The #1 secret beauty brands don’t want brides to know

Emma Gibbs is the author of the zero waste and sustainability blog A Life Lived Lightly. You can follow her on Instagram @a.life.lived.lightly.


Find out how this bride transformed her skin in just days to be wedding day ready. 

The #1 secret beauty brands don’t want brides to know

I happen to be planning my own wedding right now, and right up there on the list of all-important “to do’s” – alongside securing the perfect venue, booking a photographer and finding “The Dress” – is getting my skin in top bride-worthy condition.

Until recently, my stressed-out dermis was looking anything but! No matter how many different lotions and potions I applied it was red, enflamed and oh so very dry. 

After coming across an article about how some of the common ingredients in skincare products can actually harm rather than heal the skin (a secret beauty brands definitely don’t want you to know!), I decided to hunt down a preservative-free, certified organic skincare line. Enter – Mokosh.

After only just a few days of switching to Mokosh products my skin was well and truly on the way to wedding day ready. The redness had completely gone and the dry, flakey look was replaced with a dewy, hydrated complexion. 

Amazed at my skin’s miraculous recovery I decided to go straight to the source to find out what makes Mokosh’s products so effective. Here, I chat to Mokosh owner and creator, Marion O’Leary.

Marion, how is Mokosh different from other skincare brands? Other than that it completely transformed my skin!

We formulate our products differently to other brands – we don’t add any water to our moisturisers or cleansers, which means that they do not need the preservatives, emulsifiers, thickeners and other synthetic ingredients that are used in [other] skincare. 

Preservatives, which are strong anti-bacterial and anti-fungal chemicals, have the potential to disrupt our skin’s microbiome, and some of them, like the parabens, are absorbed through the skin, and may have negative health effects. 

Emulsifiers are detergent-like molecules used in virtually all skincare, which allow the water and oil to blend and form a cream. Some emulsifiers disrupt the skin’s barrier function, while others are known allergens. 

The phthalates are another widely used ingredient both in skincare and in perfumes. They are used as fragrance and to improve the “feel” of a skincare product. Unfortunately, phthalates also disrupt the endocrine system. 

When creating Mokosh, we looked at how skincare was manufactured before the “chemical revolution” of the 20th century – in particular the ancient Indian system of medicine, Ayurveda, to help formulate our products. As I have a science background, we were also able to incorporate the Ayurveda approach with the latest research into which ingredients are most beneficial to the skin. 

We believe switching to our products is like changing from a diet high in processed and synthetic-laden foods to one based on nutrient-rich whole foods. The difference in the skin is usually evident very quickly.

Why is “certified organic” so important when it comes to skincare?

A skincare range that has organic certification is restricted in which synthetic ingredients it can include – and these restrictions are generally based on health considerations. 

For example, certain preservatives that may be harmful to health, including parabens, are not permitted by most organic standards. 

When it comes to understanding labels on skincare products, these restrictions take a lot of the guesswork out of deciding which skincare is safe. 

Companies with organic certification have to undergo annual audits to verify that they are using the ingredients they include on their labels – to my mind, they are trustworthier. 

The other benefit of certified organic is the fact that you are applying pure, unadulterated ingredients to your skin, without the risk of contamination of pesticides and herbicides. 

Finally, purchasing a certified organic product supports sustainable agriculture, which means a healthier and more resilient ecosystem, something we need to prioritise if our planet is to remain in good health.

How should brides care for their skin in the lead up to their big day?

When caring for your skin, we go with the Ayurvedic approach to health, which is to take time out to care for yourself – body, mind and soul – and working towards achieving balance in all these aspects of your life. 

On a more physical level, a beautiful healthy glow is what most brides aim for, which can be achieved by eating a diverse plant-based whole food diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables (certified organic if possible), drinking plenty of clean filtered water, getting regular exercise, and lots of sleep and rest. 

Treat your skin the same way – certified organic skincare, free of synthetics and rich in essential fatty acids, antioxidants and plant nutrients. 

Relax, enjoy the moment, love yourself and spread that love to the others around you and you can’t fail to radiate beauty on your big day!

What products would you recommend for dry, sensitive, stressed-out skin – a common complaint of busy brides-to-be! 

We would recommend our Makeup Remover & Cleansing Oil, Facial Cleanser, Exfoliator & Mask, and Pure Hydrosol Toner which are suitable for all skin types. These three products form the core of our skincare and work really well together to keep your skin fresh and well nourished. 

Combine these with a moisturiser that suits your skin type – oily/combination skins would go with the Elderberry & Chia Seed Beauty Serum, normal skin would go with the Raspberry & Pomegranate Beauty Serum and/or the Light Face Cream, while dry skin types would go with the Light Face Cream or Rich Face Cream. 

There is some overlap with our moisturisers, partly because skin is not static – it changes day-to-day and season-to-season. It’s important to know your skin like you know your body, and to adjust the level of moisturising it needs. 

The serums can be used as stand-alone moisturisers, or when skin is very dry, can be layered under one of the creams. They also double up as eye and neck serums. With all our products, we suggest trying out sample sizes first. 

Other than a good skincare routine (and using Mokosh products!), how else can brides keep their skin in top condition?

We have already mentioned diet, rest and balance in mind, body and soul being important to health, and the best way to achieve that healthy glow. 

Another wonderful ritual that is really lovely to incorporate into your daily self-care is the Ayurvedic face massage. We have written a simple “how-to” guide here.

You can do this simple five-minute massage after cleansing your skin, either at the start or end of the day. It helps relieve stress and anxiety, stimulates muscle tone, and improves circulation to the skin. 

We call it the “face lift” because it does seem to give you a beautiful uplifted feeling, both inside and out! It’s also a great ritual to incorporate into your day to ensure you take that little bit of time out for yourself.

Keen to try the Mokosh skincare range for yourself? You can shop for their products online here, or visit their Tasmanian stockist, ecoHaven, at 27 Murray Street, Hobart.

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