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Fashion and Beauty, Beauty

Biophilic Beauty

Dew Drops Tulip Fields Open qcjifm

For some years the concept of biophilia has been something of a buzzword in design circles, most often used in reference to architecture and more latterly, interiors. Put simply, it is a term used to describe the human tendency to interact or be close nature and its other forms of life.

It was American Pulitzer-prize winning academic Edward Osborne Wilson who developed the theory that humans have an innate need to experience and be connected with nature. He presented his hypothesis in his book Biophilia, 1984 (and yes, Icelandic singer Bjork has an album of the same name, released in 2011). The idea has been subsequently developed and considers why we love to keep pets, or why we care for the fate of wild animals: why we adorn our homes with flowers and plants, and even why we are drawn to environmental landscapes. Within the building industry, biophilic design can be seen when there is a connection to the natural environment within a building’s architecture. Famous examples litter history; from the Hanging Gardens of Babylon to Singapore’s Supertree Grove and the Brutalist Barbican in London. Think ‘living walls’, skylights and atriums, water features, and a plethora of vegetation in both internal and external spaces, or ideally both.

Further, it is generally agreed that biophilic design has benefits on our mental health which makes intuitive sense if you think about practices such as forest bathing, groundedness and other eco-therapies. In beauty terms, products have been dictated by nature since the Ancient Egyptians used plant oils to soften and protect their skin, and Cleopatra bathed in milk and honey.

Dew DropsFive thousand years later, and we are still looking to the natural world for our beauty needs. Take Dutch company Bloomeffects who work with their native tulips to harness the regenerative properties of these flowers. I can only imagine inspiration came from analysing the lush plumpness of a tulip’s petals and identifying the rich potential of the natural moisturisers, amino acids and natural antioxidants within the plant. Their Dew Drops (£54 have recently launched and this serum/primer both promises and delivers a morning dewy glow.

Glow DropsUsing the mineral zinc oxide, inde wild’s AM Sunscreen Glow Drops (£32 offer an SPF50 which will protect skin from UVA and UVB rays. The range is based on ayurvedic principles and in addition to shielding from the sun’s rays also contains centella (Indian pennywort) and liquorice root to hydrate, balance sebum, brighten and sooth redness.

Weleda are globally renowned for their commitment to nature-based health and wellbeing and have been growing their own plant ingredients organically for over 100 years. They have just launched a new firming range based around the collagen-boosting effects of pomegranate seed oil coupled with Peruvian maca root which also helps make skin more radiant (from £24.95 The beneficial effects of pomegranate are also key to Tata Harper’s Water Lock Moisturiser (£61 Particularly delicious to use during these warmer months, this moisturiser/primer hybrid is refreshingly lightweight and hydrating. In addition to pomegranate spheres, it contains Vitamin C-rich orange peptides and barley leaf juice, all farmed at Tata Harper’s farm in Vermont. (Note, fruit acids are great for your skin, but sun protection must always be worn when using during daylight hours).

Sounding less like a wish list at a juice bar or garden centre, Hunter Lab ( creates gender-inclusive skincare based on ‘green chemistry’ using high performance, natural ingredients. The hero in their Charcoal Cleansing Stick (£23) will absorb impurities and, together with green tea and a blend of nut oils skin is left clean and softened. The Daily Face Fuel moisturiser (£31) is similarly redolent in nature’s bounty to hydrate and rejuvenate. Wakame (seaweed) combined with macadamia and passion fruit oils with avocado (all sources of protecting antioxidants and also fatty acids) may sound worryingly rich and therefore claggy, but the feel is light as it sinks in easily without any residual tackiness.

In addition to the wondrous skin care benefits to be found in nature, there is the fragrance to consider. Briefly, three stand-out recommendations which have recently dropped; a body oil, a shower wash and an eau de toilette, all which are deeply evocative of the inimitable glory of nature’s own perfume lab, as opposed to the chemically derived clones which proliferate.

Let’s start with Wildsmith’s new Performance Skin Cleansers (£38 Each seeks to induce one of three states: Stillness, Purity and Vitality. Each is commendable but Stillness has stolen my heart and added hydration back to my skin, courtesy of the biodynamically-grown chamomile with which it is infused. This, coupled with rose and geranium essential oils acts as a balm to my soul, doubtlessly helped along by the scent, which is that of the most indulgent spa, transforming my shower into a complete wellness experience.

Post shower, I have been melting the golden drops of Nyita’s Jasmia Body Oil into my skin, making a daily chore into a mindful ritual, a moment of calm (£139/50ml Cold-pressed organic oils are blended with an infusion of delicate jasmine flowers, hand-picked and hand-turned to dry before the enfleurage process (oil extraction) takes place. The first time I opened the bottle the scent actually made me gasp: it is pure and beautiful and so evocative of nature, I was immediately transported to halcyon meadows and memories of bucolic bliss.

Finally, a spritz of scent. There are many outstanding fragrances using natural ingredients, but these can often either come with a jaw-dropping price tag or – at the other end of the spectrum – lack a little sophistication (yes, I said it). Priced at £60 for a generous 100ml bottle, the Verbena Geranium eau de toilette from L’Occitane ( might just become my signature fragrance this summer. Containing actual plant extract, it is a light, lingering medley of its component leafy parts: refreshing, grassy citrus notes of verbena and the Turkish delights of rose-like geranium. Rounded off with cedarwood and musk at the base, this is as light and warm as an hour or two in an English country garden – or a Provencal villa – at the height of the season.


Dew Drops Tulip Fields Open qcjifm
Mon 1 Jul 2024

For some years the concept of biophilia has been something of a buzzword in design circles, most often used in reference to architecture and more latterly, interiors. Put simply, it is a term used to describe the human tendency to interact or be close nature and its other forms of life.

Mon 1 Jul 2024

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The three women behind Bodyguard clearly felt the same and have spent three years developing an effective insect repellent in a range of fragrances developed in Provence by a master perfumer.