All of the brand’s stores, offices and factories have closed for the day in honour of his death
It has been announced today that Brandon Truaxe, founder of Deciem, has sadly died at 40 years old. The cause of his death has not been confirmed.
According to Vox, the company’s acting CEO Nicola Kilmer sent the below email to all staff confirming the news:
‘I can’t believe I am typing these words. Brandon has passed away over the weekend,’ she wrote. ‘Heartbroken doesn’t come close to how I, and how I know many of you will be feeling.
‘All offices, warehouses, factories and stores please close today and take the time to cry with sadness, smile at the good times we had, reflect on what his genius built and hug your loved ones that little harder.
‘We are all in disbelief and shock but I will be in touch again very soon. I love you all incredibly much, as did he.’
Deciem, also known as ‘The Abnormal Beauty Company’, is the parent company of a number of brands including The Ordinary, Hylamide and The Chemistry Brand.
Truaxe was removed as the company’s CEO by a judge in October last year.
Our thoughts are with Brandon’s friends and loved ones and everyone at Deciem during this sad time.
Welcome to Beauty Bytes: a place where I chat to celebrities about all things beauty – from their favourite products, to their biggest beauty disasters. Plus I grill them on everything from their social media habits to their favourite cheat meals. You know, all the important and essentials things that we need to know about.
Late last year, I sat down with supermodel and singer, Karen Elson, to talk about her exciting collaboration with jeweller Duffy and Jo Malone London – the Birthstones Collection. She revealed what Pat McGrath has taught her about lipstick, how she fears we might be headed to world similar to Handmaid’s Tale and introduced me to Winston Smushface. KT – Digital Beauty Editor.
KT: YOU HAVE MANAGED TO MAKE THE ALREADY CHIC JO MALONE BOTTLES CHIC, HOW DID YOU MANAGE IT?
KE: I originally had the idea to do a whole horoscope collection, but that would involve like inventing twelve new fragrances for each horoscope. Which was unrealistic when you’ve got so many incredible Jo Malone London fragrances already. So then we started thinking about what else we could do that was months-related, that’s kind of personal and bespoke. And then we came up with birthstones; let’s make a new bottle cap that has a birthstone inside of it. But instead of just having a regular bottle top we brought Duffy, the jeweller, in to design something really weighty and heavy and luxurious. They’re handcrafted and I love when something’s been made with quality and love. Everyone has their own favourite Jo Malone London fragrance so you can personalise your bottle or buy someone their birthstone as a present.
KT: AND HOW DID YOU FIND DUFFY?
KE: Someone said to me, ‘Have you heard of Duffy?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, the hairdresser. I love Duffy the hairdresser. I’ve worked with him before.’ And she was like, ‘No, there are apparently many Duffys around and it’s actually Duffy the hairdresser’s brother – also Duffy.’ Interesting right?
KT: IS HE MARRIED TO KATE HALFPENNY, THE DESIGNER?
KE: I don’t know. Apparently there are lots of Duffys around, all married to incredible women. It came about very organically in that sense. We had some meetings, he showed me mock-ups and I really wanted something that stood out. I guess it’s quite elaborate but it’s quite simple at the same time. Like something that, you know- something that feels sharp but it also feels very classic. I would want to see that in my bathroom.
KT: AND WHICH BIRTHSTONE ARE YOU?
KE: I’m January, so garnet. It’s just kind of sweet. A friend gave me an Esteé Lauder a Carpicorn compact a few years ago and I love it. You hold onto those things forever.
KT: SO WHICH ONE IS YOUR SIGNATURE FRAGRANCE? WHICH SCENT WOULD YOU PUT YOUR GARNET CAP ONTO?
KE: It’s very hard when there are so many gorgeous Jo Malone London fragrances. I have a few go-to favourites, which I mix and match all the time; Red Roses is obviously for any time, because it’s such a beautiful, beautiful fragrance. Just a spritz of Incense and Cedrat is very seductive. I’m definitely getting more into Honeysuckle and Davana. English Oak and Redcurrant, Blackberry and Bay; I mean there are so many.
KT: WHAT’S THE WORST BEAUTY TREND YOU’VE EVER ATTEMPTED?
