News, reviews and blogs on ethical beauty, fashion and eco-living

Turn your bathroom into a hotel room with Mama Skin

Mama Skin is now available outside of French hotel rooms

Mama Skin is now available outside of French hotel rooms

Mama Skin, a natural and organic skincare range developed from the Mama Shelter hotel chain by Absolution, is now available in the UK from Kloodos.

Formerly only available in the Mama Shelter hotel rooms and shops, the products feature edgy minimalist styling.

AEOS spells it out with Spelt range

The range includes spelt oil from AEOS's own farm

The range includes spelt oil from AEOS’s own farm

Organic skin and body care brand AEOS has developed a five-piece range made using biodynamic spelt oil produced on AEOS’s own Shire Farm, with organic oils and hydrosols.

The range includes Enriching Spelt Hand Cream, Fragranced Skin Replenisher Rich Cream, Unfragranced Skin Replenisher Rich Cream, Fragranced Skin Replenisher Rich+ Cream and Unfragranced Skin Replenisher Rich+ Cream.

Spiezia Organics starts its Christmas list

The Made For a Beautiful Body gift pack features body scrub and body softening oil, leg and foot balm

The Made For a Beautiful Body gift pack features body scrub and body softening oil, leg and foot balm

Cornish organic skincare brand Spiezia Organics has introduced a range of Christmas gift selections including packs for facial skincare, body skincare, men’s grooming and hand care.

There’s also an ‘ultimate’ Christmas gift set (£136.75) containing a range of bestselling facial and body care products from both the facial and body range, contained in a Made For Life jute bag. There’s a range of stocking fillers for under £10 too.

Odylique’s new hand cream ‘can’t help but bring a smile to your face’

Odylique's natural hand cream smells 'a little like a Mediterranean garden'

Odylique’s natural hand cream smells ‘a little like a Mediterranean garden’

 

Odylique’s new Lemon Butter Hand Smoothie ‘can’t help but bring a smile to your face’ with the lemon and vanilla scent of a Mediterranean garden.

 

The Lemon Butter Hand Smoothie (£12/60ml) is certified to Soil Association organic standards and is free of tree nut oils, dairy, soy and wheat.

 

Made with organic coconut and cocoa butters, virgin avocado oil, lemon, sea buckthorn, aloe and calendula, the hand cream smoothes, tones and moisturises even cracked hands and boosts cell regeneration.

Marks and Spencer to open Little Shwop of Horrors

The Little Shwop of Horrors is launched by Joanna Lumley

The Little Shwop of Horrors is launched by Joanna Lumley

Joanna Lumley will open a special Marks and Spencer pop-up shwop shop for Hallowe’en, going live on October 28th and 29th. The Little Shwop of Horrors, in collaboration with Oxfam, will sell ‘ghoulish garments’ donated by celebrities and charitable members of the UK public.

Some 8.9million items of clothing have been donated to Oxfam since the launch of the Shwopping initiative in April 2012.

Talented eco-bags support cancer charity

The bags are available in both pink and green colourways – to match your knitting

The bags are available in both pink and green colourways – to match your knitting

Sustainable tote bag brand Talented is to donate ten per cent of all sales from its ‘I Knit So I Won’t Kill People’ tote to Breast Cancer Care to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October.

The ‘I Knit’ bag (£12-£15), from designer Leslie Astor’s Slogan collection, is available in pink and green. Each of Talented’s totes is designed in the UK and printed in Sheffield on fair-trade certified cotton.

“We are very happy to support Breast Cancer Awareness month with our latest slogan tote bag,” says Julia Gash, Talented CEO and chief designer.

“Cancer touches the lives of a lot of people and as a company we are proud to support this important campaign.”

Every year nearly 55,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer in the UK. Almost 12,000 people die from the disease in the UK annually.

London Fashion Week: innovation in style and substance

Termite Eyewear’s collection includes reclaimed acetate

Termite Eyewear’s collection includes reclaimed acetate

London Fashion Week has been and gone for another season, leaving in its wake the usual discussions of politics, good taste and whether runway styles can ever be replicated on the high street.

The Estethica initiative, however, once again put a line through any question marks concerning whether sustainability and ethics can cut it next to mainstream materials and supply chains when it comes to style. The Estethica designers more than held their own with competing collections, demonstrating an enviable range of innovation, imagination and understanding of sustainable design.

