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Category "Fashion & Beauty"

13Sep

Town Talk: Treana Peake’s at-home rock concert benefits South Sudanese people

by admin

ENCORE: Fancy having the Nickelback band and signers Barney Bentall, Jim Cuddy, Shawn Hook and Stephen Kellogg perform at your Gleneagles waterfront home. That happened when the Obakki clothing line owner, Treana Peake, staged the second annual White Envelope fundraiser at her, spouse Ryan and neighbour Judith Stewart’s estate-style properties. Ryan is a Nickelback band member. The event reportedly raised $400,000 to help sustain the Obakki Foundation’s educational, clean-water and other sustainable projects in South Sudan and nearby nations. Treana welcomed former South Sudanese child soldier Emmanuel Jal who is now a Toronto-based singer, screen actor (The Good Lie), political activist and leadership lecturer. His maxim: “Turn your eyes inside yourself and, as you change, saturate yourself with information that can enhance your new skills.”


At his Gleneagles home, Nickelback guitarist-songwriter Ryan Peake joined Barney Bentall and others to entertain White Envelope fundraiser guests.

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REVVED UP: The recent 10th annual Luxury & Supercar Weekend brought more exotic vehicles than ever to VanDusen Botanical Garden. As usual, a previous-evening reception filled Niels and Nancy Bendtsen’s Inform Interiors store.


With much high-end merchandise of their own, Inform Interiors owners Neils and Nancy Bendtsen always host Luxury & Supercar preliminary receptions.

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Luxury & Supercar Weekend co-organizer Nadia Iadisernia’s ensemble complemented a McLaren 720S Coupe beside Gastown’s Inform Interiors store.

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Cars inside included the show’s darling, a battery-powered 1,900-horsepower Pininfarina Battista costing around $3.5 million. That would get you a tasty West Vancouver home or, to those fully exploiting the Battista’s mojo, perhaps a visit to crowbar hotel. On the Inform store’s Water Street sidewalk, a 720-horsepower McLaren 720S Coupe was tagged at $401,910. The sky-blue coupe complemented L&S Weekend co-principal Nadia Iadisernia’s Ferrari-red Diane von Furstenberg dress and Ferragamo heels that together cost less than the $1,460 needed for the McLaren’s optional coloured brake calipers.


Danny Jadresko showed his 2,510-horsepower 1964 Pontiac Acadian to Luxury & Supercar Weekend principal Craig Stowe at VanDusen Botanical Garden.

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FANCY DANNY: Parked beside swanky-panky dreamboats on the VanDusen lawn, an Ontario-built Pontiac Acadian cost maybe $3,000 in 1964. Today, having gained a 10.3-litre, twin-turbo engine developing 2,510 horsepower, it could be worth $1 million. That said, not much, if anything, remains of the ho-hum two-door sedan that Victoria-based Danny Jadresko bought in 1983. He and bride Sandy later honeymooned in it. With son Cody, and aided by Quebec-based custom-car builder J.F. Launier, the Jadreskos spent 18 years developing the Acadian into a “street outlaw” that can blow the doors of most European exotics. Meanwhile, their W&J Construction and Woodsmere Holdings firms opened the doors to thousands of single- and multi-unit homes they’d built, including 600 units in Langford that rent for $800 to $1,200 monthly.


Some royalties from school principal David Starr’s Like Joyful Tears, part-edited by wife and vice-principal Sharon, benefit the Obakki Foundation.

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HOMEWORK: For the principal of Port Coquitlam’s Terry Fox Secondary, David Starr, it entails writing books. His refugee-themed debut work, From Bombs to Books, and its seven successors were aimed at young readers. The latest, Like Joyful Tears, “is my first big-boy book,” Starr said. It has a Canadian woman help a South Sudanese massacre survivor relocate to Canada. Starr’s novel was aided by his own dealings with refugees, and polished by editor-wife Sharon, who is vice-principal at Port Moody Secondary. Partial royalties from it benefit the Obakki Foundation.


A 65_RedRoses film still of the late Eva Markvoort overlooked Oscar winners David Fine and Alison Snowden who lives with transplanted lungs.

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BREATH AND LIFE: At the Vancouver Playhouse recently, Philip Lyall and Nimisha Mukerji screened, 65_RedRoses, their 2009 film about since-deceased cystic fibrosis patient Eva Markvoort. The fundraising event promoted CF awareness and organ donation. Although the lauded movie wasn’t an Oscar contender, attendees Alison Snowden and David Fine won one for their animated short, Bob’s Birthday, and earned three other Oscar nominations. Like Markvoort, Snowden received donated lungs, but survived. After a virus destroyed her own, Snowden was put into an induced coma for a month and deemed to be too weak for transplant surgery. Business and personal partner Fine said “a breakthrough idea” entailed awakening her and rebuilding strength during non-stop treatment by ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) heart-lung-bypass technology. It worked. Donated lungs arrived, Dr. John Yee undertook the surgery, and Fine and the recovering Snowden completed another Oscar-nominated short, Animal Behaviour. Snowden’s proposed acceptance speech at the February, 2019 Academy Awards ceremony would have praised VGH, her surgical team and Canadian medicine generally. However, the award went to Toronto director-writer Domee Shi’s Bao.


The Sequoia Quartet’s Catherine Teng, Kai Chow, David Han and Davin Mar demonstrated the prowess of VSO School of Music students.

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BRAVO: The effectiveness of the 16-year-old VSO School of Music was clear when four students performed at Ronald McDonald House recently. Sequoia String Quartet violinists Catherine Teng, 16, and Kai Chow, 15, violist Davin Mar, 14, and cellist David Han, 13, played works by Handel, Mozart, Vivaldi and others, with intelligence, clarity and youthful confidence.


Wally Buono, here with Moray Keith of a syndicate seeking to buy the B.C. Lions team, will be inducted into the Italian Cultural Centre’s Hall of Fame.

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FOOTBALL FAME: B.C. Lions fans still sang “Roar, you Lions, roar” in 2003 when Pasquale “Wally” Buono left the Calgary Stampeders to be the local team’s head coach. Roar they did, through five West Division championships, two Grey Cup wins and one loss (2004 to the Toronto Argonauts). After retiring in 2018, Potenza-born Buono will be inducted into the Italian Cultural Centre’s Hall of Fame Oct. 4 and possibly called “the pride of all B.C.”

DOWN PARRYSCOPE: As we consider electing more parliamentarians with no more authority than pets on a leash, a Scottish high court judge has ruled that parliament’s role in scrutinizing the government is a central pillar of the UK’s constitution, which follows naturally from the principles of democracy and the rule of law.

