You know those times when you meet someone and there's something about them (and you) that makes a lot of sense that you are meant to meet up and connect, in some way, in this life.
It's magic, but it's so often simply so 'normal' we don't give it the sparkles it really deserves.
I somehow got the attention of Natalie from Kindred Toxin Free Facials at Bulimba in Brisbane a couple of years ago and at the time I was extremely flattered she'd even found me let alone wanted to know anything about my products. I'm a small producer... a 'micro-batch maker', so it's probably amazing anyone finds me at all.
What I took from that initial connection was that 'my stuff was good enough' to be considered, which is strangely where I have my biggest doubts. I rarely worry at all about 'what I look like', I haven't worn a full face of make-up for over 20 years, and all too often look as if I've just come out the laundry after weeks of work. Although, to say the 'aesthetic' doesn't mean anything to me isn't true. I spend A LOT of time on caring for myself, but it's not all to do with how I look, it's much more about how I feel and how I am maintaining my best health. If that means my hair is shiny (and yep, messy too), my skin is moisturised, my eyes bright and clear, my feet un-callused and my nails neat, healthy and strong, then that's about where I feel comfortable.
Natalie has a wonderful platform to promote self-care beyond the aesthetic, because her business is built on some excellent ethical foundations. She embodies the new era entrepreneur and is a beautiful soul who branched out with amazing collaborative events in the last 18 months or more, creating 'Master Class' workshops with Monique of 'The Beauty Journal' to provide real-world information and hands-on experience with clean, toxin-free skincare and make-up. Their message through the #kindbeautymovement sees 'Master Class' events sell out when offered in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.
The success of workshops speaks volumes about the way society and consumers are looking at the products they buy, and at how the beauty industry can connect with small batch makers to find real, pure, natural and unique products to promote. It's 'small economy promotion' that feels good because it's doing good. The message is one of supporting local, small businesses, and also to have a criteria of supporting those who are producing ethically, being mindful of their resource usage and promoting environmentally sound business practices...plus being naturally cruelty-free.
In a few weeks time I'm going to be fortunate enough to attend the latest collaboration of Natalie's with her friend Carly Stephan for the 'Your Inner Glow' half day retreat in West End, Brisbane. After the start to the year I've had (too many issues with my mode of transport and my father being hospitalised, just for starters) this is something I am very much looking forward to.
I love their message about beauty and well-being...
"Many women are externally manipulating and (in some cases) butchering themselves to achieve ‘beauty’, motivated by a delusion that this will bring an internal sense of satisfaction, ease and happiness for them. Newsflash! It doesn’t. But the truth is that the kind of beauty they are actually seeking simply cannot be bought and must be cultivated from within. And it begins with acknowledging your innate beauty, and connecting to your inner radiance."
For me, the message of modern day beauty industry is one of fear, lack and intimidation. Frankly I find it repulsive. To connect to something that is positive, encouraging and empowering is ALL ME! I'm there! but y'know,...I won't pass up an afternoon of self-care and further encouragement, ever.
There are only a few tickets left so if you feel this is for you then I'll look forward to meeting you too.