THE IN-TRAY

Why A-Beauty brands from Australia are in the spotlight

YOU’VE HEARD OF K-BEAUTY FROM KOREA, AND J-BEAUTY FROM JAPAN, BUT MAKE SOME ROOM IN YOUR BEAUTY CABINET FOR A-BEAUTY FROM AUSTRALIA. HERE, WE SALUTE THE LOCAL BRANDS MAKING WAVES.

First it was K-Beauty from Korea, when the world went mad for 10-step skin care routines and snail-gel sheet masks. Then along came J-Beauty from Japan, with its focus on tradition, technology and geisha-like gravity. But the latest letter (and region) in the spotlight is A for Australia. A-Beauty is associated with simple solutions, down-to-earth ingredients and a no worries approach to your skin care routine that is as refreshing as a morning surf.

Unlike rigorous multi-step routines—featuring essences, emulsions, ampoules and daily sheet masks—A-Beauty is all about an easy, uncomplicated approach to self-care. As Zoë Foster Blake, founder of the ultimate no-fuss brand Go-To, told us “People think of Australians as being laidback and no nonsense”. Go-To embodies those traits as well as being seriously good skin care. The collection is easy to navigate, while the product descriptions are quirky and funny. Take the Transformazing Mask, which is suggested for use when “your skin hates you”, or Face Hero oil which “protects the face against bad guys trying to make it unhappy”.

A-Beauty showcases the best of skin-loving indigenous ingredients. Tanning brand Luna Bronze marries clean botanicals and natives including lemon myrtle, which refreshes and balances the skin, and age-defying macadamia oil. Similarly, Frank Body’s Peppermint coffee scrub features cut-leaf mint bush, a shrubby plant known for its anti-bacterial properties. The brand’s latest scrub is powered by a slate of homegrown elements, including eucalyptus oil, macadamia oil and finger lime. Kakadu plum can be found in Mecca Cosmetica Transforming Facial Cleanser as well as Go-To’s Transformazing Sheet Mask. The magical plum is known for being the world’s most potent form of natural Vitamin C, which helps to brighten, tighten and smooth your complexion.

Another identifiable attribute of A-Beauty is a devotion to non-toxic formulations and organic actives. 101 Lifestyle has proposed clean alternatives to oral hygiene products, which typically rely on industrial sulfates and fluoride to clean teeth. Instead, the brand uses natural charcoal and spearmint in its toothpaste and mouthwash alternatives. It also packages them up in sleek vessels that look epically stylish in your bathroom. Grown Alchemist, meanwhile, embraces organic, anti-ageing actives in its cutting-edge skin care. Its Age-Repair Serum and Regenerating Night Cream are both powered by organic peptides and oils to plump, firm and smooth lines and wrinkles.

Finally, a brand couldn’t really qualify as A-Beauty unless it projected a relaxed, beachy vibe. Elle Ferguson’s Elle Effect goes one better by replicating a Bondi bronze colour with her sunless, rose-scented tanning mouse. Pair it with Mecca Cosmetica SPF 50+ for healthy, sun-safe skin no matter the season. Another brand popular with It girls is Mecca Max, which captures our carefree spirit with vibrant and vegan makeup, including bold lipsticks, zinging palettes and metallic shadows. Simplicity, integrity and a playful spirit – is it any wonder A-Beauty is so hot right now?

Words by Rhyanna Cardillo
Photography by Nick Dale
Styling by Marsha Golemac
April 2019

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