wonder city, wonderfarm

Prepare to engage all five senses this coming Saturday at the first-ever Wonderfarm. A celebration of our unique community, Wonderfarm will combine farm food and local art to benefit two special Atlanta nonprofits – Community Farmers Markets and WonderRoot. The evening will include a seated dinner curated by Miller Union chef Steven Satterfield and feature more than 10 of Atlanta's most crave-worthy chefs. Interactive performances, demonstrations and installations organized by WonderRoot will also be in progress.

It is Community Farmers Markets’ mission to develop and strengthen farmers markets for long term sustainability and meaningful community impact. WonderRoot also believes in inspiring positive social change through uniting artists and community.

In addition to a delicious dinner and equally enticing art, Wonderfarm will include a cocktail reception and silent auction from your favorite local businesses. And did we mention that this is the first time that the new Krog Street Market opens its doors to the public?

Head over here for ticket information and how to get involved. This is an Atlanta evening not to miss.

triumph & disaster

New Zealand brand Triumph & Disaster is a men's skincare line that churns out products just as powerful as its name (inspired by a Rudyard Kipling poem none the less). Derived with nature but engineered with science, the brand fits the category of a modern day apothecary. They even have the cool packaging to prove it. Triumph & Disaster has a knack for finding ingredients that work, too. Blending local indigenous ingredients with scientifically proven and natural ingredients from everywhere from Polynesia to Australia, they've created a line of men's essentials. Their products range from peppermint scented Ritual Face Cleanser to close shave ensuring Old-Fashioned Shave Cream.

One of our favorite things about Triumph & Disaster is what is behind the brand (besides the handsome faces it's creating worldwide). Dion Nash founded the company on the simple belief that "ritual and preparation are worthy endeavors and that being well groomed is something of which to be proud." It's about time that men get some skincare loving, too.

Come in and snag your favorite essential or set up a facial to try it out. Here's to Triumph & Disaster, what Kipling called "two impostors just the same."

the oxygen facial deconstructed: rejuvenate daily serum

The magic of the Intraceuticals oxygen facial continues to woo us with the way that it immediately encourages more naturally hydrated and luminous skin. Because of this, we found it only right to dig in to what makes the treatment just so special – starting with the rejuvenate serum. The serum is, of course, a vital part of treatment, but it can also stand alone as a daily serum – even making the time in between facials that much more awesome. By delivering anti-aging ingredients such as vitamins A, C and E, green tea, panthenol (a provitamin of B5), squalane (a natural moisturizer) and a hyaluronic complex (sent from the tissue repair gods), the serum lifts, tones and hydrates. In turn, both skin's texture and vitality is improved in a poof. Because of these results, the rejuvenate serum is recommended to well, everyone – especially those battling dryness or those pesky fine lines and wrinkles.

We suggest applying the serum to face and neck at night as well as in the morning as it creates the ideal canvas for makeup application. So, whether of not you've experienced the coveted oxygen facial first hand, the rejuvenate serum stands proudly on it's own.

give thanks for great skin (our new favorite treatment)

We’re so excited to introduce you to Intraceuticals, our new line and oxygen facial. Often referred to as a “magic beauty machine”, the Intraceuticals oxygen machine and serums encourage natural, hydrated and luminous skin. Ready? The Aussie brand was pulled out from down under by Madonna’s go-to makeup artist Gina Brooke, so it’s no surprise that it’s a Hollywood favorite (and best kept secret - until now). Celebrities such as Molly Sims, Kim Kardashian and Rachel Zoe claim they can’t live without it. Not to mention Justin Timberlake’s honest testimonial, “It makes my skin look dope”. We’re just glad it’s not so under the radar anymore.

Why is the treatment just so coveted, though? Intraceuticals provides a new kind of oxygen treatment. First off, a techy machine uses oxygen under pressure to deliver a cocktail of vitamins and antioxidants into the skin, resulting in instant hydration, volume, firmness and a noticeable lift. Relaxing and beneficial even solo, the treatment is followed by the homecare application of the brand's three-step hyaluronic moisturizing system – revive, replenish, and protect. In the session, the products are layered to provide perfect hydrodynamics, resulting in deep and ongoing delivery of hydration as well as those ingredient perks.

We’re also offering rejuvenate with atoxelene or “no-tox botox”, so go ahead and get a jump on saying goodbye to those fine lines and wrinkles. Atoxelene uses a natural amino peptide to reduce wrinkle depth without the need for injections. Atoxelene is offered as a standalone or add-on to the Rejuvenate treatment.

Oxygen on its own has endless healing properties and Intraceuticals just bumps that up a notch. While it targets aging and dehydrated skin, it benefits every skin type and we’re especially smitten with its speedy results (more defined face contours right off the table, anyone?) Head over to our website for pricing information as well as to talk with our estheticians about the best options for your skin.

