There are so many things to do in the lead up to your wedding day and so much to think about – guest lists, invitations, table settings, the meal, the cake, the music, trying to keep everyone happy. Often the bride-to-be is so busy worrying about everything and everyone else and with the stress and anxiety levels running high, this can lead to some real wedding beauty disasters – spotty skin, brittle nails, dull and dry hair – it’s just a Bridezilla’s moment waiting to happen! So despite the exhausting never ending wedding to-do list it’s important to schedule time in to care for yourself too. You want to look and feel your best on your special day - let’s not forget that all eyes will be on you, the blushing bride, after all!
Here are a few hints from Beso on what you can do to step up your wedding prep beauty regime so you know you’ve got a great glow on as you walk up the aisle!
SORT YOUR SKIN
More than likely, you’ve already started thinking about make-up on your big day. You may have done lots of research to figure out what look you want to go for and have maybe even found the perfect make-up artist to achieve this for you. (If you haven't, remember Beso can sort you out!) But you can take steps to make her job easier on the day.
Remember that skin health comes from the inside out, so if you want to look your best, you need to care for your whole self so your “canvas” is smooth and well-nourished before you can even begin to think about creating your wedding day masterpiece! And let’s not forget that it’s not just our faces that we want to look great – skin is the body’s largest organ, so there’s no hiding it. General skin-care will have you looking fantastic and healthily radiant too.
Here are some hints to help you on your journey to wedding-perfect skin:
Water is what gives our skin suppleness, elasticity and brightness. It’s what flushes toxins from the body which helps make skin glow. It’s more important and effective than any expensive topical creams or treatments. To keep our bodies happy, it is recommended that we drink 2 litres of water a day! So increase your water intake – keep your water bottle handy and full throughout all the crazy wedding preparation. And remember that tea, juice and other liquids count too – but water is always the best choice. Try popping a bit of fruit, cucumber or even fresh herbs into your bottle to keep it more interesting. Your skin will thank you with a natural, healthy glow on your big day.
FEED YOUR SKIN
Check your diet. It’s hard to eat healthy with the stress of event planning, but your skin (and your body of course) needs you to! Skin gets so much of what it requires to look fantastic from what we eat. In the months leading up to your wedding, make sure you’re including lots of fruit, veges and healthy fats (i.e nuts, avocadoes, salmon) into your diet and cut back on sugars and bad fats. You’ll feel better and your skin will radiate health from the outside.
Skin can’t get enough of this! You should be moisturising morning and night….and anytime in between! And it isn’t just your face that needs it – your whole body will benefit from regular moisturising. The important thing is to make sure you choose the right products for your skin type or you could find yourself with weird reactions and adolescent break outs for your wedding.
Check out this range of natural moisturising products available to you through the Beso website. These hydrating treats have been formulated using only the best ingredients from nature and are great for sensitive skin.
KEEP IT CLEAN
When you're thinking ahead to your look on the big day, remember that makeup sits best on smooth, clear skin, so it's important to up the anti on your daily cleansing routine. Here's what you can do now to be skin ready for your special day:
Beso has everything you need to cleanse your skin naturally and without any harsh chemicals. Click the links below to find out more.
Beso doesn't only care for your skin, we've got you covered for your hair needs too.
With all the rush and kerfuffle it would be very easy to forget about these little things, but believe it or not, and your photographer will agree, your nails, fingers and toes, will matter very much on your wedding day. You'll be surprised how often they're going to feature in your wedding album, so with that in mind, you need to get them ready too. Build your nail strength and health by skipping nail polish now and then if you're a regular wearer and opting instead for a strengthening nail oil. This will help you to avoid ugly breakages and split nails before your special day especially as you go about the fiddly fumbly tasks on your wedding prep list, so important if you're a crafty diy planner!
No matter how you decide to prepare for your wedding, remember to always find time to rest your mind and reset your energy. It's important that you take a moment for yourself amidst the rushing and the stress so that when the day arrives you'll be at your best and ready to enjoy every minute of the experience.
Camella @ Beso
I’ve spent my day at home with a sick child. Normally I would shrug, pass it off as a headcold, offer her a concrete pill and leave her to sleep it off. I wouldn’t bother telling my family, and if they found out they’d also shrug and send her good wishes. Today was different though. I sent the alert out straight away and watched the messages and calls come in. We’re all worrying, all of us, that it’s more than a cold. Even though common sense tells me that this is not the dreaded C-word as I watch my child munch her way through every available snack and enjoy several girly movies on TV without a cough or a sniffle, it got me thinking of the what ifs. This is a scary time and today was probably the first time that the reality of this awful situation has sunk in for me. So I decided to take to the keyboard and share a few of my musings, both as a small business owner and a scared citizen of the world. Hopefully my thoughts might be valuable to you or even provide you a little bit of security knowing you aren’t the only one starting to feel a wee bit scared.
