How a Week at Glow Camp Transformed My Skin (and My Life)
When Ole Henriksen calls and asks if you want to join him across the pond in Iceland for a four-day experience called "Glow Camp" in the name of complete self-renewal, you don’t hesitate. You just say yes and trust that you will never be happier that you did. Granted, I can’t even muster up the energy to make it in for regular facials, so to jet on over to Iceland in search of dewy skin was quite a trek. But alas, my adventure began.
Ole Henriksen developed the concept of Glow Camp on the idea of traveling to exotic locations around the globe in search of that inner and outer glow. During the program, Ole evaluates your skin and puts you on a personalized skincare regime. Meanwhile, you’re achieving that inner glow (because you can’t have one without the other, as he taught me), with a couple of days of activities to challenge you outside your comfort zone to refresh your mind, body and soul.
Thus I boarded an overnight flight to Reykjavik and left my fate in the hands of Danish-born Ole for the next several days. I arrived feeling just about as run down as imaginable, and my skin looked its all-time worst after weeks of back-to-back traveling and a stressful situation in my personal life that unfolded. So needless to say I was ready to hit the refresh button.
VIDEO: Jessica Alba Shares Her Beauty Secrets
Within the first 60 seconds of meeting him, I was already captivated. He is the kindest, sweetest man on the planet, with such glowing skin and piercing blue eyes he puts Hollywood’s most beautiful people to shame. For the next 4 days, I absorbed everything that came out of his mouth and was fascinated with how this man could possibly be 65 years old yet look about 20.
“You have beautiful skin,” he told me during my one-on-one consultation with him mere hours after landing. I disagreed, but decided to take the compliment in stride. “Now we just need to make it glow.” And so the #OleGlow program began.
The brand recently announced two new exciting ventures. First, a total brand relaunch into four product lines based on top skincare concerns, and the debut of a completely new product that ties into the brand’s Scandinavian heritage, the Pore-Balance Facial Sauna Scrub (pictured above, top). He put me on a facial prescription from the “Truth” line (cleanser, serum and activating oil), meant to brighten and revive the skin. He also threw in the Power Peel to use once a week (which is my absolute favorite product in this entire world), and the Rub n’ Buff Transforming Salt Scrub to make sure I truly glowed from head to toe. I went back to my room and washed off the plane grime with the Face the Truth Gel Cleanser and already felt better.
Throughout the next couple of days, I disconnected from my phone as much as possible and embarked on the #OleGlow: hikes up active volcanoes, 4-hour car rides on sheets of ice through the middle of absolutely nowhere, and mid-mountain dips in geothermal pools. While on top of active volcano Hekla I swapped my snow boots for a bikini and dipped my toes in said pool (resembling a mossy river, mind you) and covered my face in the Pore-Balance Facial Sauna Scrub. It. Was. Heavenly. It heats up instantly as you massage it into the skin, and works to exfoliate with volcanic sand (hence the theme of the trip) and simultaneously calms it down with green tea, eucalyptus, Irish moss and kelp.
The other essential element to attaining the #OleGlow as I learned was incorporating the concept of Hygge into your life.
Hygge is a Danish term defined as “a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being” that Ole has clearly incorporated in his life and into his products. He taught us to take pleasure in the simple things, from enjoying every sip of your morning coffee to taking in each sight and sound of the nature that surrounded us.
Finally it was all starting to make sense. Day four it was time to head back to NYC, and despite the jet lag and the lack of sleep from aforementioned jet lag, I was feeling amazing. My skin was glowing (how could it not be from slathering it with Ole products for four days?), I felt de-stressed and was appreciating all the little things in life, from the chocolate croissant I ate before departing for the airport, to the Uplifting Transformation Eye Crème I applied mid-flight home. And a couple of weeks later, I am still flying high from the #OleGlow.
Check out photos from my journey below. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a pore-balance scrub to go apply.