Dominika and Elsie: Hi everyone. Hello. Welcome back to Clean Beauty Insiders the Podcast.
Dominika: We are super happy to be back after a brief hiatus over the summer. Doing a number of things which I’m sure we can get into, on another episode. But we wanted to just give you a bit of a bonus ep.
Elsie: We did! So we’ve been on something a bit like the BYBI school holidays basically, which is why there has been a huge leave of absence from us.
Elsie: We’re excited to be back and we really want to spend some time sharing with you all of the amazing stuff that we’ve been up to over the past couple of months. That will be in the form of some pretty weighty episodes coming-up, so next week look out for ‘Funding as a Female’ which gives you a little bit of a hint as to what we’ve been doing over the past couple of months.
Elsie: No surprises there. We wanted to just check-in with everyone and give you a really quick snappy podcast, so you can have a little something to listen to on the Central Line, on the way to work. Just a 20 minutes insight, into a part of our lives that doesn’t actually have to do with work.
Dominika and Elsie: Well, it kind of does have to do with work because we’re going to talk about beauty, which is definitely about work, but it’s work that we love. We’re actually going to be talking about our respective weddings! So Elsie’s going to get married, is it the 20 day countdown?
Dominika and Elsie Yes! We’re on 23 days.
Dominika: I remember this feeling because about a year ago I was in the same place. We are both recently and are going to be recently married. So we wanted to share with you our beauty tips around what we did pre, post and during wedding and just have a bit of a chit chat about what we did and what’s going on.
Elsie and Dominika: Yes. I cannot contribute to the during and post wedding stuff right now, so I’ll be talking mostly about pre and maybe if it goes well, I’ll let you guys know in about three and a half weeks time my thoughts. Dominika, maybe you can give me some of your best beauty dos and don’ts for the big day.
Dominika: Yes! So let’s maybe start with beauty for the face, and skincare pre wedding because we can both contribute to that. A very important part of the wedding day, is the pre skincare prep, to make sure that your skin is looking healthy and glowing.
Elsie: Yes, it definitely is, I think I mentioned a few episodes ago that I was trialling facials in and around London. So a bit of an update on that. I’ve only tried two! I actually went back to Sunday Riley at Hershesons because I wholeheartedly believe in the efficacy of that facial. I went to Face Gym too but to be honest I didn’t love it. I just feel like, one, the gym theme they run with, which is fine because that is their thing, but it doesn’t have that luxurious spa-like feel. I went to the Coal Drops Yard one, which is the one in King’s Cross. Really really beautiful as the shopping bit has been done recently. I’m not even sure what you would call it, it’s not a spa. It’s more like a store. It feels like a hairdresser or Salon, that’s it! You sit in a chair and there are other people around you, while they basically beat up your face! I wasn’t convinced. So I went back to Sunday Riley, and what I like about her is that she does a lot of extractions as well. So you leave feeling cleansed and really clarified and I’ve booked her in for two days before my wedding.
Dominika: Oh yeah, nice choice.
Dominika: We both loved their facial and that’s definitely a whole other episode. But for me, I didn’t get that many facials prior my wedding.
Dominika: I was always a bit scared about just having a bad reaction or something like that, but a couple of weeks before my wedding, I did end up getting this Meso-lift; these kind of tiny little injections of hyaluronic-acid which was unbelievably expensive. I didn’t notice a huge change, I think my skin was definitely a bit plumper. I do think, could I have achieved that from just applying hyaluronic-acid serum, probably. To be honest I did that anyway, so it’s hard to know which actually gave me that like really plump look. It was probably the weather as well because I got married in extreme heat.
Dominika: Who knows. But I wouldn’t necessarily recommend spending multiple hundreds of pounds on Meso at this point, as a pre-wedding ritual. I would imagine it’s more effective if you’re a little bit older as well.
Elsie: Got it. Hyaluronic-acid, obviously a great one.
Dominika: I was convinced it was gonna be amazing because hyaluronic-acid is so good and it makes sense that if you’re doing, tiny little acupuncture injections into the face, it’s getting even deeper into the layers of the skin. I thought to myself, this is definitely going to work and I sent Elsie loads of pictures of pictures of me with grids drawn all over my face!
Elsie: It did looked quite painful.
