Pillow Talk with... Arabella Preston
Welcome back to The Nightstand, our quarterly newsletter landing in your inbox in time for each season change. So here we are with Autumn, in all its golden-hued glory, and this season’s Pillow Talk is with VOTARY and VERDEN co-founder, Arabella Preston. Former make-up artist, Arabella forged her career working with top photographers, magazines and high-profile private clients. Inspired by her belief that healthy skin is the best foundation, she went on to co-found these two incredibly successful brands.

It was a complete joy to sit down with Arabella and pick her brain on all things 'nighttime routine’ and as a self-confessed skincare addict, I couldn’t wait to hear a step by step of her evening rituals.

What is on your nightstand at this time of year?

A transporting book. I’m currently immersed in Tell Me What I Am by Una Mannion. A hand cream. I can’t sleep with dry hands so have the VERDEN D’Orangerie Hand Cream by my bed always. A good luck charm. The magic wand my nephew made me when he was three. It’s one of my most treasured possessions. A skin transforming product. Currently VOTARY’S new Night Star Serum. My skin gets dry in the Autumn and is drinking this up. The best earplugs in the world. The wax earplugs by Blox are unsurpassed.

What is your bedtime routine?

It starts early in the evening with a hot bath, soaking with a bath oil and face mask. I then do my full skincare routine, thoroughly removing make-up and applying Night Star Serum. I am simply too tired just before bed to do a good enough job so my skin is always better when I do it earlier in the evening. Then just before bed I will reapply the serum and add a little Intense Night Oil on top. Then 10 minutes reading until my eyes start to droop. 

Your one pearl of wisdom for a good night's sleep?

I always sleep better when I have washed the day off, so a hot bath or shower are key.

And one fallacy?

I don’t need to digitally detox 2 hours before going to bed. In fact the opposite is true, if I am up to date with messages and have engaged with what the following day will hold, I usually sleep better. 

Whose bedroom would you most like to snoop around?

Estée Lauder’s - preferably in the 1940’s or 50’s if you can swing it for me.

What books past or present have you enjoyed on your nightstand?

I loved Anya Hindmarch’s business memoir, If In Doubt Wash Your Hair. It’s fun and honest. I also adored Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason.

Your favourite childhood book?

At bedtime it was always Demon Daisy’s Dreadful Week by Phillida Gill. It tells the story of a girl who is having a terrible time being good and her very, very tired, Mummy. My Mum read it to me and I loved reading it to my daughter at the same age. It ends with the cathartic line “But Daisy was a good girl at heart; she always said she was sorry, and her mother wouldn’t have changed her for the world.” The illustrations are also beautiful and I seem to remember some very If Only If-esque nighties!

Which If Only If nightie is on your wishlist?

Well I have to say the Arabella don’t I? But seriously, I love a square neck and long sleeve so….

One smell that evokes Autumn is...

For me it’s the smell of our freshly pressed Apple Juice. We pick the apples in September then bottle the juice. It sees us through the winter and when it gets really cold we mull it with spices. 

When it comes to bed, nothing feels better than...

Clean, ironed sheets, cotton nightwear and cuddles! 
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