Skin wizard Charlotte Colwell is one of the industries best kept secrets. She delivers radiant skin quickly by using a combination of powerful natural products, green technology and holistic techniques to de stress, anti age and boost radiance to the most lack lustre skin types. Her intuitive approach and knowledge means you will feel calm, balanced post treatment allowing your skin to restore and rejuvenate. She practices in leading spas and wellness centres around the world and has her own private practice in Hampstead.
What’s your special interest?
I love giving people the best skin they can have. Confidence is often wrapped up in how healthy we look. Im definitely a wellbeing and health addict and this is a big part of how I practice.
What is the best way to get radiant skin?
One of the most effective ways to improve your skin and help to prevent premature again is to focus on your diet. The skin, being our largest organ shows obvious signs when our body needs a cleanse, usually manifesting in breakout’s, inflammation and an unhealthy complexion. An easy way to intake more micro-nutrients to boost the skin is Juicing (or Blending) organic vegetables and low sugar fruits. Drinking a fresh Green Juice helps to alkalise the body, detoxing the cells and also boosting our immune system. This all makes the skin clearer, less prone to breakouts and gives it a more plumped up appearance.
Are there any lifestyle habits we can adopt to achieve healthier skin?
As well as a good skincare routine, the most important aspect is looking after yourself in nourishing ways that resonate with you. We’re all different, so finding what you enjoy is key. For me, this is eating as healthily as possible, making ‘appointments’ with myself to go walking in nature, a yoga class, healing massage and taking a bath with Himalayan Crystal Salt to detox my muscles. These rituals should be your idea of fun, they shouldn’t feel like a chore. Do what you love.
If skin is breaking out how can we cleanse from the inside out?
Our skin can become irritated and inflamed if we are toxic within. The liver has a huge impact on our skin and if it is over-loaded, the body will cleanse (breakout) via the skin, so it important to reduce your intake of alcohol, coffee, sugar, and try not to stress – until your skin settles down. One of the most powerful and easy ways to cleanse the liver is to drink Hot Water with Lemon first thing in the morning.
How are your facials different from others?
I aim work on a physical, mental and emotional level. My intention is to assist my clients to soften and switch off from their busy lives (only when you’re relaxed will treatments be truly effective) The skin is treated with Organic Skincare and muscles toning technologies, to detox, firm-up and nourish the skin. I like combining holistic and relaxation techniques with Facial Machines to help my clients feel amazing and leave with glowing skin.
If you have one insider beauty tip what would it be?
When applying moisturiser, massage your face and neck with upward motions to improve blood flow and help clear sinuses. You can work into the muscles by pinching around the jawline and cheeks. Squeezing eyebrow are and deeply stroking upwards around the third eye (the third eye area gets very tense from using computers and concentration, hence the ‘frown line’). Increasing blood flow brings fresh nutrients and oxygen to the cells, and releases tension from the muscles and tissues, hence giving you a healthy glow.
If people can make one healthy swap to improve their skin what would it be?
Don’t rely on a cream to make your skin look good, take your skin’s health into your own hands, start juicing organic vegetables/fruit and massage your skin every day. Work from the inside – out.
Why do you love your job?
I enjoy improving my client’s skin and lifting their spirits. And of course, I like to see results. It is my intention to balance my clients energy, whilst treating the complexion with whatever it needs to rejuvenate and repair itself, and hopefully leave you feeling much better than when you walked in.
Do you have anything exciting you’d like to tell us about?
I’m currently working to create an incredibly nourishing Night-Time organic facial oil, that ‘feeds the skin’ with a powerful blend of ingredients. This will be combined with mini video classes for massaging the neck and face. I believe the era of paying over-the-odd’s for anti-aging creams (that don’t really work) will slowly come to an end. We can keep our skin looking youthful and radiant by incorporating facial massage and pressure points into our daily skincare routines, as well as caring for our mind and bodies.
What skin boosting supplements do you recommend?
My skin boosting supplements are:
All available from Revital
I've been using Eminence Organics for 5 years now and really enjoy working with ingredients from nature rather than a cocktail of chemicals. Eminence started from the humble garden of a Hungarian woman, but now reaches into the skincare regimen of celebrities including Katherine Heigl, Jessica Biel and Madonna. Eminence's brand manager talks about the history and philosophy...
