If you're on Instagram and interested in high-quality natural cosmetics, you might already know her - Yasmine Digneffe aka a.touch.of.violet! Since the beginning of Genuine Selection, Yasmine has been a 'go-to' person for us when looking for new brands and often ask her for her personal opinion. Her taste in brands is exquisite and high quality, her knowledge of ingredients and products is phenomenal AND she is one of the nicest women we have met on social media.
Not only are we excited about this interview, but we are also excited that Yasmine will be writing beauty posts for us in the future
(reviews, DIY's, recipes, and more). Welcome to the Genuine Selection Team, dear Yasmine!
Dear Yasmine, tell us a bit more about yourself - where are you from, how would you personally describe your skin and how did your love story with natural cosmetics began?
Hi everyone! My name is Yasmine, I’m 28 years old and come from Belgium. My hobbies include painting, experimenting with fermentation & photographing but my biggest passion is trying and talking about natural skin, body and haircare products.
Ever since I was a little child I loved nothing more that playing with makeup and skincare. I could spend hours and hours at Sephora, swatching makeup and smelling all the skincare (lots of eye rolling there from my family haha!). It was only when I graduated from high school that I switched to using natural products only. I grew up in a family where natural care and medication has always been very important. My grandfather was a naturopath doctor, my grandmother and dad have the gift to heal with their hands and my uncle has his own business in natural food supplements. I think that my interest and passion for natural healing, either by skincare or nutrition, is in my genes. After graduating from high school I started a study at a healthcare school to learn more about the effects of food and skincare on our health, this was such an eyeopener and these lessons have made really big changes in my life.
A few years ago I started my own blog, https://mienelien.wordpress.com/ to talk about product discoveries, favorites, tips and tricks but you’ll also find some recipes on there. You’ll find all kind of product reviews but most of them are products suitable for sensitive skin as that is what my biggest 'skin issue' is.
2. You are an expert when it comes to natural niche brands. What does your personal skincare routine look like during the colder months? We would love to know your favourite products.
To be honest I’m very intuitive with my skincare and decide day by day what to use. However during the colder months my routines are all very similar, including rich cleansers, hydrating serums and almost always a rich balm to end my routines with.
The one product I start most routines with is a lush and comforting cleansing balm. The Recovery cleanser from Dafna’s is a staple for me during the colder months as it is very effective but also very gentle and in particular hydrating to the skin. On days where I need to remove makeup, I’ll use the RAPHA cleanser by H is for Loveor Halo by Nini Organics, both incredibly soothing to mind and skin. As a second cleanse I swear by theLamu vanilla facial cleanser from Natural Wisdom, a truly lush experience and one of the few foaming cleanser that doesn’t strip my skin.
After cleansing I use a toner, during spring and summer I prefer a lightweight mist but during the colder months I like a toner that feels more like an essence, Elemental from Naturallogic is perfect for that. I either us it as a toner itself or mix it in the palm of my hand with a few drops of oil. On days where I need more hydration, I’ll add in a serum. I love the Wildcrafted Organics Wild Plum serumfor a dose of hydration and illumination.
An absolute favorite oil serum of mine, no matter what time of the year, is Elixier from Namari! I call this my bottle of ‘liquid gold’ as it does so many amazing things and smells beyond heavenly. If I need to bring some calm to my skin, Serenity oil from Dafna’s is my go to.
Every night right before going to bed I apply a little balm to my cheeks or anywhere my skin feels a bit dry. My two favorites are May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon and Lepaar Luminous Beauty balm. Both are incredibly soothing and healing which my skin really needs during fall and winter.
Once or twice a week I’ll treat myself to a little spa evening. I add in a scrub, Namari’s Staub when my skin needs help with acne, sensitivity and is looking dull or Nini Organics Coffee & Cacao face scrub when I need more intense exfoliation. A face mask is also a staple in my weekly spa night! I love Dafna’s Revival mask for both detoxifying and hydrating my skin. For help with acne and the healing of blemishes, I swear by Inner Senses Vibrant Earth mask. And on days where I need even more hydration, Josh Rosebrook’s Advanced hydration mask is a staple.
