It goes without saying that lush, glossy, healthy-looking hair is on every woman’s wish list, but finding the right natural hair care products to meet your individual needs can be tricky, and not all products are up to the task.
Below we reveal a selection of our favourite natural and organic hair care products whose high-performance formulas and nourishing natural ingredients will help vanquish your most common hair concerns and transform every day into a good hair day…
YOU WANT: VOLUME & BODY
If your hair is naturally straight and fine, your hair might have a tendency to look a little stringy and lifeless – particularly on hot, humid days.
To prevent your hair from falling flat, work some volumising mousse into damp, freshly washed hair before blow-drying, and then spray a little dry shampoo onto your roots (we love Rahua Voluminous Dry Shampoo, $42.95) and then work it in with your fingertips.
Another one of our top product picks for fighting the good fight against flat, lifeless hair is Yarok Feed Your Volume Shampoo and Conditioner, $38.95 each. Containing a slew of volume-enhancing ingredients, essential oils and natural extracts like seaweed, nettle and rosemary, this clever duo helps boost your hair’s body while also lowering your carbon footprint and spoiling your senses with a fresh, delicious scent.
YOU WANT: FRIZZ-FREE LOCKS
If the slightest hint of humidity makes you reach for the nearest wide-brimmed floppy hat (or paper bag on a seriously bad day), frizz is the likely culprit.
It occurs when the cuticle layer of your hair is raised, allowing moisture to penetrate and swell the hair strands. If you’re prone to frizz, avoid over-washing your hair (two to three times a week is plenty) as this strips away natural oils from your hair and scalp that help nourish your hair cuticle and protect it from frizz.
Another great tip is to try smoothing down the mid-lengths and ends of your hair with a little leave-in conditioner, which will keep your hair happy and hydrated throughout the day and help prevent any frizz flare-ups.
A glistening, gorgeous, glossy mane is something most women lust after, but alas not everyone is blessed with naturally shiny locks.
People with blond, grey or silver hair are particularly prone to dullness because these shades reflect less light than darker, more pigmented hues like brown and black.
Dull, flat-looking hair can also occur when the hair cuticle is damaged as a result of colour-processing and frequent styling with hot hair tools like blow-dryers, straighteners and curling irons.
To enhance your hair’s natural shine and gloss, start by smoothing down the hair cuticle and nourishing each strand from the root to the tip. Do this by using a rich hair mask once a week and incorporate a repairing shampoo and conditioner into your hair care regimen as well.
Acure Repairing Shampoo & Conditioner, $16.95 each, is the perfect choice for boosting your hair’s shine-factor and contains rich, nourishing organic Argan oil, seabuckthorn oil and pumpkin seed oil to leave your hair looking gorgeous and glossy.
There are few things more demoralising than a bad skin day. And while it can be tempting to cake on foundation if your complexion isn’t naturally flawless, a heavy-handed approach tends to highlight fine lines and wrinkles and can look thick and unnatural.
Sheer foundation and lightweight makeup on the other hand will even out your skin tone and refine your complexion – while still allowing the skin’s natural beauty to shine through. Here we reveal five of our favourite barely-there natural bases that will prove to you that less really is more.
1. MADARA Moonflower Tinting Fluid
This incredible rose-beige tinted moisturiser is one of our all-time favourite makeup bases. This clever cream provides a sheer tint that evens out your skin tone and illuminates your complexion to give you a beautiful lit-from-within glow.
The base is formulated using nourishing flower extracts including rose, sunflower, chamomile and calendula which hydrate and soothe the skin. Is also contains natural pigments and light-reflecting particles mask imperfections and smooth fine lines.
This shade is perfect for those with a fair complexion and cooler, pink-based undertones. If your complexion is warm, olive, tan or dark, try Madara Sunflower Tinting Fluid instead.
Why we love it:In addition to being ECOCERT certified, cruelty-free and vegan-friendly, this beautiful natural formula also helps to prevent oiliness and excess t-zone shine throughout the day.
2. La Mav Organic BB Crème
This was Australia’s first organic BB cream, and it’s still one of the best as it suits just about every skin tone and type. It’s a true multitasker – it moisturises and plumps the skin, provides medium coverage, helps to correct imperfections, and evens out your complexion.
