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Night of Summer Beauty in Notting Hill

July 4, 2014 by Indra Kubicek 

I was recently invited to attend an healthy beauty products events hosted by SERENE social at Neals Yard (one of my favourite London-based organic & ethical beauty companies!) in Notting Hill. In all the years I've lived in London and walked down the infamous Portobello Road, I'd never noticed this specific Neal' Yard location tucked away around the corner from all the bustle. On this particular warm evening as I strolled over for our gathering, I felt happy and relaxed.   It is a rare occasion where I take some time out  for a little 'pampering'. But this was an exceptional treat because not only we we here to learn about beauty products, we were being educated about holistic and natural products, which is an important piece of information for all of us to have. The night included both talk and trial! IMG_0135 Leslie Saglio who is the SERENE representative in London was the first to greet me at the door. Leslie, originally from California, has an open and friendly personality and I immediately felt at like I was being welcomed into her home. Our small group of 6 ladies then headed downstairs to one of the therapy rooms where two representatives from Neals Yard (two of the most knowledgeable women on the subject of healthy & organic products that I have ever met!) walked us through a range of products. IMG_0133 Many times our conversation came back to the same concern - people are less and less willing to accept a product at face value and are very concerned at what ingredients are inside of these creams, toners, and other beauty products. I had to laugh at how many times we all remembered some 'potion' an old grandmother had told us about or a 'herb' we'd learned of while holidaying in a remote exotic location. A definite theme arose...everything we need to feel & look good is provided by good ol mother nature! We just need to take the time to find it! Of course, we're all "too busy" to take the time to learn from our ancestors and other cultures more connected to the earth. But I challenge all of us (myself included) to try to change that just a little! Throughout the demo, everyone was given a chance to get a face, neck & shoulder massage. And at the end of our chat, we headed upstairs for a little tea or bubbly & biscuits to snack on while we shopped at 20% off that day...not bad! IMG_0132 I ended the night feeling hopeful for the beauty industry and thankful there are passionate professional women like the Neals Yard ladies who are educating their clients and thankful for Leslie who had the wonderful idea to pull a group of women together in such a relaxing and lovely environment.

Some top tips I learned:

1. For stress:

Herbal tinctures: vitamins and aromatherapy oils Rose: chamomile, lavender, lemon balm, vit c Oils, Neroli, rose, chamomile, vetiver, lemongrass

2. For sleep

Herbs: Lime flowers, chamomile, rose, lavender, hawthorn, lemon balm Aromatherapy oils: neroli, lavender, rose, chamomile roman, vetiver Tincture: Wild lettuce and rose and all the mainstream ones Supplements: Tryptophan - one of the essential amino acids the precursor of serotonin and melatonin. 3. Hyaluronic acid is the secret ingredient for staying young & healthy. It is needed for wound healing, cartilage and joint functioning, pain management, tissue repair and skin regeneration.

I even treated myself to a couple little gifts:

- Honey & orange facial scrub - meant to use once a week for a deeper cleanse. I felt after each week trekking around the London underground deserves a nice facial scrub! - Stress & Sleep Herbal Relief - I admit I tend to stress myself out and anxiety can be my evil twin. So when my lovely friend Dan, training to be a naturopath, recommended this product, I thought why not? I've never taken anything for anxiety before but a herbal remedy seemed like a great option to try and I love this little potion already! A few drops to help unwind (also try meditation and 'do less'!) are a great way to end the day (nb: no alcohol needed!) Thanks Leslie, SERENE & Neals Yard! Namaste Indra

Next SERENE event?

Soul Fire Flow yoga class with Cristi Christensen (shown on cover below). Click here! inspire-cristi-yj-cover