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Fay Halkitis, Surry Hills NSW

Words by Shana Chandra

Images by Sam Riles

From her apothecary on the corner of Bourke St in Surry Hills, Fay Halkitis works magic on her clients both inside and out. Centred on beauty and wellness, Fay creates instinctive treatments with her botanical based potions, providing us with the perfect self-care rituals for the everyday. Luna Apothecary is a space of solace that goes deep, because as Fay says: “the sun sees your body, the moon sees your soul”.

 

As a naturopath who takes a holistic approach to life, we can imagine you’d have a well-honed morning routine. Tell us about your morning rituals.

I’m very much a morning person. There is no great rush in the morning in our house. I always lie awake in bed for a few minutes before rising. First thing is tongue cleaning with my copper tongue scraper and a big drink of water. I pop the kettle on and start breakfast which is almost always some sort of variation of eggs. My husband and I enjoy a cup of French press coffee and breakfast. Next up is dry body brushing and a shower.

Were there any defining moments in your life that steered you towards naturopathy?

The interest in herbs and healing has always been there from a very young age but it wasn’t until I was finishing high school that I really considered this as something I could do for a living. The stress of final exams became overwhelming so my mum took me to see a Naturopath who prescribed me an herbal tonic. The impact on my mental health was astounding and really inspired me.

 

You’re inspired by the Ophiuchus constellation and how it has been used for healing throughout the ages. How is it used, and how are you inspired by it?

My fascination with all things astrological, ancient and earthly has always been huge! Lots of ancient Greek mythology is centred around the power of herbs. The constellation of Ophiuchus is associated with the son of Apollo who was a healer. It’s a wonderful reminder of what the earth provides. All medicine stemmed from this at some point and should be revered.

Your apothecary has a focus on plant-based products. Tell us one ingredient or product you return to time and time again.

I use The Balm by Nucifera every day and it’s the one product I can’t live without. The texture and scent invokes a sense of ritual but also practicality in that it can be used for everything.

I use The Balm by Nucifera every day and it’s the one product I can’t live without. The texture and scent invokes a sense of ritual but also practicality in that it can be used for everything.

 

Our country is known for its harsh weather conditions. What are some native ingredients that are beneficial for our protection against them?

I very often prescribe Gubinge Powder by Loving Earth as a form of Vitamin C. It comes from the whole Kakadu Plum in Western Australia. Vitamin C is an amazing antioxidant. Macadamia nuts either eaten whole or the oil applied topically is incredibly nourishing and moisturising for the skin.

What are some ingredients from other countries that you use in your practice?

There are so many wonderfully exotic ingredients in my international skincare brands! Sea Buckthorn is incredible for all skin types because it has such an abundance of fatty acids. Raw honey is in quite a few of our skincare and nutritional products. The enzymes in raw honey are great topically for the skin and internally for digestion. Organic Prickly Pear Seed Oil and Argan Oil from Morocco are also very special.

 

Luna is based in a Victorian Terrace in Surry Hills. What drew you to this space?

I much prefer heritage or older builds. I appreciate their imperfections but also the fact they are so robust. This space was in quite bad condition when I first inspected it, but I was confident working with all the oddities that come with an old building. Aesthetically, being on the corner with such big front windows makes for a great outlook whether it’s sunny or raining.

What pieces of artwork fill you with joy?

I mostly love Renaissance art but the 19th Century Australian and European art collections at the Art Gallery of NSW fills me with so much joy. I’ll often visit for a bit of time out and inspiration. At home, I like to collect Australian landscapes from second hand stores and markets.

I mostly love Renaissance art but the 19th Century Australian and European art collections at the Art Gallery of NSW fills me with so much joy. I’ll often visit for a bit of time out and inspiration. At home, I like to collect Australian landscapes from second hand stores and markets.

 

If you could do only one thing for your well-being, what would it be?

Go to the beach, spend hours in the sun and swim in the ocean.

What are your night time rituals that ease you into sleep?

My night time ritual starts from the minute I walk in the door. Before I even take my shoes off, I light a candle or my oil burner. I always feel like this signifies the end of the work day. I put my pjs on and cook dinner. I don’t ever spend long cooking in the evening but it is relaxing (and rewarding!). Once the kitchen is tidied, I have some couch time and a chamomile tea. I have chamomile tea every night, even in summer! I’m usually in bed by 10pm and will read for 15 minutes or go straight to sleep. I absolutely love getting into bed and having a good sleep.

See more from Fay here


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