In addition, it also contains natural sunscreen to help protect your skin against the sun’s harmful UV rays, and is formulated with vitamin C and rosehip oil to nourish your skin and fight the signs of ageing.
Why we love it:This bad boy is packed full of hydrating anti-ageing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, vitamin E and co-enzyme Q10, which help boost your skin’s ability to repair itself.
3. Alima Pure Satin Matte Foundation
If you prefer your makeup in powder form, we recommend you try the award-winning Alima Pure Satin Matte Foundation. Formulated using four pure hypoallergenic ingredients, it glides on like silk and feels feather-light on your skin.
The light to medium level of coverage is evens out your skin tone beautifully, and with dozens of shades available you’re sure to find your perfect match.
Why we love it:This luxurious, velvety foundation is free from parabens, talc and nanoparticles. In addition, the powder minerals used in this foundation form a protective barrier on the surface of the skin and don’t cross the dermal barrier like some liquid formulas can. This means you can breathe a little easier knowing that your body isn’t absorbing anything it shouldn’t.
4. Lily Lolo BB Cream
We love this velvety, silicone-free BB cream, and think it’s an absolute steal at just $27. Chock-a-block full with with nourishing, skin-loving ingredients like jojoba oil, organic aloe and sweet almond oil, this gentle formula cares for your skin while also perfecting it.
It contains mineral pigments which help to blur imperfections and even out your complexion, and it provides just the right amount of coverage for beautiful, radiant skin.
Why we love it:This affordable and vegan-friendly makeup base creates a gorgeous, natural-looking glow and also contains antioxidants to help protect your skin. It also contains natural anti-bacterial agents which help the product last longer, without requiring the addition of any synthetic nasties.
5. 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Tinted Moisturiser
This clever natural tinted moisturiser uses natural fruit and vegetable pigments to give your skin a fresh, flawless and even-toned look. It also nourishes your skin with natural extracts like white tea, açai oil, pomegranate oil and vitamins.
In addition, this hard-working formula also provides SPF 20 protection thanks to naturally derived rice starch, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, and also contains antioxidants to help protect your skin from environmental hazards like pollution and city smog.
Why we love it: The creamy formula feels extremely hydrating (thanks to moisturising aloe extract) and makes your skin feel velvety soft, plus it’s 100% natural and doesn’t contains any synthetic fragrances, preservatives, or toxins.
When it comes to having an amazing complexion with radiant, glowing skin, the fact is that anti-wrinkle cream and illuminator can only do so much. Your diet plays an integral part in both the function and appearance of your skin, and if you arm yourself with a little know-how and a nutritious pantry, you will nourish you skin from the inside out and be rewarded with an amazing complexion.
“Our diet provides us with nutrients to nourish our skin, including zinc, vitamin A, vitamin C and bioflavonoids to name a few,” says respected Sydney-based nutritionist and naturopath Tania Flack. In addition to nourishing our bodies and our complexions, our diet also also provides us with a range of antioxidants that help us fight the ageing process by combating free radicals (molecules which are a leading cause of skin stress, inflammation and accelerated skin ageing).
“If our diet is poor and we are eating processed foods that contain a high level of chemicals, additives, herbicides and pesticides, then this accelerates the ageing process,” says Tania. Continue reading to discover more of Tania’s top nutritional tips, and learn how you can eat your way to gorgeous, glowing skin.
BEWARE THE SWEET STUFF
While we all worry about that chocolate fudge brownie with vanilla bean ice cream and chocolate syrup going straight to our hips, it turns out that it could be contributing to our crow’s feet as well.
“Sugars occur naturally in foods such as fruits, vegetables and grains and are part of a healthy wholefoods diet. However, extra sugars added to the diet are associated with accelerated ageing,” says Tania. Accelerated skin ageing can be caused by a number of things like sun damage and smoking, but one of the major causes is glycation.
Extra sugars added to the diet are associated with accelerated ageing
Glycation is a natural process that occurs within our bodies, and it involves protein molecules linking up with sugar, which triggers an inflammatory and oxidative process that damages the collagen and elastin within our skin.
