Celebrity makeup artist and hairstylist, Amanda Shackleton, travels the world for her craft. Along the way, she’s picked up beauty tips and tricks from each country she’s visited. I’ve long desired to know what women in other countries and cultures use as their product staples and we asked Amanda to tell us all about her discoveries!
Below Amanda has pulled together her Top 8 beauty products, all of which we can use to beautify ourselves in 2014.
1. Arabia Peninsula/India
Does Best: Brightening the Eyes with Kohl.
Product: Al Sharifan Kohl Kajal Eyeliner. I was first introduced to kohl eye powder over twenty years ago in Morocco where women would make their own from oil and herbs. This one is one of the oldest around. You apply it to the waterline of your eyes both top and bottom to brighten and define your eyes. It’s a super dark black, powdery kohl that is also believed to protect eyes from the sun (especially in the desert where it gets its origins) and helps smooth and cool them.
Does Best: Covering Dark Under Eye Circles.
Product: Etude House Surprise Concealer Kit. This is one of my favorite products for dark circles. It’s super creamy and gentle, made for Asian skin, but works well on everyone. It has 2 colors, first a peach color to counteract the bluish tones from dark circles then a beige color to layer on top. Blended together they are magical! It’s a top cosmetic brand in Korea I found recently and plan on trying other things from them.
Does Best: Red lipstick
Product: YSL Rouge Pur Couture in Rouge Rock. Ask any French woman what’s her most important cosmetic and it would be a red lipstick, of course. Bright red, dark red, blue red, orange red, pink red on and on. I discovered this in Milan when I didn’t have the right color red for the model. Thanks to a very generous French makeup artist, she handed me this one.
Does Best: Flawless clear skin and brightening cremes
Product: Cosme Decort Future Science Washing Creme & White Science Premium Revolution Moisturizer. It’s an amazing brand of skin care products not well known in the US. On a recent trip to Asia I needed to buy moisturizer for my face. I looked everywhere for a normal moisturizer and couldn’t find anything (at least in the drugstore type shops) that wasn’t a whitening brightening creme.They are everywhere and now we know why Japanese/Asian women have such porcelain skin. These cleansers and moisturizers are gentle and work amazingly! No more tanning for me.
Does Best: Lavender Oil
Croatia is a huge producer of Lavender Oil and it can be seen everywhere you go in the country, especially growing along the Dalmatian Coast. I’ve always used Lavender oil mixed with water to spray on clients faces as a refresher, but I was told by a Croatian Mother of the bride that the Lavender in Croatia is much more antiseptic than any where else. Now I use it on cuts and burns and even break outs. It cools and refreshes dry red skin before makeup-especially in the winter.
Does Best: Mascara
Product: Zan Zusi Black Waterproof Roll on Mascara. I was introduced to this mascara by a Mexican producer while we were there shooting, when she asked, “Why do you think Mexican women have such long lashes?” She swore by this mascara, and though it’s sometimes hard to find because it sells out so quickly, she was able to get some for the girls on the crew. I was amazed at how long and clump-proof my lashes were. You may not think of mascara when you think of Mexico, but I do now.
7. West Africa
Does Best: African Black Soap
This soap is special because it uses indigenous Palm Oils not found in many places around the world. I found this in a store in Brooklyn and asked the shopkeeper why the soap was black; she told me it is black as a result of the cooking process. They cook it until it becomes a charcoal, then let it dry in the sun for weeks. The result is a gentle soap that can be used for everything. One of its special traits is detoxifying the skin.
Does Best: Hair Oil
Product: Hesh Mahabhriingraj Maka Herbal Hair Oil. Working with many Indian brides, I found out how they keep their hair so long and shiny. Although there are hundreds of different oils they use for their hair, this was the one I was given. I love it–Indian men and women both use it on their scalps for massage (to condition and help hair grow), as well as, on the ends to keep hair moisturized so it doesn’t get brittle. It’s better than most of the high end hair products I’ve bought and I keep a small container in my hair kit to refresh dull hair.
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Shannon began A Girl’s Gotta Spa! beauty blog in 2005 to morph her love of beauty and in educating women on what truly works and what does not. In 2013 she launched a bath and body line as an extention of the beauty blog. One thing she always has on her at all times? Lip balm.