IN BED WITH SONIA DEASY
Sonia Deasy is the Kildare-born Pestle & Mortar founder and CEO, whose skincare range is available in 21 countries across three continents. The globally-recognised collection is stocked in pharmacies, high-end department stores, international airports, and recently in the first Pestle & Mortar store in Kildare Village.
So, slap on that pampering face balm and slip into your freshly-laundered Moon + Mellows to learn about Sonia’s life, loves and favourite loungewear…
New year’s resolutions: Yes or No (and why – and if yes, what are some of yours and how are they going so far)?
No, I’ve never made New Year’s resolutions. I try to build consistent habits throughout the year rather than over-reach in January and fail!
As a busy mother of five children, you designed a range of skincare to save time and effort faffing with loads of superfluous products. If you could save/gain another 10 minutes’ each in the morning or evening, what would you do with it and why?
Sleep-in (in my Moon and Mellow PJs, obvs!).
What would you say is the secret to Pestle & Mortar’s success?
Our products work, it’s really not any more complicated than that – thankfully, our customers return again and again to support us because the products make a visible difference to their skin health.
Before setting up Pestle & Mortar, you and your photographer husband worked together in a portrait studio. When did you realise you had to pursue your skincare dream full-time, and did you ever have self-doubts along the way?
Yes, I worked alongside my husband for years in our high-end portrait photography business. During that time, I noticed that many models suffered with dry, flaky, or dull skin. Their daily skincare routines were complicated, and just not working.
At the time, hyaluronic acid was the latest trend in skincare. It’s an ingredient that draws water into the skin – a hero-hydrator. I started testing hyaluronic serums on myself to see if they worked, but I didn’t like how they felt sticky and tacky on my skin. I’ve always been fussy about how creams feel; the texture, the experience. It was frustrating – I just wanted a simple daily routine that would make my skin look and feel its best. And products that I enjoyed using.
I became determined to create a no-fuss range of skincare products that people could trust. I drew on my heritage in Indian Natural Healing and developed a collection of skincare that is easy to understand, simple to use, and highly effective.
Did I doubt myself along the way? I didn’t doubt my formulations but I was nervous about competing in such a crowded industry – a landscape that was new to me then. Thankfully, I’m here to tell the tale!
How do you balance work and wellness?
I have five children and a busy family life, which keeps me active and balanced. Weekends are spent cooking, cleaning, ferrying children here and there, and generally being a Mum. We live on the Curragh, which means I enjoy gorgeous walks on my doorstep. A simple country life does it for me.
Are you a morning person or a night owl?
I’m not a super-early riser, but I’m definitely not a night owl either. Mornings are better for me in terms of productivity and energy.
Good skin is the crucible of good makeup. But which one item of makeup could you not live without, and why?
My black Chanel eyeliner – my magic wand since I can remember.
How did the many lockdowns, including remote working and zero-to-limited travel, change your approach to beauty and self-image?
I got more sleep and fresh air – the purest and truest beauty elixirs in the world.
Is double cleansing strictly necessary?
If you wear makeup and/or SPF, then yes. With the right cleansing routine, you set your skin up for success. It leaves your skin perfectly clean, hydrated, and prepped to absorb the other products in your routine.
When was the last time you slept in your makeup? Go on, you can tell us…
Honestly, never! I didn’t start wearing makeup until I was in my mid-20s, so I was sensible enough by then to remove it before bed!
Where and when was your last truly mellow moment?
I spent a half day in the AIRE Ancient Baths in Copenhagen last November – hours of mellow…
Money no object: describe your dream holiday?
The Maldives with my husband.
Imagine a much-anticipated Friday night in. Your Moon + Mellow PJs are on (obviously) and you have the TV – and couch – entirely to yourself. What is your go-to feel-good film, snack and refreshment?
The couch entirely to myself?! That’s literally all I need! Watching a good true crime series on Netflix with some dark chocolate and a cup of tea.
Who would be your top three celebrity pyjama party guests?
Victoria Beckham, because I love her style and would love to see what she would wear. Oprah, to keep things interesting, and Graham Norton to keep the convo flowing.
Which are your favourite picks from the Moon + Mellow collection?
The Long Set Juno. I’m partial to a bit of monochrome, and they are so soft and flattering with super-cute details like the mother of pearl buttons.