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M.E. SkinLab Founder Michele Evrard Talks Cosmetics 27

m e skinlab interview

What is your background?

M.E.: I am a pharmacist. I studied Pharmacy in Belgium. I wanted to work in a lab on formulation and product development. I started as an intern at Max Factor in the US, only I was integrated in the marketing department. I went on to work at Max Factor for 2 years in product development. That’s how I started my career in fragrance and cosmetics. I learned most of the job there and owe much to the incredible women who were at the beginning of what this industry has become! I have been in this industry for over 23 years, working on product development and marketing in companies such as L’Oréal, Christian Dior Parfums, Boucheron Parfums and Matis skin care. I decided to create my own products in 2008 and launched Baume 27 in 2009.

What led you to create the Cosmetics 27 line?

M.E.: My passion for product and innovation, clearly! I had worked on the concept of a unique formula for 3 years after I had discovered the virtues of Centella Asiatica. I have always been fascinated  by cellular regeneration. It was when I left my last position and set up my own consulting firm that I decided to develop that formula for myself. It was the Baume 27. That was the beginning of the Cosmetics 27 line that came out the year after.

What differentiates your line from other skin care lines, in particular other natural skin care lines?

M.E.: My philosophy is not so much about selling or adding another product to the market. After all, everything, or almost everything, is already out there! I created my line with the idea that it helps take care of the skin in a primary way. The underlying concept is homeostasis, the principle of equilibrium of any living organism. I want to help women have healthier skin. If it is healthy, it will look good. If you look good, you will feel beautiful. I didn’t want to sell claims, only results. I wanted to be authentic.

My products are all unique, in concept and formulae. It is not a conventional line. I create products that I feel are useful and that will bring something different. All our products are natural and thought to bring results. We validate the results with extensive testing. The line is pioneering in the field of natural cosmeceuticals. (Read even more about Cosmetics 27.)

What anti-aging or other advice would you give about skin care?

M.E.: Get to know your skin! You will know how to treat it and maintain it better. Too many women use and abuse products and treatments. Be good to your skin.

Adopt a simple routine, clean your skin gently, don’t abuse the sun (that’s not to say stay away from it!). Massage skin as often as you can, it is a the first step to prevent skin from aging. Drink a lot of water, and don’t smoke or laugh too much!

In terms of skin care, I recommend mixing the different products that you use, in your hands, before you apply them. It helps achieve the right formula and texture for a specific skin. You dose the products better and will know how much you need to apply by testing and feeling different amounts. If you apply them one on top of the other, you might use too much or not get the best out of each product. This is how I use my products; you can adapt them to your needs. For example, if the Baume 27 is too rich for daytime, you can add a few drops of the Essence 27 and you will have your own preferred texture with the benefits of both products. The formulae are all thought to be complementary and not additional. It is not the skin that adapts to the products, the product can be adapted depending on the skin need and condition.

What are you passionate about related to skin care?

M.E.: I am passionate about what will become “integrative beauty”. I am interested in integrative medicine, which is maybe more popular in the US than it is in our countries (Europe). In essence, integrative medicine focuses on the patient’s wellness and health rather than treating a disease. It means that the patient is at the center, and takes charge of his own health. It takes its roots in oriental medicine and therapies, including allopathy, homeopathy, osteopathy and traditional medicine. It’s medicine that treats the body and soul. Beauty will get there! I like the idea that there is not one treatment solution for all, but that we are all different. It has already started in the US with the concept of integrative spas.

Holistic Methods for Improving Hair Health

improving hair health

What Causes Hair Loss After an Illness?

After a harrowing winter, it’s such a relief to finally step into the season of hazy spring days. However, if you happened to pick up a few nasty February flus, fevers and/or colds (like me!), you may find that your hair is shedding a bit more than usual. Why? Hair loss usually occurs 6-12 weeks after the offending event. From personal experience, I understand how utterly harrowing seeing extra hairs in the drain, comb and on your pillow can be, but this type of hair loss (called telogen effluvium) always stops and has the ability to reverse – provided you take steps to re-balance your body. In this article I’ll share a few useful tips on how to get your hair back on track.

Mindfulness for Improved Hair Health

Stress and emotional upset often present themselves physically: You may feel more tired than usual, achy or even sick. One of the many reasons for this is because stress can affect your hormone levels and how your body metabolises and absorbs nutrients. In the long run, this can lead to nutritional deficiencies and endocrine imbalances…and soon enough, hair loss.

