Aylea Skye, Product Writer, MatchesFashion.com


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"Hello! My name is Aylea Skye (@ayleaskye) and I'm a Londoner, born and bred. I work as a product writer at MatchesFashion.com, but also contribute nutrition articles to Mochni.com and run my own site, The Vogue Ciel. I'm one of those people who finds it difficult to have a focused hobby, I tend to do everything. I was getting my Fine Art BA at Central Saint Martins and halfway through, I realized that writing and fashion and beauty was just more interesting. But I think it's all intertwined. It's all expressive.

I'm somebody who needs a lot of alone time to recharge and reflect, and I do this by burning a candle like Le Labo Figue 15 or Santal 26. I really love those candles, but I'm biased because I used to work there. I just find other candles either sickly pungent or not present at all, but the Le Labo formula is a good balance. If it's not a candle, it's a sage smudge. Then I do a little yoga and have a hot bath with epsom and magnesium salt flakes, just the basic health store food ones, and I mix them together. Sometimes I'll throw in a little Aromatherapy Associates De-Stress Mind Bath and Shower Oil, or lavender oil if it's before bed. That helps me sleep.

I like to try and keep my beauty routine as natural as possible, but I have acne-prone skin that scars easily, so two-ingredient products don't really work for me. If I could, I'd be one of those women whose beauty routine is water on the face and a bit of rouge if she's dressing up. In reality though, I'm pretty product-heavy. I change my cleanser up all the time but I'm currently using the Biologique Recherche Lait U which was ‘prescribed’ to me at the counter in Liberty London. It removes my makeup and cleanses at the same time, but I double cleanse to be safe, so at night I use the Rodin Powder Cleanser too. Then Chatecaille’s Blanc Gardenia Essence, which is amazing. If I don’t use it my skin looks dull and oily.

I really love Chantecaille—the products are not harsh on the skin but they're very effective, everything is plant-based, and they don’t test on animals. At night I use their retinol which helps fade my acne scars, and then I finish with Sunday Riley’s Artemis Face Oil, which is great for acne-prone skin like mine. It's detoxifying but nourishing. And I always have Lucas Papaw Lip Balm with me. It’s the best lip balm and great for rashes, cuts, burns, and bug bites.

Unfortunately my haircare is just as complicated as my skincare. I have really curly Afro-hair which I always straightened until a few months ago when I decided to wear it natural. I think very curly girls can have a complex about their natural hair, and I wanted to fight that by embracing it. It’s become healthier since then. I mainly use Rahua products, which are great because they're everything bad-free and ethically aware. When natural, I wet my hair every other day and shampoo it once a week. I also deep condition it twice a week, once with a shop-bought hair mask like the Davines Nounou one, and the once with a homemade avocado and castor oil mask. One of my favorite recent hair discoveries is Negin Mirsalehi’s Gisou Oil. It makes my hair feel so soft and has definitely made it healthier. I really like the Rodin Recine Hair Oil too—it has a lovely scent and a little goes a long way.

I only started wearing makeup after developing acne and feeling uncomfortable with my skin. I've been through a ridiculous amount of foundations and coverage products, some good, others really bad. At one point I would cake my face in foundation and not put any color back on my face with blush or bronzer, but then I started watching makeup artists on Youtube. I recently watched one of Rachel Nguyen’s videos where she applied her powder before her concealer but after her foundation—that's a good little trick. I'll use a tinted moisturizer like the Nars Pure Radiant one in St Moritz or Chantecaille Just Skin in Wheat. I know I just said I love Chantecaille, and I do, but I don't love the color range. My shade is the darkest one they have, which is so bad.

Anyway, I like RMS Beauty’s Un Cover-Up. I use two shades, 33 under my eyes and 44 on my skin. I am not loyal to any powder, but am currently using this old Chanel Poudre Universelle. My favorite bronzer for winter is a Kevyn Aucoin Matte Bronzing Veil in Desert Days. It gives your skin glow without shimmer. Finally I put on mascara, which is ever-changing, and finish with a natural lip color like Charlotte Tilbury’s Pillow Talk Lip Cheat, or Nars Sex Machine. If I want to up the ante I'll either do winged black liner or a bold red lip like Hourglass’s Opaque Rouge in Raven or Riviera. That's my style—eclectic, a little bit messy, but still considered."

—as told to ITG