Thursday, 8 February 2018


Last night I was kindly invited to the This is Skin workshop hosted by Cult Beauty featuring some of their best acne-tackling brands. This workshop came about as a response to the large volumes of queries the Cult Beauty team receive regarding adult acne. The combination of stress, diet, pollution and general modern urban living result in our skin looking less than its best, long past our teenage years. Many of us are suffering from acne breakouts and are rightly concerned as we thought we were past this. Of course, there are plenty of treatments out there we have all seen the Freederm and cringe-central Proactiv ads and heard someone get misty-eyed about retinol. The important thing to remember is that adult acne is a different ball game, not because the cause is different but because as we age we have more than just acne to consider when treating our skin. Thus, it is important skincare products don't just treat acne but also keep our skin supple and smooth, moisturised and even. I was so lucky to attend this event and hear firsthand what these inspiring skincare mavens had to say and I am even luckier to be able to share what I learnt with you guys. If only my lectures at university were this interesting:

Beauty begins in the belly. 

Carla is the picture of Aussie health with long tresses, clear, healthy skin and bright eyes. Her belief is that everything starts from the gut, so the most important thing is that you feed your body the right ingredients. She discovered this when treating her daughter's eczema through changing her diet, she began incorporating lactofermented vegetables, bone broth, leafy greens and other probiotic-rich foods into her family's diet and her friends started to notice a huge improvement in her skin. The aim is to reduce inflammation in the body which is exactly what probiotic foods, such as yogurt, miso and pickles, do. Inflammation is a major cause of acne breakouts, thus eating right will really benefit how you look and how you feel. This is, of course, something we all know. You are what you eat, after all. But take it a step further, you want to eat clean, unprocessed, healthy, organic food. One of her biggest pet peeves is people using unfiltered water because tap water is filled with chemicals such as chlorine and pesticides to make it suitable for consumption, but all of that nasty stuff is going into our bellies. Washing vegetables with unfiltered water will negate the nutrients we receive from the vegetables. This is a difficult one for me because I do eat incredibly unhealthily and I think it is something that if you are a parent you take a lot more seriously. I want my imaginary kids to have a good diet, play in the soil and drink filtered tap water but for myself on a student budget let's just say I had a McDonalds breakfast this morning so that's how well my commitment to my diet is going.

Not everything synthetic is bad and not everything natural is good.  
Pores are not draws. 

Nicolas's origin story was particularly inspiring to me, he completed a degree in Biomedical Science went on to do advertising and then studied International Business at post-grad. For his thesis, he planned out a skincare start-up and then after completing his post-graduate degree he actually did it. Allies of Skin was born and is the great success it is today. I love that story. You have to see Nicolas in person to fully understand what good skin is because he has the best skin I have ever seen in my life, he seemed to literally reflect light. Goals. In terms of tackling acne, his position is that healthy skin doesn't break out so the products you use should be restoring the skin's barrier and reducing inflammation. His focus is pollution, as a lot of us live in urban environments where pollution is everywhere and not the dirt and grime you typically see in London but light pollution. Digital pollution. We all spend so much time on phones, laptops, computers that exposure to the constant light sources even in bed, even on Night mode, is damaging over time. His big no-nos are silicones and alcohol, anything drying or suffocating on the skin should not be used in skincare which is the biggest problem with most popular acne treatments they can be extremely drying, further upsetting the skin's imbalance. My biggest concern with my skin are my pores, and Nicolas hilariously said pores are not draws which ties into my biggest pet peeve which is the great misconception that pores open and close. They. Do. Not. I just wanted to take this time to reiterate that. He did say a plant oil such as lavender, rosehip or tamanu oil as long as it is organic and authentic would help but pores will never disappear and unfortunately increase in size as we age.

The largest misconception about acne is that you have no control over it. Dig a little deeper. 

Annie's origin story is a very cool and personal one, in her late 20s she began to suffer from sever cystic acne and after trying everything and getting nowhere she enrolled herself into a cosmetic chemistry course so she could learn about the formulas she should be using and avoiding in her skincare routine and she managed to improve her skin exceptionally. Her skin is gorgeous. She shared her findings on a private Facebook group called Skin Owl and her friends demanded she sell her marvellous discoveries, and Skin Owl was born. When she herself suffered from bad acne she was told there was nothing that could be done, they had tried everything and reached the end of the road and this is frankly bullshit. She advises everyone that this is not true, there is always something, you are not just one of those people that are unfortunate and have to deal with breakouts. Consider everything: food, allergies, sleep, stress and hormone cycles. It could even be the side you sleep on or which side of the face you use your phone. She is a major advocate of hormone panels as they can be very telling not only in breakouts but moods and menstrual cramps etc. Pure plant oils are very good for acne, argan oil and marula oil. Anything non-comedogenic that mimics the sebum produced by skin naturally would be a good facial oil, not coconut oil. Coconut oil is a great makeup remover but is not a skin treatment, it is ultimately drying. She recommends lavender beauty drops as a great starter oil but it is difficult to find a reputable product as a lot of lavender oils are mixed with other ingredients. Her greatest discovery so far is the Macqui Berry found in Chile, it is the number one fruit antioxidant in the world and is a total game-changer.

Thank you for reading, at the moment I have exams coming up, I know there is always something! So it has been a struggle to find time to post, but I had such a magical time at this event. I am such a non-Londoner, I actually got lost in Shepherd's Bush before finally getting the tube to Oxford Circus. I learnt so much in such a short amount of time, it really inspired me and made me think about what I want to do as a career. I have been freaking out lately about my future, so worried that I am going to fail these exams and throw my life down the toilet that it was nice to get excited and learn about something for the sake of just learning about it. I had the most incredible fruit juice which was a blend of turmeric, carrot juice and ginger that was so delish. If you haven't heard the good news, I finally got my instagram account restored last night. It was a mission and a half and I have so much I want to say that I do intend to make a video about it. Don't forget to leave a comment. Take care. 

Have you tried any of these?


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  1. I have not tried any of these but eating proper foods is so important for your skin!

    Effortlessly Sophisticated

  2. Oh my! Sounds like a fabulous event! 👌🏽

    Candice |

  3. Sounds like it was an amazing and very education event, Kiran! Good luck with the exams!

    Shireen⎜Reflection of Sanity

  4. Sounds like you had a great time. I haven't tried any of these products.

    Jennifer | Mrs Q Beauty

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. That sounds like an event that I would have gladly participated in!

    Anne - Linda, Libra, Loca

  7. Looks like such an amazing event, sounds like you had a lovely time :) Massive good luck with you exams too :)


  8. Wow - some really good stuff in here. I'm glad gut health was mentioned - for about six months now I've been drinking apple cider vinegar in warm water every morning and it's been a game changer for my skin texture - I'd recommend it to everyone :-)

    ♥ Paula Shoe Fiend.

  9. What a beautiful and educational event!! I would love to participate in one some day!! x


  10. This sounds like such a great event and a great opportunity to find out about some amazing brands and products x

  11. Lucky girl. Would love to be a part of such. X

  12. I learned so much from your attendance! I only had one outbreak of acne that I had to go to a dermatologist for and she cleared it up with medicine. I was lucky. There are so many things that can trigger breakouts. It's something.

  13. Then's for you post. It is necessary to look and look after the skin. It is very important!


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