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6Sep

Town Talk: Netherlands dance troupe lures Ballet B.C.’s Emily Molnar

by admin

GOING DUTCH: Last year, Netherlands native Otto Tausk succeeded British-born Bramwell Tovey as Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s music director. Then, as what the Dutch might call tit voor tat, Nederlands Dans Theater snagged Regina-born Ballet B.C.’s artistic director, Emily Molnar, to lead its 27- and 18-dancer companies. Former Ballet B.C. dancer Molnar has steered the once-moribund company through a decade of break-even-or-better seasons to critical acclaim here and on national and international tours. Addressing dancers, staff, board members and supporters recently, she said: “What we have done together is remarkable.” Then, to rueful smiles all around, “It doesn’t happen easily.” Encouragingly, though, dancers “now have more opportunities to stay at home with full-time or almost full-time work.”

MORE GLOBALISM: Finland native Kari Turunen has succeeded Vancouver Chamber Choir’s Illinois-born founder and 47-year artistic director, Jon Washburn.


Thomas and Amy Fung’s annual garden party and singalong drew corporate, cultural and political guests as well as UBC and SFU’s presidents.

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SCHOOLS IN: Fairchild Group chairman Thomas Fung and actress-wife Amy usually draw business, professional, political and cultural guests to their annual garden party. This year, with son Joseph having founded the Fairchild Junior Academy in Hong Kong, local educational-facility top brass shared the lawn. They were University of B.C. and Simon Fraser University presidents Santa Ono and Andrew Petter, St. George’s Senior School headmaster Tom Matthews, York House school head Julie Rousseau, and West Point Grey Junior School head Ciara Corcoran. An after-supper singalong fronted by host-guitarist Fung could have been, but wasn’t, conducted by UBC grad Ken Hsieh. Edmonton-born Hsieh founded the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra in 2003 and has been music director ever since with no successor even contemplated.


The Fungs’ garden party saw UBC president Santa Ono chat with grad, global conductor and Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra music director Ken Hsieh.

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THE YOGI BERA AWARD: Goes to industrial safety trainer Chris Samson for his August quote: “I’m all for taking risks, so long as it’s done safely.” B.C. transportation minister Claire Trevena is runner-up for: “I think it’s very good to have a regulated market in the way that we have a regulated market.”


After baby daughter Hadley died in 2018, Nicole and Ryan Stark returned to Ronald McDonald House for the birth of Soren, Clara and Sawyer.

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THEY’RE LOVIN’ ’EM: Ryan and Nicole Stark were heartbroken in May, 2018, when four-month-old daughter Hadley died. So were staff at 73-bedroom Ronald McDonald House where the Fort St. John family lived while B.C. Children’s Hospital staff fought to save Hadley. Spirits soared this July when three-month resident Nicole delivered daughter Clara along with sons Sawyer and Soren. “Families want normalcy,” said CEO Richard Pass while welcoming the triplets at an RMH donor reception. “That means more stay-together programs for whole families.” The record stay there is 497 days.

BEEP: Phone messages for classic-car minder Vern Bethel are answered promptly. Ones for daughter Pamela can end up on stage. Umpteen 1990s calls to and responses from then-teenaged Bethel constitute her lauded 2017 show, After The Beep, playing the Vancouver Fringe Festival’s The Nest theatre to Sept. 14. Those dialing 250-885-1285 might even hear themselves in a sequel.


Nina Bentil attended husband and Mile’s End Motors dealer David’s hospitality pavilion and show at Hastings Racecourse’s annual Deighton Cup day.

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THEY’RE ON: Whatever their luck with horse-race bets, Deighton Cup organizers Dax Droski, Jordan Kalman and Tyson Villeneuve sure pick winning weather. Sunshine bathed Hastings Racecourse when their 11th annual event’s record crowd of nattily attired younger folk enjoyed music, food, champagne, cigars and even some betting. Mile’s End Motors dealer David Bentil’s usual pavilion and tree-shaded compound had guests loll alongside such exotic jalopies as a 2017 Ferrari F12 TDF worth $1.5 million. Quite a change from the vacuum cleaners Bentil sold door-to-door along and near his native East London’s Mile End Road.


Late Vancouver Sun veteran Alex MacGillivray’s daughter Caroline founded and heads BeautyNight that helps marginalized women seek success.

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R.I.P.: Former Sun editor-restaurant reviewer Alex MacGillivray died recently — no funeral by request — but his name lives on via actress-daughter Caroline who founded non-profit BeautyNight (beautynight.org) in 2000 and has helped endless marginalized women gain confidence, integration and contact-making skills.


Fung party guest Dr. John Yee, who undertakes more than 60 double-lung transplants annually, lamented Eva Markvoort’s 2010 death to cystic fibrosis.

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BREATH OF LIFE: Guest John Yee wasn’t whisked away from the Fungs’ party to perform another of the 60 double-lung-transplant surgeries he’s undertaken yearly on six hours’ notice. The Sun’s Pamela Fayerman reported that Vancouver General Hospital’s new vivo lung perfusion process allows more precious time to assess donor organs. Dr. Yee still laments cystic-fibrosis patient Eva Markvoort who, despite such surgery, succumbed at age 23 in 2010. Philip Lyall and Nimisha Mukerji’s documentary about Markvoort, 65 RedRoses (that’s how many youngsters pronounce “cystic fibrosis”), will screen at a Vancouver Playhouse gala Sept. 8 to help fund CF research and encourage organ donation.


From left, Nimisha Mukerji and Philip Lyall’s 65 RedRoses film about the late Eva Markvoort will have a gala screening Sept. 8 to help fund cystic fibrosis research. This is a 2008 photo. Markvoort died in 2010.

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Chambar co-owner Nico Schuermans and chef Tia Kambas backed student Jade Sarmiento at an all-female-chef dinner to help fund scholarships.

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HAPPY FIFTEENTH: To the Belgian-themed Chambar Restaurant Karri and Nico Schuermans opened on Beatty Street and moved next door in 2014. Also to seafood-themed Coast, which Glowbal Restaurant Group president-CEO Emad Yacoub located in Yaletown and upmarketed to Alberni Street in 2009. Chambar recently staged a dinner by five female chefs and same-gender Vancouver Community College students to help fund scholarships. Its anniversary highlight will be an all-invited block party’s pig roast and waffle fest on Sept. 8.


Chambar co-principal Karri Schuermans will host the Belgian-themed restaurant’s 15th-anniversary block party, pig roast and waffle fest Sept. 8.

