The RuraList: 5 Boffo Bath And Beauty Products To Try
Welcome to Rural Intelligence’s newest feature, The RuraList. I promise you we’re not turning into Buzzfeed (although if anyone wants to fund our venture a la Buzzfeed’s, please speak to my publisher). But we’ve found that there is always more to tell you each week, even if some of the news is a matter of quick lists or rundowns of things we think you’d like to know about. So here’s our first RuraList — and if you have any great finds of your own, please fill us in! —Lisa Green, firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Organic Orchid Facial Oil by Herbivore Botanicals It’s flying off the shelves at J. Seitz in New Preston, Conn. “Anyone who buys this product is hooked!” says Amanda Seitz, who admits her own skin has never looked better since she started using it. Part of the shop’s extensive line of sustainable, wild-crafted apothecary products, the floral oil is a blend of orchid extract, jasmine and camellia flower oils that feed the skin with beneficial vitamins and fatty acids to protect against premature aging. In fact, it says “Youth Preserving Facial Oil” right there on the bottle. We’ll take two. $24 - $65.
2. Jane Iredale Mystikol Powdered Eyeliner Fresh off the assembly line of new products from the Great Barrington, Mass.–based Jane Iredale Cosmetics, Mystikol has already gotten raves from Real Simple, Town & Country and O magazines. The fine-tipped brush is built right into the cap. Just dip the brush into the powdery/creamy, water-resistant liner and draw a tight line (cat-eye, too) or smudge it for a smokey eye. We love the packaging and its billing “sexy with staying power” doesn’t hurt, either. $24.
3. Periwinkles Bath Fizzies Periwinkles at Rhinebeck was started by a mother-daughter team who sold their homemade bath and body products at craft fairs. Now they’ve got a shop, but still continue to hand craft a large line of aromatherapy bath treats. The biggest seller: bath fizzies imbued with essential oils that “bubble like an Alka-Seltzer feels,” releasing softness and fragrance. Beach Dunes and Pink Sangria are among the many scents that sound particularly dreamy right about now. $3.75 each.
4. FACE Stockholm Lipsticks How lucky are we that the only two FACE Stockholm retail locations are situated right here in our region? And what was that old saw about buying a new lipstick when you need a pick-me-up? Ebba Long, head of communication at the Hudson store (the other is in Rhinebeck) suggests two new lipstick shades from the new 35 Collection created in celebration of FACE Stockholm’s 35th anniversary. The Honey shade is a cream lipstick; the Sand shade is a matte, and both are available in the stores and online. $22
5. Dr. Hauschka Clarifying Day Oil Winter Sun & Summer Moon in Rhinebeck is the kind of sweet-smelling clothing-jewelry-gifts shop you can get lost in for hours (trust me). But I wasn’t aware until now that there is a certified Dr. Hauschka esthetician on premises. “Of course I love all the Dr. Haushka products,” says Lindsay Morgan, “but the Clarifying Day Oil is one of those magical oils that works for anything.” Although it’s marketed as a daytime treatment for acne and oily skin, Morgan uses it to treat everything from eczema to psoriasis and rosacea. If you’ve never used Dr. Hauschka products before, this is a good one to start with. $45.
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Apothecary Friendly: The (Malin + Goetz) Line of Beauty
By Dale Stewart
It’s hard not to be a tad smitten by Matthew Malin (left) and Andrew Goetz (right), the marvels behind the eponymous beauty line (Malin + Goetz). They are both smart, athletic, articulate, and youthful-looking, a well-matched pair who’ve been together nearly twenty years, and shared a luxury apothecary-style line for going on ten. Goetz looks back on the beginning: “It was a very linear thought process for us. It’s Matthew’s industry; my background is in design and the genesis of our line came from when he left Kiehl’s. As the world becomes more globalized and ‘McBranded,’ it’s a great opportunity to have something that’s authentic, that has a soul, and that’s (Malin + Goetz).”
The wheels for Malin and Goetz’s unisex skincare line started spinning back when Malin hit the beauty line lottery, with one sought-after job after another, each preparing him for this line; beginning with an Executive Training Program at Saks Fifth Avenue in NYC. From there he became the beauty buyer at Barneys. But he really cut teeth at Kiehl’s (pre-sale to L’Oreal), and on a stint at Prada helping to develop and manage the Helmut Lang Parfums. Meanwhile, Goetz was the marketing director for the Swiss-based uber modern design manufacturer Vitra. It’s Goetz’s vision that brings (Malin + Goetz) its simple packaging, one of things that separates it from the luxury-cosmetics pack. “We went in with all of these old apothecary bottles, then our design team and I came up with modern interpretation of those bottles,” he says. “It’s a very creative way with the gradation and the typography.”
