Beauty & Wellbeing Crushes: Spray-On Aloe Vera, The Best Healthy Chocolate Smoothie Recipe, Twisting Peacock Yoga + More!

Hello! It’s been a little while between green drinks, I’ve been busy working on Wellness WA’s new look & layout, plus hitting up LOADS of cool new (and old favourite) wellness options that are popping up around Perth.

Coming right up are 4 things that I have been LOVING lately.

Spray-On Aloe Vera

Being ultra fair skinned, I was raised to fear the sun above all else. I’ve now arrived at the age of 32 with zero tan to speak of, a bunch of freckles & am often mistaken for 8-10 years younger (thanks, kind pals!). While I can’t necessarily put the last one down to just hiding from the sun – #babyfacegenetics – there’s a lot to be said for maximising your pre & post-sun exposure routines to prevent skin damage. I recently wrote an article on what I recommend pre-beach, which can be applied to any sunshiny activity.

Post-sun, and particularly if I happen to get slightly more pink than expected, the best bets I’ve found are: 1) A cold shower for as long as possible to counteract the burn, similar to if you burn yourself in any other way! 5 minutes plus is recommended to take some of the heat out. 2) Two to three cups of green tea to boost antioxidants. I’m not a medical professional but the personal research I’ve done on antioxidants is enough to make this a consistent habit for me. 3) Aloe Vera! It’s known as the “burn plant” for a reason. Applying aloe ASAP after sun exposure promotes skin healing & relieves stinging and itching, my current favourite is this Surf Life Saving spray on mist which makes applying it a breeze. I spray it on every couple of hours and before bed + after my shower in the morning if I’ve been burnt and it really does the trick!

Homemade Healthy Choc Smoothies!

Due to an upcoming retreat (hellooooo Sri Lanka!), I’ve been trying to save some money by making more smoothies at home, and saving brunch splurges for things that there’s no way I’d ever be able to make at home (cue, Flora & Fauna). With this in mind I set out to create my own version of a cacao, banana & peanut butter smoothie – the bonus being I can use all my favourite brands, additional supplements & get it tasting exactly how I like it.

After many trials I’ve come up with my favourite recipe, give it a whirl! It gets my morning started in the best possible way, after this I’m loving life, full of energy and prepared for whatever the day throws at me.

Choc Bliss Morning Smoothie

♥ 1 x cup of frozen banana chunks (if you’re lazy like me, Creative Gourmet now sells packets of pre-chopped, frozen banana at Woolies & Coles – life changing!)
♥ 1-1.5 x cups of coconut water (depending on how thick you want it… 1 cup is more of an icecream texture, 1.5 cups is a smoothie texture)
♥ 1-2 x tsp cacao, or more if you prefer. I like a gentle buzz.
♥ 1/2-1 x tsp peanut butter, I use Mother Earth Smooth variety
♥ 1/2 x tsp local honey


♥ 1/2 x tsp organic sesame seeds
♥ 1/4 x tsp ground vanilla
♥ 1/2 x sachet of Juice Plus chocolate protein powder, or other protein powder
♥ Quick grind of himalayan pink salt

Method: Place ingredients in blender in above order and blitz on high + pulse for 30 seconds. I use a Froothie which is similar to a Vitamix and it works really well, but any high-speed blender will work.

Makes 1.5 – 2 cups depending on how much liquid you use, and will put you in the best mood for the rest of the day. Let me know what you think if you try it!

Twisting Peacock Yoga Studio, Osborne Park

My latest obsession. The yin classes at Twisting Peacock are out of this world, and SOMETIMES a tiny hound called Potato pitter patters around as well! #mustlovedogs obviously, which I do with all my heart. The studio owner and totally lovely human babe, Melissa Howard, exudes ease & grace, and her classes are an incredible mix of soulful yogic philosophy interwoven with meditation, restoration and thoughtful sequencing. I leave every class on a high. The other teachers are fantastic as well and I can’t wait to explore more of the classes & very well-priced events that they run regularly.

Z’kin Brightening & Hydrating Masque

One for the chocolate lovers. This Zkin masque smells EXACTLY like chocolate mousse/chico baby lollies and it’s taken everything in my power to not squeeze the tube directly into my mouth. This has become my go-to mask pre-event or if my skin just needs a little boost. I haven’t found it to make much difference on small pimples, but it’s not really designed for that – so I spread this over my entire face but skip any areas with a pimple, where I’ll apply a separate mask which is specifically designed to dry those out. I’d suggest using this one anytime you feel a choccy craving coming on, but want to brighten your skin whilst indulging – delicious.