KE: Pearlised lipstick. Hate it. I can’t stand like a pink pearlised lip.
KT: THAT SORT OF FROSTED LOOK?
KE: Yeah. I can’t deal.
KT: WHAT’S THE BEST BEAUTY ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
ELSON: Less is more. Like, twenty people have said it to me, a lot of them good makeup artists. I remember clearly Dick Page saying it to me. What I love about him, as a makeup artist, is that he’s quintessentially less is more. Like Dick knows how to do one subtle thing that looks beautiful but hasn’t taken away from the original beauty of the person.
KT: AND DO YOU ADAPT THIS INTO YOUR OWN MAKEUP?
KE: I never want to overkill, but if you’re going to do something have it be impactful. But not a way that you’re overwhelmed by it.
KT: LIKE A RED LIP?
KE: Like a red lip or – like today I was like let’s use blue eyeliner, I like to play with colour but never over doing it.
KT: WHAT IS YOUR BEST BEAUTY PRODUCT RECOMMENDATION?
KE: It’s hard because I go through so many products all the time, I love beauty products – I’m a hoarder. Skin wise though, I’ve been into Vintner’s Daughter. Of all the oils, that actually seems to do something. But I always mix it with something.
KT: IT’S BECOME QUITE THE CULT CLASSIC. DO YOU MIX IT WITH A CREAM?
KE: Yeah. I’m such a sucker for good packaging as well.
KT: IF YOU HAD TO HAVE ONE HAIRSTYLE, ONE MAKEUP LOOK AND ONE NAIL COLOUR FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, WHAT WOULD YOU CHOOSE?
KE: Ok, well I want Rapunzel-long, big, Jessica Rabbit hair so give me that. I’ll be so happy with just hair down to my waist – so happy. If I had to have one makeup look- Pat McGrath’s made me some lipsticks so we’d choose one of her Elson lipsticks. And Chanel Rouge Noir – a deep, deep blood red.
KE: Good skin. With good skin you can get away with a lot, you know? I think if your skin looks good without wearing any makeup, that’s the best base. So for me, I think when you neglect taking care of your skin, it makes it hard to even put anything on top of it. Don’t hide things, like let it out. Let your skin shine. Be what it naturally is. If you’ve got good skin it’s very easy to apply makeup.
KT: WHAT ARE YOUR TOP THREE BEAUTY BRANDS?
KE: Jo Malone London, obviously! Pat McGrath because she’s one of my best besties. My third would be Vitner’s Daughter. Because it’s small, it’s only got one product.
KT: WHAT’S IN YOUR MAKEUP BAG RIGHT NOW?
KE: What did I bring with me? So right now I love Tom Ford’s eyeliners because he always has really great colours. So I’ve got like a myriad of Tom Ford eyeliners. By Terry foundation; she has a sheer foundation that I love. Also the Tom Ford palette, it’s got the highlight and rose tint. I’ve got Benetint, the classic Benetint. And Pat McGrath lipsticks, oh and Charlotte Tilbury mascaras.
KT: HOW DO YOU TAKE CARE OF YOUR SKIN? AND CAN YOU TALK THROUGH YOUR MORNING AND EVENING ROUTINE?
KE: Oh, gosh. Well depends on each day. I fell asleep with all my makeup on last night. So I did like the beauty faux pas of that. But morning time, I like the Eve Lom morning cleanser. And depending if my skins feel oily or dry, I like this Kat Burki enzyme spray that if I’ve gotten off a plane – it’s perfect for that. And then I might follow up with her vitamin C cream and some Vintner’s Daughter and La Mer. And at night-time I basically do the same thing, but I might use Augustinus Bader, because I’m obsessed with that cream at the moment and I feel like it does something.
KT: WHAT IS THE BEST MAKEUP TIP A PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP ARTIST HAVE EVER GIVEN YOU?
KE: Pat McGrath taught me to apply my lipstick with my fingers. I’ll put it on and then I’ll blend it in with my fingers because it’s more of a diffused lip line, which makes your lips look fuller. When you’ve got a lip that’s harsh and drawn in, for me at least, I don’t like the way that looks. Pat has always been very hands-on, quite literally. So I’ve really taken how she applies makeup on board.
KT: WHAT ABOUT MANICURES?