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DOWN PARRYSCOPE: Late French president Charles de Gaulle, whose vetoes made petitioning Britons wait 12 years to join what is now the European Union, might relish their current opera bouffe to get out.

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30Aug

Back-to-school is big business for B.C.’s lice busters

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Busy schedules, resistant bugs and, of course, the ‘ick’ factor.

B.C.’s lice busters say there are several reasons more parents are seeking professional help to deal with lice infestations — and as kids head back to school on Tuesday, they’re bracing for a busy month.

“By the end of September, we’ll likely see a few outbreaks,” said Rochelle Ivany, a Chilliwack nit picker who runs The Lice House with friend Ashley Wall. “Over the summer, kids have been off at camp, sleepovers and grandparents’ houses. When they come back to school, lice can come with them.”

Ivany entered the business when one of her kids came home with lice.

“I had no idea what to do,” she said. “Lice can be a taboo subject. No one wants to be the kid with it. Parents dread the letter coming home from school saying that there’s an outbreak in their kid’s class.”

After research and practice, Ivany set up shop in her home last year, offering people in the Fraser Valley an alternative to over-the-counter pesticides and hours of combing.

The key is to be “meticulous” while manually removing all lice and eggs with a special comb, she said.

Confidential sessions at The Lice House take between one-and-a-half to three hours depending on the severity of the infestation and the length of the client’s hair. Ivany charges $50 an hour — a lower rate than many of the services closer to Vancouver — and does comb-outs every three days until the client gets three clean comb-outs. She also provides treatment at cost for people who are referred to her through a social worker or community support worker.

“I get calls from a lot of panicked parents,” she said. “The message is that it’s OK, it’s going to be OK. We can help you.”

While it’s unclear if lice outbreaks are increasing — the B.C. Centre for Disease Control does not keep data on cases — more people are turning to professional lice removal services for help.

In Maple Ridge, Lice911 owner Barbara Pattison has been nit picking for 18 years.

“We’re the original,” she said. “When I started, there were four companies in North America.”

In the last decade, she’s expanded to provide mobile service in communities across Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Island. In addition to Lice911, there are almost a dozen other companies offering treatment in B.C.

Pattison said lice seem to be more resistant to chemicals, which have become weaker in the last 10 years, while people may be too busy, or unwilling, to spend hours combing out bugs. In the last few years, she’s also seen a shift toward more teens and young adults arranging treatment for themselves, which she attributes to selfies and people putting their heads together to look at phones.

“All it takes is three seconds of hair-to-hair contact,” she said.

The lice expert advises parents to check their kids’ hair regularly for lice, looking for sticky black, brown or grey eggs half the size of a sesame seed attached to strands of hair. Some kids may have an itchy head or a rash at the nape of their neck.

“If you can catch it early, when there are 30 or 40 eggs, it’s much easier to deal with,” she said. “An average infestation is about 500 eggs.”

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30Aug

Tessa Virtue steps into the style spotlight for new ‘uplifting’ fashion campaign

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Growing up, Tessa Virtue faced no shortage of strong female role models.

“I was so lucky. I grew up with an incredibly strong grandmother, mother and sister,” Virtue says. “All three, independent, fierce, clever women who were hard workers, had goals and visions for themselves, and were really ambitious.”

“And, they didn’t apologize for those goals.”

The trio’s individual and combined influence left a Virtue with a sense of “limitless,” she recalls.

“I really believed that I could do or be anything,” she says with a smile.

While she didn’t pause to think much on it then, she’s now keenly aware of the fact that her inspirational upbringing, surrounded by a network of strong women who promoted the underlying message of “yes, you can!”, wasn’t always the case for other young girls.

“I didn’t realize that not everyone felt that way. That, not everyone felt that privilege,” she says.

The realization has been a contributing factor to the increased visibility of Virtue in media and advertisements in recent years — primarily those following the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics where she and ice-dancing partner Scott Moir stole the spotlight for their riveting routines — that allows fans and followers a glimpse into Virtue’s life that goes beyond her on-ice achievements.

“For whatever reasons, after the Pyeongchang games, there was a different awareness of both Scott and me … but it provided so many unique opportunities. And, hopefully I can have some kind of impact for young girls to look up to,” she says humbly. “I feel very privileged to be able to be considered any kind of role model.”

Olympic ice dance gold medallists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada hold up the Canadian flag after their winning performance at the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games on Tuesday in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea. (Photo: Paul Chiasson, Canadian Press)


Olympic ice dance gold medallists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada hold up the Canadian flag after their winning performance at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games on Tuesday in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea.

Paul Chiasson /

Canadian Press

Her visibility on social media platforms such as Instagram, where she boasts a following of 364,000 and counting on her account @tessavirtue17, is one area where she works to constructively (and carefully) share her struggles and successes, in the hopes of leaving a positive impression on those who may happen to scroll by.

“I’m conscious of that. And I try to do that in a way that is authentic,” she says of fully realizing the scope of her role via social media and beyond. “I think, often, about how a nine-year-old girl would feel if she were to scroll through my Instagram. And, what messaging I’m sending, both objectively and subjectively. I think, ‘What kind of role model am I?’”

Focusing on the type of content she shares — positive messages and happy shots of herself attending events or with friends and family —  has kept her somewhat safeguarded from the rampant online trolling that plagues many celebrities online. And, when she does face negativity, she doesn’t allow herself to get too caught up in it.

“You put yourself out there and I think there is always vulnerability with that,” she says. “Whether that’s standing at centre ice and waiting for the music to start, or posting something on social media for everyone to criticize, you just have to hope that the good outweighs the bad.”

Her ambition to present a positive role model to young girls and women led her to a recent collaboration with the Montreal-based fashion brand RW&CO. The campaign, which sees her featured alongside Canadian actress Karine Vanasse and First Nations activist Ashley Callingbull, the first Indigenous woman to be crowned Mrs. Universe, aims to promote “powerhouse” working women, in various stages of their careers.

“The campaign is so in line with my messaging and the things that I’m trying to accomplish now, outside of sport,” Virtue says. “And it’s something that I can relate too, also.”

Virtue hopes people pick up on the collaborative, supportive air of the campaign stars and feel empowered to introduce that outlook into their own lives.

“The culture now of this competition that’s ingrained in us, to pit women against other women, and this unrealistic standard that we’re all held to — all these issues are pervasive,” she says. “We can only be stronger for women when we support one another.”

Speaking on a hot, sunny day in July at a studio space in Montreal during a brief break in shooting images for the campaign (with her mom looking on in support), Virtue reflected on how, at 30 years old, she’s reached a point in her life where she’s “transitioning,” personally and professionally.

