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Beauty industry veterans share their beauty rules

Beauty industry experts, such as YouTube star Lindy Tsang and make-up artist Clarence Lee, share beauty rules they live by

Foam up when cleansing


Lindy Tsang. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Lindy Tsang, 29
Chinese-Irish beauty blogger and YouTuber who splits her time between Hong Kong and Britain

The video blogger, who started blogging in 2007, has almost three million followers on YouTube. She creates beauty videos and hair and nail tutorials.

She has a one-year-old son, Isaac, with her husband Timothy Ng, who is self-employed.

1 CREATE FOAM WHEN CLEANSING

When cleansing their faces, people often take the cleanser and apply it immediately to their skin. But it is more effective to foam up the product using the hands before applying it to the face. The foam contains oxygen, which helps to cleanse skin better, especially oily skin.

2 CLEANSE FOR LONGER

We are all guilty of cleansing for only about 10 seconds. But extend that to two minutes, or even 30 seconds, and your skin will be cleaner. When rinsing off the cleanser, make sure to wash off all the residue.

3 EAT COOKED TOMATOES

Tomatoes contain lycopene, a natural pigment that gives the fruit its red colour. This also boosts the skin's immune system and makes it more resistant to sun damage and helps prevent sun spots. Cooked tomatoes have higher levels of lycopene.

4 EAT STARFRUIT

Starfruit is rich in zinc, which is great for oily skin and helps to reduce acne breakouts.

5 DRINK SPEARMINT TEA

I find drinking spearmint tea helps to control the androgens in the body, which are the main culprit of hormonal acne.

6 DON'T SLEEP WITH DAMP HAIR

This is so bad for hair. When hair is wet, it is softer and weaker and breaks more easily.

7 INVEST IN A SILK PILLOW CASE

Sleeping on your face can increase the formation of fine lines. But if you have to, use a pillow case made of silk, which is less harsh on the skin.

8 INVEST IN A BEAUTY GADGET

Good skin is key to beauty. The handheld Optimizer Voyage Tri-Light device from Skin Inc treats problems such as acne, redness and dullness. It is portable and easy to use. It helps to improve the condition of my skin and increases the efficacy of the products I use.


Use nail oil for supple cuticles


Natsumi Iwamuro. ST PHOTO: DON WONG FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Natsumi Iwamuro, 27
Manicurist at nail salon Kiyone+Lim in Orchard Central

The Japanese senior manicurist and store manager, who is single, studied at Kansai Beauty School in Osaka, Japan. She has been working at Kiyone+Lim for the last two years and is known for her intricate nail art.

1 USE NAIL OIL AND HAND CREAM

Applying nail oil and hand cream daily will help keep cuticles soft and supple and your hands looking younger. I like using OPI's cuticle oil and hand cream from L'Occitane.

2 EXFOLIATE YOUR FEET

Use a salt scrub or pumice stone to exfoliate your feet regularly, especially at the heels, where dry skin builds up.

3 DO NOT PEEL OFF NAIL POLISH

Peeling off gel manicures can weaken nails and make them thinner. Always go to a professional salon to have gel polish removed.

4 AVOID FAST FOOD

Junk food and fast food can be very oily. They can cause pimples, acne breakouts and skin puffiness.

5 STRETCH IN THE MORNING

This helps to warm up the body and makes you feel less tired and more refreshed.

6 USE EYELASH EXTENSIONS INSTEAD OF MASCARA

Using mascara can cause eyelashes to fall out more easily in the long run. Eyelash extensions are easier to maintain and can look more natural. I change or add eyelash extensions every month.

7 DRINK HOT TEA

Drinking hot green tea is healthier than consuming sweet drinks and also boosts one's metabolism.

8 USE HAIR OIL

Applying hair oil daily helps to create shine and moisturise the hair, giving a clean, sleek look.


Bathe every morning


Clarence Lee. PHOTO: JOEL LIM

Clarence Lee, 43
Make-up artist

The freelance make-up artist has been in the beauty business for more than two decades. He has worked with international stars such as Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, British girl group Spice Girls and home-grown singer Stefanie Sun.

The bachelor has also worked with world-renowned make-up experts such as Chanel Make-up's former global creative director, Mr Peter Philips, and Estee Lauder's creative make-up director, Mr Tom Pecheux.

1 NO DIRTY CLOTHES ON THE BED

Never sit or lie on your bed in clothes that you have worn out.  You never know what has been on the seats that you sit on in public places.

2 NO BAGS ON THE BED EITHER

We place our bags everywhere and you have no idea how much germs could be on the base of your bag.

3 NEVER LICK YOUR LIPS TO KEEP THEM MOISTURISED

This only makes the skin condition worse. Saliva contains digestive enzymes that wear down the skin of the lips, leaving them vulnerable to environmental exposure such as dry air.