How did Eminence come about?
Eminence started in 1958 when the current owners grandmother couldn’t import skincare products (because Hungary was a communist country) and had to make skin care with what she could grow in the garden, this included fruits, vegetables and herbs. When they could finally import products when Hungary became a republic they realised they were making something unique and decided to keep producing under the Eminence brand. Her grandsons moved the company to Canada in 2000 to grow the company into the world wide brand it is today.
What is the brand philosophy of Eminence?
Eminence’s brand philosophy is to use only the healthiest ingredients, without any harmful chemicals or additives, chosen to give premium results to all skin types. We believe in a holistic approach to skin care and health and feel passionate about sharing our quality products with the world.
What’s unique about Eminence in comparison to other organic or natural skin care brand in the market?
Eminence is unique to other organic skin care brands on the market because we have a ‘whole food’ philosophy. Instead of using essential oils we cold press whole fruits and vegetables so the vitamins and minerals stay fresh and alive in the jar, giving you maximum anti-oxidant protection. We use the whole fruit, skin, pulp and seed as sometimes it’s the ‘waste’ that has the highest anti-oxidant and bioflavonoid value.
Eminence products are not mass produced and are in fact hand-made. How does the product stay fresh and usable for long and what is the standard shelf life of your products?
There are several factors that keep our products fresh. First of all, making smaller batches of product and distributing those products straightaway instead of warehousing them for a period of time, gets the product to spas fresh, about only one month old. Secondly, Eminence does not use water as a filler in our product, everything is a concentrate. If you don’t add water as a filler, then you need fewer preservatives in the product. We use natural preservatives including witch hazel, rosemary and soyamine (a soy protein that prevents rancidity). In addition to these natural preservative the product is so high in anti-oxidant value that it also serves as a self preservative function.
What’s in store for Eminence? Any up and coming product launches in the pipeline?
We have something very special in store; this our most anti aging product to date. Based on our natural Retinol Alternative Complex and the stem cells from the swiss garden apple this collection promises to live up to its Age Corrective name.
If you'd like to know which of the organic product's would suit your skin type best, feel free to email me and I'll recommed and personal skin-care perscription for you.
I look forward to treating you to an Eminence Organics Facial very soon!
The article in SIX Magazine, advertising SkinGym, the Superfood Rejuvenating Facial Treatment that I created for Triyoga Chelsea x
I’d often heard that India is a harsh place to visit for westerners, the contrast, culture, food, pollution... You sink or swim, so to speak. Priding myself on being a seasoned traveller, I thought I’d have no problem adapting to anything India threw at me, my confidence was such, that I refused to have the jabs and didn’t even pack tummy tablets incase of dreaded Delhi Belly... the only thing I took was some Eucalyptus for a blocked nose. I was even less prepared for the emotional and spiritual shock that India had in for me, the whirlwind of emotional extremes I went through daily.
Writing this in the comfort of my London flat, it now seems rather ‘over the top’ but at the time, these feelings were totally justified. India caught me off guard, shook me up and made me laugh and cry everyday. So this is a short account of my little spiritual journey...
WELCOME TO INDIA
I was struck by the smell of an unexplored country, India's atmosphere seemed to be scented with fragrant spices - this accompanied with the intense sunlight and heavenly warmth (coming from freezing London) made me feel that nervous sense of excited anticipation for newness!
We jumped in a taxi from airport to hotel, which gave the view of Bangalore waking up... I literally couldn’t take my eyes of the people, they were beautiful - Men drinking their morning Chai, Women in stunning Sari’s, everyone sporting such vibrant colours, even the run-down buildings were colourful. It made me look down at my winter-london outfit and pledge to stop wearing such dreary clothes.
In Delhi we joined our tour group, to travel cross-country by bus from city to city. Our tour guide, a handsome Indian guy from Mumbai, full of laughter and enthusiasm, clearly loved his job and his country. His ‘welcome speech’ went something like this... “Welcome to India. This is a very vast country with many diverse cultures - things are a little different here. The people will not have your idea’s of personal space. The food can be very spicy - you might get ill. The religion changes from person to person, so does the language. The trains might be cancelled. The weather is turbulent, if it rains - it rains. Don’t get upset if it’s not what you expect... Actually, the less you expect the better. Welcome to India.”
