Reflections | Nadia Els

Syrene is a New Zealand based skincare brand centred around an ethos of 'more than skin deep' and that skincare encompasses all aspects of life. We chatted to Nadia Els, Syrene’s Head of Marketing about life, fashion, and of course, jewels. Having pursued skincare as a passion and mindful daily rituals, Syrene has artfully created a brand which not only cares for your skin, but which creates beautiful self-care moments for the Syrene community. 


How would you describe what you do? 

As Head of Marketing at Syrene, no day is the same, which is why I love what I do so much. I work on all innovative brand strategies, to launch and grow the brand globally. I love working with my collaborative team and I am super passionate about conceptualising, visualising and iterating the brands' creative vision, identity and narrative through an integrated marketing approach. Not to mention, I LOVE skincare.

Syrene is a conscious marine skincare brand made in New Zealand suffused with pure and efficacious extracts that embody the gentle purity of the Pacific Ocean. We are set out to capture, nurture and regenerate both body and soul. When marketing the brand, it is not just about skincare. It’s about the entire essence of what Syrene stands for and believe in as a brand.

What was the main objective to launch Syrene Skincare? 

When the founders developed Syrene and the brand, a key reason was to formulate products to combat the effects of New Zealand’s harsh UV, so Syrene’s formulas include rich marine antioxidants to help repair, nourish and protect skin against ageing free radical damage.

It was also inspired by the wisdoms of Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Memoir, Gift From The Sea, Syrene shares the self-care journey to a state of calm through our consciously formulated marine skincare range. More than skin deep.

Tell us, how do you typically start your day? Do you have any daily rituals?

For me, I enjoy my skincare routine every morning as it is something I can look forward to. It’s one moment of solitude during the day to be present with myself. I also prioritise a walk with my dog Toby before I head to the office, I then pick up my morning coffee and check in with my team. 

What inspires your collection of skincare products, and what is your favourite product to date?

When Syrene was developed, a key reason was to formulate products to combat the effects of New Zealand’s harsh UV, so Syrene’s formulas include rich marine antioxidants to help repair, nourish and protect skin against ageing free radical damage.

A Syrene set that is close to my heart would be our current holiday set ‘Take a Dip’ this was a special collaboration we did with an Australian artist Stevie Michaels. It’s a trio of products set to take you on a voyage, to the refreshed, relaxed, holiday version of you. Formulated with marine actives and natural extracts to help strengthen skin’s antioxidant capacity, gently exfoliate and eliminate impurities without leaving a tight, dry feeling, while restoring skin’s natural balance for a beautiful hydrated glow.

What about your work are you most proud of?

Developing and implementing a strategy to launch Syrene as the first Kiwi brand into Australasian beauty giant MECCA, and receiving a finalist nomination for the Westpac Business Awards for Excellence in Marketing. I’m also proud of the team, and how much work goes in to growing this beautiful brand. We’re now selling in 10 global markets which is a huge achievement in the space of 5 years.

When you have some downtime away from work, where is your favourite place to go?

The beach is definitely my escape. I love walking along the fringe of a wave. No phone. No distractions. 

What would be your advice to aspiring creatives or anyone starting out in their own brand? 

Never let self doubt get in the way of your work and always perservere. Never lose sight of your passion while working with your team. There is only now, create your calm, make your mark and do it beautifully.

Do you have a favourite quote that helps keep you motivated?

“It takes as much courage to have tried and failed as it does to have tried and succeeded.” Anne Morrow Lindbergh

As a brand, how would you describe your ethos in three words?

Conscious, confident, calm. Syrene women are supported through a sensory experience that suspends the moment, nurtures their skin, and nurtures their outward beauty. More than skin deep.

Do you have a style icon or current muse?

My current muse is @sofiaruutu. I love her style and find myself constantly feeling inspired by her looks, outfits and jewellery pieces.

How does jewellery influence your mood or personal style?

I’m a minimalist and have always believed less is more and quality over quantity. When I choose jewellery, this is often how I buy. Simple pieces that won't date and will be a ‘forever’ piece brings me far more joy that a current ‘trend’. 

Do you have a favourite piece of jewellery, or one that evokes a special memory?

Probably my pearl necklace I was given from my parents on my 30th. It’s beautiful, elegant and will forever be a special piece to me. 

Which piece from Elle Forma resonates most with you?

The Gianna Chain combines vintage glamour and European sophistication. This piece would sit as a staple style for my jewelry collection. One that i could wear everyday, elegant and classic.

What would be your curated edit of products from the Elle Forma range?

A couple of pieces from the Ella Forma range that I have added to my Christmas wishlist are Gianna ChainCara BraceletHalle Ring.