Really, the most important thing to do is to take care of yourself both mentally and physically. Although it may seem glaringly obvious, we often tend to forget to look after ourselves properly!

First, eat three nourishing and balanced meals a day – not processed foods that can lack essential vitamins and minerals – and two healthy snacks in-between. This will help sustain energy levels to your highly prolific hair cells. Secondly, take time out to unwind and reflect. Be it yoga, meditation, an art class, a stroll through Central Park or reading your favourite book on a park bench or a café, if it makes you feel relaxed, go for it.

“Hair Care” Means Scalp Care

Stress and illness can flare up dandruff, which is proven to worsen hair shedding. Avoid this unbecoming double whammy. Use a flaky/itchy scalp shampoo and toner daily, such as PK Flaky Itchy Scalp Shampoo and Scalp Toner, until irritation clears.

Blood Tests: Ferritin Levels and Hair Loss

If hair loss after an illness (or any hair loss for that matter) persists for longer than 6 weeks, I suggest you have blood tests done. You may even want to have them taken sooner if you are really worried. Your doctor will most likely do a full blood profile, but also make sure he/she checks your ferritin levels. This is a stored iron that helps to produce hair cell protein. Be sure to request it specifically, as your doctor may not automatically test for it.

While the reference range for ferritin levels varies between different laboratories, levels need to be at least 80 ug/L (micrograms per litre) for your hair to function optimally. Other figures to look out for are B12, Vitamin D, Serum Iron and thyroid function. Read more about Vitamin D rich foods and hair.

Take Action Early to Avoid Losing Hair

If you have recently been ill, or are currently under the weather, take a nutritional supplement to boost your immune system and help your body (and hair) recover. Look for a good all-round multi-vitamin and increase your protein intake at mealtimes. We suggest you include at least 120g (in weight) of any primary protein at breakfast and lunch. For example, 2 eggs, a 120g fillet of salmon, grilled chicken breast, or serving of steak.

Premium Shaving Products for Men

travel beauty shaving kit

We hope you thoroughly spoiled mom with lots of lavish gifts on Mother’s Day. Now it’s time to turn our attention to the men in our lives. Put down the tie and boxers and get dad something he really needs.

Though beards have become a bit of a thing in the past few years, shaving will never go out of style…and neither will quality shaving products. Finding the perfect combination of shaving essentials that best suits a specific skin type can be tricky, and many men can’t be bothered with tricky skincare situations. Travel Beauty is here to “shave the day” with a soup-to-nuts skin care and shaving supply kit. Let us spoil your favorite man (or you!) with our top-notch tools and smoothing, soothing products, so you’ll never suffer through a scathing shave again.

Shaving Kit Essential: A Great Shave Starts With a Clean Slate

Men’s skin produces more oil and sweat than women’s, so proper cleansing is important. The gentle yet effective B. Kamins Laboratories Vegetable Cleanser is the perfect pre-shave skin care step to start your shave with a totally clean slate. You can follow your wash with Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes. These travel-friendly, use anytime/anywhere cleansing and toning wipes are saturated with Ursa Major’s 4-in-1 Essential Face Tonic. 4-in-1 Essential Face Tonic is a potent skin care cure-all that removes oil and grime, dissolves dead skin, clears blocked pores, and combats blemishes, razor bumps and ingrown hairs. These can also be used post shave, it’s up to you! Use them regularly and they will deliver clearer, brighter, calmer skin.

premium-shaving-products-for-men

Shaving Kit Essential: Tools of the Trade

Your skin is now prepped and ready to be shaved. Even if your skin is not particularly sensitive, shaving can be harsh. Even those with sturdy skin can never go wrong with a shaving cream formulated for sensitive skin. Taylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Street Collection Shaving Cream for Sensitive Skin is a Travel Beauty favorite. It contains no parabens or allergens, making it especially suitable for even the most sensitive skin. A small amount easily works into a creamy lather that gives great glide and moisture; making a smooth shave a cinch every time.

Don’t Forget Your Shaving Brush

Nothing upgrades your shave like a luxury hand made shaving brush. Using a shaving brush generates more lather, lifts the hair on your face, opens up your pores and naturally exfoliates your skin. All this leads to a closer shave with less irritation, razor burn, and ingrown hairs. Taylor Of Old Bond Street Pure Badger Shaving Brush in Imitation Ivory Travel Case is handmade with the highest quality hair. Its convenient travel case makes it easy to take with you anywhere you go.