“And I’m looking to other women to support and uplift me,” she says of the changes. “So, I think it’s really neat that (RW&CO. is) putting together, really, a movement to incorporate so many things. And, they’re not just talking the talk.”

To mark the release, the retailer will be running a contest for Canadians to nominate an inspiring woman in their lives. The winner will receive a donation to the charity of her choice.

In addition to providing a visual representation of strong female role models, the partnership provided Virtue and her campaign co-stars with the opportunity to donate a portion of their fee to a cause of their choice. Callingbull directed her share toward a shelter for Indigenous women and children, while Vanasse chose a women’s shelter in Montreal.

Virtue, chose to promote another passionate platform, highlighting her efforts as an ambassador for the Canadian organization FitSpirit, which works to promote and support physical activity and athletics programs for young girls.

“It’s something that is so close to my heart,” she says of the role. “Obviously, I’ve reaped the benefits of sport and activity. But not many girls, as it turns out, even have the resources available to them to be physically active or to maintain that as they go through high school. So, FitSpirit is connecting with schools and giving that accessibility to young girls and youth at a time when they might otherwise drop out our prioritize other things.”

“It’s an opportunity to be active and connect with other girls — and to realize the power that those lessons and the sense of building self confidence and self worth that will carry forward for them.”

Recalling a recent visit to a school with FitSpirit where she met with young girls in the program, she recalls, with evident pleasure, sharing her enthusiasm for athletics with the girls — and how she took a little bit of something away from the visit for herself, too.

“They were so curious and it’s so obvious that they’re capable of taking over the world,” she says of the energetic assemblage of youths. Needless to say, it left her feeling inspired.

“When we realize the powerhouse of that sisterhood and the camaraderie among women — there’s no stopping us,” she says.


Flash fashion: Style talks with Tessa Virtue

Canadian Olympian Tessa Virtue may be known more for her on-ice moves than her off-ice style — but, these days, the 30-year-old athlete and ambassador is putting a lot more emphasis on what she wears.

“I lived in either sweatpants or athletic wear,” she says with a laugh of her go-to uniform during her training days. “I was really of two extremes, which plays to my personality as a bit of an extremist. I was either in full-on workout wear or black tie. So, I didn’t have that middle range.”

But, now, as she ventures confidently into her next career adventures that see her stepping away from amateur sport, she says she’s having fun exploring her personal style as she spends more time in the “corporate sphere” and much less time on the ice.

“It has definitely evolved over time,” she says of her fashion sense. “Now, I would say my personal style is pretty classic and refined — with a bit of a twist. I like to have a bit of an edge to every outfit.”

Virtue recently took time away from her busy schedule to dish four tidbits about her personal style. Here’s what she had to say:

On how she chooses her outfits: “I definitely dress based on my mood. I like accessorizing differently. Having classic, quality pieces and mixing in graphic tee, a headband, a pair of funky boots or a belt and changing the outfit entirely.”

On here greatest style influence: “My mom has always shopped for me. I’m so lucky that I have an in-house stylist.”

On her MVP (most valuable piece): “I love a good blazer. Whether it’s jeans, a T-shirt and a blazer, or a power suit, I think that would be my staple.”

On her most cherished item: “My grandmother’s necklace.”

Postmedia News was a guest of RW&CO. in Montreal. The brand neither reviewed nor approved this article.

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7Aug

In skin care, natural beauty is booming

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When it comes to the skin-care industry, green is definitely gold.

With new natural brands popping up, seemingly daily, and more mainstream companies introducing additional “clean” products into their lineups — eschewing ingredients such as sulfates, parabens, formaldehydes, phthalates and more — the shift is prompting some retailers like Sephora to carve out shelf space in their stores (both bricks-and-mortar and online) dedicated to the growing green movement.

In fact, the organic beauty industry is reportedly projected to reach US$25.11 billion in sales by 2025. That’s some serious plant power.

According to Mathilde Thomas, co-founder of the French beauty brand Caudalie, the driving force behind the growth in the natural beauty industry is all thanks to an increase in consumer consciousness surrounding natural skin-care ingredients and benefits.

“Consumers are more informed than ever and looking at brands to make informed decisions from a 360-degree perspective,” Thomas explains. “While the ingredients in the products are taking centre stage, consumers are also looking at everything from a brand’s facilities down to the packaging and its environmental impact.”

That increased interest in what goes into a product is prompting brands to be more transparent about their tinctures, from production to packaging.


Tayler Mariles.

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“Sustainability and brand transparency has become important in every consumer-goods category and beauty is no different,” Tayler Mariles, founder of the Vancouver-based natural beauty company Midnight Paloma, says. “Understanding what you’re putting on your face and body is just as important as knowing where the food you are feeding your family is coming from.

“Is the brand Canadian? Do they care about the people using it? Where are the ingredients sourced? All of these things are much more ‘on the radar’ now then they used to be.”

As more information about product ingredients enter the beauty-sphere, consumers are faced with the opportunity to better inform themselves on elixirs than ever before.

“People are incredibly savvy when it comes to product ingredients these days, especially in Vancouver,” Mariles says. “No one even knew what paraben was five years ago, and now you’ll get people asking if there is synthetic fragrance and chemical preservatives in our formulas.

“Customers are very educated.”

If you’re unsure of how to get started on your own ingredient education Mariles says going online is a great place to start.

“The internet is an amazing tool for this, but you definitely need to watch what you read,” she says. “There is a lot of good information but there is also a lot of fluff. I like to take a look at what is banned in the (European Union). They are usually a little bit ahead of us in terms of ingredient testing, so knowing what they are watching out for is a great way to stay on top of it.”

And be aware that, as the industry continues to change with awareness, so too will the list of “bad” ingredients.

“There will always be a new ‘dangerous ingredient’,” Mariles says. “Before getting too worried, I like to research and see what is actually going on to assess the risk.

“There are always going to be products that aren’t natural and that’s fine. Not all preservatives are bad necessarily. But when there are serious carcinogens in products that’s when these companies need to ask themselves: ‘Who is benefiting, and why?’ If you wouldn’t use a product on your own child, why would you market it to the masses? With the knowledge we have now there really are no excuses for formulating things with cleaner ingredients in mind.”

According to Mariles, one of the most common questions she faces in regard to her product lineup — ingredient inquiries aside — is how consumers can make the shift from traditional beauty products to a more “clean-beauty” routine.