4 USE A CLEANSING OIL

Even if you don't wear make-up, cleansing oils help to thoroughly remove pollution and sunscreen from your face. It should be used before a regular cleanser, which will remove the oil and leftover impurities.

5 MOISTURISE YOUR SKIN

This keeps your skin healthy. Even those with oily skin should use moisturisers. Your skin is probably over-producing oil to compensate for the lack of moisture.

6 GET A HUMIDIFIER

If you sleep with air-conditioning, you may want to consider using a humidifier while you sleep. Dry air is bad for the respiratory system and also dries the skin.

7 BATHE IN THE MORNING

Whether you sleep with air-conditioning, your skin produces sebum and you might still perspire a little. Some of us smell a little more than others. It may not be a bad smell, but it will be present. If you don't want to shampoo your hair, you may want to just take a quick shower to wash off the sebum. We usually cannot smell ourselves, but the people around us can.

8 USE SOAP

For those who are thinking of cheating in the morning by just running water through your hair and over your body,  I would say that it does not work that way.

Oil floats on water. Not using soap means you simply "push" the sebum around, making you more oily than before.


Take time to relax


Cecilia Westberry. PHOTO: RUTH SOH

Cecilia Westberry, 53
Senior beautician, spa manager and managing director of Cecilia Westberry Beauty Spa

Mrs Westberry, who runs her namesake beauty salon at Holland Close, has three decades of experience in the beauty industry. She trained at Top To Toe Beauty College and earned diplomas from the England- registered Confederation of International Beauty Therapy & Cosmetology and the Comite International D'esthetique Et De Cosmetologie, whose head office is in Switzerland.

She opened her spa in 2008. The salon offers facials, massages, lash extensions, waxing and nail services.

She is married to a corporate trainer and the couple have two children.

1 DRINK LOTS OF LEMON WATER

Lemon water supplies your body with natural alkaline, potassium and vitamin C. This aids in digestion and detoxification.

2 BRUSH YOUR SCALP DAILY

This helps to lift your face and prevent headaches caused by tension. It also keeps your scalp and hair healthy.

3 MAINTAIN A NIGHTLY CLEANSING RITUAL

Cleanse your face and body nightly to keep your pores clean. Use products with at least 50 per cent hyaluronic acid to counteract ageing and plump your skin.

Skin is the largest and most visible organ and you should let it shine.

4 USE A LIGHT FACE AND BODY PEEL ONCE A MONTH

This helps to soften and renew your skin.

5 ALWAYS HAVE YOUR LASHES PRIMED

Your eyelashes should always be curled or permed and you should apply mascara daily to visually lift and open your eyes.

6 GET PLENTY OF BEAUTY SLEEP

Adequate sleep, at least seven hours a night, helps the body to detoxify and reduces the chance of getting acne.

7 TAKE TIME TO RELAX

Do something you enjoy on your days off, such as shopping, baking or getting a massage. This helps you to rejuvenate yourself mentally.

8 HAVE SOME QUIET TIME EVERY MORNING TO BREATHE DEEPLY

This calms your mind and helps you connect with yourself. It also helps to settle your emotions for the day ahead.


Use a cushion compact for touch-ups


Bobby Wang. PHOTO: ESTEE LAUDER

Bobby Wang, 34
Estee Lauder global make-up artist and senior regional education manager, make-up artistry - Asia Pacific

The Singapore-based make-up expert from Shanghai has been with Estee Lauder since 2013. The bachelor created make-up looks for New York Fashion Week in 2012 and 2013. He has worked with magazines such as Vogue China, Cosmopolitan Malaysia and Elle China.

1 ALWAYS USE EYE MAKE-UP REMOVER TO REMOVE MASCARA

Failing to do so leaves stains that can make you look tired and unhealthy. In the long term, the stains could become permanent.

2 DO NOT CLEANSE YOUR SKIN MORE THAN THREE TIMES A DAY

Excessive washing strips away the skin's natural protective barrier and makes it more dehydrated, causing the skin to produce more oil.

3 EXFOLIATE YOUR LIPS

This applies to men as well. Keep lips smooth by exfoliating up to twice a week with a lip scrub and applying a layer of lip balm after to moisturise the skin.

4 USE A CUSHION COMPACT FOR TOUCH-UPS

Using a cushion compact, rather than a powder compact, for touch-ups provides a smoother look. Foundation will not appear cakey even after multiple touch-ups.

5 DRINK MORE WATER

Drinking six to eight glasses of water a day is important and beneficial for your skin.

6 MATCH BLUSH TO LIPS

To pick the perfect everyday cheek colour, choose a shade that matches your natural lip colour. You can never go wrong.