About the graphic design, Goetz says, “I never look at the product and think it should be any different. Our products reflect the same look and idea as hundreds of years of apothecaries and chemists did before us.” Malin adds,“We love the tension of the modern against the traditional. It’s not a complicated idea. You have a great product without using a lot of unnecessary things.” Their homes echo that same juxtaposed old vs. new sentiment. They have a place in an Art Deco building in Chelsea and a 200-year-old Italianate farmhouse in Kinderhook (currently on the market), and recently purchased another house outside of Hudson, all with traditional facades and Mid-Century modern furniture. Their uncomplicated brand philosophy is an up-to-date mix of tried and true ingredients from century-old apothecaries, many items based upon Malin’s own skin issues. “One of the focuses was to create a product that was gentle and irritant free.” Goetz jumps in to add, “Our line is a balance between science and technology, too. Our goal is to be as transparent as possible.”
Everything you need to know about their product is on the front of the bottle in a neat sans-serif font, in various playful modern crisp colors. Malin and Goetz are as straightforward as the packaging for their best-selling peppermint shampoo ($36.00), vitamin e face moisturizer ($45.00), sage styling cream ($20.00), and vitamin b5 body moisturizer ($38.00). They even have a toothbrush ($8) and a super stylish shaving razor ($90) in their arsenal. Malin understands that “there is a backlash to high-priced luxury. People don’t have to buy a $500 cream to get the same results.” And they don’t cheat on their brand. A quick snoop in their medicine cabinet (you’d do it, too) reveals they use (Malin + Goetz) products exclusively, and when the topic of what sells best comes up, they say in unison that it’s their eucalyptus deodorant ($18.00). Goetz explains, “Women gravitate towards the deodorant because it’s aluminum free. We sell it three times more than our number two product, the grapefruit face cleanser ($30.00). It doesn’t hurt that (Malin + Goetz) amenities packages are on Delta and Qantas Airlines and hip hotels like NYC’s Tribeca Grand, Portland’s Ace Hotel, LA’s Mondrian, and London’s St Martins Lane to name a few.
(Malin + Goetz) face and hair products put them on the map, but it’s the cult favorites like their dark rum candle ($52.00), which throws a scent so well that one can get a brilliant waft of it from rooms away, and their sulfur-based acne product, which have become such hits they’ve had to limit how many people buy at a time.
The next addition to the beauty moguls’ line may be home-cleaning products or toothpaste, though this may be a few years down the road. As of this week, they open their fourth (Malin + Goetz) store on Madison and 90th. Regional (Malin + Goetz) products are easily available at J. Seitz in New Preston, Hudson Supermarket on Warren Street (shelf display above), and Splash Spa in Poughkeepsie. But their connection to the region they weekend in is real and present. Recently they shipped an antique haberdashery counter purchased at Hudson, NY’s Vincent Mulford antique store for their Los Angeles outlet in the ultra-hip section of Larchmont Village. “It wasn’t easy to get it there,” Malin says. “But it was important to bring that local mix to our stores.”
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Have the Oil, Hold the Olay
By Sarah Todd
Based on the number of articles singing the praises of edible oils these days, you might think the liquid fat industry has an excellent new publicist. Olive oil wards off heart attacks and strokes! Avocado oil lowers blood pressure in a single bound! But many oils really do appear to come with a wide variety of health benefits—and not only the internal kind. That’s why a number of health-minded types are tossing their expensive face washes and creams and slathering oil on their skin instead.
Atalanta Sunguroff, the Cheshire-based herbalist behind Wake Robin Botanicals, hand blends herbal oils to accommodate the skin care needs of her clients. She envisions her role as that of a chef creating recipes that appeal to particular palates. “I love being with plants and harvesting and concocting mixtures,” she says.
But while oil blends can be customized for skin issues from dry skin and wrinkles to rashes, some tend to be crowd-pleasers. One DIY-friendly option is calendula oil, made from the small, deep-gold blossoms that are a close relative to common marigolds. (See recipe below.) “It’s pretty easy to grow in the garden, and it’s a beautiful flower,” Sunguroff says. And calendula’s healing properties can’t be beat. “It has anti-bacterial properties, it’s gentle and protecting to the skin, and it has very fast results,” she says. “People describe it as an herb of the sunshine.”
Another one of Sunguroff’s favorite infused oils combines violet leaves and dandelion blossoms with olive oil. “That one’s really good for lymphatic massage, since we’re still transitioning out of winter and cleansing,” Sunguroff says. The violet leaves moisturize and soothe skin, while refreshing dandelion blossoms tighten pores and help lighten blemishes.
Locavores may also want to try gathering the tips of pine needles from eastern hemlocks or white pine and infusing them in olive oil. “That will have a really sweet, yummy smell to it; it’s great for any aches and pains,” Sunguroff says. “It’s also anti-bacterial and anti-fungal.”