3. How important is self-care for you and how do you practice it?
Self-care is incredibly important to me. Because of my disability (I have a muscular dystrophy) I am very dependent on others. I need help around the clock with just about everything I do, but doing my skincare, applying makeup,… are some of the few things I can still do myself. It is therefore a moment of pure self-love, being busy with nothing or nobody else but myself. Those moments feel really wonderful and I treasure them so much.
4. 5 Must Have products you cannot live without.
(Secretly hope to see some of these wonderful brands at Genuine Selection Sina & Jonas! 😉)
5. What does 'inner beauty' mean to you? Is it important for your as well? If yes, is there anything you swear by (supplements, certain superfoods,...)?
Inner beauty is incredibly important to me. Our skin reflects what goes on on the inside, it’s a wonderful thing! About half a year ago I suddenly started getting a lot of issues with my skin such as rosacea, eczema, infections… As annoying as it is, it is a blessing as it shows something on the inside isn’t working well. I made a lot of changes to my diet (more veggies, slow juicing…), started focusing on fermented foods and drinks (kombucha, kefir, fermented veggies) and added quite a lot of supplements to my diet. I swear by the supplement from the brand Biotics Research, they are of the very best quality I find. Everyday I take vitamin C, Zinc (helps heal acne), Omega fatty acids, a probiotic, Blackcurrant seed oil (wonderful for eczema), Turmeric (for example from Wunder Workshop), an antioxidant complex, vitamin D, K and A. I know it sounds like a lot, and it is a lot, but with my disease and the early osteoporosis it comes with, I need all the help I can get.
6. What's the next product on your beauty wish list that you haven't tried yet, but definitely needs to make its way into your bathroom?
Hmm though question, can I cheat and share multiple ones? :D
As I love the Khus+Khus Bleu body wax, I’m very curious about their The Fix Face potion and their new release Golden Milk cleanser. The Holi trinity (including the face oil, toner & vitamin c powder) from Agent Nateur has also been on my wishlist since forever. Last but not least is the Innersense haircare which I’m dying to try. I’ve been trying to revive my natural waves and think this brand will be wonderful for helping with that.
7. What is your favorite way to pamper yourself on the weekends?
I love nothing more than starting my Sunday with a lush skincare routine. Before starting, I fill my steamer with some essential oils to get a true spa experience. I do an extra long skincare routine, mostly one similar to the one described above. While masking I will do a scalp massage and I let that product work its magic for the rest of the day. A product I really love is the scalp treatment for normal scalp from The Innate Life. I wash it out in the evening under the shower and continue with my pampering time doing a body scrub (hello Naturallogic Embody!) and indulging with a lush body balm such as the Khus+Khus Bleu body wax.
8. What do you enjoy more - your skincare routine in the morning or in the evening?
Definitely morning! I’m not a morning person and really need a morning routine to wake myself up.
9. Tell us one dream you have that you have yet to accomplish.
It’s one you won’t like to hear but my biggest dream has always been to open a green beauty shop. Don’t worry, that will only stay a dream which is why I’m even more excited to be on this journey with you!
10. Is there a beauty DIY recipe that you totally love and swear by?
A favorite mask of mine is one I make myself. So easy, but so effective at treating sensitivities and helping with redness. I mix one teaspoon of Neem powder with half a teaspoon of raw honey and a few drops of Silver hydrolat. Mix it together and apply straight away, letting it sit for about half an hour or longer if possible. Calm and happy skin guaranteed!
Dear Yasmine, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this great interview and are looking forward to reading more from you in the future. You are a wonderful person! Always hold on to your dreams. We are sure that you have found your place in the green world of natural cosmetics and maybe your dream of running your own natural cosmetic shop will come true one day.