The Beauty Chef founder Carla Oates wins prestigious award

We are so excited here at The Beauty Chef HQ to share with you Carla’s win at The InStyle and Audi Women of Style Awards.

Our inspiring founder and CEO, Carla Oates, received top honours in the Beauty category at the InStyle and Audi Women of Style Awards in Sydney on Wednesday 17 May 2017.

InStyle Editor Emily Taylor says of Carla’s award:

“Shifting the paradigm of the beauty industry is no small feat, yet it is exactly what Carla Oates set out to do–offering a holistic alternative to the beauty industry standard. She is a force to be reckoned with and she is incredibly deserving of this InStyle & Audi Women of Style award win.” 

Carla’s interest in skin health began at an early age, when she suffered eczema and allergies that lasted into her teenage years. It wasn’t until she consulted a naturopath and began to understand the correlation between nutrition and one’s complexion that she began to notice an improvement in her skin:

“When I eliminated certain foods from my diet and introduced others as recommended by a naturopath, I noticed a huge difference.”

When Carla started The Beauty Chef in 2012, there was still little understanding around healing the skin from within, especially with lacto-fermented, probiotic foods via the digestive system, so she focused on offering a holistic alternative to the beauty industry standard:

“I found a concept that I truly believed in: that beauty really does begin in the belly.”

Not only has Carla created groundbreaking Inner Beauty Powders and elixirs, that have caught the attention of stockists worldwide such as Net-a-Porter and Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop, Carla has also authored The Beauty Chef Cookbook, developed a line of natural, topical skincare products and continues to be inspired by the movement toward holistic beauty that she helped to define:

“I’m so proud of helping to create a healthier community. Every day I feel the highs of seeing my brand genuinely help people. That means a lot to me.”

Carla Oates - Women InStyle Beauty Award Winner

Carla was thrilled to be acknowledged for her work and also to be chosen amongst a group of inspiring women who are trailblazing, pioneering and making a difference in the categories of Sport, Entertainment, Beauty, Fashion, Science, Charity and Community, Arts and Culture, Lifestyle, Style and Scholarship and Business.

Other nominees in the beauty category included Zoe Foster Blake (Founder & Creative Director, Go-To Skincare) and Anna Ross (CEO & Creative Director, Kester Black).

The full list of the 2017 InStyle and Audi Women of Style Award winners is:

Readers’ Choice:


Sally Obermeder

As voted by the Australian public



Rachel Perkins

Nominees: Kerry Armstrong and Elizabeth Debicki



Amna Karra-Hassan

Nominees: Kim Brennan and Dr Jessica Gallagher



Carla Oates

Nominees: Zoe Foster Blake and Anna Ross



Nicole Warne

Nominees: Bec Cooper & Bridget Yorston and Alyce Tran



Dr Dharmica Mistry

Nominees: Dr Angela Crean and Professor Tanya Monro

Charity & Community:


Dr Susan Carland

Nominees: Dr Catherine Keenan and Annabelle Chauncy

Arts & Culture:


Ella Havelka

Nominees: Louise Hearman and Courtney Barnett



Cyan Ta’eed

Nominees: Kerrie Mather and Samantha Wills



Megan Hess

Nominees: Jodhi Meares and Sally Obermeder

Style & Scholarship:


Anna Robertson

Nominees: Matilda Brown and Mel Thomas

All nominees were selected by InStyle. Winners were decided by the Women of Style Awards judging panel, which includes:

Nicole Kidman, actress and UN Women Goodwill Ambassador; Deborra-lee Furness, actress and human rights advocate; Collette Dinnigan, fashion designer; Layne Beachley, entrepreneur and environmental campaigner; Elizabeth Ann Macgregor, Director, Museum of Contemporary Art, Australia; Pip Marlow, Managing Director, Microsoft Australia; Gillian Armstrong, film director; Louise Olsen, designer, artist and Creative Director of Dinosaur Designs; Emily Taylor, Editor, InStyleAnna Burgdorf, General Manager of Corporate Communications, Audi Australia; Cassandra Kelly, Chair, Pottinger and Dame Quentin Bryce, lawyer, academic and human rights advocate.

To read more about the winners and their inspiring stories, they are profiled in the June issue of InStyle Magazine

Buckwheat noodles, miso-roasted pumpkin & umeboshi plum salad

One of The Beauty Chef’s favourite salads.

Buckwheat noodles are an excellent source of collagen building manganese and copper as well as rutin, a bioflavonoid that not only helps to boost and maintain capillary health but it helps the body stabilise vitamin C and use it in collagen production. Hence, why we’ve paired the noodles with vitamin C rich pumpkin and plum. Plus, they taste so good together!

For additional flavour and nourishment, you can always count on miso for its rich, earthy flavour and for aiding digestion, as well as umeboshi plum, an ancient fermented Japanese medicinal food with a salty, piquant flavour, used traditionally for healing imbalances in the body – found at most health food stores.

