When jeweller Claire Aristides invited us to view her new collection at The Langham, it was a quick RSVP ‘yes, please’. As Aristides Fine Jewels turns eight, Claire shared what it's like running a business as a mother to two small children, while splitting time between homes in London and Sydney. Hearing about her passion for her work and belief in the importance of self-actualisation for personal growth, you’d be forgiven for thinking Claire is one of those ‘never puts a foot wrong’ types. Luckily, she’s also funny and honest, freely admitting to teenage beauty indiscretions (Sun In, anyone?), and to this day reaching for the face wipes when she knows at the end of a big day, a proper cleanse just isn’t going to happen. Definitely one of us.
"I do have my beauty faithfuls that I swear by but I love to experiment and try new things.
I recently discovered a Korean beauty site and ordered online peptide eye masks and chin lifting masks ... I’d love to go to Korea on a beauty recce!
As I get older I am fanatic about avoiding the sun (I was never a sun lover anyway, but my Irish-heritage skin has still been beaten by the Aussie sun over time). I rarely leave the house without a hat on. I wear Rationale C1 which is an SPF50 tinted sunscreen. Over that goes Oxygenetix Oxygenating Foundation which has incredible coverage, and then I finish off with Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Shield Powder with SPF50. The powder is really lovely to dust over your hands and decotellage.
A friend gave me a Slip silk pillowcase as a gift and they are all I will sleep on now. I have their eye mask and travel pillowcase too.
I recently started using a jade roller to massage creams into the skin more.
With my job I really try and look after my hands as much as I can, so I use Cosemedix Rescue Balm on my hands as they get so dry and I sometimes suffer from eczema.
My approach to make up is fairly low key but my approach to skin care is definitely not low maintenance anymore.
My daily routine begins with cleansing and moisturising, with the Rationale program.
I definitely have my favourite perfumes. I have a few different scents from Altaia which I rotate with my Chanel scents – especially my new favourite, Gabrielle.
I love a subtle smokey eye. I have a Chanel eye shadow palette that’s a mix of smokey shades and I love it. I like it best with good coverage foundation, matte lips and strong lashes. Charlotte Tilbury's makeup collection is so beautiful – I have the mascara which I find is really thick but not clumpy.
Straight hair means less work for me each day, but it takes it toll.
To make up for the damage, I always get a treatment when I'm at the salon. Otherwise, I am pretty low maintenance. I use Aesop Rose Hair & Scalp Moisturising Masque which has done wonders for my hair.
I love long wear lipsticks – if I wear a normal one, it is gone in twenty minutes!
I must somehow chew my lipstick off, so now I mainly buy stay-on lipsticks. My current favourite is Nars Powermatte Lip Pigment.
I absolutely loathe taking my make up off! I am lazy by night time s0 I recently started using The Cleansing Pads by The Clinic which are so handy.
I feel most beautiful after a professional has done my hair and make up!
I often rush my make up or do the bare minimum, whereas I feel when a professional does it they really look at every aspect of your face and make it look the best they can.
I am not keen on ageing, but given there is nothing we can do about it, my philosophy is to make the best of what you have.
Hydrate, care for your skin, and avoid the sun. Try and sleep as much as you can too.
I was very nonchalant about beauty growing up, as I think you are when your skin and hair is so young and fresh. You don’t realise you need to maintain it. I definitely had my moments of thinking Sun In was a good idea! I also remember telling a good friend that toothpaste would get rid of her pimples. I can’t remember how or why I had this piece of 'invaluable' beauty advice to share, but it turned out to burn her spots and make them much worse. So don’t put toothpaste on a pimple ... ever!
I still get goosebumps when I am selecting my diamonds and gemstones. I am like a little kid in a candy store.
I really get tunnel vision when creating a new collection and can not stop thinking about what I am doing. I create pieces that celebrate special moments and milestones for people, jewellery that they will treasure and will have a lot of sentiment.
Working with precious metals and the most beautiful stones is very rewarding for me. Currently I am working on a collection that celebrates the beauty of stones in bold but classic shapes. I want this to be a collection of statement jewels.
My fine jewellery philosophy applies to my wardrobe as well – I prefer classic pieces that will last and not date.
My personal style is classic and I like to buy beautifully cut staples. I try and avoid fast fashion and focus on investment pieces that suit my shape and style. I live in various combinations of jacket and wide legged pants. It’s taken me a while but I think you need to find 'your look' and not deviate from it too much.
With my children being young I need to be practical in my dressing as well. I like to feel comfortable (you can’t push a pram in heels, so I am in adidas a lot of the time), but for work appointments heels are definitely on.
I do try and eat well and exercise as I know what a difference it can make.
I try and do the 5:2 eating plan each week, and about four nights a week we just have a salad with a small amount of protein. These two changes to my diet resulted in my losing ten kilos, which I was very happy about!
I also try and do twenty minutes of yoga a day, which is a realistic and manageable amount of time for me to commit to exercise. I will often do longer but as long as I have done my twenty minutes, I'm happy. I also make time for self hypnosis. I am very big on manifesting and talking to your subscious mind. I like to walk, too. I find as you move you unwind from your worries, and things become clearer."