KE: Love them. Love, love, love.
KT: HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET THEM AND WHAT DO YOU GET?
KE: When I’m shooting I sometimes get too many. I can get quite tough with a manicurist when she’s coming at me trying to cut a cuticle off that’s already been cut three times that week. I’m like, ‘go away.’ But when I’m home in Nashville, I love to get pedicures and manicures. Such a small luxury. I don’t do nail art or acrylics or anything like that, but I like an interesting colour. I love Chanel nail colours. Universally, Chanel nail colours are like some of the best nail colours so whatever they’re doing, I always take note.
KT: HOW OFTEN DO YOU WORKOUT AND WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE WAY TO EXERCISE?
KE: I love working out. It’s funny I didn’t workout a lot in my twenties and in my thirties I really fell in love with it. So when I’m home in Nashville, I like to workout five days a week. I love it. I do Pilates, I might go on a hike, I might do a spin class. But when I’m travelling it’s so hard and often, even if there’s a gym downstairs, I find myself being more drawn to room service, a glass of wine, and TV. I’m not working out because I want to be thin. That’s the last thing I’m doing it for. I’m doing it because I want to feel strong. I’m all about that at the moment. While I like doing a spin class, I never try and over do it beyond my point of- beyond the threshold-
KT: HOW DO YOU LOOK AFTER YOUR HAIR?
KE: Oh me and my hair is like an on going love-hate battle, to be honest with you. I’ve got really frizzy red hair. So to keep the frizz tamed, it’s a never-ending battle. I recently got one of those Dyson hair dryers and that’s actually really good.
KT: YEAH, IT’S MEANT TO HELP WITH FRIZZ SO MUCH.
KE: I definitely noticed that it helped with that. When I did a shoot recently I was like, ‘Why is my hair all different lengths?’ Somebody had used a curler and it singed my hair off. Because my hair is so fine hairdressers wants to get that curl, so they use such a high heat, that is will like singe your hair or damage it beyond repair. So I’m constantly dealing with that. As a model, part of just being a model is that someone’s like backcombing your hair to get that big hair look and I’m literally watching pieces of my hair falling on the ground. I’m like, ‘oh awesome.’ It’s hard. I do the occasional hair mask. Olaplex, I know – that’s been really helpful as far as like damage is concerned. Terax is a shampoo that I’m obsessed with. And there are a couple of Redken products that I’m into, as well – All Soft. It really smooths your hair out. And also, what’s it called – Rahua? They have a hair mask, a colour hair mask, that’s got tuberose in it. It’s gorgeous. Heaven. I just scrape my hair back back. Might as well just pretend it’s not there. I want to wear wigs. I want to be Rapunzel.
KT: WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE TV SHOW TO BINGE WATCH?
KE: I just finished watching Handmaids Tale, which I absolutely loved. I’m now on American Horror Story, the Apocalypse one which I’m obsessed with. So good, so good. There’s so much to watch. But Handmaid’s Tale is, I mean- you know Margaret Atwood as well, what a writer. The director, Reed Morano – I actually know one of the director’s of Handmaid’s Tale and she’s this incredible woman – started out as a cinematographer, she’s such a bad ass, and is now directing. And she’s a big part of Handmaid’s Tale and how it came about and I just love – it’s eerie, it’s creepy, it’s quite likely we’re heading into those times but let’s hope not.
KT: WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT?
KE: Oh my God, I’m such a nerd. I love following animals all the time. It’s like my favourite guilty pleasure. Don’t give me too many fashion people, you know? Honestly, if you’re a puppy, if you’re a kitten – there’s this one cat, ‘Winston Smushface.’ I can’t with this cat. I’m going to show and it’s going to blow your socks off.
KT: HAVE YOU GOT CATS? ARE YOU A CAT OR DOG PERSON?
KE: Yeah, I’ve got four cats. I love dogs too. I love all creatures. Sometimes I think I like animals more than I like humans. What’s so special about Winston, is that Winston likes to sit up. And his tongue sticks out all the time. That’s what so special about Winston. They’re just funny.
KT: WHEN THIS GOES LIVE EVERYONE’S GOING TO START FOLLOWING WINSTON SMUSHFACE AND HE’LL SEE A PEAK IN HIS FOLLOWERS.