Dominika: Actually, it wasn’t painful because it’s just so tiny, it’s not like a proper injection, more like a little pinch on the skin kind-of thing. It’s like if you get microdermabrasion, it’s that kind of feeling. So it wasn’t painful, it looked more severe than it was. I just didn’t notice a huge change afterwards, which was disappointing because it was probably one of my biggest investments for the wedding and I got that done about three weeks prior to, because they said it takes a couple of weeks for it to really shows up, so I timed it perfectly. But there was no big hurrah unfortunately, just the actual wedding which was definitely a hurrah, an overarching hurrah hurrah, but no face hurrah sadly.
Elsie: Got it. I think like that glowy bouncy skin is every bride’s dream for the big day. I kind of slightly altered my skin care routine. I mean, obviously we are we are blessed with the fact that we own a skincare brand. So, both of our routines tend to be pretty on point, but I want to go for that really glowy, really healthy skin and I don’t want to have to wear too much makeup. I would like to look quite like toned and sort of you know, highly…
Dominika: Highly Sculpted.
Elsie: Exactly, sculpted! So I got truly inspired when we went to Finland recently by an amazing woman called Katja who is a Gua-Sha expert.
Elsie: I don’t know how you become that actually, we should’ve asked her.
Dominika: Yes! We should have asked her how to become Gua-Sha experts.
Elsie: Maybe in time!
Elsie: We actually ran a breakfast for some prescient influences in Helsinki and she ran a short class alongside some of the BYBI products, which it was fantastic to watch her and we left with one of her Gua-Sha tools. For anybody who doesn’t know what a Gua-Sha is first of all, it’s like the jade-roller, but it’s the flat kind of curved stone version and she has her own one, it’s quite big and it has a curve to it so that it fits the curve of your face. I’ve been religiously Gua-Sha-ing. I just I love it! I really enjoy the feeling of it, the ritual, that cold stone on your face.
Elsie: I mean who even knows if it’s doing anything but…
Dominika: Well, Your skin is looking very sculpted and taught!
Dominika: I mean to be fair, Katja’s face is the definition of a sculpted Gua-Sha-ed face. I mean it is so…her skin condition is just phenomenal.
Dominika: It’s like, if she were a P.T. and she just had like a six-pack, that’s the equivalent of the condition of her skin, the muscles were so tight and there was no sagging, no lines. She had a really great profile.
Elsie:Yes, agreed. Really impressive and I think that’s what inspired me. So I’ve been doing it along the jaw and you really feel like it’s helping because of the size of her one. I’ve been using that as part of my nighttime routine and alongside, pretty much all of the BYBI Boosters actually because they are oil-based. They act as a really good product to help the Gua-Sha tool, kind of glide over your face. I love it with a bit of a mix of CBD and Bakuchiol especially and then I use it more generally with my skincare routine. I’ve incorporated a couple of new things as well. Firstly, we have launched Crystal Clear a BYBI cleanser, which is a clarifying cleanser, it’s got probiotics, rock-quartz crystal and salicylic acid from white willow bark. It’s really clarifying, so that is firmly in my nighttime routine now. Thank goodness we launched that within a few months of my wedding, so I was able to try it out in the run up to the wedding. I’ve also been loving Dr.Roebuck’s Noosa cleanser as well, which we picked up while we were in Singapore, as a really lovely light cream cleanser. So that doubled with Crystal Clear is actually really nice and effective and you get that like, none stripping feel from both of them but you do feel cleansed and just quite soft and supple.
Dominika: I really like that. I’m such a fan of cream cleansers. It’s like my real sweet spot. We have to work on one soon. On the topic of Dr.Roebucks, I was using the AHA brightening mask, I think it’s called Daintree, that is really really nice to use a couple of days before your wedding, as a brightening mask. It has loads of grapefruit acids in it. It just generally gets rid of dead skin cells and leaves your skin really bright and glowing. It really gives you a bit of a brightening lift and then just following up some Vitamin C as well would be just a treat!
Elsie: Mhmm Yes!
Dominika: You’ve just reminded me of one of my favourite facial rollers, the Nurse Jamie one, which I sometimes use really regularly and then I put it in a bag and then I don’t see it for like three months! Typical me. But I was definitely doing that a lot, prior to the wedding. Again around the jaw to cheekbone. I like doing it and it does make my skin a little bit red but it does feels like it’s really done its job and I think that’s a really really effective facial tool. It’s a little bit easier than a Gua-Sha, if you are new to facial tools. All you have to do is kind of go up and down and everything else is done for you. Whereas the Gua-Sha is just a little bit harder because of all the nooks and crannies which can be a little bit tricky to figure out what goes where. Katja has loads of demos and workshops on her Instagram as well. Her Instagram handle is @Katjakokko, we will put it in the show notes just to be clear on how to spell that because it is a Finnish name.
