Your name: Sarah Brown
Occupation: Founder and Director, Pai Skincare
Name and age of your little one(s): Jack, 3, and Toby, 10 months.
A little bit about yourself:
I’m the founder of Pai Skincare, a London-based premium organic skincare brand for sensitive skin of all kinds; I’m also a busy mum of two!
Before I created Pai, I was working in PR and in my late-twenties I worked in the US managing the International PR for a major wine brand.
I learned a lot, but I was travelling all the time and under a lot of stress, which is how my beauty career started - with a really, really bad rash!
A sneak peak into your fridge (the good, the bad and the ugly!):
My fridge is never without the following, Hellmans Mayonnaise (which I eat with everything, such a guilty pleasure), gallons of organic milk, salad, blueberries, mini pizza bases and an ice-cold bottle of rosé!
Favourite thing about being a mum:
Seeing the delight that my boys take in the simplest of things that us adults take for granted. Whether it’s a visit to a beach, discovering a snail in the garden, a picnic - kids love picnics… and penguins!
What is the one product YOU couldn’t live without:
Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara - I’ve tried a hundred natural mascaras but haven’t found one that measures up to this, and music. Not sure either need any explanation!
What is the one product your child couldn’t live without:
For my youngest - Ewan the Sheep. He’s a cuddly, glowing sheep that replicates the sounds of the womb and mother’s heartbeat. It’s amazing at helping to settle babies.
I was given one as a gift but I’ve since bought several for friends - and they were a staple gift at Pai HQ’s recent flurry of baby showers.
For my eldest, his ‘guitar’. It’s actually a ukulele with a union jack painted on it, he seldom leaves home without it. We’re hoping it’s a sign of great musical talents to come!
Why do you feel it’s important to live healthily?
A very close friend was diagnosed with an aggressive and advanced form of breast cancer a few years ago.
She was only a year older than me and I will never forget her reprimanding me saying: ‘if you don’t look after yourself, Sarah, how can you possibly look after your family’.
It stopped me in my tracks and was a huge wake-up call. My diet was terrible, I was constantly stressed and snatching sleep when I could.
I’m pleased to say my friend made a full recovery, partly through a dramatic change in her lifestyle. She started juicing, swimming three times a week and generally taking life easier. I’m taking concerted steps to follow suit!
Your top tip for other parents:
Tip for me:
It’s a colossal effort getting healthy nutritional foods into my children so by the time it gets to 8pm I rarely have any energy to cook for myself! I cram in the veggies through smoothies. I religiously drink spinach, pear and almond milk smoothies in the week and juice carrots and ginger at the weekends.
Tip for children:
If I had children that didn’t sleep my life would be so unbelievably tough. I count my lucky stars every night that they tootle off to bed and knuckle down to some R&R.
I put it down to my Mum who really stressed the importance of making their bedroom or sleeping space an unbelievably calm and special place to be. Surrounded by their favourite things: teddies, blankets, nightlights, mobiles, books or whatever.
She told me to never send them to their rooms as punishment so their little sanctuary harbours no negative associations.
Best #parentingfail story:
Leaving my son in the living room unattended while I went to run a bath. He managed pulled the phone off the side table and dialled 999, not so bad if I’d actually noticed but I didn’t so the phone was left off the hook connected to the emergency operator…
Half way through his bath the police were hammering at the door to check everything was ok. All pretty mortifying!
You favourite quote:
“Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness.”
It’s a James Thurber quote that I learned from my lovely brother, and a nice reminder to live in the here and now and enjoy the journey.
It’s pretty pertinent to running a business – you can’t waste a minute worrying about what’s on the horizon or dwelling on past mistakes, it just paralyses you!
One key life lesson you learnt from your mum or dad?
I have two. One is to never compare yourself to others or life will always feel that little bit disappointing!
The other (from my Dad), which is to cross the bridge when it comes. It reminds me of a Mark Twain quote. “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened”
One lesson you hope you’ll teach you’re children when they’re all grown up:
Above everything else, to be a kind person.