Once in a while you find yourself being very inspired by a multi tasking master Mum, who's not only doing everything for everyone else (classic mum style), but also finding the time to be the best version of themselves. In the spirit of celebrating amazing mums this Mother's Day we chatted to Kars Breanne, a freelance journalist and small business owner based in London, who is simultaneously rocking motherhood and her career!
Firstly, we’d love to ask what inspired you to start your own business and your ethos behind this?
So I actually have a few (very small) businesses! I started my first business out of a passion for sewing and wanting to create modest clothing that was also my style, which has done well for getting me a small income. Now having my first child has been what's really pushed me to want to chase my passions in a way that also enables me to stay home with her as long as I can, especially during the early years. I don't mind working my day job as a journalist at all, but I really hope to be able to dedicate these years to focusing on my daughter alongside my work until she's in nursery! The baby line I started was actually inspired by necessity. I find the UK to be quite lacking in the sorts of brands that I resonate with (that are predominantly in New Zealand, Australia or California), so it all just got quite expensive with shipping and customs. The main thing that really cost me that I thought "hey, I could make this myself", was a baby sling, so I did just that! I figured there's probably more mums in the UK and Europe experiencing the same issue, so why not offer them items they may need as well?
What drives you to get up and go every morning?
(Does LOTS of coffee count?) In all seriousness, my daughter 100%. Before I became a parent, when you only have yourself to look after it can be a lot easier to let yourself down than it is to let your children down. I want to be the best example for her that I can be, in showing her that everyday should be treated with the best attitude, that anything is possible if you allow it to be, and being a mum shouldn't hold you back from doing other things that are of value to you.
How do you maintain work/life balance since becoming a new mum?
I'm not going to lie, it was very difficult at first. It feels like you suddenly don't have time for anything (and at first, you don't). Even getting to have an uninterrupted shower is a huge victory. But once a few months go by, I feel like as mums we can all of a sudden find these hidden pockets of time to get things done that we didn't utilise before. This also requires some discipline, in that you take advantage of every free moment as opposed to filling it with time wasting activities. This doesn't mean not having any down time, but just making the best use of your day and planning ahead.
And what’s your secret to self care, and finding me-time?
It took me awhile to acknowledge that I was severely neglecting myself during my postpartum time. Physically, emotionally, and mentally. If I wasn't dedicating all of my time to my tiny human, I was doing things to make my husbands life easier. But as many new mums quickly learn, if you're not taking very good care of yourself, its extremely difficult to take care of others. I think a key thing to remember is that self-care is not a luxury - it should be a requirement. Today self-care is treated as some romanticised and 'extra' thing that we do, when it should be a part of our everyday lives anyway!
Can you give us some insight into your daily skin care routine? What daily steps do you take to help yourself feel your freshest self?
One of the issues I struggled with postpartum was severely dry skin on my face, and I felt like I'd tried everything to improve it. (Literally, I have every cream and oil you could imagine). I was finally able to settle on a skincare routine a few months ago, and honestly it's improved so much! It's more intensive in the evening (cleanse, rose water/lavender or chamomile spray), hyaluronic acid, moisturiser/night mask), and in the mornings I just spritz some rose water on my face to freshen up. If I wash it again in the morning it would be too drying for me.
What has been the most rewarding thing about motherhood?
Seeing her learn, grow, and explore has been the most amazing experience, and knowing that as her parents we are guiding her in this journey. Whenever she learns something new, or laughs at something different, it just lights me up inside. As well as knowing how much comfort she finds in me, and that she comes to me whenever she's afraid or tired or just wants a good snuggle.
What gets you through the tough moments, either in your job or as a mum?
Reminding myself that (God willing) it will all be worth it and pay off in the end. As a mother, just reminding myself of all the beautiful moments that outweigh the difficult, and that it gets easier over time. In my work, just hoping that all of my hard work now will allow me more time to rest in the future. Here's hoping!
What’s the best piece of advice your mother gave you, and what would you pass on to your daughter?
My mother actually passed away when I was 14, which has made becoming a mother difficult for me as I don't have that motherly support or person to go to for advice. But from what I do remember, it's not necessarily based off of what she said but just by her actions. While she struggled with her own life challenges, and wasn't what most people would describe as the 'mom of the year', I never doubted her love for us or what she was willing to do for us. All of my memories of her are just of what a light she was, and how much beauty she brought to every environment she was in. I hope to do the same for my children, and to be someone they associate with comfort and warmth. I would advise my daughter the same - to be firm and ensure she's respected, but to never let life dull her shine or change who she is.
How long have you been a Skinfoodie & which are your absolute Skinfood favourites?!
For about 7 months! My favourite's are the Exfoliating Cleanser as it sloughs off dry skin but is still gentle enough for my sensitive complexion, and then the Avocado Night Mask as it's deeply moisturising and allows me to wake up feeling supple and glowing!
If you could share one key skin care tip with your younger self, what would it be?
Simplicity is key. You don't need fancy products with a million ingredients - just pure, simple, and timeless treasures that will give your skin what it really needs to thrive.
And don't forget to tell your mum how much she means to you today (and all the other mum's in your life)!