The 26th January marks Australia Day - the national holiday of Australia. Whilst the day itself has been controversial (see here), it is an opportunity for many Australians to come together and reflect on the history of the nation, its achievements, value the diversity and also look back on how Australia has progressed as a nation and find ways to move forward.
Many Australians, on this national holiday will spend their day at the beach, having a barbecue, eating delicious lamingtons or listening to the infamous Triple J Hottest 100 (an independent music countdown) and celebrating everything that does make us quintessentially 'Aussie'. Yes we can be a weird group of people who are fiercely protective over questionable foods such as Vegemite and we are very isolated from the rest of the world but we also do know a thing or two about beauty and skincare.
This blog post looks at sixteen different skincare and beauty brands that are Australian that many of you many not have heard of before. I hope you enjoy this round up!
Ocinium is a skincare brand that has been developed by Cassandra Hilton, who has a background in Naturopathy, Herbal Medicine and Nutritional and Environmental Medicine. The line combines both natural and organic ingredients and botanical extracts with safe and high performing clinically active ingredients (think Retinol, Niacinamide etc). The range contains beautiful oils infused with green tea and ginseng, high performing active serums that can contain Vitamin B3, Vitamin C and Vitamins A, C and E and a moisturiser packed with botanicals and active ingredients.
I am most excited about the launch of the brand's new cleanser, the Ecdysis Bio Ferment Cleanse - which is a cream cleanser that uses bio-fermented ingredients and fruit enzymes to work together to both clean and gently exfoliate the skin. This cleanser also uses some amazing ingredients such as Niacinamide and AHAs (naturally occuring) to help improve overall skin appearance. This will retail for AUD$70 for a 100ml biophotonic glass bottle.
Like it's name, Mrs Manuka is a new and upcoming natural honey based skincare line. It contains only two products (which will expand throughout the year) - a moisturiser and a mask but they both pack quite the punch. The line uses and emphasises the power of honey, a known antibacterial that is packed with all sorts of skincare goodness as well as natural oils and botanicals to help give the skin that beautiful Australian sunkissed glow. Based in the Bondi, this natural honey based skincare line is one to watch as the brand has some exciting new additions over the next year and seriously...who can get past that super sexy packaging?
My favourite in the range is the Detox Mask, a dry clay mask that can be activated with a liquid that contains bentonite clay, Manuka honey powder, chamomile flower powder and calendula powder to help purify, detoxify, calm and also nourish the skin. I love using this with green tea as it really soothes and brightens the skin further. The Detox Mask comes in a 100gm resealable sachet that retails at AUD$45.
Most of you know that I have a love affair with the Sodashi Skincare range. The range was created in Perth, Western Australia by the ever so lovely Megan Larson over 15 years ago and the brand has just grown from strength to strength. Sodashi Skincare uses only natural ingredients and is 100% committed to the environment in most aspects of the business. The brand draws it's inspiration from aromatherapy, Ayurveda and biochemistry principles and its formulas use the regenerative qualities of plants, herbs, marine extracts and botanical essences.
I love almost everything that I have tried in the Sodashi Skincare line, but one of my absolute favourites would have the Calming Concentrate, which has introduced me to such a unique and beautiful way of exfoliating the skin. The Calming Concentrate is basically a concentrated blend of different plant extracts such as geranium, German chamomile, lemon and lavender mixed with almond oil which not only acts to exfoliate to the skin in the most gentle way but also helps to soothe and calm irritated or sensitive skin types. The smell of this absolutely gorgeous and using this is just the most indulgent, relaxing and luxurious experience. The Sodashi Calming Concentrate can comes in a 30ml dropper bottle and retails for $65.30 from the Sodashi website.
The Beauty Chef
If I had to pick one range of skin loving supplements to love and to use for the rest of my life it would most definitely be Carla Oates' The Beauty Chef range. The Beauty Chef is unique in the way the range focuses on bio-fermented ingredients as the brand's philosophy is that good skin starts from the gut. Founder and creator, Carla Oates firmly believes that good skin starts on the inside, going to say that "it’s where your hormones are metabolised, 70% of your immune system lies, and where nutrients are manufactured and toxins are eliminated. For good health, the gut requires a proliferation of good bacteria, which can be found in abundant supply in fermented foods. The skin, hair and nails are the last places to get nutrients that go to more important organs first; therefore the skin is the first place where gut imbalances or signs of under nutrition will manifest".
My favourite product in The Beauty Chef range so far would have to be the Glow Advanced powder, which has helped tremendously in my general gut health and I have found that my skin health overall is much better (this has been most noticeable on my rashes on the body). This product contains an abundance of probiotics and ingredients rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to help give the skin long lasting glow and radiance. The Glow Advanced Powder is AUD$59.95 for a 150g plastic jar and lasts generally for one month if consumed everyday.