Let me know if you have any questions or comments below! x

Be well,


Meet Steph Johnson – Yoga Teacher & Manager of COMO Shambhala Urban Retreat

First up, briefly tell us a little bit about yourself!

I’m the manager & resident yoga instructor at COMO Shambhala Urban
. I was first introduced to yoga when i was 16 as method of coping with stress and anxiety. I credit the practice for providing a close-knit community, support and guidance that I so desperately needed, something I’m now recreating with COMO Shambhala Urban Escape, Perth’s urban wellness center in the heart of Perth CBD.

I have practiced yoga for more than a decade, and have completed my Level 1 (350 hour) Integrated Science of Hatha, Tantra, and Ayurveda teacher training with Tamara Yoga, in Western Australia. I have also trained with internationally renowned yoga teachers; Sarah Platt Finger, Alan Finger, Seane Corn & Simon Borg-Olivier.

Tell us about your daily beauty routine! What are your non-negotiables for looking and feeling your best?.

Self-practice! I can not walk out the door without doing my own practice. I HAVE to check in with myself every morning and every night! I’m also a bit of an obsessive shower-er, I have been known to have 4 showers a day… some may call that OCD…

What’s the one beauty treatment you can’t live without? And your favourite place to have it done?

Hair cut!! I started going grey at 24 (eek!) and I cut my hair every 8 weeks.

Who do you trust with your hair in Perth, and why?

Alicia from Baseline Hairdressing in Subiaco, she’s the bomb!

Favourite budget / at home beauty treatment?

Massaging sesame oil all over my body.. it’s whacky but it’s incredibly nourishing & calming and a fantastic remedy for anxious or ‘Vata’ types.

Your three, absolutely cannot live without, favourite products?

Bare Minerals Powder, Nars Laguna Bronzer and toothpaste.

What beauty treatment/ wellbeing activity would you love to try but haven’t yet?

You wouldn’t believe it but i have never done Jacobs Ladder… I seriously have to get there!! Otherwise Indoor Cycling scares the CRAP out of me but I’m game. Also, I’m rather curious about this new buzz on pole dancing!

Describe a typical day of eating for you – brekky, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinks – the works!

Oh gosh, I’m really quite simple. I’ll have a smoothie and a cup of tea before I head out the door. Lunch is generally eggs in some form either on a salad or on toast with avocado and vegemite and dinner is greens with tempeh, salmon or roasted vegetables with some sort of tahini apple cider vinegar. I kind of do things on repeat…

How do you like to get your body moving? Describe your weekly fitness routine.

Yoga yoga yoga! And a walk once or twice a week. I am also occasionally dragged to a cardio session with friends… kicking and screaming though!

♥ Reece Carter (The Herb Nerd!) Dose Vitality Tonic!

Do you take part in any alternative therapies or take supplements? If so, we’d love to hear about it!

I am always trying out weird and wonderful things. I get a remedial massage once a month from Louise @ Resolve Remedial Massage in Claremont, I went through a stage of getting bowen therapy, acupuncture and reiki once a week, I practice a lot of Tantra and I take 5ml of Reece Carter’s Dose Vitality Tonic once a day. Also.. chocolate!! LOTS OF IT! Is that a supplement? (ED: Yes.)

You’ve got a big event in 7 days time that you need to look incredible for. What’s your plan of attack to look & feel your absolute best?

Sleep, meditation, yoga, water and clean eating. That’s it. Not complicated. Straight to the point and very
manageable. I’m not one for big diets or restrictions. These are my non- negotiable and they work.

How do you like to relax? What are your favourite ways to de-stress? Yoga, Meditation and my body coated in sesame oil with a cup of tea and a good book. I’m currently reading: Relax & Renew, Tantra: The Path of Ecstacy & The Girls.

How many hours sleep do you usually get each night? Do you have any bedtime rituals or tips to help you get a great nights sleep?

I sleep 8 hours a night… without fail. I will always have a shower before bed and brush my teeth. Reading a book with a cup of peppermint tea & dark chocolate is a pretty common practice too.

And lastly… do you have any top secret tips you use to keep looking / feeling great?

