By Paola Bassanese
An interview with Sarah Brown, founder of award-winning company Pai Skincare
Q. You have created a skincare range specifically designed for sensitive skin: can you tell us about the creative process behind it?
A: Before Pai I was your average beauty consumer, chopping and changing products with little consideration for what they contained.
Then in my mid-20s I developed the skin allergy urticaria and everything changed. I suffered with red, itchy rashes on a daily basis, and was constantly taking antihistamines – it was not only frustrating but also hugely damaging for my self-confidence.
After looking into potential triggers I discovered a raft of irritants in my cosmetics, and couldn’t find a truly clean, gentle yet luxurious range that I could use without reacting.
I quit my job in PR and set about creating Pai, with the aim to fix all the things that frustrated about a mainstream beauty industry that gave little thought to sensitive and allergy-prone skin.
Q. What is your beauty regime?
A: I cleanse with our Camellia & Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser and purifying Rice & Rosemary BioAffinity Toner every night and follow up with a few drops of our Rosehip BioRegenerate oil three times a week. I also apply a light application of our Rejuvenating Echium Rejuvenating Eye Cream when my eyes are feeling a little tired or puffy.
On the nights when I don’t use the Rosehip Oil , I leave my skin to breathe and regenerate itself naturally. I have combination/sensitive skin and I think it’s so easy to overwhelm it with too many products in an attempt to keep it under control.
Q. What do you do to keep fit and healthy?
A: Pai has me running around 24/7, which keeps me fit and luckily compensates for the fact that I don’t have the time (or admittedly the inclination) to go to the gym!
Q. How important is massage in your day to day life?
A: I don’t currently incorporate facial massage into my daily skincare regime, although as I get older I become more aware that I should!
I do try and have regular Acupressure sessions though, which I find instantly soothing – hence why it is part of Pai Organic Facials for sensitive skin.
Q. Many people are suffering from eczema and psoriasis, which products would you recommend for face and body?
A: Skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis are incredibly common, and very rarely spoken about on beauty pages.
Pai products are packed full of skin healing, protecting and regenerating organic extracts, and so are ideal for nursing damaged skin back to full health.
For the face I would recommend our Chamomile & Rosehip Sensitive Skin Cream – high concentrations of anti—inflammatories instantly soothe skin and reduce redness, while Rosehip boosts the skin’s natural healing process.
For the body our Comfrey & Calendula Calming Body Cream provides an incredibly intensive hydration boost to dry, cracked or damaged skin. Rich in Omegas 3&6, the core ingredients promote cell turnover, encouraging a healthy, clear and calm complexion to rise to the surface.
Q. What do you enjoy the most about your job?
A: Pai is my baby, so hearing great feedback from customers never fails to make me smile!
I’m also incredibly passionate about new product development – there’s nothing more satisfying then seeing your initial idea transform into a fabulous product on shelf.
Q. What makes Pai different and what is the philosophy behind it?
A: Pai is all about sensitive skin. All of our products are formulated with sensitive skin in mind, so we never use synthetics or harsh irritants – many of which can be found lurking on the ingredient lists of natural and organic beauty products – even certified ones.
To support this we always try and be as transparent as possible, listing all our ingredients in plain English so customers know exactly what they are putting on their skin.
We also have our own in-house formulation team and are one of only a few organic brands on the market that can say this. Most natural skincare companies farm out their product development work – often to the same formulators – which has resulted in a lot of identikit, unimaginative products flooding the market.
The man hours that go into the development of each and every Pai product is phenomenal. We are absolute ingredient experts and have a rooted relationship with our products that is second to none.