The YouTube Exec With A Stash Of Turkish Beauty Staples


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“Hi! I’m Nur Ozdamar (@nurozdamar). Born and raised in Istanbul, I spent a big chunk of my life in Turkey, lived a decade in New York, and am now based in South West London. I moved here four months before the pandemic hit. But luckily, London is one of the most walkable cities in the world and the restrictions didn’t take away my long walks. I live near one of the most beautiful parks and go there a few times a week with my dog, Rosa.

I’ve worked in music for over 12 years, and now I lead Artist and Label Development at YouTube. We help musical artists and labels across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa learn how to use YouTube to share their stories. My team of six is the greatest in the world, and we’re big fans of our amazing partners: Tems, Arlo Parks, Pa Salieu, Rote Mütze Raphi, COLORS, Meekz, and so many more. I have a big heart for nurturing and developing talent, whether it’s my peers, coworkers, or partner, so I genuinely feel like what I do for a living is complementary to my purpose in life. Like everyone else, I watch a solid amount of YouTube videos every day for entertainment, education, and inspiration. I go on when I need to figure out how to do a lifting face massage or apply metallic eyeliner, then one click leads to another and I find myself watching a video about the history of drag makeup. I know so many people who learned how to cut hair or do their nails by watching videos on YouTube during the pandemic.

My appreciation for beauty comes from my grandmother. She was always an effortlessly beautiful woman, but I noticed the way she would prioritize whatever made her feel good. She always found little moments to take care of herself while raising a whole family of many. She passed away last year—I saved the last face cream she used and keep it on my nightstand. It reminds me to make more time for myself. We always exchanged beauty gifts, which I miss a lot. I know I look best when I’m happy and relaxed, so I try to listen to my body and mind, figure out what feels good, and regulate my products and routine accordingly. My skin reacts immediately to everything, whether it's stress or a chocolate bar. If you were to ask me my routine next year, I’m sure I would have different answers.

I start my day with a quick meditation and walk around the block with Rosa. When I get home, I splash cold water on my face to wake me up and wipe it up with a light toner from Avène that smells divine. Serum depends on how my skin is feeling: I go for Paula’s Choice 10% Azelaic Acid Booster if my skin is stressed, and if not, I mix a couple drops of Melanie Simon’s Serum C with either Fenty Beauty Fat Water or Chanel Le Lift Lotion. My go-to moisturizer is Sisley Black Rose Skin Infusion Cream, which my skincare expert coworker Steph recommended. I use Skinceuticals Ultra Facial Defense SPF 50 every day even if I’m not leaving my flat. And while applying everything, I always do the lymphatic massage I learned from my girl Frederika van Hagen’s IG to wake my skin up and reduce puffiness. Highly recommend. I spray pure rosewater from my favorite Turkish brand Homemade Aromaterapi, which I keep in the fridge, to finish. Usually rose waters have a bunch of random chemicals or artificial scents in them, but this one is pure and smells like heaven.

Since I’m already in the kitchen, I make myself a morning smoothie (oat milk, matcha, bee pollen, Vida Glow Marine Collagen, and adaptogens from Glow Bar) and down my supplements, which I chose for general health and to support my skin. My lineup is BioCare’s CO10Q and Glutathione Complex, Altrient’s Liposomal Vitamin C, BetterYou’s D 1000 and Boost B12, and Anatome’s Daily Biotic + Gut Support. Before trying something new, I always consult a doctor. I also drink Melez Tea’s Beauty Blend, a delicious floral white tea, throughout the day.

My everyday makeup look starts with Chanel Les Beiges Water Tint in Medium, Charlotte Tilbury’s Fair/Medium Contour Wand, and Pat McGrath Divine Blush in Nude Venus. For my eyes, I use KKW Beauty’s Eye Contour Duo in Light [Ed note: discontinued] and Natasha Denona’s black Macro Blade Liquid Liner. (Though when the occasion presents itself, I love their Chromium Liquid Eyeshadow in Infra Nude.) Mascara primer is magic—I use one from Dior underneath my Milk Makeup Kush Mascara. I used to get lash extensions, but that primer does the job. I leave my brows as natural as possible, just taming them with a little bit of Anastasia’s Brow Freeze Styling Wax. Either plain Vaseline is good for my lips, or I use a combo of Dior Addict Stellar Gloss in 640 J’Adoir with NYX Lip Pencil in Nude Truffle. That is the best nude liner—a friend introduced me to it.

A few times during the week I spend more time on self care, meaning I dry brush my body with Clarins Tonic Body Firming Treatment Oil or take a very long bath with a body scrub. I love Homemade Aromaterapi’s Rose Body Scrub, and my good friend Marina got me an amazing one from And Other Stories’ Humlegården series [Ed note: that one’s discontinued, but there are others] for my birthday. I usually do a face mask in the bath as well. Tata Harper’s Radiance Mask is an all-time favorite. I also use an LED mask two or three times a week—I go to Light Salon once every few months to get the professional dose, but the at-home version has been a great investment. Facials are a rare treat. I have a few favorites all around the world: Sarah Bradden in London (a real spiritual reset), SB Skin in NY (a fantastic human with magic treatments), Dr. Dray in London and Paris (I get mesolifts, a medical cocktail of hyaluronic acid and antioxidants), SaintlySkin in Spain (she knows her tools and facial massages) and Merve Akkaya in Istanbul (to get spoiled head to toe). For anything more invasive, the only person I trust with my face is the wonderful Aysun Mamak.

I recently met Sami Knight, the sensational celebrity hairstylist responsible for all of Adele’s chic recent looks. He mentioned that Adele does a lot of moisturizing treatments and avoids heat as much as possible, two tips that have influenced my current routine. I have a good head of hair (thanks to my Turkish DNA), though pure almond oil and Kérastase’s Nutritive and Discipline products keep it healthy. Also: K18’s leave-in molecular repair hair mask actually works. I’ve been paying a lot more attention to hand and nail care since meeting a brilliant nail artist named Karolina. She does a mean gel French mani and got me into Byredo Suede and Tulipmania Hand Scrubs and Dior Crème Abricot. I also love L’Occitane’s Amande hand cream, which my neighbor gave me. When I do my own nails, I start with a strengthening base from Nailtiques and use a clean, nude color like Chanel La Base Protective and Smoothing.

Before I go to bed I do a serious cleanse with something oil-based that melts into skin, like Elemis’ Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm or the Medik8 Lipid Balance Cleansing Oil. I apply it to dry skin and wipe it off with a wet cloth. I remove my eye makeup with a Turkish staple: Bebak Almond Milk. It smells divine and removes makeup like no other product can. If I feel like I still need a cleanse after that, I use Dr. Sturm’s Enzyme Cleanser, a cult product I will never not use. My nighttime products are thick, so my skin can absorb them while I sleep. I usually use Estée Lauder’s Night Repair followed by Biologique Recherche’s Crème ADN Elastine Marine Collagène Marin. If I feel like my skin needs a bit more moisture, I either use Disciple’s Dreamy Skin Retinyl Oil or Chanel’s Camellia Repair Mask. When I don’t forget eye cream, I love the one from Dr. Jart’s Ceramidin line. It’s super simple and hydrating, and pairs nicely with my Dieux reusable silicone Forever eye masks.

I get a lot of my energy from people, so the pandemic has been particularly hard for me. These days, I try to spend as much time with people (virtually or in person) as the universe allows. I also make sure to step away from the screens, go out for a quick walk, or read a book. But for me, spending time with my dog is the best and easiest way to unwind. Rosa is very loving—even when she’s hyper, her fluffy presence makes everything better.”

—as told to ITG

Photos via the author