Sea change, tree change, call it what you will, but when Magdalena Roze relocated fro m Sydney to Byron Bay three years ago she also underwent a beauty metamorphosis. “I’ve become much more comfortable in my own skin,” says Roze, the flaxen-haired media personality and cookbook author. Admittedly, that transformation had as much to do with motherhood as her bucolic new surroundings. “I’m definitely more low-maintenance since becoming a mum,” she adds. “Interestingly, I enjoy my skin and hair care rituals so much more because they feel like a treat, and my moment to wind down.”

Roze’s move to the free-spirited enclave was prompted by her husband Darren Robertson, the acclaimed chef behind Three Blue Ducks. That Sydney restaurant has since expanded to both Byron Bay and Brisbane. The couple’s son Archie was born two years ago, while baby number two is due this month. In a former life, Roze was a TV presenter and meteorologist, complete with 3am starts. (NARS Laguna bronzer was a lifeline.) Now, she focuses on blogging, writing and her food-themed podcast, The Pass. We caught up with Roze recently to find out how Byron Bay has triggered a bohemian rhapsody.

TMM: Where did your passion for food spring from?
MR:"Some of my earliest memories involve food. My parents having lots of people over with platters of cheese and charcuterie and turning mid-week dinners into a feast. Being Eastern European, it was the norm to eat wholefoods like sourdough rye bread and fermented items like sauerkraut and kombucha before they became cool. Moving to Byron Bay has been a game-changer because this area is renowned for ethical farming and wellness."

Which comforting recipes are on high rotation during the winter months?
"I’m all about comfort food in winter. It usually involves slow cooking, which means it’s super easy. You just throw ingredients into a pot and leave them to develop rich flavour and nutritional value. Some of my favourite recipes are pasta with lamb ragu, my “Mullum” vegetarian curry, slow-roasted tomato soup and spinach and cheese pie. We also drink a lot of chicken broth as it’s so good for immunity, digestion, skin, hair and nails. Finally, a warm apple crumble straight out of the oven is hard to beat!"

I believe that what we put on our skin and body is just as important as what we eat. I made the switch to more natural products out of necessity a few years ago

Your book Happy & Whole explores del icious wholefoods. Do you gravitate to natural beauty products too?
"Yes. I believe that what we put on our skin and body is just as important as what we eat. I actually made the switch to more natural products out of necessity a few years ago because my skin was suffering so much from the heavy makeup I wore on TV. I overhauled what I was using at home and, thankfully, the rashes and sensitivity disappeared. I also became more conscious about this when I fell pregnant with Archie, as I wanted to create the healthiest environment possible for my growing baby. I’ve noticed a huge difference in my skin and hair since using more natural-based products."

How did relocating north inform your overall style? And is there a Byron Bay beauty look?
"I’m definitely more relaxed and casual to fit in with the lifestyle here. I love natural fibres like linen and cotton that are breathable, and, despite having a toddler, I can’t help but wear lots of white and neutral colours. My wardrobe is largely made up of flowy dresses, jumpsuits and simple tees. In terms of beauty, there is a look and it’s about natural waves, dewy skin, bronze colours and a sun-kissed, effortless style. I guess it highlights a woman’s natural features and her inner goddess, rather than covering up. I love it."


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What does your morning beauty routine consist of?
"I like to leave the natural oils on my skin when I wake up, so I just splash my face with water rather than cleansing, and then give it a refreshing spritz with Chantecaille Pure Rosewater, which smells divine. I follow that by moisturising with Dr Barbara Sturm Face Cream Women. It’s light enough for the Byron humidity but super hydrating. Day to day, I go virtually makeup free, but I always fill in my brows with the Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil and dab a bit of NARS Radiant Cream Concealer under my eyes to hide the mama bags!"

What does your nightly routine look like?
"I love to have really clean skin before I go to bed, so I use African Botanicals Pure Marula Cleansing Oil to remove any makeup, sunscreen or impurities. It feels so luxurious and smells amazing, plus it’s free of parabens, preservatives and chemicals. Next, I cleanse with Chantecaille Rice and Geranium Foaming Cleanser, which makes my skin feel clean and smooth but is non-drying. I can use it to remove eye makeup too, which is a big plus. My skin is prone to congestion, so the gentle exfoliating beads of rice bran give a thorough cleanse and the geranium is anti-bacterial. It’s probably my favourite cleanser of all time. I follow again with Chantecaille rosewater and Dr Barbara Sturm face cream."

Which products do you turn to when you want to dial up the glamour?
"My favourite foundation is Chantecaille Future Skin. It blends beautifully, is light enough for a natural daytime look, but you can build it. It has goodies like seaweed, chamomile, rosemary and green tea. I’ve been using NARS Bronzing Powder in Laguna since my TV days, and I swear by NARS Blush in Orgasm. I like to wear warm, brown tones on my eyes and finish off with Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner—it’s so easy to get a clean line— followed by Kevyn Aucoin The Volume Mascara. If I’m dressing up for an event, I’ll get a few individual lashes put on too. Lips depend on what I’m wearing but my staple is Chantecaille Lip Stick in Agave. It’s a subtle pink that’s gorgeous and a little matte."

Which personal and room fragrances do you like?
"I usually go perfume-free, or rub a little essential oil on my wrists, but if I’m going out I wear Gypsy Water by Byredo. It’s earthy and arty and makes me feel like I’m going on an adventure. In the home, I always return to Diptyque’s Figuier candle candle since it smells so grown-up and it’s the perfect mix of sweet, warm, woody and inviting. There’s nothing quite like it. It’s funny because I always thought that I was more drawn to florals like rose and citrus notes, but it seems that the scents of the forest have my heart."

Do Archie and Darren help themselves to any of your products?
"Ha! Darren would have to be the most low-maintenance person I know, and yet he always looks good. Archie loves my makeup bag though, and because he’s always by my side he’s been watching me get my makeup done for work. He’s always rummaging around playing with brushes, opening lids and unscrewing things. He’s just worked out what lip balm is and tries to put it on me. I let him do it even though I look like a clown!"

What do you relish the most about living in Byron Bay?
"So much! The beaches, amazing produce, community and nature are so good for the soul. It’s such a beautiful and supportive place to bring up a family, and I really gravitate towards the healthy lifestyle and philosophy here. I feel so fortunate that we have so many great wellness options with yoga, acupuncture and access to food direct from the producer. The farmers’ markets are a highlight every week, and I pinch myself that picking up fresh milk from the dairy or homegrown vegetables from a roadside stall is just a way of life."

Words by George Epaminondas
Photography by Amelia Fullarton
April 2018


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