Meet the Maker: Indie Lee

I recently had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Indie Lee, the founder of Indie Lee & Co. a clean and eco luxe line of skincare, formulated with efficacious ingredients that combine science + plant botanicals enhancing the health of your body or skin. We sat down and talked about clean beauty, wellness and her launch in Sephora Australia.

Indie’s story is unique and a heart warming. She started the line over ten years ago when she was diagnosed with a fatal brain tumour that doctors felt could be environmentally derived and attributed to something as simple as what she was putting on her skin. After learning that up to 60% of what we apply to our skin, including toxic ingredients in conventional skincare, may be absorbed in as little as 26 seconds, Indie had her awakening. After surviving a successful surgery on Earth Day 2009, she embarked upon a wellness journey to create a clean beauty collection dedicated to inspiring and empowering others to be mindful about what they put on their skin as well as into their body.

“When I was given a finite amount of time to live, the world became technicolor – I now appreciate every moment and I feel very fortunate to be creating a platform that will allow others to do the same. Education and empowerment are my driving forces and this line is the medium enabling me to pay my knowledge forward.” – Indie

The clean and luxurious collection of skin and beauty products will be launching in Sephora, Australian on March 20th, 2019. Indie is a kind, genuine and positive person who started her line purely out of her passion to live and literally to beat the odds of a life threatening disease. It was fascinating and inspiring to meet Indie and to learn more about her story and products. Enjoy the interview below.

How does a typical day start for you?

Every morning starts the same for me. I begin the day by mediating and taking that time for myself to get centred, I then pick up my phone to text my business partner and best friend GMS, which stands for ‘Good Morning Sunshine’. I then go look after my daughters, puppies and make myself a smoothie.

What is your morning beauty routine like?

My morning beauty routine is quite simple, as I don’t always cleanse in the morning. I do my thorough cleanse in the evening, but if I wake up and feel like my skin needs a good cleanse then I use the Indie Lee Purifying Face Wash. I typically start my morning routine with the COQ-10 Toner (this is my a.m. cleanser), it really helps to fight free radical damage and is a preventive to environmental pollution and living in an urban setting. I then follow this by using the Stem Cell Serum, because I’m 47! I follow this with the Daily Vitamin Infusion, (which has plant ceramides in it) followed by the Daily Skin Nutrition and the I-Waken Eye Cream and I’m good to GO!

What was the first skincare product you developed?

The first product I developed is not in the line anymore, but it was a moisturising oil. It had jojoba, apricot kernel, lavender and chamomile oils, a really lovely and gentle all over body oil. The other product developed first was the Coconut Citrus Scrub, it exfoliates whilst hydrating the skin so after you’ve used it you don’t need to follow with a body lotion or moisturiser. I developed this body scrub as I suffered from Rheumatoid Arthritis and one of the side effects from the therapy was very dry skin – this scrub helped keep my skin super soft and hydrated!

What are your hero products from your line?

I would have to say the hero products from the line are the COQ-10 Toner, The Awaken Eye Serum, the Purifying Face Wash (this is very popular for oilier skin types) and the Radiance Renewal Pads.

What’s on your bedside stand?

It’s my phone, a noise cancelling machine (so I can really go to sleep), books as I am forever reading. I love reading and the current book I’m reading is: While You Sleep, it’s  about Auto Immune Diseases and I just finished reading Crazy Rich Girlfriends, it’s a great light hearted book that’s absolutely hilarious.

What are your tips to keeping skin healthy?

I believe that what you put on your body is just as important as what you put in your body. It’s wonderful if you’re going to use clean skincare but you have to match that with healthy eating. Don’t over-cleanse – work with your skin type and use a cleanser that won’t strip your skins natural oils. I don’t think we are getting enough hydration and we need to think about what we are drinking to make sure we are staying hydrated. My most important tip is BE KIND to yourself – we are living in a Instagram-selfie generated world and we are really hard on ourselves! We need to start loving ourselves more and believing in ourselves! Have more confidence in yourself, self confidence is one of the best beauty tips I could ever give someone – LOVE yourself!

ISUN BALANCING ROUTINE

ISUN Skincare need no introduction, this artisanal, wildcrafted and organic line have definitely made an impact on my skin in a positive manner. I have been lucky enough to incorporate more of the products in my routines and have thoroughly enjoyed the results as well.

The brands ethos is all about pure and pristine ingredients which have a direct correlation when using the products and getting the results you’re after for healthy skin. There are many organic or “natural” products on the market but there is definitely something unique and special about ISUN.