Screw you Corona Virus. Seriously, screw you.
THE FACTS ABOUT MY FACTS
To be completely honest this is not an article where I discuss recent statistics and medical findings about the Corona Virus. We’re all getting bombarded with this information every hour of every day. This is more about sharing some ideas on how to stay sane and make good decisions about how to find our way through this horrifying era. Take it for what it is. I’m not looking for a witch hunt. We’re all in this together after all.
E A GOOD HUMAN
I think this is a biggie. Because I have been a bit of a fool in my selfish thinking. It was only this morning that I found myself pettily complaining to a friend about a dance event I’ve been looking forward to attending being cancelled. She was great. She calmly reminded me that we’re all missing out and that, yes, I sounded like a spoilt child. Events are being cancelled for good reason. The sure way to end this pandemic is to stop it spreading and the only way to do that is if we stop gathering together. So if you are thinking you are invincible and that you can move through your world like you used to, enjoying the social privileges that you’re used to, think again. If you are upset that plans are being cancelled, show compassion. If you responsible for running a big social event and are trying to decide whether or not to go ahead, do the right thing. And if you should self-quarantine, even if it’s a “just in case” scenario, do it. Yes, it’s an inconvenience, but it’s an inconvenience to us all. As I had to tell myself today, suck it up sunshine. This is bigger than you. It isn’t forever but the sooner we all take responsibility for what we can do to stop the spread the sooner we will see the light at the end of the tunnel. For my own part, I’m putting any Besp makeup workshops and consultations on hold for now. It’ll mean a dip in profits, but that’s what has to happen.
And while I’m at it, can we please stop the shelf raiding?? The thing about it is, the ones who will suffer from this are the most vulnerable of our society – the ones that live on a day to day budget, who can’t afford to stock up on large quantities of groceries. People living in situations where they don’t have space to store extras, which can be the case for many of our elderly who are already most at risk from this virus. They are the ones who are will be going without because of the greed of others. The hoarding mentality means that while some of us will strive on plenty, others will suffer with nothing. It’s an unnecessary additional strain on an already disrupted society. So, if in a state of panic, you are considering raiding the supermarket shelves to the point of depletion, think twice. Don’t be silly. Be kind.
SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES
Yes, I know, that’s what I am, and this could be seen as shameless self-promotion. But honestly, I’m thinking of the bigger picture. We’ve become so reliant on getting what we need from the big brands and overseas companies that we often miss what’s good in our own village. As the virus spreads there will likely be some importing restrictions and it may prove harder to get what would normally be considered everyday items. I mean, look at the craziness going on with tissues, toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Supermarket shelves are emptying at an apocalyptic rate and restocking might become more difficult. Maybe now is the time to find out who’s selling what locally and support them. It might just be one more small step to best surviving this time. Also keep in mind that it is our small businesses that will suffer most in the economic crisis that this pandemic brings with it. We can only get through to the other side with consumer support. Go on, be a good human, support the little guys.
STUCK AT HOME? MAKE THE MOST OF IT
If you have had to shut yourself away from the world, try not to let it get you down. To quote a very good psychologist that I know “View it as a holiday. Change your perspective. You don’t have much control over the situation but you can accept and be grateful for what you have”. If you can, try to find ways to enjoy it, or at least fill the time in a useful way. Here are some suggestions that might tide you over.
PHONE A FRIEND
With the rising number of confirmed cases the need to self-quarantine has increased. It’s a socially isolating situation and brings with it its own can of worms. For some of us, this alone time is not going to be something that suits our personality and has the potential to cause anxiety and depression for many people. I’m that kind of person. I fear the idea of self-isolation, of the feeling of being cut off and away from my normal routine. Today is only one day away from my normal life but I got thinking about what we can do to look out for our socially restricted friends.