KE: I also love Pickle the Pig, I can’t. It’s too much. So yeah, nothing like grand and intelligent. I mean obviously I like all the feminist accounts as well. There’s like @feminist, @instafeminst, my friend Sarah Sophie Flicker who used to be one of the people who started Woman’s March and she’s one of my favourite Instagram activists. I’m all about that. But you have to counter the stuff that’s very powerful with cuteness.
KT: WHEN DID YOU REALISE THAT YOU WERE FAMOUS? WAS THERE PERHAPS A MOMENT WHEN YOU WERE RECOGNISED?
KE: I remember it clearly. It was Halloween, 1998. Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell would always do their Halloween party in New York back in the day. And I was walking down the street and all of a sudden there was like twenty-five paparazzi following me and I was looking around confused. I literally had this moment like, ‘What is going on? Who’s behind? Oh- me.’ It was so weird because I was still a teenager so it was really – it was weird. Different days. Different time though because Instagram didn’t exist so it wasn’t like – you could still do your thing. We didn’t document every single moment of life.
KT: AND FINALLY, WHO’S THE PERSON YOU WERE MOST STARSTRUCK MEETING?
KE: Prince. Hands down. I mean I met him a couple of times but the first time I met him, it was a Miu Miu party. Again like, ’97 I think. And I just walked the Miu Miu show and he was performing. And I remember having these crazy, high sparkly blue Miu Miu shoes – I still have in my closet. And I remember he walked into the party and I was like, ‘Oh my God, I love you.’ And he just took my hand and looked at me and I was like, ‘thank you!’ Although I think at this point in time, I’d be star struck if I met Prince George.
But they’re also giving us something pretty special as the most romantic day of the year inches closer.
Lush revealed that they’re releasing a special Valentines Day bath bomb range, we vowed to buy them all. Whether you’re loved up or opting for a Galentine’s this year, everyone deserves a fun bath bomb.
There’s the aubergine, modelled on everyone’s favourite sexting emoji, which is a bergamot, fruity ho wood and litsea cubeba treat, and a peach that releases bursts of grapefruit, peach juice and sweet davana.
No wonder people are getting excited to try them.
However, some people may have been getting too excited by them, and now a doctor has warned women not to use them as sex toys. Obviously.
Speaking to Metro, Dr Vaness Mackay, spokesperson for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: ‘We would strongly discourage the use of bath bombs internally as these could disturb the fragile balance of good bacteria inside the vagina.
‘This natural flora helps to protect the vagina and disrupting it could lead to irritation, inflammation and infection, such as bacterial vaginosis or thrush.
‘Women are advised to use plain, unperfumed soaps to wash the area around the vagina (the vulva), not inside it, gently every day.’
So, just incase you were getting any wild ideas, don’t put your bath bomb in anything except your bath.
We’ve had our fair share of long-awaited US beauty brand launches. Those collections that we have fawned over for years via our Insta feeds and hurried trips to Sephora on holidays in America. Praying for the day they would finally cross the pond. Think Drunk Elephant, Glossier and Herbivore. This month sees another one to add to your diary: Milk Makeup is finally coming to the UK and we are beyond delighted.
On the 28th January, Milk Makeup will be available to buy exclusively on Cult Beauty. If that seems too far away, two days before the official launch – on the 26th January – the brand is opening a pop-up shop in London’s Covent Garden offering customers access to the full collection 48 hours ahead of the nationwide launch. You’ll have the opportunity to test out their infamous on-the-go sticks, have your makeup done by the brand’s makeup artists and get your hands on the Meet The Fam set, their hero collection in cute minis, which is only available at the pop-up.
If you’re unfamiliar with the brand, here’s everything you need to know about Milk Makeup…
It has a HUGE cult following on Instagram. Obvs.
The brand is all about making your beauty routine easy and accessible, so that it fits into your modern lifestyle – even if you’re on the go. Which is why they encourage the use of fingertips for application and their innovative easy-to-use, multi-use sticks are bestsellers.
The products are cruelty and paraben free and vegan. (Handy if you’re doing Veganuary.)
