Beauty may be only skin deep but we’re seeing a shift beyond products designed to anti-age, slim and plump to ones that prioritise our wellbeing.
Whether it’s tackling poor sleep and anxiousness, or boosting positivity and concentration, women are increasingly looking to invest in a natural approach to self-care – with a luxury holistic tinge.
While “holistic” can bring to mind misty past associations with alternative medicine, encapsulated by musky aromas and promises of the moon on a stick written on leaky dropper bottles, that hippy vibe has been replaced with premium ingredients, expert blending and glossy packaging.
This crossover into wellness is a sign the multi-billion pound industry is finding its feminist feet. Washbag staples are no longer led by superficial chemical-laden fixers designed to make us more presentable to the outside world. We’re becoming less inclined to choose firming shower gels, or the latest brightening concealer to hide dog-tiredness, above promises to nourish, nurture and heal our bodies and minds. “Beauty” has become more personal.
Online beauty curator Cult Beauty says it has seen traffic to wellbeing-related products more than double over the past two years amid a subtle shift in what customers are asking of products to build into their daily beauty routines.
“Product efficacy is of course front and centre, but people are also searching for beauty that supports their emotional state,” co-Founder Alexia Inge tells stylist.co.uk.
“Skincare companies are now complimenting their topical ranges with nutritional supplements as a given and adding aromatherapeutic or Ayurvedic properties such and sleep and stress-aids to their formulas.”
“It signals a new attitude – you’re considering your complete self as well as your looks,” Inge adds. “Of course for many, the two are inextricably linked, but there’s no point in spending hundreds of pounds on products if you’re grey from lack of sleep or permanently frowning from stress.”
It’s no coincidence that many of those driving premium self-care products onto our beauty radar are women. Take world-leading aromatherapist Michelle Roques O'Neil, who blends oils that are geared to balance, detox, calm and energise. She wants to remedy our exposure to the detrimental effects of electromagnetic frequencies that for some, can contribute to feelings of anxiety, insomnia, hypersensitivity and lowered immunity.
Her “stress less - live more” mantra comes without any promises of more youthful-looking skin or firmer thighs and has earned her a cult – and celebrity – following.
"Modern life can be a juggle and can take its toll on your inner wellness,” she says. “My products offer aromatherapeutic solutions to a range of negative conditions by helping regain spiritual balance.”
That’s a beauty routine we can get on board with.
Click the gallery below for our pick of the best healing beauty products...