This three step trio has been conscientiously tested for over a period of time to see how it  would work with my skin as well as other products in my am and pm routines. What I love about the products is that they work well layered with each other or when used alone. They perform effectively as a trio and can also be used with other skincare or makeup.

First Step – Cleanse with the Lavender Sage Facial Cleansing Gele. The combination of aloe vera, green tea, sage, goji berry, lavender and other purifying herbs allows oily/combination skin to be thoroughly cleansed without being stripped of your skins natural oils. A great gentle yet soothing cleanser that works well in the am or pm to help calm inflamed, congested and acne prone skin types.

Second Step – Moisturise and treat with the Sunstone Facial Oil. This face oil is the perfect synergy of herbs and botanical ingredients that help hydrate and balance oily skin. It contains the queen of herbs – Holy Basil also know as Tulsi, Hibiscus, Sandalwood, Echinacea, Barberry and Milk Thistle as well as other purifying plant based botanicals to aid and assist your skins ability to purify and repair itself. In my opinion this is one of the best facial oils made specifically for oily/combination skin types that addresses the main concern. The ingredients chosen are highly beneficial for the (oily/combo) skin to help revitalise, repair and restore your complexion. It also makes for the perfect dewy glow when mixed with a little foundation or tinted moisturiser.

Third step – Treat eyes with the Revive Eye Gel. It’s definitely not easy finding an eye treatment or cream that works or delivers the results you’re after. The eye area is a very delicate and sensitive part of the face and requires gentle and effective care. The first time I applied the revive Eye Gel, I noticed a reduction in the puffiness around my eyes. Which is why I love using this in my morning routine. I find it particularly helpful to ease swelling and soothe the eye area leaving a light, refreshing texture on the skin. It contains an abundance of vital ingredients and herbs like caffeine, cucumber, hyaluronic acid that help to minimise dark circles, puffiness and hydrate the eye area.

ISUN products are truly eco and organic. The skincare is made with care, active ingredients, healing herbs and integrity. It’s more than just a routine, it’s a daily reminder to care of your health, yourself and your skin.

 

 

 

AIKA WELLNESS

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Aika Wellness launched late 2017, Aika is the world’s first 100% certified organic Ayurvedic inspired range of skincare for purists. As the winner of Australian Organic’s (ACO) Cosmetic of the Year award in its launch year, Aika sets a new standard in luxury certified organic skincare.

Created in a wellness spa environment over fourteen years of concentrated research and hands on spa therapy, Aika skincare draws on its founder Eranthi Bonney’s Sri Lankan heritage steeped in Ayurveda and her extensive background in owning and running wellness spas.

Uniquely formulated with spa grade high performance results, Aika sources only the most premium certified organic ingredients available worldwide for the ultimate spa at home sensory ritual. All products are lovingly hand made in small batches in Melbourne, at Aika’s own certified organic studio ‘The Lighthouse’.

More than functional skincare, Aika’s philosophy is about the whole person where the goal is to awaken the healing power of the skin, body, emotions and mind so that true healing and rejuvenation can take place.

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Daily Rituals for lasting wellbeing

A key concept in Aika’s skincare is the Ayurvedic practice of dinacharya, meaning the ‘daily routine’ to support your body’s natural energy and daily rhythmic cycle. Aika’s products empower you to set aside precious time each day to take care of yourself, to love and honour the skin and body you’re in.

This daily regimen of caring for ourselves through adequate rest, healthy eating, movement and spiritual practice has a cumulative affect that is quite powerful and results in a greatly improved sense of wellbeing in a very short period of time.

Here are three simple steps for your morning and evening rituals to help support your wellbeing and get glowing skin with Aika skincare.

AM – ARISE

  1. Rise and Shine. Ideally wake up with the sun. After a refreshing shower smooth over Aika’s Body Anoint to lock in moisture and keep your skin soft and silken. Cleansing your face is an important morning step and Aika’s Pure Polishes are a luxurious treat to help gently exfoliate and remove dead skin cells that have been shed overnight to reveal a glowing face.
  2. Get Moving. A walk, run, yoga or stretching can help you get your mind and body ready for the day. Aika’s Tonics help this awakening process by infusing your skin with herbal extracts and essences to refresh, remineralise and increase your skin’s circulation for a new day.
  3. Nourish yourself. Eat a breakfast packed with whole fruit and vegetables to give you the energy to perform at your peak. For your face, Aika’s Balms are concentrated skin food that melt into your skin to lock in hydration, providing essential nutrients your skin needs during the day while strengthening its barrier function from environmental damage.