Dominika: If you want to pick that up.
Elsie and Dominika: So..what about body?
Elsie: Well maybe we can explain a bit about our dresses? Because that will put the, what we did to our bodies into context!
Dominika: So my dress, if you go to Clean Beauty Insider’s Instagram, my lovely photographer, Elsie took my favourite snap from the whole wedding. Obviously, she knows my angles.
Elsie: I was like go and stand there, by the view!
Dominika: So you can actually see my dress there for those that are super interested.
Dominika: I had a corseted, lace bodice top and then a very fitted chiffon skirt. It was a dress that had that break in the middle. It was quite fitted. It was intentionally fitted. I made it even more so, once I had my final version. So for me body prep was definitely around getting rid of lumps and bumps because I wanted my silhouette to be very smooth.
Dominika: I may or may not have worn some quite heavy duty spanks! But that’s just between you and us.
Elsie: How they make you sweat, oh don’t they.
Dominika: Yes! I was I was really pleased to take them off actually. They do make you sweat. However, that definitely helped with the outer silhouette. There is no shame if control underwear is available to you, I highly recommend it. For me it was about smoothing out lumps and bumps. Something I also did, aside from eating healthy and going to the gym religiously, was dry body brushing.
Dominika: I found it really helped and it helped kind of lift my buttocks area as well, which was a focus for me, I was brushing upwards and I really felt that there was that movement and all the blood was flowing there, and it definitely helps the cellulite as well. I used a dry brush which is the best one I’ve ever found, it’s an Australian brand and they are called IKO and the bristles are just so stiff and I’m sure that it took off about six layers off my skin, but at the same time, it is so good! So a really firm dry dry brush is, I think the key to a particularly smooth lower body and is good to get rid of the evil cellulite.
Elsie: My dress, is a Halfpenny one and it has a more evening gown feel to it andI have my arms and my back out. It’s fairly fitted around the kind of top part of my tummy. So a lot of prep is going into getting rid of the lumps. I really want a smooth back and arms because that is almost fully out. So, I went back to the O.G. coffee scrub. There are many recipes available in the Clean Beauty the book, should you be interested but essentially, you literally use coffee mixed with a bit of oil if you want. Sometimes I’ll grab a Frank Body and they do a cocoa one and it smells so good! It’s just delicious, if I’m feeling lazy. We saw them recently in Singapore (Frank Body), and we grabbed a couple of their bits then. I find it really helps. It’s a little bit like dry brushing in that way, where it helps to kind of smooth and just really improve the top layer of skin, which is nice.Then I picked up your tip!
Elsie: Which is a good-in.
Elsie: We’re looking each other, like who’s gonna tell them?
Dominika: Yes! the glycolic acid. This is the best thing that you can do to get rid of dry skin on the body. I actually just like bathe in it sometimes, well not literally!
Dominika: I like to just pour on my arms, because I sometimes get ingrowns and little bumps on my arms. Side note! The Ordinary glycolic acid 7% is super cheap, £5 for a BIG BOTTLE. I think it’s 250 ml. Just pop it on a cotton pad or directly on the body, sometimes I just pour on. If you’ve got any sort of breakouts, dry skin or any sort of bumps, it just literally disintegrates the glue between the dead skin cells and they all just fall off and then you’re left with such soft skin. It’s great prior to putting on any sort of fake tan as well. So I notice even the Isle of Paradise, their tan remover is very heavily based on glycol like acid. So if you’ve had any tanning disasters as well you don’t have to spend £15 on theirs, just buy The Ordinary’s tub of glycolic acid, 7% is pretty strong. I think the only one stronger that I’ve found was the Nip + Fab extreme pads. I think that’s 10%, so that would literally strip you! So depending on how extreme you want to go, The Ordinary is definitely great value for money and it doesn’t really require cotton pads, if you just massage it in.
Dominika: So that is a great tip. You can use it on your legs, on your ankles like around your feet, before you get tan, on your elbows, just anywhere on the skin to make your skin really soft. As I said, if you’ve got any breakouts on the back or your arms or anything like that, or on your arse if you going to wear spandex, just to put it out there is it’s also great for that as well.
Dominika: I mean! You know, just being honest.
