Skincare has become quite the hot topic of late and we have had the pleasure of assisting many clients with their skincare routines. Some just needed help putting together a basic daily routine, while others were desperate for help with severe skin issues. We have had huge success when turning to Sharon van Vuuren of ELEVEN2 skincare for advice so we at VitaSoul thought it was time for another skincare article and asked Sharon to be our guest blogger this month. Enjoy the article as Sharon shares how Eleven2 Skincare was born and gives us more detail on the importance of a skincare routine.
Introduction to ELEVEN2
As part of my introduction, I have to mention that this range would never have come to life without the help and support of a very amazing human being – my beautiful daughter, Leigh. Her energy and enthusiasm played a crucial role in getting ELEVEN2 off the ground and she is now the social media guru for our brand.
Also, I’m an absolute health nut and l love all things natural and good for you. That’s why I feel very privileged to be contributing to the VitaSoul website!
I don’t come from a beauty background, and to be honest, I didn’t even have a proper skincare routine before ELEVEN2. I was really just one of those people that used whatever products were trending. Serious health issues (oestrogen dominance to name just one) changed all of that, and I was forced to look at my diet. I started eating healthier, then went plant-based. I needed a skincare range to compliment my new vegan lifestyle, one that didn’t affect my hormones.
Product featured: ELEVEN2 Gentle Face Wash
The skin – our first line of defence
Our skin truly deserves a skincare routine, it is so amazing and incredibly complex. It’s made up of 650 sweat glands and over a thousand nerve endings. It has the ability to renew and regenerate itself naturally, continually replacing old cells with new ones. It is a flexible and waterproof barrier and yet, incredibly, it also emits water. We need to be more conscious of what we put on our skin because it is our largest and most permeable organ. Even though the three layers that make up our skin (the epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous fat) shield us from environmental elements, substances can still be absorbed if they are small enough. Many of these substances are found in everyday skincare products.
Phthalates, for example, can build up in our bodies over time causing endocrine disruption. Parabens for me are also a big no, as they are known as hormone disruptors that mimic estrogen in the body. Another big no on the ingredient list for our products is fragrance. Fragrances are not only harmful to the environment but can cause allergies and system toxicity.
Initially, this knowledge was just to assist me with my own health issues, but I was encouraged to put this information and expertise to good use so that others could benefit from it too. Eventually, after 3 years of study, research and development and a lot of trial and error, ELEVEN2 skincare was born. A clean and simple skincare range that is not only vegan and cruelty-free (we are BWC endorsed) but also totally free from phthalates, parabens and unnecessary unnatural fragrances. Only the best functional and organic ingredients are ever used, and I have personally sourced and researched the origin of every single ingredient in our range.
Due to the absolute complexity of our skin, I don’t believe that there is such a thing as perfect skin, but I’m all for healthy skin (and a little natural anti-ageing boost here and there!) At ELEVEN2 we are constantly learning to ensure that we keep up to date and informed on all the best natural ingredients for our skin food, to offer you evidence-based skincare you can trust.
Say no to plastic
Another major health change I made personally was to try as far as possible to stay away from plastic. Not only is plastic bad for the environment, but chemicals from plastic containers could also leach into your skincare and then absorbed by your skin. So where possible, our products are packaged in glass.
Product featured: ELEVEN2 Rose tonic
Role of gut health
Beauty and wellness go hand in hand, and that’s why we love clean, organic and vegan products that are good for both your skin and body. An unhealthy gut can wreak havoc on your overall health, including the appearance of your skin. It can contribute greatly to inflammatory skin conditions, like eczema. I have personally seen great skin benefits from using probiotics daily. I especially like Rhizo Health Probiotic which helps keep the gut healthy and functioning optimally. Of course, a diet rich in whole foods, fresh fruit and green leafy vegetables really contributes to your overall health too.
Products featured: Rhizo Health Probiotic &Nature’s Nutrition Super Food Mix
A smoothie a day
We love nutritious food and my everyday go-to smoothie is the bomb! Here’s how I make it:
- 1-2 Frozen Bananas,
- A handful of washed baby Spinach
- Nature’s Nutrition Super Food Mix (Natural Vanilla is versatile and delicious)
- 1 Date
- 1 Teaspoon of Nut Butter
- ½ Cup of cold Water & lots of Ice
Blend until creamy and smooth, drink and enjoy! For extra creaminess add Almond Milk instead of water.
Products featured: Rhizo Health Probiotic, ELEVEN2 Rosehip Concentrate & ELEVEN2 Niacinamide
Morning and night-time routine recommendation
Morning routine recommendation:
Our Gentle Face Wash followed, by our Rose tonic, a drop or two of Niacinamide serum. A few drops of Squalane to add some glow and always finish off with a natural SPF (preferably SPF30 or higher) even in winter. Oh Lief’s Natural Sunscreen Face Stick is a great choice, it’s a broad-spectrum sunscreen made from natural ingredients.
Product featured: ELEVEN2 Gentle Face Wash
Products featured: ELEVEN2 Rose tonic, ELEVEN2 Niacinamide & ELEVEN2 Squalane
Product featured: Oh Lief Natural Sunscreen Face Stick
Night-time routine recommendation:
Our Oil Cleanser effortlessly removes make-up, Sunscreen and the day! Next some Rose tonic and the Vitamin C Brightening serum for its additional anti-ageing benefits. Then for a real boost of organic goodness some Rosehip Concentrate (you really just need a few drops).
Product featured: ELEVEN2 Oil Cleanser
Products featured: ELEVEN2 2 in 1 Charcoal Face Mask and Scrub, ELEVEN2 Rosehip Concentrate & ELEVEN2 Vitamin C Brightening serum
Using one of our masks twice a week will really nourish and feed your skin. The 2 in 1 Charcoal Face Mask and Scrub is a firm favourite.
Some product info
Oil cleansing is based on the principle of like dissolves like. Oils dissolve make-up, dirt, sunscreen and excess oils. Our Oil Cleanser is beneficial for all skin types, even oily skins. Our formula consists of beautiful non-comedogenic organic oils like Sesame Seed, Hemp Seed & Vitamin E. We have added an emulsifier that completely rinses off all trace of the cleanser with warm water.
Niacinamide as an ingredient is an amazing all-rounder. It’s anti-ageing and helps to control breakouts. We have added Panthenol (a form of Vitamin B5) in the formula for its extra hydration benefits – hydrated skin looks more youthful.
Our Rosehip Concentrate has so many benefits – use alone or add a drop to your current moisturizer to give your skin a boost of Vitamin A & C.
Squalane is an exceptional moisturizer. It has anti-ageing and antibacterial properties which help with inflammatory skin conditions & prevents TEWL (transepidermal water loss)
*Use a few drops of Squalane with your foundation to add radiance to your skin. Makeup artists love it and it can change a relatively thick foundation into more of a tinted moisturiser – giving your skin a beautiful natural glow.
So all said and done, your routine will make your skin happy, which in turn will make you happy. Happiness makes us all beautiful!
There is no cosmetic for beauty like happiness.
– Maria Mitchell
Yours in health and beauty,