I recently discovered the brand Rohr Remedy by the lovely Franca of Peachy Clean and the ladies at Maslow & Co and was absolutely fascinated at the brand's unique philosophy and take on the botanicals used in their products. Rohr Remedy take inspiration and wisdom from Indigenous Australians, learning all about their native and natural medicines and remedies. Taking this knowledge and fusing it with modern day science gives Rohr Remedy some of the most unusual and fascinating ingredients. Using ingredients such as desert lime (rich in Vitamin C), Honey Myrtle (anti-inflammatory), kunsea (an oil that helps with irritated skin) and quandong (high in antioxidants), there is no doubt that the founders at Rohr Remedy have really delved deeper to understand the land and the ancient tradition of natural medicines developed by Indigenous Australians.
The product that sparks my interest the most is the Kakadu Plum Vitamin C Face Serum which contain Kakadu Plum, a prized fruit that apparently has the highest source of Vitamin C in the world. Indigenous Australians used Kakaku plum for both medicinal purposes as well as a food source. The Kakadu Vitamin C promises help in the production of collagen in the skin and Vitamin C is a known antioxidant which helps to fight off free radicals as well as helping to brighten the skin, giving it a more youthful and firmer appearance. The Rohr Remedy Kakadu Plum Vitamin C Serum comes in a 50ml glass pump bottle and retails for AUD$48.
There are many natural skincare brands that exist in not only in Australia but throughout the world - however, how often is it that you hear about a brand that creates and cultivates its products at certain points of the lunar cycle? This is where Alyssum Alchemy comes into play - a little bit mysterious but all so very luxurious and spiritual. This skincare line uses and harnesses the powers of aromatherapy, botanicals, gems, crystals and Reiki and draws much inspiration from the Australian bush. Alyssum Alchemy's founder Alison is deeply passionate about sustainable, natural, cruelty free and most importantly high performing skincare and ingredients. Each and every product in the Alyssum Alchemy line is handcrafted and created with the upmost care and love in small batches.
What fascinates me greatly is Alyssum Alchemy's Rose Radiance Facial Nectar which is a face oil that is rich in antioxidants, fatty acids and packed with vitamins and minerals to help restore, nourish and replenish the skin. It is described as being "infused with Australian Rose Quartz (from the Harts Ranges in the Northern Territory) on a Full Moon. Blessed with Reiki" and also "enhanced with carefully selected Gem and flower and essences which support you as you open your heart and unfold into unconditional self-love, allowing your inner beauty to shine forth". This gorgeous, mystical yet mysterious sounding concoction is available from Alyssum Alchemy and Peachy Clean for AUD$58 for 20ml.
It is a known fact that I have the biggest girl crush on woman extraordinaire Zoe Foster-Blake and my love for her skincare line Go-To is no exception. This cute, colourful, high performing and incredibly charming skincare line was created on the basis that skincare should not be complicated and BS free. The website is full of hilarious descriptions (created by none other than Zoe herself...she's hilarious) of each and every product and the range prides its self on being natural, cruelty free and most importantly effective.
My favourite product of the entire line? It's a tie between the Lips! Lipbalm and also the Exfoliating Swipeys. Both are incredibly effective and do its job incredibly well. Lips! nourishes my lips like no other lipbalm and its incredibly cute packaging makes it an absolute breeze to take around with me. It nourishes dry, chapped lips instantly and I find that flaky lips are gone within 24 hours of use. The Exfoliating Swipeys are one of my favourite chemical exfoliators due to the fact these soaked pads are so gentle but oh so effective in keeping my skin smooth, glowing and luminous. The Lips! Lipbalm is AUD$15 for 15ml and Exfoliating Swipeys are AUD$46 for 50 pads and can be purchased from the Go-To-Skincare website.
Cinch Skin is all about keeping beauty simple and they have successful done with their signature product Face Cheat which is considered to be the swiss army knife of skincare. It acts to be almost like a moisturiser, mist, serum, illuminator and primer in one easy step. Face Cheat by Cinch Skin contains the trademarked SUPEROX-C, an ingredient derived from Vitamin C rich Kakadu Plum to help the skin achieve that beautiful luminous glow.
I personally love using Face Cheat for the gym as it really does provide my skin with that perfect amount of hydration without feeling at all greasy. It helps to calm, nourish and hydrate the skin before and after a boxing session and it is perfect to take with me when I am on the go. Cinch Skin's face cheat is so incredibly unique in terms of the way it has been created and the way it works and I can't wait to see what they come up with next. Face Cheat can be purchased from Cinch Skin for AUD$39.95 for 100ml.