KEEP CLEAN AND CARRY ON
This is the best thing we can be doing. The World Health Organisation is emphasizing the importance of hand washing in stopping the spread of this virus. Hand sanitizer has also become a common fixture in most organisations and supplies in supermarkets have been depleting rapidly. From a skincare perspective, here are a few things to keep in mind around the cleanliness aspect:
This is a rough time for our world. We’re all united by our fear and we have to support each other through this. This is not a time for complacency, but nor is it a time for panic. We must stay sensible and work together methodically to beat this pandemic. Stay informed by watching the news everyday and reading government and health department updates. We can beat this if we do what has to be done, act selflessly and behave responsibly. The sooner we can decrease the spread of Covid-19 the less at risk our vulnerable will be. So if you aren’t doing it for yourself, do it for others and remember that in situations where society is most put to the test, it’s first and foremost about being a good human.
Stay safe and look out for each other.
I get asked a lot of questions about my background, so that seems like a good place to start. See, I’m not your average Kiwi. I moved here when I was 10 and very much consider Aotearoa my home. However, I’m not the type that can blend into the general crowd. My Dad is from Guyana, and is Indian by blood, while my Mum is from a border town in Northern Ireland. I was born in Belfast and lived there till the big move. So here I am, looking a wee bit “exotic” which has become one of the favourite adjectives I get thrown my way, with a broad Northern Irish accent and all the boisterousness that comes with it. It throws a lot of people and I get a lot of strange, disbelieving looks, yes, even in these days of cultural diversity and melting pot families. But it’s who I am and I wouldn’t change a thing. It’s probably a big part of why I created Beso in the first place, as a way to offer people what they need to feel good about their bodies and the skin they’re in. (cliché much, I know).
And then there’s my educational background. Given the nature of my Company, a lot of people assume that I have a science degree of some sort. But nope, not even sort of. In fact, I was terrible at science at school. I was always of the opinion that it was a waste of time and something I’d never use. Ha! I wish right now, Mr Pettit, Mr Ferguson that I’d listened a little harder in class, because science is what I do all day now. My focus throughout college and university was actually foreign languages, coming from a strong desire to travel and see the world. However, this is not something that pays the bills, so my BA led me to teacher’s college where I trained to become a language teacher. I don’t regret this for a minute. I loved being in the classroom, working with kids, sharing my excitement for learning. Teaching was my passion for 13 years and I loved my job. And my languages did help me travel of course, so bingo! But then I discovered a new happiness and went in a different direction, much to everyone’s and my own surprise.
Beso was for me a hobby, after returning to my teaching position from my second round of maternity leave. I think I’d started to lose my fizzle in the classroom and I was ready for a change. So with the encouragement of many amazing ladies, I decided to take the plunge, quit teaching and concentrate on building Beso into something I could be proud of. It was a terrifying transition for me but I just had a feeling that Beso had to shine, that it was going to be important and that I would be able to use my company to help others in some way. I retrained, got my certificate in makeup artistry, and started to study everything that matters; so far I’ve covered social media marketing, essential oils, aromatherapy, skincare and soap making. Never a day goes by that doesn’t find me working on my skills to deliver the best information and service to my customers. I’m so glad I took this leap because it has made me so happy and my Beso dream grows and develops everyday.
Beso is so much more than I thought it could be. I imagined maybe having a few moisturisers, maybe some lip balms and deodorant. But here I am now with a wide range of products, and am becoming a one stop shop for natural skincare and cosmetics. And it’s all made by me.
I think that’s what makes my company a bit special. It is just me. I have developed all my own recipes, I create my own bases, I do my own trials, I jar the products myself and I design and print the labels and packaging. I take the photos and a I do the marketing. I stand by everything that leaves my lab and all the promises I make my customers. It is up to me to provide the satisfaction people seek when they buy my products and I consider myself 100% accountable for everything that happens in my lab and studio. Not a product leaves my store without being checked and signed off by me. This is an important part of what I am doing, because I know that I am always doing right by my customers and nothing is left to chance.
Another question I get asked is why did I go down this path at all. This is a very important aspect of Beso, as I created the products for myself and my family. We all suffer a bit from skin issues and I was tired of risking our health with synthetic and harmful commercial options. And I was also sick of seeing existing natural products sold with such an incredibly high mark up. I couldn’t help but see how ridiculous it was that a product with less ingredients in it could cost so much more. I was annoyed that the term “natural” had become synonymous with “elite” and “expensive”. So that meant in my mind that people already suffering from skin problems were being penalized by having to pay more to eliminate the nastiness from their beauty regime. So I started sharing my natural concoctions with friends and family so they could enjoy them too. And then they started offering to pay for them which was a bit of a turning point for Beso because it suddenly meant I had a business on my hands. I sat down and thought very carefully about my pricing because it was my goal to stay affordable so my products would be accessible to everyone. I’ve continued this philosophy and am proud to say that my highest priced non-customised item in my store is only $35.