“People want to make the right choices but they don’t know where to start, and they certainly don’t want to spend a fortune changing over,” she says. “It can be an overwhelming process at the beginning, but slowly adding good clean options is easy now. There are tons of options in everyone’s budget.”

To get started on the greening process of your own skin-care routine, she recommends starting with the few products that you use everyday — your personal skin-care MVPs (most valuable products of course) — rather than the more novelty creams, oils and other assorted tinctures. 

“Get some good clean replacements and go from there,” Mariles says. 


The Detox Mask from Midnight Paloma.

Midnight Paloma

Expanding one’s knowledge of the green-beauty movement, as well as further understanding the list of potentially harmful chemical ingredients lurking in self-care products, is important for more than just one’s piece of mind, though. According to Thomas, an increased level of awareness can also help safeguard against buying “greenwashed” products — or beauty and skin-care products that are purported to be “clean” but have buried chemical ingredients or production processes.

“It’s important for customers to do their own research and look critically into the ingredients that brands are using in their products,” Thomas says. ” ‘Natural’ to one brand may mean something completely different to another. In fact, there is no one definition of natural.”


The Caudalie Limited Edition Beauty Elixir.

Caudalie

At Caudalie, which promotes the use and benefit of products featuring antioxidant-rich grape seed sourced from their family’s vineyard in Bordeaux, France, Thomas says there’s an emphasis on avoiding ingredients that have been linked to health-care concerns.

“As a brand, we frown upon including ingredients that are endocrine disrupters, that can be irritating or that are bad for the environment and use the smallest proportion of preservatives as possible and are committed to avoiding certain controversial and artificial ingredients,” Thomas explains. That emphasis on a more sustainable product also extends to the production.

“It’s important to me that everything from our facilities — to the product, packaging and formulation — leave as little negative environmental impact as possible,” Thomas says. “I’m also especially proud that Caudalie is an active member of 1% for the Planet, which is an organization that works to protect the environment. We’re proud of the fact that at the end of 2018, we planted more than four million trees globally and have plans to plant more than eight million in eight countries by 2021.”

As the green movement continues to gain momentum, shoppers can expect to discover more resources for information, increased transparency and even more “clean” beauty brands on offer — and, as it has been for the past five years, the push will come from consumer demand.

“The more educated people are, the more demand there will be for sustainable, healthy products,” Mariles says. “It’s like everything in our lives now, the more we know, the better we can change our lifestyles … Transparency is going to be more important than ever moving forward.”

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22Jun

Using artificial intelligence to combat acne

by admin


While artificial intelligence won’t replace your dermatologist it shows promise as a diagnostic tool, in everything from acne to skin cancer.


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Nobody wants to be called in to see the doctor and find a robot wearing a white coat.

You may not have to worry your GP will be replaced by a droid anytime soon, but artificial intelligence is playing a growing role in health care, diagnostics and the delivery of services.

Skin care and cosmetics brand La Roche-Posay is among companies turning to AI as a diagnostic tool.

La Roche-Posay, a L’Oréal brand that specializes in products for sensitive skin, recently introduced the Effaclar Spotscan – a scanning tool that uses artificial intelligence to diagnose acne. It’s the latest in data-driven skin care that uses AI to develop personalized solutions for skin health. AI won’t take the place of your dermatologist, but  it shows promise as a diagnostic tool, in everything from acne to skin cancer.

Othman Bennis, head of marketing for La Roche-Posay said a need for early intervention among acne patients was identified by dermatologists. That was the catalyst for a product that could help patients identify early on the level of their acne, measured on a scale from zero to 4+.

“They were telling us one of the main pain points they have in the management of acne patients was that most of the time acne patients were not going soon enough to see a dermatologist and when they were coming, many times it was too late,” said Bennis.  “Even if they had the right treatment at that time, they would still have marks and scars because they hadn’t gone earlier.”

Dermatologists wanted a way for patients to get an early screening to diagnose the severity of their acne. They also wanted patients with moderate to high acne levels to be directed to a dermatologist for treatment.

That led to research into a digital tool that could provide an early and accurate diagnosis of acne, ranking it on the same scale used by dermatologists seeing patients in person.

It started with data collection, with some 6,000 photos, three for each patient, with varying degrees of acne. Photos had to be taken on both an iPhone and Android phones since the calibration of pictures isn’t the same across the different operating systems.

La Roche-Posay, a L’Oréal brand that specializes in products for sensitive skin, recently introduced the Effaclar Spotscan.The photos had to encompass skins types from all over the world. Dermatologists provided the photos and each photo was graded by three different dermatologists.

In the case of a disagreement on the numbers, something that’s not unusual in real life practice, the majority determined the deciding grade. So, for example, if two dermatologists said an acne was a grade three and one said it was a grade two, it would be counted as grade three.

The photo analysis focuses on pimples, blackheads and acne marks, like pigmentation of the skin.

Once that data collection and analysis was complete, the AI process began with the data fed into supercomputers. Machine learning resulted in a system that could define and grade acne with an accuracy on par with having two dermatologists deliver a diagnosis.

“Basically it is as precise as seeing a dermatologist face to face,” said Bennis.

Response to Spotscan, which launched three months ago, exceeded expectations, said Bennis. It is now available in 50 countries and two million people have used the online tool to evaluate their skin.


La Roche-Posay, a L’Oréal brand that specializes in products for sensitive skin, recently introduced the Effaclar Spotscan.

Handout

There is a professional version of the online tool as well as a consumer version.

Eighty per cent of people under the age of 25 have had acne at least once and 40 per cent of adult women have issues with acne.

“Acne is huge,” said Bennis. “It is a very widespread problem.”

The online tool has a number of functions, not all related to promoting La Roche-Posay skincare products. For ratings of zero to two, users are offered a skincare analysis with both generic suggestions and La Roche-Posay product suggestions for a skincare regime. At higher levels, it recommends a visit to a dermatologist.

Bennis said users don’t have to be La Roche-Posay customers to benefit from the online tool. Another function is a timeline simulation for people who have low to mild acne to show the effect of following a recommended skincare regime for eight weeks. For severe acne there is no such simulation because users are advised to see a dermatologist.

A second function is useful to all — the ability to track progress though a digital diary that compares early results to later ones as treatment is followed.

AI is also being used to screen for skin cancer and some research results are promising. Research published in Nature, the International Journal of Science, demonstrated artificial intelligence could be trained to achieve an accuracy in classifying skin lesions that was on par with board-certified dermatologists. There are consumer screening apps but some of the more popular ones, like SkinVision, haven’t yet been approved for availability in North America.

