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Thursday, 22 March 2012

Skincare With The Family Touch

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you will know skincare is one of my favourite topics to write about. I find everything about skin fascinating – the way it performs, how it psychologically affects us and, of course the thinking and technology behind new products. One brand that’s caught my eye recently has been Gazelli with its fancy name and exotic illustrations. And who wouldn’t be seduced by the name Triple Youth? Three times younger, you bet! Furthermore, it’s an independent brand with a family heritage. Dr Zarifa Hamzayeva has tapped into her scientific knowledge in the fields of genetics and prevention and developed a range from the natural resources of her home country, Azerbaijan. Working alongside her daughter Jamila, head of European development, it’s a range based on the White Healing Oil.

Here I get to the soul of Gazelli by catching up with Jamila to talk climatic zones, culture and feeling comfortable in your own skin.


Do you work closely alongside your mother? If so how do you get on?
I am very close to my mother, both personally and in work life. I think we work well together. In fact, I would say we complete each other with a mixture of her scientific knowledge and mind of a formulator and manufacturer, and my creative approach to branding and communication with customers.

 What’s the idea behind Gazelli?
 It was my mother’s vision almost 20 years ago. She wanted to connect all the facets of who we are as women and develop something that reflected us all. A creation which combines the healer, the nurturer, the lover of beauty and culture – all of the different elements that make this world so rich.

Many of us may not be familiar with Azerbaijan. How would you describe your country?
A land incredibly rich in natural resources. Nine out of 11 possible climatic zones are found on this land which means that driving through the country a desert like hilly land could lead you into a deep forest, then take you to the foot of a great snowy mountain. It’s also a place full of ancient traditions, culture and strong family values.

What qualities does it have that you’ve captured in your brand?
The products are formulated with unique ingredients from our Azerbaijan such as our White Healing Oil. This is from the Naftalan region found in our Triple Youth range, as well as caviar extract from the Caspian Sea, volcanic muds and other plants and fruit extracts that we source from different parts of the country.

The packaging is beautiful. What was the inspiration behind it?
It was inspired by graphic art of the region. The hand drawn artwork invites you to explore scenes of rural life and capture traditional pattern from local tapestries and metal works. The ladies on the packaging each tell a sort with their eyes and gesture.

What are women asking for or looking for today in a modern skincare brand?
Primarily, it’s important for the product to be effective and a pleasure to use, such as its texture and its scent – something you can form a bond to.

You mention Gazelli is inspired by ancient poetry in praise of Beauty, Youth and Love. Do you think we are a world that has become obsessed with looking younger?
I truly believe that many, like my mother feel extremely comfortable in their own skin at whatever age. But as well as that they do everything they can to look their best. Also, I think people are younger at heart nowadays which also drives them and makes them look younger. And of course great skincare and a health approach to life helps.
What’s your personal skin mantra?
Feed from you skin from outside and inside and smile. It lights up your whole face.

How does the beauty outlook of a UK woman and an Azerbaijani woman differ?
From a very young age, the knowledge of ‘taking care’ of yourself gets passed down from mother to daughter. Learning how to make the most out of what you are given naturally is a great skill. The main focus is to get an ability to dedicate time to yourself, even a minute in a busy day.

Why did you choose Harrods to showcase your brand?
I think that Urban Retreat in Harrods is a great location as it allows us to introduce and show both our expertise in spa treatments as well as retail. It’s also a place where you are given room to express yourself which is so important for the brand, and also being in such prime location is absolutely incredible.

One of my favourite products is their Triple Youth Ultimate Firming Serum, £62.
To explore the rest of the range go to and

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