Prices start at a very handsome £10.25 (for their tattoo stamps, which are sure to become firm favorites over the festival season).
It was created by the founders of Milk – the world-class fashion photography studio, with outposts in New York and LA and ex-fashion and beauty editor, Zanna Roberts Rassi.
We’re super excited and you should be too. Head to the pop up at 6a Langley Street, Covent Garden WC2H 9JA, from 26th January.
Lush is taking a stand against plastic waste with their products – have you seen the packaging-free lipsticks? – and now they’re planning to reduce waste by opening a ‘naked’ store in the UK. It will stock all of your Lush favourites with a slight difference – everything they sell will be packaging-free. The shop will be on Market Street in Manchester and will open on January 18th.
The company has already launched ‘naked’ stores in Europe, with branches in Berlin and Milan also championing the plastic-free initiative.
So how does it work? Yes, you can get your bath bombs and shampoo bars without packaging, but what about the bottled products like shower gels? Instead of picking up the plastic, you can opt for a bubble bar instead. All of your faves will be recreated in solid form – from deodorants to facial cleansers – so you’ll be doing your bit for the planet without changing a thing.
‘Naked’ products make up almost 50% of Lush’s core range, and in 2017 they reportedly sold almost 800,000 ‘naked’ items, hugely reducing their packaging.
Product inventor Alessandro Commisso’s statement on the Lush website reads: ‘With the naked shop we don’t just want to offer beautiful products to our customers, we want to use this as an opportunity for discussion. It’s pretty much about debating these topics with the public, with the media, and with Lush customers to find out where to go next.
‘This is the last step in our twenty year development of naked products, but it’s the first step in the development of what Lush could be twenty years from now. We’ve opened this up these spaces for debate, and we’re also inviting NGOs and activist groups that work on reducing waste and reducing plastic pollution into the store, so we hope that it’ll be an education for us and for our customers.’
Online orders will also be plastic-free with cardboard-only packaging.
If you love all things pimple popping – from the viral videos to sorting out your own spots and getting a noticeable amount of enjoyment out of it – we’ve just found the ultimate pimple popper set to appease your deepest, darkest skincare desires.
Although these tools look insanely irresistible to the likes of us who love a spot squeeze, it’s important to consider that extractions are something that should really only be done by professionals. You can risk scarring and infection, so buy the set at your own risk!
The company recommends the following to make it the safest experience it can be:
‘Before treatment you should clean your face and disinfect the equipment. Once the pimples are removed with the extractor, provide a soft and nourishing cream to the skin for a soothing relief.’
If you’re brave enough to give it a go, and follow the instructions, this is pretty much the ultimate pimple popping set on the internet!
We all know that when it comes to makeup and skincare, most things have expiry dates. But can we count on our hair tools to last us absolutely forever? Do hair straighteners have an expiry date, for example? Well, we have some bad news for you…
Hairstylist Jackie Dove revealed to Daily Mail Femail that actually, hair straighteners do not escape expiry dates. She suggested buying a new pair every two to three years, and picked out three key signs to know when your pair has reached its limit:
Scratched plates: While this sounds simple and easy to detect, Jackie told the publication what you should really be looking for is ‘lifted plates’. ‘If you turn your hair straightener to the side you can generally see the plate lifting.’ She continued: ‘If they’ve lifted, your hair is likely to get caught in it.’
Flashing lights: Yep, apparently it’s a bad sign if after your straighteners are ready to use (and the light comes on), there should be a constant light with no flashing.
Effectiveness: This sounds like a simple one, but we often ignore it. If you’re having to go over the same piece of hair more than once, it probably means your straighteners aren’t nearly as good as they were at styling.
This advice however can sound a little frustrating; forking out for a new pair of straighteners every two years?! Luckily, there are ways you can prolong the life of your pair, mainly by taking care of them and always storing them in a heat proof carry case that’s useful for travel, too. There are also plenty of at-home cleaning hacks on YouTube to keep your plates as fresh as possible.
It’s also good for your straighteners – as well as your hair – to occasionally take a break from using them; try having certain days off.
It’s the age old question – to blow dry, or not to blow dry?
We’re well aware of the damage that heat can cause on your tresses, which is why all the experts advise you use heat protection spray when using styling tools. So what would you say if we told you that research suggests air drying your hair could be just as bad as blow drying it?
