Victoria Hall

Meet The Woman Behind Nannette De Gaspé

Nannette de Gaspe

Most of us are well acquainted with sheet masks and have put several to task to hydrate, brighten and improve our skin. The idea of using a dry sheet mask might feel slightly unnatural, but over the past year several have launched onto the market. The woman who discovered the technology and first launched it onto the skincare market is Nannette de Gaspe. To mark the launch of Nannette de Gaspé’s game-changing dry sheet masks and her impressive Art of Noir skincare range, we caught up with her to find out what inspired her…

Can you tell us a bit about your background?
I began my career in corporate banking and corporate finance. For a number of years, prior to launching Nannette de Gaspé, I worked in private equity.

What gave you the inspiration to develop the dry sheet masks?
A few years ago, through my private equity work, I was presented with a revolutionary technology in the delivery of active ingredients and a process to dry print the formulations onto textiles.

I was inspired to bring the technology to the market when I learned how the clever delivery system transports active ingredients to multiple layers of the epidermis (top layer of skin), creating a reservoir under the skin, feeding and nourishing it from the inside out. I was very impressed with the significant clinical results achieved in a very short amount of time. It was true innovation.

I decided to launch Nannette de Gaspé, a luxury, high-performing and natural beauty brand to share this wearable technology with the world.  My vision was and is to empower people with revolutionary cosmetic solutions that are easy-to-use, not intrusive and truly beneficial to the skin. We have since introduced our Baume Noir Face, a virtually waterless global face cream that also incorporates this advanced delivery technology.

Can you explain in Layman’s terms the technology?
We are using a breakthrough micro vector ingredient delivery system that allows for active ingredients to travel through micro penetration to multiple layers of the epidermis (top layer of skin). The technology not only allows for a deeper penetration of actives, but also ensures a more continuous release of actives as the micro vectors slowly melt into the skin, thus delivering more pronounced results in a condensed amount of time.

Because our TechstileTM treatments are dry, there is no water to act as a filler, infusing your skin with upwards of 95% natural ingredients and up to a mind-blowing 87% active ingredient concentration.

Why did you decide to expand the range with the Art of Noir products?
We would always suggest to our clients that they should wash their faces with a good cleanser and use an exfoliator to remove dead skin cells and refine pores, before using our dry TechstileTM  treatment. Many of our clients would ask us when we were coming out these products.

Because Nannette de Gaspé was called a disruptor in the beauty industry when we pioneered the dry TechstileTM treatment, we knew that we had to bring out unique, high-performing skincare. We spent almost two years creating our Art of Noir skincare collection which is upward of 95% natural.  

What are your desert island beauty essentials?
Definitely our Essence Noir Cleansing and Treatment Clothes, the Polish and both Baume Noir Face and Lips. I would also want my Amazing Cosmetics Amazing Concealer (never leave home without it!), Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara, MAC Blushbaby Blush and, of course, my Elta MD SPF46 Sunscreen.

What do you think the future holds for the health and beauty industry?
Skincare will be more about quality than quantity. Consumers will want their skincare routine to be simple, treatment focused and fit easily into their lifestyle. They will be looking for high-performing active ingredients in multi-tasking formulations (ie. a cleanser that is also a light exfoliator with anti-ageing and hydrating benefits).

As trends are moving towards nourishing the body with green and clean inside and out, people will want clean beauty which incorporates more natural and sustainable ingredients.

As consumers become more educated and savvy, they will want greater customisation options and access to products and technologies that they can use at home, on their terms. Brands will offer personalised products for the changing needs of one’s skin, which can be daily, weekly, monthly.

Everything You Need To Know About Dermarolling

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The idea of puncturing your skin with sharp 0.3mm long needles for three minutes, twice a week, might be enough to make some people squirm, but dermarolling, or microneedling, has received a lot of press in recent months. The technique isn’t necessarily new, but more experts are rallying behind it as a way of rejuvenating your skin quickly. So, what are the benefits?

First and foremost, what is a dermaroller?

It look like a medieval torture device, but the spiky, roller gadget can be hugely beneficial to your skin. Dermarollers have lots of small, sharp needles that you roll across your skin to create micro punctures. Needle length varies from 0.2mm to 1mm for both in-clinic and at-home dermarollers. However, if you haven’t tried it before most experts recommend starting with needles between 0.2 and 0.3mm (Nannette de Gaspé’s Roller Noir has 0.3mm length needles).

What are the skincare benefits?

Microneedling creates thousands of tiny punctures to your skin, which not only help to slough away dry skin, but also turbocharges your collagen and elastin production. Essentially, microneedling makes your skin think it’s been injured and forces it into repair mode.

While you will notice your complexion looks fresher, don’t expect overnight success in terms of skin firmness as it can take around eight weeks for your skin to produce collagen.

How do you use it?