Be authentic!! Always be yourself. Trying to be something or someone else will only create suffering which in turn will leave you feeling unfulfilled. Being you, being bold and being brave will always reward you! And then of course.. yoga, water, meditation, self-reflection and lots of self care will help you along.

You can find Steph @ Como Shambhala Urban Retreat Perth:

1 Cathedral Avenue, Perth

Instagram: @comoshambhalaperth

If you have any questions for Steph please leave them in the comments below so she can reply! 🙂

Be well,


Perth Yoga: Yin Yoga @ The Yoga Space, West Perth.

Photo credit: Qi Yoga


Lately things have felt a little crazy. Despite selling my shares in the business that I worked on 24/7 for over 2 & a 1/2 years, life has quickly filled up with all kinds of work and activities. From working full-time at lululemon, to yoga teacher training and the subsequent commitment to attending 5 yoga classes per week (!!!), some freelance marketing work & trying to squeeze in glasses of wine with friends alongside binge watching Game of Thrones (5 years late to that party) – I am left pretty exhausted at the end of each day.

Today I wanted to share with you one of my favourite styles of yoga (and places to practice) that I find really nourish, relax & calm my nervous system when things are getting a bit too cray cray – Yin Yoga!

The classes I find myself getting to most often at the moment are at The Yoga Space (since this is where I’m doing teacher training) and the yin classes are held at 7pm on both Thursday and Sunday evenings.

Each class is lit with candles to help you slip into a deep state of stretchy relaxation, run for 75-90 minutes and are taught by expert yoga teachers with loads of experience in gently guiding you towards calmness and a (at least partially) switched off brain.


Yin yoga is different to regular vinyasa/hatha yoga in that each pose is designed to release tension in the fascia and joints, rather than the muscles, and the poses are held for anywhere from 3-5 minutes. Props such as bolsters, blankets, blocks & cushions are also used to help the body get into position – although this is a quiet/slow practice, it can still be challenging as the body is being asked to relax into areas that it normally doesn’t. The teachers can help you with any poses that you find tricky, and you may even end up with 2-3 bolsters, 3 blocks and a cushion supporting you!

Over the course of the class you will take part in many different stretches & held positions, all while breathing deeply and doing your best to concentrate on the present moment, which is easier said than done on some days, and the class ends with an extra long Savasana (resting pose) …bliss.

Make sure you drive home safely afterwards as you’ll more than likely want to jump straight into bed as soon as you’re done, and did I mention that yin yoga can help you get an AMAZING nights rest? Well it can! I always sleep like a baby post-yin, sweet dreams, zzz!

Cost: $20 casual class

Where: The Yoga Space, West Perth

When: Thursday & Sunday @ 7pm


Be well,

Annette xo

Ananda Designs – Yoga Inspired Jewellery!

The power of positive thinking has resurged in recent times thanks to ethically dubious sources such as Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret, as well as a far more pleasant upsurge in wellness exercise programs like Yoga and Tai Chi. Anyone who has participated in something as common as a Yoga program can attest to the focus on wellbeing and inward calm – processes like breathing exercises, guided meditations and the setting of intentions are all wound up in the Yoga experience, and I think we can all agree that the feeling of a decent Yoga class is one of the more dizzily euphoric – perhaps topped by tripping and falling into Jeremy Renner’s lap. Maybe.

One of the more pleasantly materialistic side effects of this popularity is the product focus – beautiful LuluLemon exercise gear, indestructible branded yoga mats, even homewares with definite Eastern slants have flourished, and one of the more beautiful and enjoyable sides of this is jewellery – Yoga/Wellbeing specific jewellery, created with precious stones and with the intent to focus and improve the outlook of the wearer.

Ananda Designs is the brainchild of the charming and lovely Christina Zipperlen, dividing her time between Bali and Perth while designing and overseeing the creation of her pieces. She collected stones as a child, and inherited two special pieces from her mother, inspiring her further studies into semi-precious stones and their meanings. The fruits of her labor are stunning, handcrafted pieces with stones relating to their unique functions – to restore wellbeing, to detoxify and cleanse, and to balance.

“My daily yoga practice has become a very special time in my day, allowing me to deeply connect with myself and just be, and leaving me with such a beautiful feeling of inner peace. My wish is to spread this feeling to everyone who wears my jewellery.”
– Christina

♥ The gorgeous Christina

And Yoga laces the whole way through the collections: Yoga-centric terminology like “Shanti” and “Santosa” reappeared through the product listings, and as an additional dose of sweetness, all the rings bear the word “love” engraved into the inside band. It’s a gorgeous touch and bears testament to the level of detail and work that goes into each piece. Additionally there are detailed listings of the chakras and their aligning stones, to help a buyer more specifically target their custom made piece.