– Serves 4


  • 2 tablespoons white (Shiro) miso paste
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted and cooled
  • 11⁄2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 500g pumpkin, peeled, seeds removed and cut into 1cm-thick slices
  • 1 brown onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 200g packet buckwheat noodles
  • 3 umeboshi plums, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1 large handful coriander leaves, torn


  • 1⁄4 cup (60ml) tamari
1⁄4 cup (60ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Place a large wire rack on a large baking tray.
  2. Blend the miso paste, 1 tablespoon of the coconut oil and 1 tablespoon of the sesame seeds together in
a medium bowl. Add the pumpkin and toss to coat.
  3. Arrange the pumpkin slices on the rack. Roast for 15-20 minutes, until softened and caramelised.
  4. Meanwhile heat the remaining oil in a medium frying pan over low heat. Cook the onion and garlic, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes, or until caramelised.
Set aside.
  5. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil.
  6. Cook the buckwheat noodles, according to the packet instructions, or until al dente.
  7. Drain and refresh in iced water. Drain.
  8. To prepare the dressing, place the tamari, lemon juice and sesame oil in a jar and seal with a lid. Shake to combine.
  9. To assemble, place the noodles, roasted pumpkin, caramelised onion, umeboshi plums, coriander and remaining sesame seeds in a large bowl and toss
to combine. Pour over the dressing and toss to coat.

To find more nourishing recipes from The Beauty Chef Cookbook, click here.


Sweet potato is low GI, full of fibre and its high vitamin A content helps keep your skin healthy and free from breakouts. It pairs beautifully with the creamy goat’s cheese.

– Makes 6


  • sweet potatoes, peeled
  • extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 150g marinated goat’s cheese, crumbled
  • 1 large handful flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 1 large handful mint leaves, coarsely chopped

Almond and chilli dukkah

  • 1⁄2 cup (90g) almonds
  • 2 teaspoons sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • Himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Cut the sweet potatoes lengthways into approximately 2cm-thick wedges. Arrange on a large baking tray and drizzle with oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until tender and slightly crisp.
  2. Meanwhile to make the dukkah, spread the almonds on to a small baking tray and roast in the oven for 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Dry-fry the sesame seeds, chilli flakes, coriander seeds and cumin seeds in a small frying pan over low heat, until the sesame seeds are lightly toasted and spices fragrant.
  3. Crush the roasted almonds and toasted seeds together, using a small mortar and pestle or spice grinder, until coarsely ground. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. To serve, transfer the roasted sweet potato onto a large serving plate. Crumble over goat’s cheese. Sprinkle with dukkah and scatter with herbs.

For more nourishing inner beauty recipes, click here.

Eat Your Way to Glowing Skin

Feeding your skin from within will give your skin a healthy radiance that no amount of cosmetics can replicate. Here are some of our favourite beauty foods guaranteed to get your glow on – from the inside out.

Science is proving there is a strong connection between our skin and gut health. Our appearance is a reflection of what is happening internally which means an outer glow begins deep within your digestive system.

Conversely, problems within the digestive tract can trigger skin rashes, inflammation and acne.

At The Beauty Chef, our approach to beauty is all about nourishing your skin from the inside out. And most importantly, cultivating a healthy “inner garden” or microbiome where trillions of bacteria live in your digestive tract outnumbering your human cells by approximately 10 to one.

Your skin will look its best when you feed your body – or more precisely your belly – the nutrients it needs to nourish the intestinal tract and digest food properly. These nutrients are best derived from a diet rich in low HI wholefoods. By low HI, we mean foods that have had less human intervention. The less processed, the better.

What you don’t eat can also make a big difference to your complexion. You can help keep your skin healthy by eating less gut compromising foods including; sugar, gluten, alcohol, processed foods, refined carbohydrates, processed vegetable oils and processed meats and dairy.

Too much of these types of foods can over time damage your intestinal tract and even lead to a permeable gut wall (known as leaky gut), allowing toxins and undigested food to seep directly into your bloodstream triggering an inflammatory response. The result is systemic inflammation, which spreads around the body causing a broad range of skin problems from dry skin to skin breakouts as well as premature ageing.

Skin-nourishing nutrients

So let’s focus on some of the skin-nourishing nutrients you need to eat daily to promote good gut health – starting with probiotics.

We have all heard about the importance of eating probiotics to encourage the growth of good gut flora, boost your immune system and also help your body manufacture beauty-boosting B vitamins.

Probiotics can be found in everything from:

  • Fermented beverages including kombucha, apple cider vinegar and kefir
  • Lacto-fermented foods such as raw sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, tempeh, yoghurt and cultured dairy products.
  • The Beauty Chef’s range of lacto-fermented Inner Beauty powders and boosts.