7 SCRUB FOR A SMOOTH SHAVE

Men should exfoliate their skin at least once a week. Removing dead skin cells will help prevent bristles on the jawline and reduce chances of getting cuts.

8 DON'T USE OLD MAKE-UP

Old make-up could contain bacteria. Check expiry dates and throw away make-up that smells or looks different from when you bought it.


Eat what you like


Daniel Ng. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

Daniel Ng, 57
Creative director of hair salon kimrobinson

The hairstylist, who is from Hong Kong, has been in the business for more than four decades.

He met celebrity hairstylist Kim Robinson in Hong Kong in the 1990s and partnered with him to open Le Salon Orient in Singapore in 1995. The salon is now called kimrobinson.

Mr Ng has worked on the manes of famous people such as Chinese actress Zhao Wei, Hong Kong actress Cecilia Cheung and former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

1 EXERCISE

Think about the last time you got out of a car or a taxi. If it took a lot of effort, then maybe you are not so healthy and need to exercise. Jogging for half an hour a few times a week is great.

2 HEALTHY HAIR COMES FROM A HEALTHY SCALP

You need a healthy scalp to have good hair. Select a shampoo without silicone, which in the long term is less damaging for the scalp and hair.

3 MEN SHOULD HAVE THEIR OWN SHAMPOO

Men can be lazy and use anything that has bubbles for their hair. Those who are attached often use their partners’ shampoo.

But men have different hair needs and should choose a shampoo that suits their own hair. Shampoos designed for chemically treated hair can cause hair loss in men in the long run.

4 DON’T SMOKE

Smoking is very bad for the skin and ages it.

5 EAT WHAT YOU LIKE TO EAT

These days, many people restrict themselves from eating what they like. They classify foods and say certain things are unhealthy and bad for one’s body. When I see what some people call health food, I get very stressed. You can eat anything you want as long as you have a balanced lifestyle.

6 KEEP STRESS DOWN

Eating what you like also means you are less stressed. Stress can cause your body to decline.

7 BE HAPPY

Being happy is essential to being healthy. Think about what makes you happy and do it.

8 NO SUPPLEMENTS

I do not take any supplements. Such pills usually come in plastic capsules and although it can be digested, I feel that they are bad for one’s health.


Get enough sleep


Pauline Ng. ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM

Pauline Ng, 29
Founder and managing director of face spa Porcelain

Ms Ng studied business at Singapore Management University and started Porcelain with her beautician mother, Madam Jenny Teng, 53, in 2009, shortly after graduating.

The spa in Cantonment Road was named Best Luxury Beauty Spa in Asia at the World Luxury Spa Awards in 2013 and 2014.

The home-grown company also has its own paraben-free, fragrance-free and non- comedogenic skincare range.

Ms Ng’s husband is in private banking and they have no children.

1 GO FOUNDATION-FREE

I have nothing against make-up, but I am an advocate of keeping the base of your skin free from foundation, BB cream and concealer. This allows the skin to breathe and prevents congestion over extended periods of use, which can lead to acne and other skin issues.

2 DOUBLE CLEANSE DAILY

I double cleanse my skin at the end of every day – first with a make-up cleanser, followed by a hydrating cleanser. This helps to get rid of all impurities such as make-up, pollution, dust and sweat.

3 KEEP YOUR FACE CLEAN

Besides washing my face daily, I also keep my skin clean by not touching my face too much and changing my pillow cases once a week. Good hygiene keeps bacteria at bay.

4 ALWAYS USE SUN PROTECTION

Even if you are just making a trip to the supermarket, wear sunblock on your face. This helps to keep your skin healthy.

5 GO FOR A PROFESSIONAL SKIN TREATMENT AT LEAST ONCE A MONTH

This helps maintain skin health and prevent skin issues. Those worried about skin brightness can choose an exfoliation-based treatment, while those concerned about ageing can select a treatment that helps to lift and firm the skin.

6 ALTERNATE NAIL COLOURS

If you paint your nails regularly, alternate between nude or clear nail polish and coloured nail polish. This helps to prevent nails from turning yellow.

7 GET ENOUGH SLEEP

There is no myth to the concept of beauty sleep. Sleeping seven to eight hours a day allows your body to get rid of toxins, prevents inflammation and recharges your mind.

8 USE HYDRATING SKINCARE

Never use cleansers that contain SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) or alcohol-based toners. These tend to dry out the skin.

Look for skincare that contains ingredients such as aloe vera, rose, sodium hyaluronate and ceramides. These help to hydrate and provide moisture to the skin.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 21, 2016, with the headline 'Beauty from tip to toe'. Print Edition | Subscribe