In recent research published in the Lancet machine-learning algorithms were more accurate in diagnosing skin lesions than a group of human viewers, which included board-certified dermatologists, dermatology residents and general practitioners.

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19Apr

Town Talk: Style show made big hair even bigger

by admin

HATS OFF: Nobody expected Easter bonnets, fascinators or headgear of any kind when the Show It Off extravaganza filled the Vancouver Playh­­ouse recently. Hair alone was the attraction, and Avant Garde salon owner Jon Paul Holt and dancer-choreographer producer Viktoria Langton showcased plenty of it when the male and female show benefited B.C. Children’s Hospital. Stylist from the UK, across Canada and hereabouts created confections that, in most cases, were frothed up on models attired in the Playboy rather than Easter bunny manner.


Dee Daniels will return from her and Denzal Sinclaire’s U.S. tour to sing at Motown Meltdown’s benefit for Seva Canada’s eyesight-restoration efforts.

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HIGH FLYERS: Early aviators gained surprising extra height by flying at top speed and jerking back the joystick. They called it the zoom climb. A century later in 2008, one-time television wunderkind Moses Znaimer applied the term to half-century-old folk able to elevate their lifestyles. Among now-77-year-old Znaimer’s related enterprises, Zoomer trade shows feature travel, financial, cannabis and health-and-wellness exhibitors. Entertainers, too.


Joy TV’s CARPe diem show host-producer Carmen Ruiz y Laza greeted Motown Meltdown’s Bill Semple and Kendra Sprinkling at the Zoomer Show.

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The recent Zoomer show here saw Kendra Sprinkling produce a version of the 17th annual Motown Meltdown concert that will play the Commodore Ballroom April 27. Its beneficiary, Seva Canada, restores eyesight to thousands of global patients annually. One concert singer, Dee Daniels, will zoom home from her and Denzal Sinclaire’s touring tribute to the late Nat King Cole and daughter Natalie.


Vancouver Sun Sun Run columnist Lynn Kanuka and editor-in-chief Harold Munro welcomed guests at a reception preceding the 35th annual event.

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FEET FEATS: Olympic bronze medallist Lynn Kanuka’s columns helped prepare Vancouver Sun reader for last weekend’s 35th annual Sun Run. She and run co-founders Doug and Diane Clement were acknowledged at a reception where Sun editor-in-chief Harold Munro noted that the 10k event’s earlier participants had covered the equivalent of 10 times around the world. Kanuka’s 2019 columns revealed that her training world extends northward to Burns Lake and New Aiyansh beyond Terrace. With three other regions, they’re part of her 10-year-old effort by which Indigenous leaders develop running and walking programs. Regarding such communities’ elders, “Their health has changed,” Kanuka said. “Their blood pressure has gone down.” So have blood-sugar and cholesterol levels, “One has even lost 100 pounds,” she whistled.

DO GO: Although tough by foot, the few B.C. residents following remote, spectacular Highway 37 north from New Aiyansh to the Alaska Highway should relish every one of its 750 kilometres.


Some wonder whether the brotherly love Jason Kenney had for Charlie Wu in 2015 will extend to other Vancouver residents now that he’s Alberta premier.

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KENNEY, CAN HE? During 2015 TaiwanFest celebrations here, then-federal immigration minister Jason Kenney called festival manager and former University of San Francisco fellow student Charlie Wu “my Chinese brother with different mothers.” Let’s see if such familial regard for B.C. residents will continue.


Monica Soprovich, Tanya Perchall, Rebecca Bond and Carey Smith ringed host Zahra Salisbury at the Hotel Georgia’s Reflections terrace reopening.

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SKY TIME: Springtime sees the Rosewood Hotel Georgia’s substantially open-air Reflection terrace reopen formally. Rain made the recent event rather more al drencho than fresco. But with one area permanently covered and some others tented, attendees stayed dry and, given the enhanced intimacy, possibly more reflective. They were hosted by Zahra Salisbury, whose brother Azim Jamal and uncle Joe Moosa founded Pacific Reach Properties that paid $145 million for the then-90-year-old hotel in 2017.

UP PARRYSCOPE: One block west on Georgia Street, the Depression-delayed Fairmont Hotel Vancouver will celebrate its 80th birthday on May 9.


Seen partying at his architecture firm’s old Gastown premises, keg-surrounded Michael Green literally raised the bar with an Armoury district move.

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GREEN PARTIERS: Free drinks and a high-volume deejay would fill any Friday-night joint to the rafters. So it was when A-grade party giver and wood-structure-tower advocate Michael Green celebrated his self-named architecture firm’s move to Armoury-district space formerly occupied by Emily Carr University students. Despite a new climbing wall, Green’s guests didn’t actually reach the joint’s near-10-metre-high rafters.


Kelsey Kushneryk and Lindsay Owen alternate between piloting a Twin Otter and a rebuilt and re-engined DC3 aircraft between Arctic and Antarctic bases.

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Still, two among them routinely reach higher altitudes in places quieter, colder and far more dangerous than False Creek shores. Former rodeo roper-funeral director Kelsey Kushneryk and partner Lindsay Owen are 4,000- and 5,000-hour pilots who have spent six seasons flying for Calgary-based Kenn Borek Air in Antarctica and the Canadian Arctic. Owen hit the news in 2017 as first officer aboard a Twin Otter that sped 14,000 km from Alberta to rescue two sick workers in ‑­­60 C temperature from near the blizzard-whipped South Pole. She and Kushneryk also pilot an 80-year-old DC-3 airliner that, like the same-age axe with four new heads and six new handles, has likely had every part replaced and turbine engines installed.


Vancouver International Centre for Asian Art interim head Yun-Jou Chang and president April Liu fronted 20th-anniversary celebrations at the Imperial.

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A-PLUS: Now ensconced on Keefer Street with a 30-year lease, the Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, aka Centre A, celebrated its 20th anniversary recently. President April Liu and interim executive director Yun Jou Chang welcomed centre founder Hank Bull and guests to the Main-off-Hastings Imperial where Chinese-language kung-fu movies once were screened. Las Vegas-born Liu is a Chinese art historian and Museum of Anthropology public-programs curator. Belgium-born, Taiwan-and-Prince-Rupert-raised Chang is vice-president of the pan-Asian Cinevolution Media Arts Society. As well as encouraging beginning artists, the centre “strives to activate contemporary art’s vital role in building and understanding the long and dynamic Asia-Canada relationship.”

DOWN PARRYSCOPE: While Chinese genetic scientists transfer human brain cells to monkeys, the reverse process may have been perfected in London, Ottawa and Washington, DC.