I found this speech very amusing, sitting in a colonial "Palace" (similar to The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel) appreciating the images painted on the walls and the antique colonial furniture. Although I was yet to view my bedroom - and the less said about that the better!
I defy anyone new to Indian traffic, not to be nervous. Seated right at the front of the bus, I had the best view of all the near-death experiences. There are no rules, so driving on the wrong side of the road, over-taking within an inch of your life, cows grazing in the middle of the motorway - it's all totally acceptable. Anyone driving like this at home would be worthy of a criminal conviction. Our bus driver however was clearly at ease and in-tune to the madness of the traffic, gently winding in and out of obvious danger. In time though, I started to secretly enjoy it, you become accustomed to - nearly being squashed by a lorry or swerving the Ox.
Upon reaching Jaipur I saw a poster saying “Leave the ordinary Behind” - how appropriate I thought, as we entered the crowded streets of Pink City. I was aghast at the sight - traffic moving in all directions, countless cars, motorbikes, yellow rickshaws, camel-carts, Ox carts all traveling through the dusty roads. On the streets, chickens were being slaughtered, children running bare-foot, men peeing up a wall, women with babies begging for money, a staggering array of colours and contrast crammed into slim streets. My western-civilisation trained mind was thinking "this is Chaos" but as I became accustomed to the city, I wondered if it's actually all working quite perfectly... just because it’s different in my eyes doesn’t mean the system doesn’t work, or needs to be changed.
I developed a love for rickshaw riding through Varanasi (the Ganges) and rickshaw racing was especially fun! One afternoon our driver must have sensed we open for excitement, as he zoomed past the other rickshaws, who took this as a green-light for a race... by the time we reached our destination, we were exhilarated and delirious, like a rollar coaster with no handle bars.
I would love to tell you about the Trains, but sadly our Train journeys were cancelled... We were warned.
Without a doubt my highlight of the trip was visiting the villages in the countryside. The children of the villages are the most delightful I have encountered anywhere in the world, their little faces beam at you, they are genuinely pleased to see a foreigner in their homeland. As one group of teenage kids where asking me polite questions, I could feel myself close to tears, not because of their thin bodies, mud-hut homes and grubby clothes, it was their heart-felt welcome and bright shining eyes that caught me by surprise. I suppose I wasn't expecting to be greeted with such humility, warmth and grace. Once back on the bus it took me a while to digest my emotions and come to some sort of understanding as to what I was feeling.
In the cities, you see lots of poverty, whole families living in tin-shacks, deformed beggars, people selling anything they can to uninterested tourists. coming from UK this inevitably brings up thoughts like... how can a government allow this? Are these people happy regardless of their situation? Despite their living conditions, I found these individuals incredibly open and friendly, they where so quick to smile and greet you. Of course they’re hoping you'll give some money, but even on the times I didn’t hand over cash, the welcoming, wide-eyed smile was always there, which I found very touching.
After the Taj Mahal experience in Agra, a small group of us decided to visit the Oberoi Hotel, which is known for it's beautiful terrace overlooking the Taj. We spent the afternoon eating and drinking in a cocooned heaven regaining our thoughts and energy. When leaving the Oberoi, I passed some children dressed in rags, just off the main road. A little girl holding a 7 month old baby, came running towards me, smiling and waving. She took me over to her home which consisted of 4 sticks holding up a tin roof, inside was another baby and a lady who greeted me in Hindi. They'd made their home on top of a rubbish heap. At that moment, I was feeling somewhat glutenous and self-indulgent remembering my delicious lunch just 30 minutes ago, it was an utter contrast. I stayed for a while and played with the children, who looked like little angels.
Feeling quite overwhelmed, I went to the nearest shop and bought packets of biscuits to give to the little girl who first greeted me. When I handed them to her, she took them from me like a person in the desert would take water. I walked away feeling a mixed bag of emotions - love, compassion and intense gratitude for everything I have... I think she gave me much more than I gave her.