Experts recommend rolling upwards in a diagonal direction across your face at least twice, if not three times for the best results. Always roll on freshly cleansed skin and wash/spritz your roller with alcohol afterwards to avoid any bacteria build-up. Expect your skin to be a shade of pink for at least 15 minutes after you’ve rolled.

What’s the best skincare to use alongside your dermaroller?

If you usually apply your vitamin C or retinol serum in the evening, alternate these with your dermaroller. Reactive ingredients, especially exfoliating acids can be too harsh on skin after microneedling. Instead, opt for a hydrating hyaluronic acid serum or a soothing, nourishing formula to help replenish your skin. Remember you’ve just caused micro-injuries across your face, so be gentle.

How long will your dermaroller last for?

Similar to razor blades, over time the needles on your dermaroller will become blunt. However, this should take around six months if you’re using it a couple of times a week.

Total Wellbeing: The Term You’ll Be Hearing About A Lot In 2019

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There were whisperings of self-care throughout 2017, but it wasn’t until this year that the term really came into its own. Over the past few months brands, magazines and influencers have all tapped into the theme. It has its own dedicated week in November and a quick scroll of Instagram on a Sunday reveals that it even has its own hashtag, #sundayselfcare.  

But, what does self-care actually mean? Well, essentially it’s anything that encourages you to spend some quality time with yourself and leaves you feeling good, including taking a bath, putting on a face mask or reading your book, you name it. The NHS defines it clearly as ‘keeping fit and healthy, understanding when you can look after yourself, when a pharmacist can help, and when to get advice from your GP or another health professional.’

According to Mintel’s latest report, as we progress into next year self-care will evolve into ‘total wellbeing’. The report states, ‘Consumers are treating their bodies like an ecosystem and seeking solutions that complement their personal health and evolving needs.’ From the moisturisers we slather on to the sprays we use to clean our houses and the cars we choose to drive, total wellbeing spans across all aspects of our life.

“Consumers are looking externally to their surroundings and internally towards their physical and mental wellbeing, expecting holistic approaches to wellness,” says Gabrielle Lieberman, Director of Trends & Social Media Research Americas. “Developments in health monitoring, such as skin sensors or ingestible capsules, will satisfy consumers’ demand for this personalised approach, while also building on scientific research in these emerging fields.”

In terms of skincare it’s likely that you’ll be hearing a lot more about probiotics and the many benefits good bacteria can have on our complexions. Of course, pre- and probiotic skincare isn’t new. In fact, good bacteria has been used in formulations for a while, but up until now it hasn’t been highlighted. Brands such as Aurelia Probiotic Skincare have been championing ‘biotic’ ingredients and the bestselling Botanical Cream Deodorant is testimony to its efficacy.

When it comes to supplements, it’s likely that future formulations will be developed in spray form as this is the best way for the body to absorb most nutrients. And, it’s likely that our supplements will be tailored to our specific needs. Although, this won’t necessarily happen next year, you can expect to read a lot more about the importance of monitoring your vitamin and mineral levels as part of the total wellbeing approach. If you’re baffled by which supplements you should be taking, it is worth reading Shabir’s Essential 6 For Optimal Health.

The Bathing Ingredient That Could Fend Off Colds

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If this week’s drop in temperature is anything to go by autumn has most certainly arrived. While the weather might warm come 4pm, coats are mandatory in the morning and it’s cold and dark again by 7pm. With the small changes in temperature, it’s no surprise that more of us are prone to catching a cold at this time of year. If the first few weeks of autumn are prime time for getting a lurgy for you, it might be worth considering popping two Daily Immunity supplements every morning. Read More…

The New Generation Of Gua Sha

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Chinese medicine has had a real resurgence this year with plenty of experts and beauty brands taking inspiration from the ancient ritualistic approach. It goes hand-in-hand with the modern concept of self-care and desire felt by many to strike the work/life balance and switch off.

If you follow Gill’s newsletters you’ll already be well-versed in the Hayo’u method and its authentic yet practical take on Chinese medicine and more specifically the Gua Sha massage technique. The skin-boosting Beauty Restorer has become a bestseller and offers a fool-proof approach to facial massage. This autumn, Hayo’u is launching three new tools. We caught up with the founder, Katie Brindle to find out more…

The hair reviver

For some, the idea that a piece of jade stone could in anyway help boost hair growth could be a bit far-fetched. Yet the Beauty Restorer Comb has been expertly cut and chiselled to do just that. Using the same approach as the original Beauty Restorer, the comb works by boosting your circulation to drive nutrients to the follicles in your scalp.

“It also massages the acupressure points of your head, regulating the meridians (energy channels) that flow through the scalp,” says Brindle. “This is great for your overall health.”

The inspiration behind the Beauty Restorer Comb was personal for Brindle. “I inherited thin hair from my mother and grandfather then endless dieting during my teens and early 20s resulted in anything remotely resembling a luscious head of hair,” she says. “Having tried everything on the market to no avail I gave up and resorted to extensions as it was so bad.”