Of particular interest (personally) are the Malas – a long chain of stone beads that accompany a traditional priest or monk in prayer, in much the same way as rosary beads are used. There are a pre-determined number of stones for the short and long lengths, and the effect is truly gorgeous. Definitely at the top of my shopping list.

The pieces are created in Indonesia and Bali, 10% of each sale going to the Sacred Childhoods Foundation, an organisation preventing child trafficking and prostitution. Similarly the stones are sourced from ethically viable sources, and it’s rather nice to have such good intentions surrounding a piece of jewellery. It also helps that they’re beautiful.

Ananda Designs has a brand spanking new website, and a corresponding Facebook page. I think my yoga practice would benefit from a Mala. Yep, definitely.

Have you heard of yoga inspired jewellery before? Keen to incorporate some into your routine? Leave a comment below!

Article by Suzanne from Don’t They Know Who I Am?

Be well,


Exercise / Yoga Review: Tamara Yoga, Claremont, Perth.

I’m a lazy, overweight exercise-avoider. I have no excuse beyond a crippling dependence on cake, and in the last year, I’ve been doing my best to try to get on top of this situation. There have been ups, there have been downs, but having recently started attending Tamara Yoga, I’m starting to feel a lot more optimistic about my rocky road to (relative) health and fitness.

Firstly, all credit to my younger sister, who after my unsuccessful week-long attempt at finding a yoga class that worked with my work schedule piped up and suggested I attend Tamara Yoga. It’s obscenely close to where I live, parking is ample and free and their schedule is so insanely varied (7.00am on a Saturday morning, anyone? How about 6.00am on Cottesloe beach?) that you’d have to be truly unlucky to not have something you could attend.

The format is thusly – some classes are fixed, some allow a rock-up-and-pay arrangement. I signed myself up for a six-week beginners course, which locked me in for that amount of time, and meant that each class built on what was learned the week beforehand. They’re wonderfully flexible with this arrangement – I came waltzing in at the week two point, and they altered the fee to reflect the five-week duration. My instructor – the effervescent Carol – quizzed me a bit on my relative level of familiarity and kept an eye on me to make sure I didn’t do anything stupid.

This Buddha greets you in the foyer @ Tamara Yoga

The other option – pay as you go – means that for certain classes you can just turn up and hope it’s not horribly packed (this hasn’t happened – yet). I chose to attend a Vinyasa class at 7.00am on a Saturday morning (yes – this was extremely strange and overeager), which worryingly specified neither all levels or beginners, as many classes do. This instructor (I didn’t catch her name, but the website makes me think Helen), just like Carol, checked on what I knew and what I didn’t and came by to adjust me occasionally. Whilst it was a more advanced class than I strictly speaking should have been attending, every pose and movement had a lesser-powered option, and she was careful to specify easier variations of every motion. It was incredibly inclusive, and very considerate, and impressed the crap out of me.

♥ A class in action

But how are the classes themselves? The key word is relaxed. It’s a very informal, almost chatty format, more educational than you might expect and the wind down, meditation portion at the end (savasana) is complete bliss. The day after my first class I felt less stiff, more limber and more – centred, I suppose? And I don’t resent going at all, like I do gymming, or any other kind of exercise. I actually find myself poring over the schedule and trying to find drop-in classes I can wedge myself into – voluntarily. As in, with no one making me. This is a big deal, kids. As an additional level of awesome they provide everything – mats, blocks, straps, all manner of things. And you can buy rather wonderful yoga equipment there. I’m tempted. Watch this space.

So ultimately I’m really happy with Tamara Yoga. It’s wonderfully informal (which I love) with a great assortment of classes and highly skilled, friendly staff. It is the ultimate in non-intimidating Yoga. Very recommended!

Have you been to Tamara Yoga before? Have a penchant for cake? Lets chat below!



Phone: 9385 2242

Tamara Yoga Classes held at The Luck Now Centre
UPSTAIRS 10/24 St Quentin Avenue Claremont Perth Western Australia
Enter via laneway off St Quentin’s Avenue across from Claremont Quarter

Review by Suzanne: she is allergic to exercise, and can only be cured with cake.

Be well,