The ‘summer body’ preparations are well underway and having been back at the gym for only 2 months I’m way behind schedule. The thought of being poolside leaves me feeling vulnerable. But, considering I haven’t booked flights to Ibiza, Miami or in fact anywhere and combine that with the washout we’re having here in Germany I can take a deep breath and calm the hell down. For now the preparations continue, with the following….

1 JAMES READ Sleep Mask Tan Face*. Go to bed pale and wake up golden is my kinda tan and the clear gel won’t streak the bed clothes. The first time using this I looked at my face wondering if I looked yellow when in fact it had been so long since I’d had a tan, real or fake, that I’d forgotten what I looked like with a golden glow. I call this the classy tan as you can build it up slowly over a few nights. This way you won’t walk into work one morning looking like an umpa lumpa.

2 BUTTER ELEXIR Hair & Body Oil*. Regular readers will know that I love a natural oil. This one is packed with skin boosting essential oils, it smells like a spa and leaves my skin glistening but not greasy.

3 KIEHLS Ultra Light Daily UV Defense SPF 50*. Thanks to my tan in a can I’m all set but I won’t step out in the midday sun without full protection. During the summer this sunscreen works a treat when used as a face moisturiser. TIP. Don’t forget to add a pea size amount to the back of each hand before leaving the house, apply whatever is left to the top of your ears. Available worldwide.

4 WILLEMS EYEWEAR B-ZERO Dartmoor*. These stylish gold shades reflect the light without being full on mirror, which I like, and the quality of the lenses is outstanding. Expect to see me wearing these on my instagram soon.

5 H&M T-Shirt & Shorts. With the new season I’m mixing up my colour palette of the usual grey’s and blue’s. Adding warmer hue’s lifts the tone and injects some summer spirit.

*Press Samples



My go hard or go home approach to exfoliation needs to come down a notch now that Summer’s on it’s way. Regular acid peels are great, not only for removing dead skin but also by keeping it in a constant state of repair which promotes younger looking skin. You know it! Before the last 12 months I only used SPF on holiday or if I were sunbathing, now I wear it every day. Even with an SPF 30 or higher, I wouldn’t sit in the sun whilst using certain exfoliators for fear of damaging my skin.

Now that the Summer season is approaching I want to enjoy whatever warm weather we end up having in Germany without irritating my skin. This leads me to my latest skincare discovery which is from the US ‘all-natural’ brand Tata Harper*. I’ve started using the Resurfacing Mask which is 100% natural and nontoxic. Even during the Summer months it’s important to keep skin gently exfoliated, otherwise we run the risk of an uneven tan *starts screaming*. This little pot of gold gets the job gently done which is exactly what I’d hoped for. It has a gel consistency and smells fresh and slightly florally and dries on the skin with a cling film like feeling – I leave it on for the recommended 30 minutes. Whilst this is all-natural it definitely makes a difference when using it 1-2 times a week and it didn’t cause any redness on my skin. It also contains French Pink Clay (very posh) which helps detoxify the skin and minimize pores. It’s worth noting that this contains some potentially irritating essential oils so I’d consider this if you are sensitive to these types ingredients. The packaging is a bit madam for my personal taste but I wanted to try this brand anyway as I’ve heard many great reports. Having used this I’d like to try some other products from the range soon.

*Press Sample



My appreciation for natural oils has transitioned from the occasional laid back date to an exclusive relationship. My bathroom shelf holds an impressive selection of essential oils ranging from RODIN to VINTNER’S DAUGHTER. With open arms I welcome the latest edition – BUTTER ELIXIR. From the picture you will see I have the face elixir, plus the hair and body oil. The nourishing and comforting face oil contains a blend of apricot, rosehip, argan and rose oils. The hair and body combines almond, argan, lavender and chamomile. I’m using these as my bedtime oils as they are rich and nourishing which aids in the skins nighttime regeneration. I find the rose oil in the face elixir and the lavender in the body elixir super comforting and relaxing, another reason to use them at night yet there’s no reason not to use them both day and night. The natural fragrance in these products is noticeable but not overpowering in my opinion. Both absorb easily and leave my skin soft and nourished.

I’m a supporter of independent brands, founded by nice people who give a damn. Butter elixir’s founder is no exception, I can tell she’s a cutie from her portrait on the website. And my interaction with the brand during the arrangement of this collab was lovely – it’s nice to be nice. For this reason alone I recommend you give them a try, especially if you appreciate the benefits of natural oils.

I’ll admit that when it comes to fragrance I’m a total snob. If I’m gifted a bottle of Chanel Bleu or Dior Homme Sport it’s likely I’ll pass it onto someone else. Preferred brands? Byredo or Frederic Malle. I guess I’d compare fragrance to wine as both are so personal to the individual and once you’ve had the good stuff there’s no going back. The German brand Brooklyn Soap Company are known for their range of natural grooming products which I featured last year. I just received a sample of their latest addition The Woods eau de parfum. The packaging is both functional and aesthetically pleasing as it shields the liquid from daylight which degrades the fragrance over time. It smells really, really great as it’s rich, complex and luxurious which I like.


Top: Mandarine, Black Pepper, Fresh Ginger, Bergamotte, Tyme.

Heart: Absinthe, Iris Absolut, Red Pepper, Nutmeg.

Fond: Myrrhe, Amber Musk, Benjoin Siam, Cashmir Wood, Incense.

Created by French perfumer Mark Buxton it’s clear that care and skilled craftsmanship has gone into this product. Fragrance is a difficult market to enter and the guys at Brooklyn Soap Company have pulled out the stops to make this something special. Understandably the buyers at Colette snapped it up.