As with London Fashion Week AW14 in February, Estethica SS15 spread itself throughout the Designer Showrooms crowding Somerset House – and even onto the catwalk thanks to Christopher Raeburn – with designers announcing their sustainability credentials via a subtle Estethica tag. Among the brands was Termite Eyewear, its latest collection Palm Peach inspired by photography from 1970s Miami. The pieces, made to order in England, are made from sustainable birch plywood and beach-bright acetate offcuts rescued from years spent forgotten at a glasses factory.

Also in the Accessories rooms was milliner Mich Dulce, showcasing her collaboration with bag brand Zacharias alongside her statement headwear. The feminine headpieces utilise abacá fibre and are the product of the hand-weaving and craft skills of women in the Philippines. Nearby was the classic Panama hat label Pachacuti, the work of 200 female weavers in Ecuador, with Plant Hunters the theme for SS15. A certified Fair Trade brand, the hats featured sustainable touches including recycled glass beads and decorative bows coloured with vegetable dyes. Social enterprise Bottletop returned to the Bags showroom with a more pared-down look for a number of its pieces, using the natural metal of the drinks can ring pulls – upcycled by female artisans in Brazil – that form the basis of its designs.

Meanwhile in Ready-to-Wear, Eden Diodati’s luxury eveningwear and jewellery is produced by social cooperatives in Italy and Rwanda, made up of painterly printed silks, modern feminine silhouettes and glamorous embellishments. Christopher Raeburn’s celebrated sports luxe pieces started life as military parachutes before being ‘intelligently reconstructed’ in England, proving that catwalk styles can have less than elegant beginnings.

Similarly, Auria’s fun bingo-themed swimwear line had nothing to suggest its provenance as recycled fishing nets from the Philippines. The UK-made collection also features lining discarded by a larger swimwear brand, bagging more eco-credentials. Lingerie brand Charini, showcasing its batik and nature-inspired designs, has many values to its name: the use of reclaimed fabrics from carbon accredited factories, silks from small businesses in Sri Lanka and handmade trims from traditional craft communities, while rejecting plastics, elastic, underwiring and harmful dyes.

However, as with AW14, this season the real buzz was in the Estethica Emerging Talents room. The space is an opportunity for designers to present their first or second collection, and saw the return of Flavia la Rocca, Louise de Testa and Katie Jones following their LFW debut in February. Flavia la Rocca’s new collection continues her theme of recycled fabrics and modular fashion – zips and buttons join or divide garments, designed in modern shapes and wearable colours, for a flexible wardrobe – while Louise de Testa has developed her innovative zero-waste designs and offcut marquetry for her 1930s tennis-inspired sportswear collection.

Katie Jones showed that knitwear can work perfectly for the spring/summer season with metallics and ice-cream colours inspired by childhood trips to Brighton Pavilion with her grandmother – her own crochet work providing inspiration through the classic patterns that comprise Jones’s pieces. Jones uses surplus and reclaimed materials and spins her yarn in England. Also proving that knits are not just for winter was Estethica newcomer Wool and the Gang, showing light sweaters and hats created by a community of knitters – the ‘Gang’ itself – and a bright bag made from upcycled T-shirt jersey fabric. Unusually, Wool and the Gang also encourages its customers to knit their own clothes if they prefer, supplying the yarn and patterns.

In addition to the collections on show at Somerset House, Ecoluxe London held its biannual London Fashion Week event down the road, bringing together designers and brands with an even greater variety of ethical and ecological concepts. Community craft initiatives, upcycled clothing, new natural fabrics and handmade skills were all attendance. It was recycling, however, that caught the eye and the imagination: cement bags (Craftworks Cambodia), postage stamps (The Duck and The Sesame), saris (My Wild Heart), umbrella fabric (Supported by Rain), feathers (Bailey Tomlin) and even food waste (Hoyan Ip/Bio-Trimmings) were all reworked into wearable styles.

Ethical fashion may still need the backing of initiatives like Estethica and Ecoluxe London at present, but with such an abundance of ideas against a backdrop of diminishing natural resources and increasing consumer demand for transparency from brands, the niche is edging into the mainstream.


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