Elsie: No no that’s good.
Elsie: It is really good for body acne which loads of people get, it’s really really common.
Dominika: It makes sense though. If you think about gym clothes, it totally makes sense because your skin is suffocating between like lycra and sweat. So imagine if that was our face, of course we would break out.
Elsie: Agreed. What I’ve been doing more recently after I’ve glycolic-ed, is going in with Galinee’s body milk. Galinee is a great brand who are focused on microbiome skincare which is becoming hotter and hotter at the moment in the beauty industry. Their body milk is really nice. It works! It’s got probiotics, it works to keep the skin’s microbiome nice and healthy. So what I find is, if I’ve used something like an acid, this just helps to kind of balance and keeps the skin feeling soft and not too stripped. I’ve also been trying to get better at body moisturising.
Dominika: I’m terrible with that, but I really do like that Galinee body milk.
Dominika: Hot tip for tanning which we could probably jump onto as well, but oil-free moisturisers after you’ve got your tan, is absolutely key. Oil breaks down your tan which I learned the hard way on one holiday to Thailand, I was bathing in coconut oil! My tan just disintegrated. So again, any sort of like oil-free body lotion, which I think the Galinee one pretty much is, is really good.
Elsie: So tans are sometimes are a very tricky one. Dominika is a big spray tanner, I feel like you’ve influenced me. I am newer to the spray tanning game and because my wedding is in October, I’m not going to be naturally tanned and for me it’s nice I think to have a little bit of colour.
Dominika: In my defence I’m not an Essex orange tanner, it’s just because I hate going in the sun. So instead of going in the sun, I just tan and then pretend like I’ve been in the sun. Then when I come home from my holiday I just wash it off and I’m back to being pale me! Seeing as London is just getting so unbelievably hot during the summer as well, it is good just to have a couple of things in your arsenal. Although, this summer I have been loving Isle of Paradise. I think we both have. I think they are a great one for weddings as well. If you just need a little area tanned, an arm or the chest area, which you sometimes do, if you haven’t got your whole body on show. That would be a good option instead of getting a head to toe spray tan.
Dominika and Elsie: If you’re brave enough to self-tan before your wedding, you would have to be a Pro and have that glycolic acid to hand!
Elsie: I certainly am not brave enough. So I’ve been doing some research into good weddings specific tanners. I think where tans can go wrong, are areas that are probably going to get a fair amount of camera time i.e. the hands.
Elsie: With tanning, I’ve been doing a lot of research and been doing some trials which is actually sounds a little ridiculous, trial tans for my wedding. But I really want to be careful. I have actually found a man who has been in the industry for a very long time and has dubbed himself the Tom Ford of tanning, and that is a hashtag! He’s called James Harknett at The Away Spa at The W Hotel in central London. He’s expensive, but he’s great, really really good. I’ve just had my trial with him, it’s really subtle. He uses a mix of different tans I think. I cannot vouch enough, for the fact that he is clean, it’s very difficult to get a clean natural tanning brand. By clean I mean clean-natural.
Elsie: People see me, they’re sometimes like, have you been away on holiday? But not like whoa you’ve really been away! So I’m committed to him and I’m very happy, and Im going to get a tan done on the Thursday before my wedding which is on the Sunday.
Dominika: Good timing.
Dominika: I discovered a lovely lady called Claire, who is at a salon and in Islington called the Walnut Club, they do mobile tanning. I discovered her in the summer. She did quite a few tans of mine as well as my Hen-do and then I got another one done just before I flew to Dubai for my wedding. She is fantastic.
Dominika: She’s in my opinion the best tan I’ve ever had. But she only services in specific areas like Clapham, Westminster, kind of west onwards. So if you’re in that area, highly recommended. I think the tan is £40 and they actually have a wedding package as well. I think you can buy three tans and then they give you a free oil-free lotion. I think that package is around £150 or there’s a savings deal and you maybe have some pre tans ahead of your wedding as a bit of a trial. I would definitely suggest you get a trail tan before your wedding. I’ve had many spray tans in my life and this is by far the best. I’m very thoughtful when it comes to the hands and she’s very good at the hands, elbows, and feet. She knows her stuff and she’s for weddings as well.
Dominika: So checkout Claire at Walnut Club.
Elsie: So let’s move onto hair, I don’t think either of us have done anything drastically special.
Dominika: Oh, I did get hair extensions though, which I think is quite drastic for me.
