This week, Myfashdiary.com speaks to Harper’s Bazaar Arabia Editor-in-Chief & glowing new mother, Louise Nichols about her beauty routine, where she also shares some tips for pregnant women, and new mothers.
-Beauty products I swear by
My bath is lined with empty pots of Dior Prestige and Capture Totale face creams that I can’t bear to throw away, so gorgeous is the packaging. Chanel’s Sublimage is also a special treat that I adore. I invest in face creams and then slather my body in Nivea Smooth Sensation moisturiser.
My beauty secret is the eyelash growth treatment Latisse from Dubai’s Vivandi Hair Spa (although I have also heard good things about Revitalash from Maria Dowling salon), and for extra-special occasions I’ll apply Mac’s half lashes to the outer corners of my eyes.
-What’s in my make up bag
Following the birth of my daughter Leo six months ago I have had to downsize my beauty arsenal as time is of the essence. I am now also a pro at putting my face on one-handed with Leo on my hip (however as she gets more wriggly it’s only a matter of time before she’s accidentally on the receiving end of a mascara wand).
My skin is definitely more crepey and tired-looking since having a baby, so foundation is a must. For off-duty days and during the summer heat I like Giorgio Armani’s Maestro Foundation or Chanel’s Vitalumière Aqua, which are both feather-light. For a bit more coverage I generally revert to Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, which I have used since its launch in 2000. I often with flirt with other foundations but this is the one I come back to time and time again.
I struggle to find concealers that don’t cake, while still covering my epic dark circles. Lancôme’s Teint Miracle Instant Retouch pen is the best compromise.
When I travel I buy Shu Uemura eyelash curlers, and I swear by Shiseido’s Nourishing Mascara Base (at Bloomingdale’s Dubai), topped off with either Chanel or Dior’s latest mascara.
Now it’s no longer available in Dubai, I order Nars’ Orgasm blush from Asos.com – it’s an essential. If I have an extra 30 seconds I might attempt some contouring using the fantastic Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow powders. I keep Mac’s Crayon Khôl in ‘Teddy’ in my bag to smudge on if I have to go out for a meeting.
I love lipstick; on other people. I find it too uncomfortable. My mum sends me pots of Carmex from the UK, which I am addicted to. For nights out I use Dior Addict Lip Glow, a universal shade which is really like wearing a lip balm with a smidge of added colour.
Solgar’s prenatal nutrients kept me free from morning sickness during my pregnancy and I still take them now while breastfeeding. For milk production I rely on Fenugreek, which is especially important now I am back at work and pumping. On the advice of my trainer, Dan Harrison from Evolve, I take insane amounts of Omega 3 as well as a pipette-full of liquid Vitamin D3 and, before bed, Chelated Magnesium. In a bid to restore my post-partum hair I also take Philip Kingsley’s PK4 Hair capsules.
-Perfect detox juice mix
My go-to on all things dietary is Dubai-based trainer Marlene Bunston. She persuaded me to commit to a daily green smoothie containing kale, spinach, celery, avocado, broccoli, lemon juice, apple, fresh ginger, frozen banana, pineapple, mango, cinnamon, chia seeds, nutmeg and coconut oil. It’s nicer than it sounds.
-Favorite healthy dish
My sweet tooth is my undoing so I am always looking for ways to make healthier versions of cookies and cakes by using coconut oil and stripping out the sugar and processed flour. My guru is Gwyneth Paltrow and her new cookbook, It’s All Good. The five-spice and sweet potato muffins and her chocolate and almond cupcakes are insanely good. When it’s not puréeing Leo’s baby food, my Vitamix is put to good use making nut butters and almond milk. If I’m craving comfort food I’ll whip up custard using eggs, homemade almond milk and a nutmeg topping for a protein-packed pudding.
I have to confess I am too lazy for facials and body treatments; I’d rather read a book. My face won’t thank me, but hopefully my mind will.
The first three months after giving birth in October last year consisted of round-the-clock feeding (both my daughter and me!). I don’t think I ate one proper meal during that time but relied on grabbing biscuits and snacks. Once my daughter Leo started settling into more of a routine at three-months-old I realised I needed to take myself in hand. I started training again with Dan Harrison at Evolve gym in Jumeirah. Dan trained me during my pregnancy so it was fairly easy to resurrect my fitness levels, but a year of unfettered cake eating left my body fat off the chart. Dan uses CrossFit techniques, which I supplement with 8K runs, and after three months I dropped 7kgs. Now I am back at work full time, there’s not much chance for training, but I try and squeeze in weekend sessions with my husband’s trainer, Marlene Bunston, at the gym in our complex. I’m not back to where I was pre-pregnancy, but by the time Leo is nine-months hopefully I’ll have made it. ‘Nine months on, nine months off’ is my mantra.
I have very fine, straight hair and the merest hint of styling product makes it greasy, lank and sticky. I rely on the Kérastase Resistance and my amazing colourist Maria Dowling. She’s my hair miracle!
-Key to feeling beautiful?
When my daughter reaches out to touch my face – even when I’ve got greasy hair, no make-up and am wearing an old tracksuit covered in dribble – it makes me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world.