When starting this blog, I intended to write about the temples, ayurvedic massage, markets, safari etc, but these weren't the things that sunk into my soul and imprinted on my heart.
I was reminded that the world around me doesn’t have to be perfect for me to feel good, yes luxuries are very nice, but we shouldn’t need them in order to enjoy life. I was reminded that we all have a choice to be happy or grumpy, open or closed minded, view our surroundings as harmonious or chaotic. I suppose it really is all a state of mind. Don't get me wrong - I wont be stopping my 5* hotel visits, I enjoy abundance, but if I'm only happy when those things are present, then my existence will be very limited.
The village children reminded me about smiling from the heart. Their pure, adorable smiles awakened something that had been rather buried - the childlike innocence of being joyful for no reason, just happy to be alive, not linked to anything I'd bought, achieved or accumulated.
On the final night, I watched the sunset sink into the glistening Arabian sea, exotic birds sounding from the coconut tree’s, lounge music playing in a nearby cafe, people laughing. Palolem beach in Goa felt like the most relaxing place on earth. I felt so eternally grateful to have experienced India and to the people who made the journey so magical, I’ll leave the other stuff to the Lonely Planet.
So happy to see Kate Shapland from the Telegraph enjoyed my Organic Facial...
Facialist and yoga bunny Charlotte Colwell believes that the way you feel inside (body and brain) is reflected outside, and that treating skin well takes a holistic approach. So she has developed a glow-restoring facial workout which aims to maximise the performance of treatment topicals and cosmetics to give skin a radiance that seems to come from within - always tricky in winter when the cold, hard light does your complexion no favours.
Like all the best alternative skincare gurus her good-skin philosophy is based on getting you to relax - to nix stress - as a well of balancing emotions. 'Often clients come to me with a skin complaint and it's mostly how they are feeling that is triggering this - so it's essential that I help my clients relax on a deep level as well as addressing topical concerns" she reveals. Charlotte combines her facials with deep breathing yoga exercises to bring about calm, and blends up live products to apply to skin - alongside organic Eminence products - to really feed it.
Colwell's most popular 'live facial workout' at the moment is her Organic SkinGym Treatment. It begins with a relaxing neck and shoulder massage using hand-blended organic essential oils, and a warming double deep cleanse and exfoliation. This is followed by the workout which involves a flowing sequence of massage movements and pressure points to drain lymph and clarify skin. Charlotte then applies the live mask - in this case a mix of greens, reparative herbs, plants and fruits to deeply cleanse skin - and gives your feet a wonderful massage.
The upshot is a relaxed expression with fewer frown lines, firmer skin and a youthful glow - and deep sense of calm within. And Charlotte encourages you to sit and drink a skin-boosting herbal tea in the Shavasana pose before rushing off to join the human race again.
Vantage is a North London magazine, focussing on fashion, travel, property and beauty. Here are my Organic Beauty tips for the Jan 2012 issue...
Throughout a Facial with me, you’ll experience specialised massage techniques, pressure points and a whole host of fruits and herbs to give a gorgeous healthy glow, but there's one particular product that gives an incredible super-skin result.
Almond+Mineral Treatment by Eminence is my little secret weapon to create the skin-result that all my clients want to achieve. It’s an extremely effective natural glycolic exfoliator, digesting dead cells and works deeply within the epidermis. It contains Hot-Paprika and Nettle to stimulate + oxygenate the cells, ground Ivy tones + tightens the pores and finely crushed almonds slough dead skin. The result is quite astonishing, giving a plumped, revitalised result. It’s one of the most 'active' and effective retail-products that I’ve come across, giving you the appearance of a 2hr Facial - Instantly.
To use - Apply half a teaspoon amount of Almond+Mineral Treatment mixed with a drop of water to your face/neck/chest. Leave on for 10 minutes, then wash off with cool water. Your skin will feel a hot, tingly sensation (the paprika takes your skin cells for a work-out) Once removed your skin will be pink and feel quite hot, Don't Worry - this is normal, it will calm and disapear after about 10/15minutes, leaving your skin fresh, bright and glowing! After removing I like to wipe over a toner and apply an Organic Serum or Moisturiser.