Like Sunguroff, Beacon herbalist Sarah Elisabeth draws her expertise from her extensive knowledge of the natural world. She interned at the Brookyln Botanic Garden and went on to study herbalism at the New York Botanical Garden, where she got to know plants from aloe to zucchini. Today, she spreads her natural knowledge with outdoor classes, leading herb and weed walks that teach people to recognize the healing plants growing in their own backyards.
When it comes to using oil for facial care, Sarah’s top pick is jojoba oil—a liquid drawn from the crushed seeds of the jojoba plant that grows in the southwestern United States. Her nightly skin care routine is to tone her face with witch hazel, than splash on jojoba oil, which offers light, softening coverage. “It keeps the skin nicely conditioned,” she says, “and it’s good for being out in the sun since I’m a farmer.”
Now that spring’s blue skies and sunshine have people hitting the hiking trails, Sarah recommends that outdoor adventurers carry a bottle of plantain oil to treat cuts, insect bites, and bee stings along the way. This plantain isn’t the stout banana used in Latin American cuisine, but a small plant with flat green leaves growing in a rosette. “It’s called ‘white man’s foot,’ she says, “because the colonialists brought it over from Europe. Everywhere they went, this plant grew.” Sarah mixes plantain leaves with olive oil for a natural, all-purpose, on-the-go ointment.
And if you return from your long hike with sore calves and shoulders screwed tight from heavy backpack-lifting, Sarah recommends smoothing on St. John’s wort oil to treat muscle pain. “It’s amazing, and it actually has the ability to heal the tissue on your injury,” she says.
The best thing about oils, Sarah says, is how subtle they are. People who’ve grown accustomed to ineffective skin treatments sometimes can’t believe how well they work—and how fast. “I know the first time I used St. John’s wort oil, I felt better in 30 minutes,” she says. “I was like, ‘Do I feel better, or am I just tripping?’”
An added bonus of using topical oil treatments is that they create the kind of plump, dewy skin that’s well-primed for natural cosmetics. To update your makeup routine for spring and summer, swing by SEVEN salon.spa’s makeup party on Friday, May 17, featuring Jane Iredale’s mineral cosmetics. Iredale makeup artists Lisa Lape and Sabrina Fortier will be on hand to teach beautifying tips and tricks. And if you’re more into spas than making your own herbal oils, try an ayurvedic oil massage at Kripalu in Lenox. One of Kripalu’s most popular treatments is shirodhara, in which a therapist pours a steady stream of warm herbal oil over your forehead for 45 minutes. The cascade relieves stress and helps you think clearer, sharper thoughts—perfect for contemplating oil’s coming world domination.
Atalanta Sunguroff’s Calendula Oil Recipe
Deadhead the calendula by pinching off the blossoms with your fingers or snipping them with scissors.
Let the petals dry, then place them in a jar and fill it with organic, unrefined olive oil.
Infuse the mixture in the sun for about four weeks.
Drain the petals from the oil and pour it into an airtight container. The oil lasts for up to a year.
SEVEN salon.spa Makeup Party
Friday, May 17, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
7 South Street
Stockbridge, MA 01262
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Looking Good, Locally
It’s one the paradoxes of life that the busy social calendar of the holiday season coincides with formidable beauty opponents such as pasty skin, dry winter winds, and the skin-dulling effects of too little fresh air and too much online shopping. But thanks to our area’s diverse array of rejuvenating facials, minimalist skin care products, and mineral-based makeup, it’s easy to show up at seasonal soirées radiating health and goodwill towards men (especially). Supporting these local beauty businesses helps keep holiday dollars circulating in our neck of the woods — and what’s more, they make fine presents, too. Wrap up a gift certificate for a soothing facial at Body and Soul, a bottle of Jojoba Face Scrub from Malin+Goetz, or a shimmery compact of Jane Iredale’s limited edition Triple Pearl Powder, and watch your loved ones light up like a Christmas tree.
Let It Glow
It’s easy to feel right at home at Body and Soul in Great Barrington. In the cozy waiting area of the Berkshires’ first day spa, clients unwind with hot tea and heated neck warmers lightly scented with cloves. You’re relaxed before your treatment even starts.
That’s the therapeutic intent of founders Doone and Stephen Marshall, who were body workers at Kripalu before starting Body and Soul in 1987. Doone Marshall says she wants the spa to help women shift away from chasing eternal youth and toward focusing on health. “If you feel and look healthy,” she says, “you also look as good as you can.”
Anyone can look luminous during winter months — but, Marshall says, it does require a little maintenance. She calls her spa’s anti-aging facial La Fleur Reparer ($160) “gym for the face. “The facial uses technology that reads and diagnoses skin, then delivers a current that subtly re-sculpts and lifts facial tissues.