While this process is normal and natural, an excessively sugary diet will intensify glycation, which will in turn speed up the ageing process – hence why sugar is one of your skin’s biggest enemies. “Ideally we should all try to avoid added sugar in our day-to-day diets and use it as a treat occasionally for special celebrations such as birthdays,” says Tania.
DAIRY – A FACTOR IN ADULT ACNE?
If you’ve well and truly left your teenage years behind but still struggle with acne and blemishes, reducing your dairy intake might help you on your way to a glowing, spot-free complexion.
“I do see significant improvements in skin when people eliminate dairy from their diet as part of a detoxification program to improve skin,” says Tania. “In clinic I have observed that dairy consumption seems to be associated with skin congestion, however the reasons for this are unclear. It is possible that the milk proteins including casein and whey may cause problems for some people and impact gut function.”
Impaired gut function can cause a whole host of problems for you and your skin, as it can ultimately interfere with your body’s detoxification processes, which will in turn put more pressure on the eliminatory function of your skin.
If you do decide to ditch dairy in an effort to reduce skin congestion, it’s important that you still consume plenty of calcium to keep your bones healthy and happy. Eating foods like canned salmon and sardines, kale, bok choy, watercress, almonds, calcium-fortified soy milk and tofu, chia seeds and sesame seeds will help boost your calcium intake.
EAT YOUR WAY TO GLOWING SKIN
Upping your intake of fibre and wholefoods such as vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds will give your diet a massive nutritional boost and ensure that your skin (and body) is getting the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants it’s craves.
In addition, eating the healthy fats will also improve your complexion. “Essential fatty acids found in fish and seafood provides an array of benefits for the skin. They are strongly anti-inflammatory and help to slow the ageing process,” says Tania.
Essential fatty acids can specifically help your skin by nourishing cell membranes, which will in turn strengthen your skin. Essential fatty acids have also been shown to support healthy hormone balance as well, which is a fantastic added benefit for women.
Great sources of essential fatty acids include fresh sardines, mackerel, salmon, prawns and scallops. If you’re vegan or vegetarian, all isn’t lost – foods like avocado, coconut oil and chia seeds will help boost your intake of the good, skin-loving types of fat.
H20 TO THE RESCUE
We’ve all heard the old ‘eight glasses of water a day’ adage, but does your daily water intake actually play that big of a role in how your skin looks? According to Tania, the answer is a resounding yes.
“Dehydration can cause skin to look dry, and we should aim for a minimum of 1.5 litres of water per day and avoid excess alcohol and caffeine, which accelerate dehydration.” If you can’t part ways with your daily cup of tea or coffee or that cheeky glass of pinot on a Friday night (hey, we get it), make sure you have an extra glass of water for every caffeinated or alcoholic beverage you drink.
In addition, if you’re exercising you should aim to drink an extra two glasses of water for every half hour of exercise you do.
SUPPLEMENT YOUR SKIN
While supplements should never be used as a substitute for eating healthily, they can help give your diet and your skin a helping hand.
One of our favourite supplements for amazing skin is The Beauty Chef’s Glow Inner Beauty Powder. This tasty berry-flavoured powder combines a blend of organic and natural ingredients that are bio-fermented for gut health and packed full of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, antioxidants and amino acids, which nourish your skin from the inside to help give your skin a healthy glow on the outside.
Another supplement we love is Amazonia Raw Prebiotic Women’s Multi. Not only does this wholefood-loaded supplement boost your intake of vitamins and minerals, but it also contains fermented ingredients that act as powerful pre- and probiotics that promote the growth of good bacteria in the gut. Healthy intestinal flora help your body extract maximum nutrition from the foods you eat, which in turn boosts your overall health and wellbeing, and can also improve the appearance of your skin.
We know that antioxidants are one of your skin’s best friends when it comes to anti-ageing, but ensuring that you eat enough antioxidant-rich foods to create a noticeable improvement in your skin can be a tricky task (how many blueberries can one person eat in a day, right?). Enter Matcha Maiden Green Tea. Made entirely of stone-ground organic green tea leaves, this vibrant green powder contains the nutritional equivalent of 10 cups of antioxidant-rich green tea, which helps your body combat age-accelerating free radicals.