You'll see the benefit on your skin for about 5 days. This product is particularly suited to dull/dry/dehydrated skin as it gives an intense boosting treatment.
A misconception in the Beauty industry today is that the Organic Products arn’t as effective as chemical brands. This is a myth. Your skin (your largest organ) absorbs around 60% into the blood stream - just as if you’d eaten it! Which is why I only recommend using cosmetics that are safe to eat. Regular skincare brands don't get past my treatment room. Things to watch out for - Chemicals such as phthalates, mineral oils, sodium lauryl sulphate, propylene glycol, and parabens - All are commonly used in cosmetics and body care products, and are known to be toxic to the human body.
My advice... GO ORGANIC :-)
On 11.11.11, I performed as a Love Fairy for Cate Makenzie’s show at the Mind Body Spirit Event at the Horticultural Hall in Victoria, London.
To those of you who don’t know Cate - she’s an international Workshop Leader + Life Coach, inspiring countless individuals to live their dreams and open their hearts.
She does this by gently guiding you to work out what it is you really want, in any area of your life you wish to improve. She then assists you to overcome the fears and blocks around obtaining these wishes, to really move forward into creating them (apparently the answers are all within us!)
When I first had a session with Cate 3 years ago, I wanted to start my Facial business, but had only got as far as hand writing my Treatment Menu on a piece of paper. Throughout the session we discussed my ambitions, along with the things that were holding me back. Cate gave me some excellent business tips and recommendations and asked me to create my own personal mission statement for my future business.
But it was what she said when looking at my hand-written Menu that really hit a chord “Charlotte this little bit of paper has such positive energy, I think that your going to be great at this” It was such a simple thing to say and I know it might sound silly, but having Cate have faith in me - helped me have faith in me!
Having been to many workshops and private sessions with her, I absolutely see the value in Life Coaching, as it’s having someone with no hidden agenda - support and assist your growth in a very powerful way.
Being fairly shy, when Cate asked if I’d be a dancing Love Fairy - on stage for her show, I was initially reluctant... what if someone I knew saw me?? It was also going LiveStream on the web - eek! But I decided to put my inhibitions to one side, push through my comfort zone and just do it.
It was SO much fun - it took me back to being 7 years old again, dancing around with fairy wings and glitter, like being at kid’s disco. To my amazement the audience joined in and were genuinely loving the loss of their inhibitions as well.
Being Allowed to be a child again felt really indulgent and refreshingly liberating. It reminded me that it’s important to stay connected to your ‘inner child’ and express a little fun-creativity every now and then.
And if, when I was 7, I’d been told I was going to be a Love Fairy when I was 28... I’d have been very very happy!
For more info on Cate see www.catemakenzie.com
Clip about the MindBodySpirit Show
I recently received a truly wonderful treatment from a therapist called Claire Farman. Claire has 30 years experience in Massage, Homeopathy, Reiki, Mediation and Sound Healing, and combines these therapies into 75 (very blissful) minutes. She tailors the time to suit your specific needs, based on how she reads your energetic field.
After an initial consultation, Claire decided what homeopathic remedy I needed and popped some Phosphorus pills into my mouth. I was then handed my personal healing Gem, and invited to lie on the most comfy massage coach I have ever been treated on (and I've been on a few!!)
Then came the Sound Therapy - I often attend classes of Gong Meditation at Alchemy Centre in Camden Town, so I knew I was going to enjoy the ‘sound’ element of the treatment - but Claire’s version was a whole new world. Singing bowls were placed on and around my body, throat and forehead, and after a few minutes I drifted off into a blissful, floating abyss, where deep peace was easy to access.
After some time, Claire brought me back to reality by asking me to choose from a range of colored bottles, I naturally choose the pink bottle, from which she sprayed the room with the most delightful fragrance; for my Aura Cleansing. She ended the hour with a divine neck, shoulder, head massage.
When it was all over, I couldn’t stop smiling, my energy levels risen considerably. I felt balanced, peaceful and calm. Apparently the combination of treatments you receive balance your chakra’s to rejuvenate your being... a week after, Im still feeling the benefits.
Claire practices from her home in Hampstead. See her website for more info