The spa’s cleansing facial ($125), which uses products from homeopathic skin care line Dr. Hauschka, is another great cold weather treatment. Unique to the Hauschka treatment is lymphatic stimulation, which uses little brushes to flush away toxins and impurities. “It feels like little cat paws going over your face,” Marshall says.
Revelers with parties booked for Saturday, December 8, may want to swing by Body and Soul that day between noon and 3 p.m. Teralynn Warner-Farman from Dr. Hauschka will be on hand providing free makeovers. Call ahead for an appointment, and spend the rest of the day (and night) turning heads.
Body and Soul Day Spa
184 Maple Ave./Rt. 23
Great Barrington, MA 01230
Open 7 days a week, services available from 9 am to 8 pm.
So Fresh and So Clean
Photo by Charles Masters
The word “apothecary” conjures up romantic images of tiny glass vials and star-crossed lovers. But Malin+Goetz, founded by New Yorkers Andrew Goetz and Matthew Malin in 2004, is a unisex version for the twenty-first century, with a strong virtual presence. Their family-owned skin care company takes cues from the herbal-medicinal roots of the past, giving botanical ingredients like eucalyptus a high-tech boost. “It’s like if you have strep throat,” Goetz says. “You’d want to drink green tea and use an antibiotic.”
Malin+Goetz’s inspiration is an extension of their down-to-earth philosophy. “We wanted to simplify,” Goetz says. To that end, the partners created products for a basic, two-step skin care process and set up manageable, friendly storefronts in Chelsea, the Upper West Side, and Los Angeles. They committed to keeping manufacturing and packaging production within a 90-mile radius of New York City. And in the interest of simplifying their own lives, they bought a second home in the country — an 1810 farmhouse in Kinderhook, NY.
Now that the weather outside is (somewhat) frightful, Goetz says New Englanders may need to update their skin care routines. “The tendency in the industry is to codify skin as oily, dry, or combination,” Goetz says, “but skin is affected as much by the environment as by hormones.”
Since sloughing off dead skin is crucial in winter months, Goetz suggests exfoliating with Jojoba Face Scrub ($38). He also vouches for the hydrating powers of the company’s Vitamin E Face Moisturizer ($45), which combines soothing chamomile with anti-oxidant vitamins E and B5.
To outshine even the menorah at holiday festivities, Goetz recommends using 10% Glycolic Acid Pads ($48). “It’s a chemically oriented exfoliant that lifts all the dead skin off to reveal newer, younger skin,” he says. The pads are gentler than spa peels, so they’re perfect for merrymakers who want to go to parties looking rosy-cheeked—but not red-faced.
9 East Shore Road Rt 45
New Preston CT 06777
Get Your Glamour On
Back when Jane Iredale was a producer and screenwriter in New York and Los Angeles, she noticed that makeup meant to beautify often just created more skin problems to cover up. “I started thinking about a solution,” Iredale says, “a makeup with true skin care benefits.”
Eighteen years later, jane iredale‘s mineral cosmetics line counts celebs like Nicole Kidman and Tea Leoni among its fans. But the internationally successful brand has retained a small town home base in Great Barrington, MA.
Since Iredale has ample experience with the region’s frosty season, she understands the needs of people who don’t see much sun after 4 pm. To trick friends into believing you’re leading a double life as a California surfer, Iredale recommends Tantasia ($36) — a self-tanner that lets wearers “emulate the effects of sun-kissed days at the beach without the exposure.”
For women who want both full coverage and protection from wintry elements, Iredale suggests Glow Time Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream ($48)—a triple threat “beauty balm” with moisturizer, SPF, and foundation. Low-maintenance types will love Dream Tint ($36), a tinted moisturizer that’s one of Iredale’s personal standbys.
To channel your inner glamourpuss at holiday shindigs, Iredale suggests drawing inspiration from the soft, flattering glow of pearls. Her Triple Pearl Power ($68) can be swept over foundation for a dash of subtle radiance.
And nothing makes a statement like a bold red lip. “Red lipstick is going to be huge this winter, as we’ve grown used to bright lips after the orange craze this summer,” Iredale says. Her pick is PureMoist LipColour in Carrie, a hue that pays tribute to Sarah Jessica Parker’s iconic Sex and the City character. Castor seed oil and beeswax make the conditioning lipstick go on smooth. Dab on the pink-based crimson, and your fellow party-goers will be begging you to pout when Santa comes to town. —Sarah Todd
Jane Iredale: The Skincare Makeup
28 Church Street
Great Barrington, MA 01230
Available online and at area retailers including:
323 Main St.
Great Barrington, MA 01230
6464 Montgomery St.
Rhinebeck, NY 12572
Essencials Day Spa
439 Pittsfield Rd.
Pittsfield, MA 01201
To find other Jane Iredale retailers near you, click here.