Shaving Kit Essential: Post-shave Skin Soothers

After shaving, pores need closing and skin needs soothing. Given their soothing and hydrating properties, you can follow your shave with Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes. They will also help close up your pores. Last, slather on some Mr. Taylor Luxury After Shave Balm or Ursa Major’s Fortifying Face Balm. These high-performance moisturizers, both paraben free, are the perfect solutions for sensitivity, irritation, dryness and blemishes (including ingrown hairs). The powerful formulas contain active natural ingredients like witch hazel, frankincense and lavender to instantly soothe any problem areas and leave skin comfortable, hydrated…not to mention, handsome.

Overnight Beauty Essentials

overnight travel beauty essentials toiletry kit

Even a simple overnight trip can turn disastrous if you suddenly discover you’ve forgotten to pack one of your beauty essentials. We are here to save you from ever suffering this unfortunate fate! Travel Beauty has curated the ultimate collection of overnight beauty essentials in one convenient travel kit. Use this product guide as your packing list and you’re guaranteed to have a gorgeous getaway every time. Hitting the beach? Be sure to check out our beach bag beauty essential guide specifically for the sand and sun!

Overnight Essentials: Shower with Power

Starting your day off with a sub-optimal shower can dampen anyone’s spirits, so a fragrant shower gel and body cream duo is a definite overnight beauty essential. We love Compagnie De Provence travel size shower gels and body milks. They come in a variety of scents, but you can never go wrong with Olive and Lavender Shower Gel and Incense Lavender Body Cream. The petite size makes these products perfect for a quick overnight trip.

Overnight Face Essentials

Sometimes an unfamiliar (and/or uncomfortable) bed can lead to us suffering through a night of broken sleep. But you’d never know it by looking at our faces! How do we keep our skin looking fresh no matter what? By packing our favorite essential face products. We keep skin clean with travel size Elemis Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash and follow that with Institut Esthederm E.V.E. Serum Source and Juvena Specialist Skin Nova SC Eye Serum. No overnight travel beauty kit is complete without these. This product trifecta will keep skin smooth and bright, even after a rough or restless night.

An Overnight Essential for Beautiful Hair

You may choose to skip the shampoo on your overnight trip, but your hairstyle will nonetheless need refreshing at some point. Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defence is an overnight beauty essential for hair you’ll always find in our travel kit. It protects, conditions, tames, smoothes and adds shine…with just a few sprays. We especially love Daily Damage Defence to protect our hair from those high heat hotel hair dryers.

We’ve kept this overnight essentials travel kit intentionally pared down. Think you need to round your own bag out with a few more products? Shop Travel Beauty’s entire collection of luxury beauty and grooming products now.

Negative Ion Water: Benefits for Beauty

vine care water

Where do I begin? Vine Care Water is negative ion water that was first developed in Japan for NASA to clean the lenses and mirrors on space bound vehicles and satellites. Bacteria cannot live in a pH 12.5 environment, so it was made as a germ-killing cleanser.

Negative ion water is 170 times more absorbent than water, so on its own it provides moisture. Used in conjunction with hair and skin care products, negative ion water works as a driver – so it boosts the effectiveness of products used subsequently.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Hair Care

The negative charge of the water is attracted to – and bonds to – hair.  It helps strengthen fine hair, making it feel thicker. It boosts the strength of conditioners, treatments or styling aids to amplify the benefits of these products. It can also be mixed with your shampoo or conditioner at a rate of 10%, or can be sprayed onto hair, roots to ends, before leave-in conditioners or styling aids are applied. This is a fabulous tool for thick, curly hair as well; read more here about how to use it.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Skin Care

Care Water works great as a skin toner or clarifier that also adds moisture (most products that clarify tend to dry the skin). Many of my clients have had success clearing up some forms of acne with Care Water as well. Layered with other products, it boosts the benefits of those products. Here’s an easy experiment to give you an idea of what Care Water does:

  • Put a few drops of oil into water. You will see it separates.
  • Then spray the oil and water with Care Water.
  • You will see it actually reduces the size of the oil drops so that the water and oil mix together.
  • This is the same way Care Water breaks up and clears away oils on the skin.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Scrapes & Cuts

Sprayed on scrapes or cuts, Care Water cleans the wounds (by killing bacteria) and moisturizes, therefore promoting healing. It’s currently being used in research at burn hospitals in Japan with very positive results.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Teeth

Care Water also works for brushing your teeth – both cleansing and whitening. Read all about our smile-cleaning secrets here. Don’t swallow it, though! It is not for internal use. The pH is too extreme for that.

Care Water is the ideal multi-tasking travel companion. You can find this cure-all wonder water in travel size here at Travel Beauty.