 

PM – RETREAT

  1. Remove the day. De-stress by having a warm bath or shower with Aika’s herbal salt Body Polishes. Thoroughly cleanse your face with Aika’s Deep Cleansers which contain clay for drawing out toxins and pollution from the day and removing makeup.
  2. Restore your mojo. Replenish your prana or energy with a mindful activity such as meditation, breathing exercises or visualisation to move from the external focus of the day to an internal one of connecting to your essence. Aika’s Ayuressences are created to balance your energy and calm the emotions while promoting your skin’s overnight cellular turnover.
  3. Increase the peace. Dim the lights or light a candle to help your mind adjust to slowing down. Aika’s Elixirs facilitates your skin’s overnight renewal process with a boost of anti-oxidants, vitamins and essential fatty acids for ultimate rejuvenation. Finally massage your head with Aika’s Hair and Scalp elixir which helps slow down the mind and soothe the emotions preparing you for a restful sleep.

 

 

CLAYTOX / DETOX FACE MASQUE

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There is nothing better than a detox face masque session in the luxury of your own home. We all have our skincare rituals – one of my favourite at-home spa day rituals is using a clay based masque to pamper, nourish and detox my skin. My favourite way to do this is with my Claytox Detox Face Masque.

Claytox is an Australian skincare company specialising in natural, organic, handmade and vegan face masques. All the masques are ethically sourced and always made without the use any additives and chemicals, making Claytox Masques truly natural and pure.

The masque is made out of Alumina Silicate (Sea Clay), which is packed full of natural occurring minerals like calcium, magnesium, bromide, potassium and sulphate. These minerals have unique properties allowing the skin to fight off free radicals, promote cell renewal, repair skin cells, balance moisture and soothe the skin.

It comes in a pack that includes a silicone bowl, spoon and bamboo brush for easy application. The clay masques must be mixed in the silicon bowl (provided) so it doesn’t interfere or react with the natural clay. Mixing the clay with metal can counteract the natural properties of the masque. You can also mix the clay with your favourite face mists, yoghurt and honey for extra nourishment.

 

 

 

 

During the week I make sure I set some time aside to do my face masque ritual. Having oily, congested and skin prone to breakouts, masking is a very important step that helps purify and heal my skin. Alumni Silicate being such a gentle and nutrient dense ingredient allows my skin to receive a deep yet gentle cleanse without stripping or drying it off.

I felt in love with this product straight away. After my first use the results were amazing. My skin looked refreshed and more vibrant, giving it a beautiful glow. In addition, it can also be used on your body as a gentle exfoliant, whilst helping the reduction of cellulite. It works as a great spot or t-zone treatment to target those stubborn blackheads or pimples. Immediately after the first use I noticed that my pores were more refined as it cleans all the debris and oil from them.

I highly recommend the Claytox Detox Face Masque, not only for its results but also for the relaxing spa ritual in the comfort of your own home.

 

 

 

BORN AGAIN BODY

MEET THE MAKER: BORN AGAIN BODY

I had the opportunity to meet with Jess, the founder of Born Again Body. We spent the day at the beach, soaking up the sunshine and moisturising ourselves with her refreshing and unique Skin Tonic.

The motivation behind Born Again Body came while Jess was living in Bali and  experienced how basically every body lotion and cream she applied simply melted or glided off because of the hot and humid conditions. After lots of research and development she created a very unique solution, a hydrating skin tonic, which has all the moisturising benefits and withstands heat and humidity – conditioning your skin.

Spending the day with Jess in the sun and heat, I was able to experience the benefits of the tonic first hand. The product feels absolutely AMAZING – fresh, light and hydrating. I really like that this moisturiser is a tonic and not a cream – and can be applied within seconds. Although originally designed for hot summer conditions, it can be effortlessly and used all year round.

Enjoy the interview below.


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After living in Bali, your idea for Born Again Body was born. Has the lifestyle and culture in Bali influenced Born Again Body?

Bali was such a special, uplifting and life-changing time for me. The simple lifestyle, complex culture and yet beautiful landscape all had a huge impact and influence on the direction of Born Again Body. While I was living there I found it so hard to look after my skin, particularly living under the harsh sun. Most of the products I found were either full of toxic ingredients or were too thick and greasy for the humid climate. Having spent most of my days outdoors I needed a product that was lightweight, non-greasy and preferably natural. It had to complement this kind of active lifestyle. For me, being outdoors and in nature is so important; it re-energizes and inspires me. Which has become the ethos behind the Born Again Body brand and the essence I’ve tried to capture in our signature product.