TMF (themakeupfactory) Cosmetics
TMF is a makeup brand where the philosophy is that makeup should be easy and that makeup should be used to enhance our own natural beauty. Founder Jill Chambers strives to create cosmetics with a conscious - beauty should sustainable, environmentally friendly and safe. Her firm belief that beauty and skincare should not compromise the health of her clients and the environment has driven her to create the wonderful, innovative and most importantly fun makeup line that is TMF. Based in Perth, Western Australia, Jill's line has gone from strength to strength and is now stocked in 35 retailers nationwide. TMF is inspired by effortlessly cool, off duty beauty - the products are high performing, vegan and incredibly easy to use.
My favourite product (which is now a staple) from the TMF range is the Vegan Skin Perfector Liquid in Light Coverage as this foundation is an amazing compromise between a tinted moisturiser and a light-medium weight foundation. It covers and conceals in all the right places but allows the skin to breathe and show through. It really has been one of my favourite makeup discoveries from last year and TMF's lipsticks are also definitely worth looking into! The Vegan Skin Perfector retails for AUD$65 for a 30ml tube and can be purchased directly from the TMF website.
Edible Beauty has been a skincare brand that I have been watching for sometime now, mainly due to the brand's beautiful and minimal aesthetic but also the fact the brand does an incredible sounding range of teas (I love a good green tea). It's founder, Anna Mitsios is a qualified naturopath and nutritionist and the line is driven by her passion for herbal and natural ingredients. The line prides itself on being 'edible' meaning that every product is good and safe enough to eat, meaning that there are no ingredients that would cause harm if ingested. Each and every product is considered to be pure and free from chemicals such as parabens, artificial fragrances, petrochemicals etc and uses high quality plant based ingredients.
Recently, Edible Beauty launched a sheet mask that uses bamboo fibres as the sheet for the mask. What really intrigued me was the ingredients listing for this mask in which there were no harsh chemicals found. As many of you know, many of the mainstream Korean sheet masks, often do contain some fillers, and in general it is incredibly difficult to find an all natural sheet mask. There are only a few companies in the world that I know that do this. The Edible Beauty Express Bloom of Youth Infusion Mask aims to plump, hydrate, brighten and restore the skin using ingredients such as bamboo, ribose, pomegranate extract and hyaluronic acid. The Edible Beauty Express Bloom of Youth Infusion Mask comes in a set of 3 masks and retail from the Edible Beauty website of AUD$49
Real U Australia
Real U is a brand that specialises in oily and blemish/acne prone skin by using patented technology developed by Ebony, a skin specialist with over 20 years of experience in the field. What makes Real-U so unique is that the product itself does not contain 2 common ingredients found in skincare for those with blemish prone skin (Benzoyl peroxide and Salicylic acid) which can dry out the skin. The Real-U formulations are much more gentle and works with the skin to help control oil and breakouts in the skin and also to help heal any acne. The range is small, containing only 3-4 steps to help balance the skin and control blemishes. These steps include a pH balanced Face Wash, a 'Control' serum, a moisturiser and also a spot treatment if necessary.
I have really been enjoying using The Real U Australia's Spot Treatment which help to control any pesky spots that have come my way. I find that this spot treatment doesn't sting and it really helps to calm the redness and eventually deflate any blemishes I may have. It takes around 2-3 days for my spots to heal over when using this amazing spot treatment. The Real-U Spot Treatment retails for AUD$32 for 15ml on the Real-U Australia website and only the smallest amount is needed.
Rationale Skincare an Australia cosmeceutical brand developed by by Richard Parker, who at the age of 25, found that his skin was already showing signs of ageing and pimples even though he was using and trying a plethora of different skincare products. He found that simply did not work and found himself studying cosmetic chemistry and after a lot of trial and error, Rationale Skincare was born. The brand prides itself on delivering results with its potent and active formulations and being a research and evidence based company. All its formulations are 'Isotropic Formulations', whereby every product 'delivers perfect synchronicity between its active ingredients, base formulation and the skin. There are no superfluous or harmful ingredients and its products are completely “skin natural” formulations'.
I am currently loving using the Beautiful Skin Luminizing Superfluid, a mix of skincare, sunscreen and makeup in one little product. I received this from my cousin as a gift for Christmas and I absolutely love the glowing base that it gives my skin whilst also helping to protect the skin from UVA and UVB rays coming from the sun. This is a incredibly lightweight fluid, making it perfect for the hot and humid Australian summer. I find that this just melts into the skin and gives a beautiful, very sheer coverage. It's great on its own on a good skin day but also works well as a primer or a base to wear underneath a foundation. The Beautiful Skin Luminizing Superfluid comes in a 30ml bottle and retails for AUD$85 and is available on the Rationale Skincare website.
What are some Australian skincare/beauty brands that you have heard about or are currently using? I would love to hear and discover some new brands! Don't forget to leave your comments in the section below!