Dominika: It wasn’t drastic, you couldn’t really tell, I think you were the only person that night who really noticed. Probably because you just know my hair so well. I got them for volume just to thicken my hair out because mine is quite thin. It enabled me to have a bit of an up-do, on my wedding day and were tape in temporary tapes that lasted for around six weeks.
Dominika: I literally loved it. I just loved having thicker hair. It’s my dream. But alas, it was a one off. So that’s one thing I did.
Elsie: Yeah, I have just been working tirelessly with Glass House Salon in East London who we’ve mentioned many times over the years, we’ve known them for a very long time. They were the ones responsible for my bleach blonde on my request, I must say. They have also been the ones who have helped me get out of it. They’ve been working with me for my last few appointments on getting my hair back, to just looking like a really natural blonde. I’m wearing my hair up in a low bun. I don’t want it to look streaky because it’s quite close against my head. They’ve been great and I would always recommend whenever anybody asks for a more cleaner, natural hair salon, I suggest them, they are my first go to.
Elsie: A little bit expensive, but I would say worth every penny.
Elsie: Makeup lastly maybe, to finish up?
Dominika: Yeah. So I mean I had a makeup artist in Dubai
Dominika: Her kit was very specific to her. She had a lot of just mainstream brands. I think I went quite subtle with my makeup, as I don’t typically wear a lot of makeup anyway. So to come out with a full face would have been shocking for a number of people!
Dominika: I just kept it quite simple. I wore a very pale nude lip as well. Then in the evening when I changed outfits, I put a red lip on. That was my evening look, which lasted a really long time. I’m not sure what she used, she just blended a load of different colours and products on her hand for the red lip, but it did last a really long time which was impressive.
Dominika: She did my eyebrows quite strongly though. I had to bring that back a bit because again, I didn’t want to walk out looking like a different person which is always a danger with wedding makeup. In terms of brands it was kind of generic like Nars and Mac. She was a Dubai based makeup artist and there wasn’t much choice on the green front unfortunately.
Elsie: I’m using Tabby Castro who again, is somebody else that we’ve known for years at Clean Beauty and then at BYBI, she actually did our makeup for our book Clean Beauty and then she’s done on our makeup on shoots and individually on a number of times, so I really know her and trust her. She’s ex Mac and has been transitioning her kit over. She’s got a really good portfolio of experience from commercial to editorial and she now does a lot of bridal because she actually got married herself last year. So she loves bridal now.
Elsie: She’s doing myself and all of my bridesmaids. We’ve got a very tight schedule. I’m excited because I just feel like she knows what I need and what I want. I think makeup is probably one of the things that if you can, it’s best to get a trial or at least know a lot about the person who’s doing it, so we’ll see how it goes.
Elsie: We’ll have to report back on what it actually looks like.
Dominika: Yeah well, I’ll have to return the favour and get your glamorous snap at your wedding to put on Clean Beauty Insiders.
Dominika: So guys 20th of October, stay tuned!
Elsie: Yes!, for the outcome of everything that we’ve just discussed, and the months worth practicing to sculpt my face with a Gua-Sha!
Dominika: It’s so worth it. You’re going to have a great time. You’ll have a great day.
Elsie: We had a great day at yours so…
Dominika: Oh! I wish we could do it again! So upsetting.
Elsie: I was saying the other day we just should renew our vows every ten years, and everyone should just do it, which is just really fun.
Dominika: I’ll actually be at another wedding on my anniversary which is always great.
Elsie: Well Autumn weddings seem to becoming more and more popular.
Dominika: It’s true. It’s a great season to get married I think. I got married in London on the 27th of October and it was absolutely glorious. It was crisp but very sunny very autumnal. Yeah. It was a beautiful day.
Elsie: So nice.
Elsie: So we hope that was useful. It was just a quick one. We will be back next week with more! But if you have any questions, definitely send them over and yeah! keep your eye on the Insta and the website, for some new changes coming very soon.
Dominika: Yes. We will put all of the products and services that we mentioned in the show notes so you can delve into them, wedding or not because they’re still great services, regardless.
Elsie and Dominika: Thanks so much guys. Thanks so much for listening to Clean Beauty Insiders. You can now listen, watch and read everything that you’ve just heard on CleanBeautyInsiders.com, Apple Spotify or Youtube.
Dominika: Don’t forget to give us a follow on Instagram as well as on Clean Beauty Insiders and BYBIbeauty