Your digestive tract also requires a daily dose of prebiotics to feed the good bugs in your digestive tract. Prebiotics are foods which contain an insoluble fibre called inulin and include bananas, berries, onions, garlic, Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, leeks, celery and leafy greens.

Fibre also acts as an intestinal broom which helps sweep away toxic waste and cleanses your digestive tract.

You can get your daily dose of fibre from:

  • Chia seeds.
  • Psyllium husks.
  • Oats (which also contain silica which helps promote skin elasticity).
  • Fresh fruits.
  • Vegetables.
  • Unrefined whole grains.


Helpful Hint: Remember to soak your oats, grains, legumes, seeds and nuts before consuming as these all contain a substance called phytic acid, which binds to minerals in your gut and prevents them from being absorbed. Soaking will reduce their levels of phytic acid.

A daily cup of bone broth from grass-fed beef bones or organic chicken bones is another good way to help balance gut health. If you have digestive issues or inflammation, bone broth can also help heal and seal your gut lining. And it’s rich in skin-loving nutrients including amino acids, hyaluronic acid, chondroitin sulfate, calcium, magnesium and potassium.

Vitamin C is an easy addition to your diet as it is found in so many wholefoods and assists with the formation of collagen, which helps strengthen your skin and maintain elasticity. Fruits and veggies including lemons, berries, tomatoes, capsicums, oranges, kiwifruit, papaya and grapefruits are all high in vitamin C as are your leafy greens. Starting your day with a glass of warm water and lemon juice will help flush toxins from your body and support your liver. If your liver is working well, your skin will thank you. A healthy gut and a healthy liver work synergistically to keep your skin clear and luminous.

Getting enough good fats

Essential fatty acids are important to nourish and hydrate your skin.
The saying should really be an avocado a day keeps the doctor away because they are a good source of monounsaturated fat and fibre plus they are anti-inflammatory and contain vitamins E, C, K and B6.

Coconut oil is rich in gut-healing lauric acid, medium chain triglycerides and it’s anti-microbial, anti-fungal and antiviral.

Ghee and butter are making comeback for good reason as they contain fat soluble vitamins A, E and K2 plus an anti-inflammatory substance called butyrate which can help protect the intestinal walls. They are also a good source of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which boosts metabolism and may have anti-cancer properties.

Chia seeds are a great source of anti-inflammatory and anti-aging omega 3 fatty acids that keep your heart, intestinal tract and connective tissue healthy.

Fish oils and ground flax seeds are also high in omega-3 fatty acids which reduce inflammation. And fermented cod liver oil is especially good because it is high in skin-loving vitamins A and D, plus it is rich in the essential fatty acids DHA and EPA.
Or you can get your omega 3s from sardines, which are low in mercury and loaded with calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, selenium and zinc. Plus they are packed with protein.


Your body uses protein to build and repair your skin, muscle tissue and bones. It also promotes the growth of strong hair and nails. Plus protein helps regulate your metabolism and is crucial in the production of important body chemicals including enzymes and hormones. Try to get it from a variety of sources such as eggs, fish, lean meats, legumes, nuts, seeds and quality protein powders such as The Beauty Chef’s Body Inner Beauty Powder.

Add fresh herbs and spices

Cumin, cardamom, caraway seeds, nutmeg and cinnamon are all carminatives meaning they assist digestion and prevent gas.

Ginger is anti-inflammatory and relieves nausea while peppermint soothes digestion by relaxing stomach muscles.

Cayenne pepper stimulates your metabolism and helps curb cravings, turmeric is anti-inflammatory, cinnamon keeps blood sugar levels steady and cardamom relieves indigestion.

Sage helps promote bile flow for healthy digestion, parsley is an iron-rich blood cleanser, thyme is an anti-inflammatory and fennel seeds help eliminate mucus and gas.

Eat a rainbow of fresh fruits and vegetables

Not only are they rich in fibre but they also contain a plethora of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that fight free radical damage which causes premature skin ageing.

Some of our favourites are:

  • Beetroots, blueberries and other purple coloured foods are rich in antioxidants called anthocyanins which help prevent wrinkles.
  • Papayas and other yellow fruits and vegetables are high in beta-carotene which converts to vitamin A which is crucial to skin repair. Papayas are also gut-friendly because they contain an enzyme called papain which assists digestion.
  • Cabbages and other cruciferous vegetables are high in fibre plus they contain a potent detoxifier, an antioxidant called sulforaphane as well as collagen-boosting vitamin C.
  • The super-hydrating, humble cucumber is anti-inflammatory and contains skin boosting silica as well as vitamins B and C, zinc, folic acid, iron, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.


Finally, remember it’s not just what you eat but how you eat that determines the nourishment you get from your food. Avoid drinking with your meals as it dilutes your digestive enzymes, chew your food properly and sip your smoothies slowly or alternatively chew your smoothies to allow your saliva glands to begin the first stage of digestion and ensure maximum nutrient absorption.


For more inner beauty and health inspiration, click here.