Beauty secrets from Sigourney Cantelo

With her glowing skin, glossy hair and perfectly groomed brows, Sigourney Cantelo is one of the most polished women I know. Which isn’t surprising really when you consider she is one of Australia’s leading beauty journalists and the former beauty and health director at Vogue Australia. These days Sigourney edits her own gorgeous beauty website, We’re also lucky enough to have Sigourney as one of our expert contributors here at Sporteluxe. I sat down with Sigourney and asked her to share some of her best-ever beauty secrets, tips and tricks.

Your complexion is amazing. Can you share an insider skincare secret?

Every night, give yourself a really thorough face massage with a facial oil, like rosehip oil, to really stimulate circulation in the skin and tone facial muscles. I learnt this from Bianca, when I interviewed her about her beauty tips for Beauticate. She showed me a really cool technique for facial massage that she had learnt when she was a beauty therapist.

Udos OilsAny tips for keeping your skin, hair and nails healthy from the inside out?

Silica is great for weak hair and nails. I like to use Transmax Resveratrol to help with energy levels and living a healthy life. Udo’s Oil is full of Omega 3, 6 and 9 and can be poured into a smoothie or used in a salad dressing. Alkalising with green juices and smoothies gives you a massive intake of antioxidants before you even walk out the door in the morning.

I’ve also been embracing fermented foods lately. I’ve been making sauerkraut and kombucha which help with gut flora and keeping your system alkaline.

White SandsCan you share some time-saving beauty wisdom for busy active women?

For circulation and lymphatic drainage I swear by dry body brushing before a shower. I have two brushes that I wear on each hand to save time. I do long, sweeping motions from my feet in upward strokes toward my heart. To increase circulation when I’m feeling really brave, I’ll turn off the hot tap at the end of my shower for three to five seconds (this is definitely more of a summer tip!). To further boost circulation, I dry myself vigorously with a towel. Increased blood flow helps to detoxify the body and sloughed skin is able to reap the benefits of body oils and moisturisers better.

For instant body or texture if I have to go out after work, I’ll spray my hair generously with dry shampoo and hairspray. I then pile it up into a top knot or bun, do my make-up and at the last minute, before getting out of the car or taxi, I’ll rake my fingers through it to get body through the roots and texture through the lengths. This really counteracts the “limpifying” effects of the day.

I also recently discovered hot rollers. My hair is very soft and fine and it’s a constant struggle to create any body or shape in it. Starting with day old hair, I’ll put a handful of mousse into dry hair. I blowdry it in and then section hair and use setting spray (like White Sands Liquid Texture on each section first before rolling it in and pinning it. I leave it until the last possible minute then take it out and brush through carefully. It inevitably drops but it leaves a bit of shape, as if I’ve had a bouncy blow dry!

Jo MaloneWhat beauty products are in your gym bag?

I have Crealine cleansing water to take make-up off before I work out and an SPF tinted moisturiser for post workout. Travel sized shampoo, conditioners and body wash from Aesop. The brunette Batiste dry shampoo is great for hair touch ups and Jo Malone Orange Blossom is a great scent for post-workout.

LanolipsAny multi-tasking natural beauty buys that you swear by?

I swear by lanolin. You can by just plain old medicated lanolin in a jar from the chemist but I also love Lanolips the Golden Ointment and the plain 101 Ointment. I keep it in on my bedside table and rub it into cuticles and lips and any dry areas of the face and body. It’s also great for cuts and scratches on your hands, hang nails and raw red noses from too many tissues!

Also, keeping a jar of cold pressed coconut oil in the bathroom is a great idea for removing make-up and something fashion blogger Margaret Zhang is a fan of showed me. (as fashion blogger Margaret Zhang showed us), moisturizing the skin, using as a hair mask and oil pulling.

Finally, what are some common beauty blunders many women make and how do you fix them?

So many women (me included!) forget to blend their make-up properly, especially around the jawline. Make sure you check all angles of your face in the mirror (and in different lights if possible) and blend well around the hairline. To help blend eyeshadow, use a fluffy blending brush to help blend the eyeshadows outwards and upwards.

Another blunder is wearing dark and bold lip colour without prepping the lips. Exfoliate and hydrate the lips properly before applying any colour. If they’re flaky use a soft toothbrush or damp face washer to gently buff off dry skin and then hydrate the lips with a moisturising lipbalm.

Also, never underestimate the power of the brow! It’s so important to get the colour and shape right when you fill in your brows. Always look for a powder or pencil the same shade or a shade darker than your hair, but steer towards cooler, ashier tones.