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12Apr

Town Talk: BMW showroom gala supports pancreatic cancer research

by admin

BEEMER TEAMING: BMW dealer Brian Jessel and managing partner Jim Murray cleared all but one vehicle from their Boundary-off-Lougheed new-car showroom to stage the 14th annual Cabriolet gala. Previous runnings reportedly raised $2 million. Staged by Diana Zoppa and sponsored by ZLC Financial chairman-CEO Garry Zlotnik, the recent one benefited Pancreatic Cancer Canada by netting some $525,000. The sole car left standing beside a spotlit stage and dining tables reflected the ever-more-elegant gala’s name. It was a just-introduced BMW M850i Cabriolet tagged at $145,000. Figuratively donning his dealer hat, Jessel compared it to a certain $350,000 British sportster, “But this is a nicer car.” As for other BMW introductions, half-year Cabo San Lucas resident Jessel said: “We’ve got a lot of new product coming this year. I won’t have to marry for money after all.”


Elektra Women’s Choir conductor and co-founder Morna Edmundson welcomed operatic soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian to a benefit banquet at the Sutton Place hotel where she sang works by Berlioz, Bevan and Schubert.

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BETTER WORLD: Operatic soprano and graduate biomedical engineer Isabel Bayrakdarian sang at the Elektra Women’s Choir’s recent benefit-banquet in the Sutton Place hotel. Elektra honorary patron Bayrakdarian also performed at the choir’s 30th anniversary concert in 2017. At the hotel, co-founder Morna Edmundson conducted the 53-voice ensemble as she did in January at East Hastings Street’s Oscar’s Pub. That Elektra Uncorked fundraiser followed the release of Elektra’s 15th album, Silent Night. No repertoire stick-in-the-muds, the choristers are heard prominently on Gibsons-based progressive-metal musician Devin Townsend’s Empath album that released March 29 to seven-figure YouTube hits. Such musical genre-bending aside, few would dispute Schubert’s An Die Musik that Bayrakdarian sang to Elektra patrons: “You, lovely art, in how many gloomy hours of experiencing the turmoil of life have you ignited love in my heart and transported me to a better world?”


City singer Amanda Wood accompanied an ovarian cancer fundraiser’s fashion-show models with an energetic rendition of Alicia Keys’s Girl On Fire.

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Anna Wallner, Marousa Dumaresq and Kristi Brinkley modelled Chikas, Sundress and Riana garments at the Love Her benefit for Ovarian Cancer Canada.

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Okanagan Crush Pad owner Christine Coletta brought wine to and accompanied cousin Lisa Konishi at a $225,000 Ovarian Cancer Canada benefit.

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OVARIAN OVATION: With Franci Stratton chairing for the third time, the recent Love Her gala reportedly raised $225,000 for Ovarian Cancer Canada. The lunchtime event included a fashion show by West Vancouver retailer Marilyn Diligenti-Smith. Local volunteer models hit the catwalk as singer Amanda Wood belted out Girl On Fire. Ovarian cancer, however, is a murderous fire that researchers and practitioners yearn to put out while striving to discover how its starts. Back at the gala, attendees applauded when an annual award commemorating business and community leader Virginia Greene went to Christine Coletta and cousin Lisa Konishi who have jointly lost eight friends and family members to ovarian cancer. More cheerfully, Coletta donated and served much wine from her 45,000-cases-a-year Okanagan Crush Pad operation.


His artist in residency at the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Classical Chinese Garden now over, Paul Wong will publish a book based on 700 letters to his late mother.

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PAUL’S LETTERS: Paul Wong’s year-long artist in residency at the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Classical Chinese Garden ended with a reception at his Keefer Street studio. Fifty-five arts-related tenants reportedly pay $2 a square foot to occupy the building’s lower, third and fourth floors. A Korean restaurant and Scotiabank branch are conveniently located at street level. Meanwhile, Wong’s now-concluded exhibition of 700 letters to late mother Suk Fong has received a reply. The Canada Council for the Arts reportedly offered $54,500 to fund a related book. “We’re trying to get the money as soon as possible in case there’s been a mistake,” Wong cracked while admitting, “It was more than I asked for.”


With one of her works to open the DOXA Documentary Film Festival, Baljit Sangra hopes to make a feature about Canadian South Asians in the 1970s.

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POST PAST: B.C.’s early 20th-century South Asian pioneers were the subjects of a recent Vancouver Sun article. Now, moviemaker Baljit Sangra wants to portray their second- and third-generation descendants. To open the DOXA Documentary Film Festival May 3, Sangra’s 85-minute Because We Are Girls examines three Williams Lake sisters who concealed their shared sexual abuse for almost 25 years. She hopes that her next, and bigger, project will be a feature-film drama. “I would love to do a coming-of-age narrative of South Asians growing up in the 1970s,” Sangra said. “The fashion, the music, what they thought.” That might cost $5 million. Let’s hope she raises it.


Former mayor, former premier, cannabis firm principal Mike Harcourt received Simon Fraser University’s President’s Distinguished Community Leadership Award.

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NEW LEAF: Simon Fraser University chief Andrew Petter presented the President’s Distinguished Community Leadership Award to Mike Harcourt recently. The latter’s merits aside, the Four Seasons Hotel ceremony echoed Petter having been in 1991-96 NDP premier Harcourt’s cabinet. No such gender or partisan links occurred in 2010 when the honour went to Petter’s decade-later successor as B.C. Liberal finance minister, Carole Taylor. Her co-awardee, since-deceased husband Art Phillips, was Harcourt’s predecessor-but-one as Vancouver mayor. Soon after her award, Taylor was named chancellor of SFU where, vis-à-vis president Petter, she said: “My job is to protect him.” In his early 20s, lawyer Harcourt counselled Kitsilano-based Cool-Aid youth social services’ clients, some of whom were jailed for possessing marijuana joints. Today, he chairs Lumby-based True Leaf that plans to produce 2,500 kg of cannabis annually.


Andrew Petter made an SFU president’s award to Mike Harcourt as he had done in 2010 to the university’s then-pending chancellor, Carole Taylor.

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DOWN PARRYSCOPE: A century ago, satirist Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary contained: “Politics: A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.” Also: “Conservative: A statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal who wishes to replace them with others.” Finally: “Liberty: One of imagination’s most precious possessions.”

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28Feb

Review: Kora Organics Noni Glow Sleeping Mask (and more!)

by admin

Kora Organics Noni Glow Sleeping Mask


Kora Organics Noni Glow Sleeping Mask.