How important are the ingredients you have chosen for the Hydrating Skin Tonic?

The ingredients I chose for the Hydrating Skint Tonic have been carefully thought out and researched. I didn’t want to jump on the latest beauty bandwagon, I didn’t want to use the latest beauty craze ingredient. I wanted to use trusted, reliable and natural ingredients that actually work and have stood the test of time. Hence why some of the main active ingredients include aloe vera, cucumber seed oil, vitamin E, rose oil, green tea and jojoba oil. This combination not only performs so well together but each individual ingredient plays its own important role in hydrating and replenishing the skin.

What is your approach to beauty?

Less is more. As I’ve gotten older I wear less makeup because it makes me feel more confident, I’m less concerned about other people’s opinions of me and I want my skin care products to be super simple and no fuss. You also start to become more comfortable in your own skin and accepting of your “flaws”. What you think are your flaws are actually so beautiful and unique and what makes you different.

The Hydrating Skin Tonic is such a unique product. What is your favourite way to use it?

I love the simplicity of it. Like I said I’m all about products that are no fuss and are easy to integrate into your lifestyle. Through the colder months I’ve been spritzing it on my face during the day for extra hydration. And then during the warmer months I love the ease of jumping out of the shower, spraying it all over my body and within a minute my skin is nourished, hydrated and feeling smooth without that greasy feeling.

What is your beauty routine?

A beauty routine to me encompasses not only looking after what’s on the outside but also what’s on the inside. It’s about taking care of your body as well as your mind and heart. Every day I make sure I get up and move in some way; a walk along the beach, a hot yoga class or just stepping outside to get some fresh air. Plenty of sleep and staying hydrated also does wonders for the health of your skin. And the good ol’ cleanse, tone and moisturise has been a faithful routine of mine since I was quite young.

 

 

 

 

 

VOTARY

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I have wanted to try Votary for a while and was so excited when I finally got my hands on two of their cult beauty products. The Rose Geranium and Apricot Cleansing Oil and the Votary Intense Night Oil.

Votary are a luxe British brand, famous for their oil cleansers and face oils.  The products in the Votary line are cold pressed natural oils that have been extracted from plants, flowers, fruits, vegetables and seeds. No fillers just pure plant based ingredients.

I have been using the Rose Geranium and Apricot Cleansing Oil, as my cleanser for over a month. I immediately fell in love after my first cleanse, it really is an effective oil cleanser that works so well on all skin types, especially oily/congested skin like mine.

I pump the oil into the palm of my hands, I take a moment to inhale the soft aroma.  As I inhale the scent of fresh apricots with the subtle hints of rose, I feel an immediate sense of relaxation and apply the oil to my skin. I love oil cleansing in the evenings (maybe because I have more time), I find it’s a great way cleanse all the daily impurities and pollution that have built up during the day on my skin. It’s also a really great way to end the day by connecting with the ritual of applying the cleanser, delicately massaging it and removing it with a hot towel.

It’s a beautiful oil cleanser, that gives a great deep and nourishing cleanse. It is a great product to try if you’re new to oil cleansers or need an oil cleanser that suits skin on the more oilier or nomination side. The grape seed, apricot kernel, rose geranium and chamomile oils provide the skin, with anti-inflammatory, wound healing, antiseptic and essential fatty acids (omega-6).

Votary’s Intense Night Oil, is AMAZING! This is the most luxurious face oil/night treatment I have used that is clean and plant based. It contains Retinoid (Vitamin A) in an oil-soluble form and is a great natural alternative to the harsh retinol products that are on the market. Retinoid aids in renewing skin and helps with pigmentation/dark spots. It also stimulates collagen production and new blood vessels in the skin.

Packed with active plant botanicals like rose-hip oil, avocado oil, paracress, tomato seed oil and rose. These ingredients work simultaneously with the retinoid to provide antioxidants, help improve elasticity and the tone of skin as well aiding in the regeneration of skin. I have loved using this as an evening treatment, I can definitely feel the active botanicals working on my skin. I have seen a notable difference in some pigmentation I have, it has also improved my issues with congestion. I can also see how it has helped with the overall tone of my skin as well.  I love the results and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a clean, active product.