Personal Notes – Chapter 1

An exclusive interview with Lana Graves – photographer, skincare and makeup creative. We discovered Lana’s inspirational Instagram feed and asked her to review some of our products.

Please tell us a bit about yourself…
Hello, I’m Lana and I am originally from Lithuania, born in the coastal town, Klaipeda. I moved to the UK in 2016 for a fresh start, seeking new life experiences, career opportunities and inspiration for my photography. I must say that the biggest part of my work is now involved with skincare and makeup and I’m quite obsessed with it – I love discovering new products and sharing ideas with my followers and I also like to support and promote a more ethical, sustainable and vegan lifestyle.

So how did you become interested in photography?
Oh, I was dreaming about the idea of becoming a photographer since I was a child, however, I never really had any decent gear to start on my photography journey. I remember I used to have an old smartphone, which was my go-to tool back in the days -to make my very first pictures. Luckily for me – one Christmas morning it all changed when I got my first camera as a present from my family. We’ve never been “wealthy” or even close to a “middle-class family” so for me, what happened that day was truly a miracle and I still remember it as one of the happiest moments in my life. I was only 15 and that’s when my photography adventure started.

So for this assignment where did you take your photographs?
The photographs were taken in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, where I am based at the moment. Some photographs are taken near the beautiful gothic Cathedral (Church of St Peter, St Paul and St Andrew) in the town centre, one of the greatest pieces of local art which always inspires me and some of the photographs are taken in my apartment.

So moving on to your other passion skincare, could you perhaps define the characteristics of your own skin?
Yes – my skin type is very sensitive, often dry during cold periods. I’m quite pale and sometimes my skin can develop red patches. If I’m not moisturising my skin really well during winter, I also experience a feeling of skin tightness which leads to flaky skin as a result.

So what do you like about using natural beauty products?
I really appreciate natural beauty products because they are made with natural and organic plant extracts and minerals and so don’t contain any harmful substances. Also, it’s great to discover brands like Bath House because you make natural beauty products that are all vegan and are not tested on animals, because I stand against cruelty. I really care about our planet and always look for natural beauty products and brands that don’t harm the environment and are mostly made of sustainable and biodegradable materials.

What beauty products do you have?
Which ones do you use on a typical day? I have been using Bath House Kombu Seaweed facial toner, facial serum, cleansing milk and face cream for my daily skincare routine, I regularly use Kombu Seaweed cleansing milk to remove my makeup, I tend to apply makeup daily as a part of my job and so I love that skin feels so soft and moisturised after removing makeup – Kombu Seaweed Toner is also a must-have toner made with added glycerine, it leaves my skin looking radiant and healthy.

My absolute favourite Bath House product is Patchouli & Black Pepper face, hair & body oil – because it’s such a good multi-use product – and that’s fantastic, I’m applying it from head to toes, no lie! It smells divine, a few drops on my body after a shower, a few drops on my hair (dry) to tame flyaways, for glossy and shiny hair. Sometimes I’m leaving it as an overnight hair treatment to prevent dry ends. One of the greatest uses of Patchouli & Black Pepper face, hair & body oil is for face massage, simply applying a few drops on the face and neck, massaging with gua sha stone. Gentle massage for 5-10 minutes daily helps to promote blood circulation and fades out fine lines over time.

Any top tips for skincare you would like to share?
Yes, my top tip is, don’t forget about your neck, neckline and ears! Always apply the same skincare regime to each body part, don’t forget that it’s the same skin, not less important.

So moving on to the world of scent, what is your favourite type of fragrance? And why? … and do they hold any specific memories for you?
My favourite type of fragrance is something mysterious, dark, woody and sensual. I have never associated myself with floral, girlish scents, I like scents like smoked wood or the scent of a pine forest – it reminds me of my motherland: long walks in the forest, rain, the aroma of a smoky fire pit, moss. I believe scents play a huge role in inspiration, at least for me.

If you could recommend one of our fragrance products, which one would you choose?
Blacksmith candle – it’s pure magic, it takes you to some special place, it definitely can bring back so many warm memories, give you so much inspiration and make your home the cosiest place on earth.

And for personal fragrance?
As I mentioned I am drawn to smoky, sophisticated and sensual fragrances and have loved wearing the eau de parfum Patchouli & Black Pepper. It’s a very rich and sultry fragrance, I also love Slate with its woody notes of sandalwood and cedar which wrap you in warmth. Both are beautiful sophisticated fragrances that haven’t irritated my skin in any way.

What makes you feel beautiful?
Being healthy, having a good sleep, eating delicious food, taking good care of myself makes me feel beautiful. When I feel good physically I can wear a potato sack and feel extremely pretty. Need to mention, that freshly washed hair makes me feel beautiful too!

What do you do for your well-being and self-care?
I like to light up a candle, read a book or listen to my favourite album in the late evening. Mornings I usually apply a face or hair mask while making myself a cup of fresh coffee. I find it oddly satisfying when it heavily rains outside and I can stay all day home in my bed, edit some photos for my blog. However I believe minimising exposure to social media from time to time has a positive impact on my well-being, so I don’t forget taking about long walks.

Overall, how have you found using the Bath House products?
Absolutely amazing! Everything is super satisfying: from gorgeous packaging to the product texture and scent. Kombu Seaweed facial toner helped to soothe my skin and visibly reduced redness and red patches, which honesty, makes me super happy, I would recommend it to anyone with a sensitive skin type. Kombu Seaweed face cream is super lightweight, doesn’t clog or irritate my fussy skin and works to give me a healthy glow with all the moisture I need throughout the winter. I’m amazed and delighted that Bath House products are made in small batches and feel it’s great to support local makers, and all products are made with 98% natural ingredients and are 100% vegan and cruelty-free.

What are you looking forward to this year?
I hope this year will bring so much joy, so many exciting collaborations and professional growth. I’m looking forward to travelling a little bit more, exploring more beautiful places in and around the UK, and meeting more talented and inspirational people with a similar mindset. I’m looking forward to renting a spacious house with a beautiful garden to spend warm summer evenings in, with my partner having a glass of preferred drink in hand and chatting about future plans, lastly to mention I’m planning to get married this year (it’s a secret!) no big celebrations, just a small family and friends gathering.

Follow Lana Graves on Instagram at lana_thegraves.