Let the social season begin!

clarisonic, now from face... to feet

While Georgia may have had a confusing transition from winter to spring this year, we feel like the warm and humid is now here to stay and with that comes bathing suits, tank tops, and those tiny shorts. Oh man. We're thankful that our friends over at Clarisonic have us covered and this time, not just our faces. We're talking Clarisonic Pro Face and Body.

What Clarisonic aims to address this month is Keratosis Pilaris. We know, it sounds scary. In simpler terms, though, it's just referring to those summertime "chicken skin" bumps. In more proper terms, it's a skin condition where protein in the skin (keratin) forms hard plugs within hair follicles. And guess what? Over 80% of the population has it. So, Clarisonic conducted a 12 week study in which they proved just how great the body brush is. 100% reported an overall improvement in skin texture, 92% said they had a reduction in redness, and 91% noticed an improvement in dryness. All of these things get a thumps up, especially during a Georgia summer.

We love the Clarisonic system, which we talked about here a few months ago, and we invite you to come check it out and talk with Amy about any questions because again, the Pro Face & Body is only available through (your favorite) esthetician. Bring on the summer!

meet the birds: amy leavell bransford

We figured it’s about time that you get to know the birds here at the Aviary and who better to start with than owner herself, Amy Leavell Bransford. A “PR girl-in-recovery”, Amy found refuge and true love in opening Aviary in 2009. By bringing her history, personality, and (awesome) style with her, Amy created a place I don’t know what we’d do without. Here are a few of her thoughts on it (what she’s thinking while treating that pretty face of yours included).

You went from PR to skincare, what inspired you to open Aviary? After spending my 20s in a haze of smoky bars and nightclubs, I felt the need to counterbalance with something a little healthier, for mind and body. Plus I have an intense need to fuel my beauty product dependency and because I am also a PR girl-in-recovery, I still think the things that I love you should love, too.

What’s your favorite thing about it? Besides the energy, I love the aesthetic you’ve created (and there has to be a little of you in that). My parents are preservationists and the wood used inside the Aviary was reclaimed from my parents’ tree farm. So there are little hints of my childhood home. There is a piece of wood that faces the kitchen in the salon where obvious years of layers of paint are on it. One of the deepest layers is a mint green that had to only be available in the 50’s. My great-grandmother had her living room (now my parents’ living room) painted that color and the wood was a baseboard there. I like being reminded of that history when I walk by.

This cool, relaxing aesthetic carries over into your treatment room. What do you think about while saving our skin? I am usually planning out what I am going to make for dinner. All kidding set aside, I am constantly thinking about what new products we need to carry (back to the product dependency issue) and services that we should offer and how I can perfect what I am doing in the treatment room. I’ve recently been focusing more on adult acne. Treating and understanding what causes it to occur to women in their 20s, 30s and beyond.

When you’re not working at Aviary (and when you are), you’re a full time wife and mom (to two cuties). What are your favorite Atlanta adventure spots? We live in Inman Park so lately we are on the Beltline every weekend, either by foot or bike. My kids love going the Isamu Noguchi Playscape in Piedmont Park. Outside of town, we like hiking at Arabia Mountain and Sweetwater Creek.

And of course, if you were a bird, what kind of bird would you be? A White-Winged Dove.

your new bff

Are you sitting down? For something this exciting you may want to be. That’s right… all beauty woes have been solved. It’s called Skin Savior Waterless Beauty Balm, the brainchild of One Love Organics. And it’s because this magic balm poses the question, “what isn’t it?” Multitasking as a hair tamer, illuminizer, make up remover, moisturizer, pomade, primer for mineral powder, and skin soother, this 3.5 oz. jar does it all.

Skin Savior is made up 100% natural ingredients including pure, cold pressed plant oils, mango butter, and three critical extracts (chia seed, oat, and vanilla) that break down and cleanse without stripping the skin’s natural protective layer as well as smell quite lovely. And… it’s waterless. One Love Organics believes in kissing mystery products goodbye and only includes ingredients with direct benefits (H2O not included). Everything about it really just comes down to lovely…

The brand, One Love Organics, takes pride in their sensitive, simple approach to beauty. They hand make and hand fill every product right down to Skin Savior. But beauty for One Love isn’t just skin deep. Ethically and environmentally driven, they are accredited by PETA and Green America Approved Business as well as donate 1% of their annual net revenue to organizations such as CARE and The Children’s Scholarship Fund. And as if we haven’t found our well, one love, everyone from The Zoe Report to Birchbox has praised Skin Savior. Amy especially believes in it for winter chapped skin and with Atlanta finally (maybe) getting a dose of winter, we are in perfect time!

celebrate the season (right down to your skin)

We’ve (un)officially entered the holiday season. With weeks old smiling pumpkins beginning to wilt on stoops, new pumpkins waiting for Thanksgiving (already?) the sound of pumpkin flavored… anything, pumpkins are hard not to love. But all won’t wither away like our stoop sitting friends. For example, Sircuit’s Youth Accelerator Mask (Made Better) with pumpkin enzyme is here to stay.

