Jill Bucy and Tata Harper = Skincare Dream Team

Jill Bucy owner Svetlana Ponomareva and her whisper soft touch

It was a sweltering late summer afternoon and I was finally about to cross the threshold of Jill Bucy Skincare, hallowed ground for Seattle’s skincare obsessed and widely considered as the place for a facial in town.

Located in a small suite in Queen Anne’s MarQueen Hotel, on the corner of Queen Anne Avenue N and Mercer St. (you’ve probably passed by it a thousand times without realizing it), Jill Bucy Skincare was started by Bucy in 2006, who sold it just recently to famed facialist Svetlana Ponomareva, who has vowed to maintain the same dedication to the art of the facial.

Inspired by the techniques, machines and products of French line Biologique Recherche, Jill Bucy is one of only two spas in town that uses the Perfector machine, a non-invasive device that uses low frequency micro-currents to revitalize the skin and Ponomareva is a master with it.

As we were settling in to my facial, I mentioned to Ponomareva that I had spied Tata Harper skincare products on the shelf of her front vestibule retail area. Tata Harper is a natural, nontoxic line, with many of its ingredients coming straight from the Vermont farm where it is based. It’s a luxe brand, often fawned over in the pages of Vogue, Marie Claire and other high-end publications, but one I have never seen in person in Seattle.

In fact, Ponomareva tells me, Tata Harper herself is schedule for a facial right after me. Apparently, she was in town for a meeting with Nordstrom (see below for more deets) and made an appointment at the only spa in town that carries her line. What a lucky day for me.

When I emerged from the treatment room, there was Harper, sitting in the waiting area looking dewy, perfect and gorgeous. As the intrepid journalist I am, I introduced myself and we set up a time for a chat about her line and her thoughts on how to manage your skincare regime during the changing of the seasons. Read on for more.

Ali Brownrigg: We're transitioning from a rare stellar and sunny summer to our damp and chilly Seattle fall— what changes do you recommend to a skin care regime for the shift in seasons?
Tata Harper: Damp, chilly weather is an odd mix when it comes to skincare. Really what matters day to day is how much water is in the air, since that affects your skin's ability to stay moisturized on its own. For example, a super chilly, dry-aired day with lots of wind will dry out the skin, simply because of the exposure - but if that air is humid or rainy, then it won't be as depleting. When it comes to transitioning seasons, my best advice is to keep the skin balanced and strong so it's resilient to environmental changes and external stressors. If your skin is hydrated in its deepest layers, where it really counts for anti-aging benefits, then seasonal changes in temperature and humidity won't affect your skin much! It's all about building the skin's own moisture balance, with products like our Hydrating Floral Essence or Rejuvenating Serum, which both contain a natural Hyaluronic Acid to replenish deep moisture. Then add a final layer of environmental protection - like with our Replenishing Nutrient Complex. Otherwise, a good anti-aging skincare routine should take you through the year without too many seasonal changes necessary!

AB: What is your impression of Seattle and how was your facial at Jill Bucy?
TH:I love Seattle! I adore coastal cities since I grew up on the coast of the ocean, in Colombia. While the cities are very different, it always makes me feel a little bit at home. My Jill Bucy facial was to die for—completely relaxing and rejuvenating. They have a beautiful space and are charming people. It was really such a treat during a busy trip, and really made my day.

AB: You mentioned a meeting at Nordstrom—any news there?
TH: Yes! We'll be in Nordstrom soon! We just finished making arrangements, and soon they'll have our 100 percent natural and nontoxic, Vermont-made beauty products.


AB: What is your current personal fave product in your line?
TH: My Rejuvenating Serum. I've been using it every day since I first created it and it's transformed my skin. It's a complete collagen treatment that is completely biocompatible, so it sinks right into the skin. My favorite thing is to cocktail it with the Hydrating Floral Essence in my hands for a seriously hydrating anti-aging treatment—together they deliver the anti-aging ingredients to the skin's deepest layer, where the ingredients work their magic. I use it all over my face and neck twice a day.

AB: What are the best products out of your line to give as a gift?
TH: An amazing gift would be our Try-Me Kit, which is a kit of samples of eight of our daily skincare essentials; it's perfect if you want to share natural skincare with someone who might be trying it for the first time, and who would want to try a range of products. It's a great introduction to our line.