With a background in dermatology, Claire Vero, Founder of Aurelia Probiotic Skincare knows a thing or two about a good skincare routine. Read on to discover her favourite way to wind down and pamper herself on a Sunday…
The Wind Down
At the moment my Sunday routine revolves around my two sons; new-born Atticus and three-year-old Henry who require stories, baths, cuddles and more! After a walk in Richmond park and a late Sunday lunch we generally get cosy on the sofa with cups of tea and encourage gentle playtime with the little ones and their cousins who live locally. The boys’ routines begin at around 6pm with bath time, and Atticus is then treated to a baby massage which is something I love to do with him. Once the boys are in bed, it’s nice to have some quiet time with my husband Alex and my own Sunday routine can begin in earnest. As Atticus is so young, I am on maternity leave at the moment but when I’m working, I do feel lucky that I’m generally excited about the week ahead on a Sunday evening; my days are varied and interesting and as a brand founder sometimes a week can absolutely fly by! When I’m back at work, part of my evening routine is to check my diary for the week ahead and make sure I’m ready for any particular meetings or events we have planned.
I like to make time for a beauty routine every night, but there is something cathartic in particular about my Sunday night routine, which I find helps me feel prepared and energised for the coming week. For me the key to feeling prepared is having a good night’s sleep, so I naturally gravitate towards relaxing, sleep-inducing products in the evenings. With two young children, for me the key with my skincare is relaxation combined with results, which is what I get from using Aurelia Probiotic Skincare every evening. In the early stages of formulating Aurelia, I wanted the products to not only deliver visible results with probiotic ingredients, but to offer therapeutic benefits with mindful elements. I did this by incorporating natural essential oils in exquisite blends to help calm, energise or balance with each application.
As a treat I love to light scented candles while I’m applying my skincare, and have always been a huge fan of Diptyque. I have recently started burning Byredo candles which are beautiful with such unique blends. I tend to create a bit of a sanctuary in my bathroom which is where all my favourite products are lined up, with my candles lit and the lights dimmed slightly!
My skin is usually on the dry side, so I love to layer my Aurelia products to get ultimate hydration and glow. I always start with the Miracle Cleanser which is creamy yet lightweight and doesn’t strip my skin or make it feel tight. Using a cloth is my favourite way to cleanse as I can first massage my skin with my fingers, then remove every trace of cleanser, impurities and makeup with the bamboo muslin, of which I have many dotted around the house! My next step is the Revitalise & Glow Serum which is really easy to use as it absorbs so quickly into the skin. Depending on how my skin feels, I’ll either apply the Cell Repair Night Oil on its own, or layer it with the Cell Revitalise Night Moisturiser. Both of these night-time products have the most incredible, relaxing blend of essential oils and I feel like I couldn’t sleep without them now! They are also deeply nourishing, and help me wake up to supple, dewy skin. I do enjoy a detox mask too, and to help reduce the odd hormonal breakout I use the Chantecaille Detox Clay Mask which, for a clay mask, is incredibly creamy and doesn’t harden on the skin, so my skin is detoxified without feeling dry. If I’m really indulging in my routine on a Sunday evening, I’ll spend a little longer massaging my face. I’m a huge advocate of the benefits of facials, so if you can include some aspect of that in your daily skincare routine, you’ll see benefits. My favourite product for this is the Cell Repair Night Oil which is the perfect texture for facial massage. My top tips are to always massage from the middle of your face towards your ears, and try applying pressure to the jawline from your chin outwards to help relieve tension and aid with lymphatic drainage.
My body care routine tends to revolve around the bath, which is where I like to relax and contemplate – when I have the time! Before getting in, I’ll use the Mio Body Brush which has a good, firm texture, to brush upwards from my feet to my arms. It takes some getting used to, especially if you’re ticklish, but I’ve been a fan of body brushing for years because the results are so good. If I’m not body brushing, I’ll use the Elemental Herbology Macadamia & Papaya Body Scrub which has just the right level of exfoliation.
Bathing is one of my favourite times of the day, and I always add 3 scoops of Epsom salts to my bath to help with hydration and detoxification. I have recently discovered the Mauli Himalayan Healing Salts which add a beautiful fragrance to the bath, and contain rose quartz crystal powder which I love for its peace-giving qualities. Another bath product I love is the Mio Liquid Yoga Restorative Bath Soak which helps to destress my mind and body. I always have at least two Aromatherapy Associates Bath & Shower Oils in the bathroom, and I’m particularly fond of Deep Relax and De-Stress Muscle which truly work to give me that comforted, relaxed and supported sensation. I’ve been interested in aromatherapy for years, and took a course before launching Aurelia which gave me a wonderful insight into the power of fragrance and essential oils.
For washing, I invariably use the Restorative Cream Body Cleanser which is sulphate-free but still creates a beautiful foamy lather due to its coconut extracts. I might stay a little longer in the bath on a Sunday, as it feels like such a luxury, and once I’m out, I’ll use my new favourite from Aurelia – the Firm & Replenish Body Serum which is beautifully lightweight and sinks in effortlessly. If I’m after something with a thicker texture, I’ll use the Susanne Kaufmann Body Butter which is rich but non-greasy.
With a skin and body care routine sorted, I realised that for a long time I had been neglecting my hair when it came to using natural products. My husband and I have been on a quest to find the best sulfate-free shampoos and natural conditioners as we both have sensitive scalps. We have been through bottles and bottles, and recently came across the Ouai range which I’m really enjoying, and makes my hair look and feel lovely and smooth. I tend to wash my hair in the mornings as I like to blow dry it smooth, and I’ll use a heat protecting product – the Oribe Supershine Moisturizing Cream is the best – before using my hairdryer and a round brush to style. If I’m completely bound by time, my go-to style is an easy plait which is practical too, as it doesn’t matter if my hair is a little damp still when I style it.
I’m normally in bed by around 10.30pm following my bathing and skincare rituals and love to read a novel or catch up on my favourite series. I try not to look at my phone too much when I’m in bed or even use an iPad because the bright light at such close range is known to keep you awake even after you’ve put the device away. I use a couple of spritzes of our new Little Aurelia Sleep Time Pillow Spray on my bedding which is so gentle and relaxing, and for my skin last thing, I’ll mist the Calming Botanical Essence over my face and neck. I’m lucky in that I sleep soundly, and don’t need to use earplugs or an eye mask but I do like to use extra sleep aids, such as a lavender bag under my pillow to ensure a restful night’s sleep. I don’t tend to exercise before bed but I have been trying to incorporate mindfulness in my nightly routine, which is a type of meditation in itself if I feel like there’s a lot going around my head.
I love my sleep, but I’m a morning person too. I don’t set an alarm at the moment as I try to get as much sleep as humanly possible with a newborn, but when I’m up I’ll feed Atticus and then Henry will come and see his baby brother for some cuddles and kisses. I think it’s really important to have breakfast as a family and before my husband goes to work we’ll all sit together in the kitchen and enjoy our first meal together.