Annals of Dermatology conducted a study and found that leaving your hair to dry naturally once you’ve washed it can actually be worse for your hair health than blow drying step-by-step while it’s still wet.
It’s all to do with your hair’s response to being wet. Experts claim that when your hair is wet, the fibres swell and are weaker, so letting your hair air dry means its exposure to water goes on for longer, making the risk of damage greater.
Talking about the research, Dr Tim Moor, chief technology officer at ghd, told The Sun: ‘Naturally drying hair swells the cortex, as it is in contact with water for a longer period.
‘Repeated swelling and slow drying of hair causes the cell membrane complex (the glue that holds the cuticle together) to crack, which damages the hair.’
Confused? Same. Armed with all this new knowledge, do you blow dry your hair or not? We know that blasting your tresses with hot air can cause surface damage and dehydrate your hair, as well as affecting the colour.
But it turns out you don’t need to ditch the hairdryer completely, as long as it is around 15cm away from the hair and continuously moving as opposed to staying in one place for an extended period of time.
Lush has been making headlines for all the right reasons over the past few months. Late last year, they re-released their palm oil-free soap to save endangered Sumatran Orangutans, and they also launched refillable lipsticks to reduce plastic waste. We’re here for it.
And while they’re working hard to create thoughtful and impactful campaigns, they’re also working on some things just for fun.
So if you’re looking for something a little different as February 14th approaches, take a look at some of the Valentine’s Day bath bombs. You’ll want them all.
First up, let’s take a look at the aubergine. That’s right – the sexting emoji favourite has been transformed into a bergamot, fruity ho wood and litsea cubeba surprise. It also shoots green and blue foam from each end. Innovative.
Next, there’s the peach pleaser. It releases bursts of grapefruit, peach juice and sweet davana. Something that everyone needs on the most romantic day of the year, no?
The cheeky bath bombs are £3.95 in store and online.
And there’s a comeback for the brand’s iconic love boat bath bomb. Making it’s way back into stores, it’s available for £4.50 and is a mix of sweet orange and Sicilian lemon oil seas.
Oh, and don’t forget the big banana massage bar. Think Fair Trade cocoa and shea butters, spicy clove bud oil and Brazilian orange oil for just £5.95.
All items are currently on sale, so there’s no excuse not to get at least one.
Last night’s Golden Globes saw an array of beauty looks, from noteworthy makeup to unique hairstyles. So without further ado, here’s who would win a Golden Globe for beauty in our eyes…
Lady Gaga for most ‘woah’ moment
With A Star Is Born up for pretty much every award going throughout awards season, she was bound to make an impact on the red carpet. But blue hair? Who’d have thought it. Well, truthfully, it worked and as ever, Gaga nailed it.
Lupita Nyong’o for best ‘cool girl’ makeup
Lupita is known for her experimental take on beauty, using awards ceremonies to show off her fun side. Electric blue mascara and liner at the Golden Globes, for example? We’d expect no less.
Thandie Newton for best ever hair
We were crushing hard on Thandie Newton and her beautiful curls. She paired her hair with super flattering smoky eye makeup and a neutral lip shade. Perfection.
Amber Heard for best throwback vintage hair
Surely we can’t be the only ones getting serious retro Shakespeare in Love vibes from Amber’s ‘do? We’re not sure the inspiration here, but if there were an award for the best hair-from-another-era look, she would win.
Judy Greer for most creative use of accessories
While we’re sure Carrie Bradshaw would be appalled, we kinda dig Judy Greer’s bold choice of hair accessory: the humble scrunchie.
Lucy Boynton for most copy-able bob
Looking for a new cut for 2019? Lucy Boynton’s bob has garnered more than a few fans. Choppy, sharp and painfully cool, take this pic to your hair stylist.
Emily Blunt for most elaborate updo
A high class, luxury event like the Golden Globes calls for a boujee updo, and this year Emily Blunt nailed it. Practically perfect in every way, Mary Poppins would be proud.
Kate Mara for most ‘high fashuuun’ look
Kate Mara’s fiddly-looking updo, bold pout and impressive cheekbones screamed one thing: FASHUUUUN.