When it comes to the makeup side of things, I decided to train in this service so I could connect with some of the wonderful ladies out there who struggle with this side of life. I have been able to meet so many gorgeous souls with incredible stories and spend time with them, making them feel happier in themselves and getting them to accept their personal beauty. My attitude towards makeup is that we should be doing it for fun, not as a chore. I want to enhance the ladies who come to me and help them see what they really like about themselves, not to change how they look and alter their appearances beyond what they can realistically achieve at home. I think this makes me different from so many other professionals in my trade. The best part of a makeover for me is helping my customers feel relaxed and happy with what they see in the mirror, not just on the big reveal, but before I even start applying the makeup. Self-acceptance is what Beso is all about and it means a lot to me to be part of this drive to give people that inner happiness.
It’s been five years now that I’ve been chipping away at Beso, wondering every week, every month, every year if it might be coming to an end. But old customers return, and new customers continue to join me and this crazy ride keeps going. I hope the Beso love will spread and someday I’ll be a household name, at least in Tauranga. Regardless of the future, I’ll keep working my hardest to develop the best natural products I can and send them out into the world knowing that they are amazing and truly made with love.
Our household has been reflecting a lot recently on our environmental impact. Images on the news and on social media frequently highlight the negative effect the human race has had, and is continuing to have on our poor planet. It's getting harder to ignore the problem, which I feel is a good thing. If we are to help our environment recover at all from the state we've brought it to, then we all need to take action now.
My family is making changes to do our bit, and so these habits are being carried with gusto into practices at Beso HQ.
I decided with all this thinking going on, I'd dig up a bit of information to share with you about the beauty industry and the environment and check that I was on track with my wee business in my efforts to become cleaner and greener.
My research has revealed some jaw dropping facts. Let's start with cosmetic garbage. Process this:
And how about chemicals leaking into our eco-system? Let’s see:
Now, let’s discuss a topical ingredient: palm oil.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, the chemical found in so many of our beauty products, the one responsible for producing the luscious lathery bubbles that we love so much. This nasty “has been linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, organ toxicity and skin irritation (https://www.livestrong.com/article/174367-dangers-of-sodium-lauryl-sulfate/)
Now that isn’t great news for our skin, but there’s another issue. This ingredient is derived from palm oil, 90% of which is extracted from trees in Malaysia and Indonesia. This is causing mass deforestation and destruction of habitats of endangered species such as tigers and orangutans. And while there are sustainable palm oil options, it’s hard to be sure you are making a responsible choice when the ingredient itself is disguised under a different name.
This is a lot to take in. But we have to think about it. All of it. Looking good, enjoying the luxuries presented so temptingly to us by the beauty industry, should not mean that our planet has to suffer.
Which brings us back to Beso. My research has made me question the eco-practices I use in my growing one-woman beauty business. And you know what? I’m not doing too badly at all. In fact, I’m quite proud of my efforts as a beauty eco-warrior. Here’s what I’m doing to help the environment so that my customers have the choice to do the same:
Typical packaging used around a commercial face lotion.
Not here at Beso though! Beso products come in reusable and refillable containers without the extra rubbish to deal with
(image sourced from https://www.stylist.co.uk/beautybeauty-products-eco-conscious-packaging183786)
I’m committed to making Beso the best it can be, but choose to adopt practices that mean I can also commit to protecting the environment. I’m doing the hard work to ensure my company is as eco friendly as possible so that you know you are making a clean green choice when you shop Beso for your beauty needs.
On January 6th I had the honour of attending my big little brother's wedding in Whareama (where? you ask. So did I. I can tell you it's a long way South of Tauranga, especially when you're driving there with a car sick 8 year old and a grumpy 4 year old).
It was a perfect day, filled with so much love and laughter and now I have a new sister who is absolutely precious. The ceremony took place in a tiny, old country church presided over by the same priest who married both my sister and I. The bridesmaids looked amazing (make-up care of Beso of course) and my brother and his boys scrubbed up spiffingly. My brother sang his bride-to-be up the aisle with an original tune written just for her, while I quietly said a wee thank you prayer for waterproof mascara and my new makeup setting powder. (Tears - you shall not pass!) And of course we danced until the wee hours while the wine flowed freely.
I wouldn't have missed it for the world.
I would, however, have happily left the pre-trip packing to some other poor fool.
Getting all the necessary gear required for two weeks away from home for our family of four into impossibly small cases to fit into what suddenly seemed the impossibly small boot of a car was nothing short of a nightmare. We Muries clearly do not travel lightly.