Youth Accelerator is an all-natural, pumpkin enzyme peel that’s rich in anti-aging and skin perfecting nutrients.  Brimming with Beta Carotene and over 100 other nutrients, pumpkin ferment and lactic acid (skin softening exfoliant) removes dead skin cells and deeply cleans pores. It helps to minimize free radicals (that icky stuff in the air) that result in accelerated aging and clogged pores. It’s suitable for all skin types yet best for aging, oily, and/or those with hyperpigmentation.

It all lends to a healthier, more vibrant complexion and that’s what we’re all about. And with endless holiday parties (and photos opps) coming up, a revamped complexion couldn’t sound better. And, hey, Youth Accelerator is 100 times simpler than the holidays and all they bring. Use once a week for 10-15 minutes will do the trick! Ready to beam? We know it smells good but save that for the desserts. THIS intensive therapy targets the skin’s receptors yet boasts fewer calories better than that pumpkin spice latte you’re craving.

The pumpkin mask is also available in the Smart Peel Facial and appointments with Amy can be scheduled here.

honey, we love you

Some of you may have seen the photo of our DIY facials last Thursday (yes, you read right) but that photo only showed part of it. We had such a great time with the National Honey Board in town. We also have a lot to fill you in on. The National Honey Board is a federal research and promotion board under USDA oversight that really digs into and promotes… honey. And when they contacted us about having an event about honey and its benefits when it comes to skin, we couldn’t have felt sweeter.  It was a night of newfound knowledge, honey-inspired food (honey/vanilla cupcakes, anyone?), and DIY facials. We know it’s that honey and teatime of year but please set some aside for your skin. It’s making quite the buzz.

Our very own Amy Leavell Bransford as well as HollyBeth Anderson of HollyBeth Organics teamed up and created a five-step, DIY soothing honey facial. But why? First off, Amy and HollyBeth share a passion for natural and pure skincare. They are careful to choose only products with potent and organic ingredients that nurture, treat, and protect the skin. Honey is 100% that as well as a humectant (meaning it draws and retains moisture in skin) and has whole body benefits (remember when mum used to give you a spoonful for your cough?).

As a humectant, it makes for the greatest moisturizer. Though this has always been instinctive, it’s now proven thanks to our friends at the National Honey Board. In 2010, they conducted a study to find out that after honey was applied to the forearm and, untouched for four hours, hydration levels increased. It won’t leave skin feeling oily either. After all, dry skin is one of our biggest battles in the coming months. Hydrated skin stays soft, supple, elastic, and young. Wondering why that honey bear is your cabinet is still ¾ full yet?

So, stickiness aside, grab that honey bear down and give some of our recipes a try. We promise a sweet time.

Oh, Honey! Purifying Cleansing Oil

3T honey 3 large ripe strawberries (mashed or blended) 1T Almond or Grapeseed Oil

We love honey as a cleanser! It contains many vital nutrients and vitamins and is naturally antibacterial. Here we mixed ingredients together in a bowl, utilizing the enzymes of strawberries and created a cleansing oil that won’t strip the skin.

Grits & Honey Scrub (A HollyBeth Original)

1T honey 1T grits (can also use oats, ground nuts, coffee beans) ½tsp your favorite oil to add traction

Grits and honey mixed together make a wonderful scrub. Mix together in a bowl and use circular motions on cheeks, chin, and forehead to slough dead skin cells. Remove after 5 minutes with a warm compress.

Even Out Skin Toner

1 1/2T witch hazel 1/8tsp lemon juice 1/8tsp honey

Lemon is a natural skin brightener and preservative and we love honey for its humectant qualities – a must for a skin toner or balancer. Here we mix the ingredients with witch hazel and use a spray bottle to mist on our skin.

“Milk n Honey” Pore Refining Mask

2tsp full fat Greek yogurt 2tsp honey 2 drops lavender (or your favorite essential oil)

Here Greek yogurt is our alpha hydroxy acid, smoothing out skin and working on fine lines. Paired with anti-bacterial and humectant honey, this is a great mask for all skin types and wonderful for re-hydrating skin. Lavender essential oil will calm the skin.

Mix ingredients in a bowl and apply using hands or a fan brush. Remove with a warm compress after a few minutes (5 if sensitive and 15-20 otherwise).

Buzzy Lip Conditioner

½tsp honey ½tsp Organic Sweet Almond Oil 1-drop peppermint (or other favorite essential oil)

Peppermint oil stimulates and plumps the lips while honey and almond oil offer a deep conditioner for fine lines around the lip area. Mix ingredients in a small bowl or container and apply using lip brush, finger or a q-tip. This one may be our favorite.