applying a little pressure.

Once your pampering is complete, give each nail a quick swipe with nail polish remover to get rid of any oily residue.

Phytomer Oleocreme Ultra-Nourishing Hand Cream

Step 6 – Apply your polish

Now for the fun part! It’s time to polish!

Firstly, it is important to invest in a polish that is not only long-lasting but healthy for your nails too. Look for “5-free” options which means it’s DBP, Toluene, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, and Camphor free.  ELES Cosmetics nail polishes are made with the best of Australian quality ingredients and have a 5-free professional patented formula which holds its colour and shine for days.   They don’t require a base coat but you can still opt to apply one first if you wish.

Now select your colour of choice – my forever favourite is the ELES Cosmetics Nail Polish in Alice in Wonderland, while my daughter is currently loving Some Like it Hot! On application be sure not to overload the brush with polish (you need just enough to cover the nail in one coat). Brush from cuticle to nail tip in as few strokes as possible, preferably three times only – one stroke down the middle of your nail, one on each side. For seamless coverage it’s best to apply two coats, however the longer you can wait between coats, the better.

ELES Nail Polish

You can complete your manicure by applying a topcoat if you wish, this can protect your manicure and add a little extra shine.