For those who know this feeling all too well, Brindle recommends sweeping the comb across your scalp from your forehead down to your neck. While this can be done at any time of the day, on wet or dry hair, Brindle stresses that it should be done daily for the best results.

The eye brightener

Also known as the Beauty Restorer Precision, this small paddle wand has the potential to magically brighten and smooth your eye and lip areas. “It’s really simple to use, letting you get even closer to fine lines and wrinkles, particularly around the eyes and lips,” says Brindle.

Unlike the other Hayo’u tools, you need to use small ‘flick’ movements when you use this one and use your natural facial contours as a guide. For example, trace your eye socket with small flicks to boost and lift your eye area. Like with the comb, you do need to use the Beauty Restorer Precision regularly to see any difference.

While it was designed for the eyes and lips, you can use this tool all over your body. “The fine tip means you can use it for longer and with pinpoint accuracy to reach every contour, line and wrinkle around your whole face,” says Brindle. “It can also be used on specific areas of muscular tension and joint pain to clear inflammation and stagnation.” If you spend too much time sat at a desk or on your phone, you might find it helpful in treating carpal tunnel syndrome and RSI.

The skin booster

At first glance the Beauty Restorer Lite looks exactly the same as the original. But, upon closer inspection you’ll notice that it is much slimmer and lighter. Brindle designed it for those with more delicate skin. “The older we get, the thinner and more delicate our skin gets – due to the natural loss of elastin and collagen over time, as well as hormonal changes, which weaken it,” she explains.

“Children also need a gentler tool as each layer of their skin is only around one fifth of the thickness of adults.  thinner and more delicate. Each layer of young children’s skin is around one fifth as thick as adult skin,” Brindle adds. The Beauty Restorer Lite can be used in the same way as the original tool, following the traditional Gua Sha method, to help boost circulation and reduce inflammation. It’s also particularly good at helping to clear up teenage acne and breakouts.

For more information on Hayo’u and the Gua Sha rituals, click here.

Could Tapping Reduce Your Stress Levels?

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We all have those moments when everything mounts up. For some it lasts for mere moments, for others it can go on for days or weeks. It could be a mammoth project at work, a renovation at home, or an amalgamation of overwhelming things. Even the toughest, most mentally and emotionally stable people waver on occasions. A tightness in your chest that takes more than a couple of deep breaths to loosen or a racing mind keeping you up until 3 am.

There are around three million people in the UK who suffer with anxiety disorders. While there are prescription medication that can ease anxiety, there are also plenty of natural remedies that don’t have any known side effects. Magnolia Rhodiola Complex, £26, is the one that Shabir recommends time and time again as the blend of herbs not only helps you to relax, but also makes your body more resilient to stress.

Over the past year or so, another technique has been receiving a fair amount of attention, tapping.

What is tapping?

Tapping, or Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), is essentially like acupuncture but without the needles. Instead, you use your fingertips to tap on the meridian pressure points outlined in Chinese medicine to help release blockages of energy.

While tapping is heavily influenced by traditional Chinese medicine techniques, it wasn’t invented until the 90s by a man called Gary Craig. Since then some practitioners have suggested that the technique can help ease phobias, chronic pain and addictions, as well as help reduce anxiety and stress levels by lowering your cortisol levels.

So, how do you ‘tap’?

Not everyone is going to feel comfortable about tapping various parts of their body in public, but there are a couple of options that can be done discreetly on a crowded bus. It’s also surprisingly easy to mentally get into it. Unlike meditation where you’re encouraged to focus on blank space, when it comes to tapping you hone in on the issue at hand and target the negative emotion or stress. At the same time you tap up to seven times on the key meridian points.

If you’re not au fait with Chinese medicine, the key points to ease stress are found on the side of your hand; the inner section of your eyebrows; to the side and below your eye socket; underneath your nose; on the crease between your lip and chin; your collar bone; just below your armpit; and the top of your head. If you want to follow a specific routine, it’s worth looking up The Tapping Solution, which offers short video tutorials and help finding tapping experts near you.

What are the alternatives?

For those who still remain unconvinced about tapping parts of their body, there are plenty of other methods to relieve moments of stress and anxiety. Breathing properly sounds very straightforward, but most of us don’t do it correctly. The result is higher stress levels and poor posture.

Getting enough sleep is obvious, but if you’re stressed out it’s likely that you struggle to drift off too. A lot of experts recommend partaking in at least two hours of good cardio exercise each week and avoiding eating at least two hours before bed.

There’s also some research to suggest that setting out a structured sleep routine can help. It might sound ridiculously simple, but when you think about it, do you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day? If you need a little extra help, Shabir recommends Sleep Tight, £25.50. It goes without saying that combining it with some light tapping could be just the ticket to help you drift off…