(1) Astaxanthin: the actual elixir of youth and beauty (I use Bioastin 12mg). It’s a carotenoid, found in marine plants, shellfish and salmon and has broad health benefits like relief of pain and inflammation, eye health, cell cleansing and (sound the trumpets) healthy skin. Not only does it increase hydration, give you an internal suncreen (for the first time in my life, I can actually achieve a golden tan, rather than the burn-freckle combo) but it also happens to fight off my scales very effectively. If I’m lax on my Astaxin (Astax-lax) consumption, they’re bound to appear within a few weeks. If I see a few bumps appearing, I double-drop for a few days and that will see them off.
(2) Skincare: basically, anything you’ll find in the health shop, that’s not overly laden with essential oils. My go-to cleanser is Lavera Basis Sensitive Cleansing Gel, followed by a simple rosewater toner - this doesn’t have to be anything specific, just the large bottle of pure rosewater you can pick up in the chemist. I use Trilogy’s Age Proof Daily Defence Moisturiser and Ive just started using an eye cream (Weleda Wild Rose Smoothing Eye Cream), though I’m not entirely unsure that this isn’t bringing on a bit of eye scale (oh yes, the Perioral also hangs out around my eyelids, sometimes), so I may revise. At night, I leave my skin naked, unless it’s feeling particularly dry, in which case I massage in some pure argan oil, which I also use on my nails, lips and any dry patches on my body. Always handy to have a bottle of this around; it makes for a great hair treatment, too. I use Jason Shampoo and Conditioner (because the SLS and silicons in all the big brands irritate the aule face, too) and diluted Dr Bronners as body wash.
(3) Cosmetics: this was a trickier quest. Most of the health shop brands either look rubbish, or look rubbish. Nude by Nature is a gorgeous collection of products, created by the leaders in glowy skin, the Aussies. I use the Liquid Mineral Foundation (lovely sheer coverage that evens skin tone really nicely for one so light), along with the Perfecting Concealer; Cashmere Pressed Blush; Sheer Light Illuminator for a bit of glow; and the Natural Illusion eyeshadow trios, which I’d love the texture of, even if they weren’t so kind to my skin. Lippie, mascara and brow pencils are whatever give me the most oomph, as these areas aren’t fussy about chemical content.
So, while I’d love to have the type of skin that looks fabulous, no matter what - my husband could clean his face with the horrible anti-bacterial wipes we keep by the toilet for little willy dribbles, and it would still look annoyingly perfect - when I’m feeling philosophical about my health and mortality, I am grateful that it keeps me on track, when I’d otherwise fall into periods of self-neglect pretty regularly. Nothing like vanity (rather than the prospect of numerous life-limiting diseases) to keep you eating well and away from toxins.