Handout

Kora Organics

Noni Glow Sleeping Mask

They say: A face mask from supermodel Miranda Kerr’s brand Kora Organics that features Silver Ear mushroom, coconut milk and caviar-lime extract to deliver “smoother, plumper-looking skin” while you sleep. The product is said to be suitable for all skin types including normal, dry, combination and oily.

We say: Our tester loved the way this gel-texture mask left her skin looking hydrated and “bouncy” in the morning. Applied to clean, dry skin, a small dollop of the mask smooths easily onto skin and dries quickly, leaving only a slightly tacky feel. In the morning, the mask washes off easily with warm water.

$60 | Sephora; sephora.com

Nanette de Gaspé Bain Noir Cannabis Sativa Bath Soak Treatment

Nanette de Gaspé

Bain Noir Cannabis Sativa Bath Soak Treatment

They say: A luxurious bath soak from Nanette de Gaspé that features hemp-derived Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil, as well as Meadowfoam and Poppy Seed Oils, to “soothe, revive and protect the skin while also de-stressing the mind and body.”

We say: Cannabis, in various shapes and forms, has been a hot ingredient in beauty and wellness products in recent years. Our tester, who is new to the movement, was pleased with the entire product experience of this luxe bath soak. A small scoop of the dark-purple formula into the water provided a powerful punch of pleasant scent — not to mention a deep hue. A 20-minute soak left her body, not to mention her mind, feeling completely relaxed.

$325 | Holt Renfrew; nannettedegaspe.com

Nude by Nature Touch of Glow Highlight Stick

Nude by Nature

Touch of Glow Highlight Stick

They say: A glide-on “cream-to-powder” highlighting formula featuring active natural ingredients such as Australian Kakadu Plum, Quandong and Desert Lime. The fragrance-free formula also features Carnauba Wax and Vitamin E to smooth and soften the complexion.

We say: Our tester was impressed with both the colour payoff and the feel of this product. The easy-to-apply stick blends easily onto skin with one’s fingertip and stays comfortable (read: non-sticky or greasy) throughout the day. Our testers, women in their 30s and 60s, used the shade 04 Opal on their cheekbones and down the bridge of the nose for an instant, non-glittery glow.

$28 | Nudebynature.ca

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11Jan

Town Talk: Revisiting folk from 2009 who helped bring about today

by admin

2009 began somewhat in reverse to 2019. Back then, newly inaugurated Barack Obama occupied the White House and signs of a severe economic recession were declining. Here in B.C., gang violence increased dramatically just as we celebrated being assigned the 2010 Winter Olympics. Principal bidder Jack Poole would die before those low-snow games began. Famed architect Arthur Erickson perished, too, as would two of the 35 folk (and one fast ferry) portrayed on this page. Still, they and the 33 others revisited from 2009 columns contributed in still-evident ways to the character of the province we cherish.


Nanaimo-born singer-pianist Diana Krall had friend Sir Elton John join a benefit concert for Vancouver General Hospital’s Leukemia Bone Marrow Transplant program in memory of her mother Adella who succumbed to multiple myeloma in 2002.

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Gwen Point accompanied husband Steven, B.C.’s first Aboriginal lieutenant governor, at the 64th-annual Garrison Military Ball that no longer entailed the presentation of serving or retired warriors’ debutante daughters.

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Restaurateur chefs Rob Feenie, Tojo Hidekazu, Michel Jacob, Pino Posteraro and Thomas Haas participated in the Senza Frontiere dinner that benefitted the Chef’s Table Society’s bursary and scholarship programs.

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Nimisha Mukerji and Philip Lyall premiered their 65_Red Roses documentary about cystic fibrosis patient Eva Markvoort who, despite a double-lung transplant, would die in 2010 but still spur medical-research fundraising.

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Kasi Lubin and Shauna Hardy Mishaw kicked off the eighth-annual Whistler Film Festival they’d founded with a $30,000 fundraising and that, under Hardy Mishaw, has become a fixture that bow screens 90 international movies.

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Cognoscenti already knew that one way to get vehicles like this 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900 B Coupe into Pebble Beach concourse d’elegance contention was to have them restored by RX Autoworks’ Mike Taylor and Ian Davey.

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Graduate student Hong Zhu was the first to take up residency when Prospero International Realty Inc. chair Bob Lee opened the 81-room MBA House at the University of B.C.’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School of Business.

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Recently retired from the National Ballet where fellow principal dancer Karen Kain called her “the iron butterfly,” Chan Hon Goh prepared to lead the Goh Ballet company that parents Choo Chat Goh and Lin Yee Goh founded.

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With four PuSh International Arts Festivals behind him, founder Norman Armour prepared to welcome 30,000 ticket buyers to a 21-show season and to continue doing so until his retirement from a much-grown event in 2018.

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One year after the institution he headed became Emily Carr University of Art + Design, president Ron Burnett told students that up to 96 percent of them could expect to “become what you imagine, from an artists to an entrepreneur.”

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B.C. Children’s Hospital Foundation Crystal Ball committee member Sherry Doman welcomed friend and 20-times ball supporter Indra Sangha who, though now terminally ill with ever-spreading cancers, said: “I had to come.”

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Rev. Mpho Tutu heard then-nine-year-old pianist Jeffrey Luo play Mozart and Chopin airs at a benefit for her archbishop-father’s Desmond Tutu Charitable Foundation and the Dali Lama Centre for Peace and Education.

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Having starred in the multi-Genies-winning The Necessities of Life, star Natar Ungalaaq flew from Igloolik, Nunavut for a screening attended by director Benoit Pilon’s former classmate, city-based filmmaker Lynne Stopkewich.

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Michaela Morris and Michelle Bouffard’s now-dissolved House Wine Enterprises firm was a go-to for many seeking wine know-how and especially those with 2,000-bottle cellars that needed supervision and enhancement.

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Concord Pacific chief Terry Hui and Westbank Projects Corp’s Ian Gillespie were already big-time developers when they checked what architect Walter Francl had done for Bob Rennie’s 97-year-old Wing Sang Building.

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Ask A Woman event-planning co-principal Tammy Preast lifted 14-year-old Casey at a gala-benefit for the Love On A Leash firm she founded that would later raise funds for such organizations as the Dhana Metta Rescue Society.

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Brent Comber rescued water-borne forest debris to carve imposing artworks and Obakki clothing firm principal Treana Peake raised funds to construct water wells and permanent schools for those living without either in South Sudan.

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On the last day of the year, a marine-transport vessel carried away a Pacificat fast ferry, one of three that failed to meet operational and economic demands and that, after long mothballing, were sold for pennies on the dollar.

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