Next up on our wellbeing questionnaire hit list is Fiona Klonarides, founder of Beauty Shortlist and all-around wellbeing warrior.
What does wellbeing mean to you?
Being well, living well. In every possible sense. So, an optimistic mind which is mostly at peace and free from worry. A sense of gratitude and equanimity, good physical fitness and emotional health. A spiritual foundation that feels right for you and anchors you, and a general feeling of contentment/happiness. Nourishment.
Do you feel the pressure to work long hours / lead the perfect Instagram life / be perfect?
I used to work insane hours but they’re more regular now.
@BeautyShortlist’s Instagram is mostly a mix of award winners, nature and natural remedies, eco-solutions and other posts, e.g. about the NYC makeup artist giving senior home residents free makeovers (a brilliant woman!) or Jane Fonda rocking the cover of British Vogue at age 81, along with a sprinkling of my own travels. I can’t remember the last time I posted a picture of myself. I’m all about seeking out and sharing outstanding brands and feel-good, do-good products.
Ten years since The Beauty Shortlist launched back in 2009, I still love beauty – more, now that it’s intrinsically linked with wellness. I still get a buzz from new launches. I never got burnout, thankfully, but I could see how it could happen. Beauty, nature and wellness are pure oxygen for me, they always will be.
Why did you decide to collaborate with Tisserand Aromatherapy?
I have huge respect for Robert Tisserand and his work. I’ve always used aromatherapy as a daily ritual and an everyday pleasure rather than, say, just for a winter cold or to scent a bedroom. For me, aromatherapy is an important and beautiful element of life and Tisserand brings it alive.
When I was small I loved squeezing orange rinds, it was like an instant spritz of “Eau d’Orange”. I’ll never forget one New Year’s Day morning in Bergamo many years ago, wandering the streets scented with whiffs of Italian coffee, warm bread and incense. I love bringing nature inside, infusing pine cones with pine essential oil. Another clear memory is burning little chunks of oud in a house in the mountains above Fez during a chilly blue sky October amid a blaze of crimson, gold and copper leaves outside.
Aromatherapy transports me to places…rose (England), orange blossom (Morocco), oranges (Seville), rosemary (the south of Portugal). The woody scent of a crackling fire is incredibly comforting, it reminds me of my roots – cups of tea in the kitchen, fireside evenings on the sofa, winters in England.
What’s your relationship with your mirror? …
I see it every morning and evening but don’t spend much time with it otherwise 😉
What’s the best piece of advice you could give to improve wellbeing?
If you can create a strong, calm, trust-life “core” for yourself (with meditation, exercise, earthing, breathing exercises, avoid energy-sapping people, be with nature more, whatever works for you…) to strengthen your resilience to stress and cool inflammation – that’s a big one. Kindness and love are a good modus operandi. And yes food really is our medicine – 100%.
How do you use the Tisserand Aromatherapy products?
Total De-Stress I adore! It’s my top Wellbeing Blend – I use a lot of the products in the range: the Rollerball, Bath & Shower Wash, the Bath Salts. And the Total De-stress Aroma Spa Diffuser is heavenly. Such a brilliant diffuser. I’ve tried lots. I use it a lot, actually, it’s so clean and easy to use. I’ll pop in some Rosemary or Peppermint oil during work hours, or Orange or Bergamot for a zesty, summery vibe, and in the evening Geranium and Rose are gorgeous before bed. Speaking of vibes, the Happy Vibes Rollerball blend has been a handbag favourite: Lemon Tea Tree, Bergamot and perhaps a little unexpectedly, Nutmeg, adding an interesting grounding element to the sunny citrus.
What do you do (other than products) to help improve your wellbeing / sleep / stress levels?
A random list would be: guided meditation, walking through fields or in woods or barefoot (at the beach or on rocks or grass), plus music and cooking (great for “flow”). Dogs and horses are wonderful “stress therapists” too. If I’m worried about something or someone, or my mind’s still in work mode, I might take 5-10mg of full spectrum hemp oil CBD an hour or two before bed. Passionflower also works. And we tend to be deficient in nerve-calming magnesium so that’s a good one to have to hand.
What’s your attitude to time passing by? …
Good question. Funnily enough, I find I can slow it down by doing new things or visiting new places. The first week of a holiday seems to go slowly, the second half just flies by…do you find that? Like water and fresh air, time is an extremely precious commodity. It’s better to use it wisely and in a healthy way rather than mindlessly scrolling through Instagram or watching an average movie on Netflix. Every birthday is a big gift.
What’s your favourite things to do, favourite way to spend the weekend / after work / to recharge?
Getting offline and getting outside, and I love being beside water. My favourite place in the whole world is the damp stretch of sand between the waves and the land, breathing in all that good sea air, and leaving your cares and footprints behind.