However, when it came to packing my toiletries it was a case of, thank Beso for small blessings!
It turns out that I have not only created a pretty cool range of natural products but that many of them are multi-functional, making it much easier to pack at least this part of my luggage! It seems that my selfish desire to avoid having 6 billion single-purpose beauty products has been reflected in my creations.
So here are my favourite Beso multi-purpose treats:
So much multi-functionality means less bottles and tubs in your travel case. Here are Beso's top-ten travel toiletries with everything you will need on your holiday, be it camping, glamping, motelling or hotelling! (many of these are available in travel size at request too):
Multi-purpose products help us to de-clutter not only our luggage, but our lives and our homes too, meaning less spending and less waste, reducing our footprint on an already fragile planet. When it comes to minimalising your beauty routine, Beso is glad to be able to provide you with natural and effective options.
And that makes me pretty proud!
Camella @ Beso
In a bid to be a good blogger I have recently been reading a lot of other awesome blogs, and it's been opening my mind to a whole lot of new ideas around the beauty industry. What I want to discuss today is what my blog research has told me about synthetic perfumes and how much harm they can cause us. I recently completed a course in essential oils and have been working to create beautiful scent combinations with my collection of oils and so this struck a chord with me and I wanted to know more. So giving my recently purchased bottle of perfume a wary sideways glance, I decided to delve deeper and find out more.
I’m not sure you’re going to be very happy with what I’ve found out, but I need to share. I’ll do you all a favour and summarise my new lightning bolts of knowledge - in easy to read numbered points, because a lovely friend of mine told me she likes blogs written that way!
I can’t say my family and I are living in a fragrance-free home either. Far from it. In fact, despite choosing what seem to be the most natural options when I purchase the products that I can’t make myself, that sneaky wee word “fragrance” is still found lurking in the list of ingredients. That’s what makes the decision to go chemical free even more frustrating. A conscientious effort to do better is often thwarted by very good “natural” marketing.
Some companies seem to try to distract us from their use of fragrances by bandying around popular terms like "organic", “vegan" and “animal cruelty free” to make us feel reassured about our choices. And yes, these aspects are important to consumers. But look closer and you’ll find that these products often contain toxic chemicals under the simple term “fragrance”. Don’t let yourself be fooled.
The process of having a “toxic fragrance free” household isn’t something that can happen all at once, but little changes make all the difference. Here are some helpful hints to get started:
If you don’t fancy making your own, check out Beso’s perfumed lotion bar. Quite delicious, if I do say so myself. In fact, try swapping out your synthetic perfumes for many of Beso's naturally fragranced products - body mousses, hair and body oil, face lotion - all gorgeously scented with essential oils. So much better for you!!
Beso is here to help you with your transition to fragrance free – that’s one of my wee company’s key points of difference. If I can’t come up with a scent using essential oils given to us by nature, then it simply doesn’t happen. Rest assured though that Beso products still smell amazing so you don’t have to look far for some great options!
Thanks for reading my rant. I hope it’s been helpful. Let me know what you think in the comments section and feel free to ask me any questions about achieving a fragrance free lifestyle.
So here we are! I have finally found time to succummb to the temptations of blogging! But who am I, and why am I blogging anyway?? Let me give you a bit of background here.
Up until two years ago, I was Mrs (Camella) Murie, secondary school teacher for 13 years and working as Teacher in Charge of French at Aquinas College in Tauranga. All was going well. Actually no, it wasn't. I really wasn't doing very well as a teacher after returning to the job from 18 months maternity leave with baby number 2. I needed something different that could fit around my family, and teaching just was not that job. If I was doing well in the classroom, I was failing as a mum. And vice versa. As I thought my dilemma through, I started to use my spare time (between the hours of 9pm and midnight) to create things that made me smile, dabbling with natural ingredients to produce beautiful, smelly things that I could lather my worries away with. And then I started sharing these body treats with my friends and family. And low and behold, they liked them too!
So I took the brave decision to pack in my teaching career and focus on starting up a little natural skincare and cosmetics company that I like to call Beso! And ever since then I've been working with a smile on my face to retrain myself and produce quality, natural skincare for my growing number of customers.
Believe me, I'm still shocked that what was just a hobby is now so real and that the Beso story is still evolving and improving after two years! Onwards and upwards!
I hope you'll join me on the Beso journey as I start to share some of my stories with you and hopefully give you some helpful information and advice along the way.
X Camella @ Beso
Me, 2nd from right with my gorgeous family, who have inspired, supported and encouraged me every step of the way.
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