We’ve all learned some lessons from South Korea, but the underrated hub that deserves a spot in our regime is South America. South American women know how to enhance their natural beauty and take care of their skin, hair and nails by harnessing the power of natural ingredients.
There’s a reason why Brazil has the third biggest beauty market in the world, after South Korea and the USA. If you’re looking for silky, smooth, sleek hair or a bright, glowing complexion (who isn’t?) then where better to take inspiration from than origin of keratin treatments and those coffee scrubs you see everyone raving about on Instagram?!
We could all definitely take a leaf out of their book when it comes to our beauty regime – we spoke to Dr. Liesel Holler, who as well as being a doctor was Miss Peru 2004, so knows a thing or two about beauty.
#1 Skin that glows
If there is one thing South American women know how to achieve it’s golden, glowing, gorgeous skin. Sofia Vergara swears by using Crème de la Mer to get a radiant complexion and keeps up to date with all the latest antioxidant-rich superfoods.
According to Dr. Liesel: “For perfect skin you need good nutrition, don’t overlook it. If you eat loads of sugar and processed foods you won’t have perfect skin. I eat fried stuff, I love it. But I’ll have a nice green leafy something, and vegetables with everything. You need to hydrate, and avoid smoking. Smoking is the worst, if you don’t stop for your health stop to prevent wrinkles! And also get enough sleep. My grandma is ninety and she doesn’t look it, I have good genes but it’s a lot about how you take care of yourself. Dark skin ages later as well, because it’s oilier which protects the skin, but it’s how you live your life. If you drink a lot of alcohol, tan a lot and smoke then you will look older.”
A combination of enzymes, antioxidants and oils are the keys to a glowing complexion. Start by cleansing the skin using fruit enzymes to gently exfoliate the surface and prevent blackheads or breakouts. We like Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel – a non-foaming, glow giving formula containing both papaya and grapefruit enzymes to leave your skin clear and radiant.
#2 Go coconut crazy
Brazilian beauty Adriana Lima swears by the hydrating power of coconuts and as well as drinking her fix, loves to soak her skin with cotton pads saturated with chilled coconut water after a tiring day for a refreshing, moisturizing boost.
Skincare shouldn’t stop at your neck! Double your coconut dosage and wave goodbye to cellulite and stretch marks by incorporating a coffee and coconut scrub into your regime. Caffeine rejuvenates and tightens the surface of the skin while the grainy texture is ideal for dealing with pesky dry patches, ensuring you’re glowing all over! Try the Sister & Co Raw Coconut & Coffee Sugar Scrub – the coconut sugar (a mineral and antioxidant rich sugar made from the sap of the coconut tree) will help to replenish your skin! FYI: You can also pick up free coffee grounds from Starbucks to mix with some coconut oil if you fancy making your own!
#3 Don’t forget your luscious locks
If you want hair like Gisele Bündchen, then Keratin (a fibrous protein found in your hair and nails that keeps it strong and healthy) is your new best friend. Using heated appliances damages the hair follicle and saps away keratin in the hair’s structure, meaning dry, frizzy, sad looking hair.
If you’re anything like me then the idea of parting with your hair drier or straighteners is painful, so combat the damage instead by using a keratin treatment. The Brazilian Blow Dry treatment uses keratin to strengthen and smooth the hair, promising frizz free locks for 2 to 4 months, depending on your hair type. To get the salon look at home, Keratin Complex Infusion Therapy Infusion Keratin Replenisher replenishes your hair, taming flyaways and reducing damage.
#4 Achieve A Radiant Complexion
South American women really know how to accentuate their natural beauty, with Alessandra Ambrosio swearing that when she goes home she adopts a minimal routine of sunscreen, lipstick and blush! However, we can’t all look like Alessandra and if you’re not comfortable going completely au natural, then finding a luminous, dewy base that contains SPF is the way forward.
Dr Liesel says: “I started using eye cream around 25 because the eye area is very sensitive. I’m using the C-Vit Eye Contour Cream right now, and I have to say I like what I see. I don’t use makeup normally so I like a bit of shimmer in my moisturizer. So I cleanse the skin, put on a serum and put on a moisturizer. If you’re not very dry you could use an SPF with moisturizer. So either SPF on top of moisturizer, or SPF instead of moisturizer.”
#5 Get your vitamin boost
We all want to age gracefully, and Vitamin C could be the key. Premature ageing is known to be caused by the sun, as well as other contributors like pollution (bad news for city girls like us). Combat it by introducing antioxidants into your routine – Dr. Liesel swears by the new Sesderma C-Vit range and the use of vitamin C to detox the skin, as well as stimulating collagen production, hydrating and maintaining even skin tone.
“Premature ageing of the skin is thought to be because of free oxygen radicals, the sun, pollution, many things actually affect the skin. Free radicals shoot around and damage anything in their way, they damage the DNA of cells which makes us age. So C-vitamin and other antioxidants absorb the free radicals so they don’t damage the cells. The C-vit range is not too heavy for young skin, and they stimulate your collagen. The ageing effect is cumulative, smoking and sun are the major culprits, you can’t do anything for your internal ageing or your DNA clock. But what you can do is affect the outer irritants.”
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