I worked in a Design Studio for a Publishing Company based in the United Kingdom, I loved my job. In my spare time I was a sponsored athlete, training before and after work, travelling at weekends to cross country Mountain Biking and Multi-Sport Adventure race events. My life was all about nutrition, training, rest and recovery and being the best I could be for my team, and sponsors. To help my body and mind I was a huge fan of complementary health including Massage Therapy, Naturopathy, Acupuncture, and Aromatherapy.
The opportunity to relocate from the United Kingdom to France followed by a permanent move to Australia, this was both exciting, yet challenging with no friends or family in either country.
My passion for natural therapies took me back to full time education eventually becoming qualified as a Remedial Therapist. It was during this time I was hit by a car while out cycling.
I fractured my lower back, right hand and sustained multiple soft tissue injuries and permanent nerve damage. I have to this day not been back on a road bike but do mountain bike away from roads and cars! Following the incident I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Along came my everything in the form of a little human, my son. I sold my clinical practice and worked part-time with clients from my home clinic.
My drive to start my own plant-based skin care brand began after I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). From that moment I absolutely knew I had to overhaul every single aspect of my life in order to recover both my physical mental health, and my quality of life. This diagnosis followed on from having Adrenal Fatigue and Glandular Fever both often precursors to full blown CFS.
It has been a roller coaster journey back to health, CFS is not unlike grieving a death of a loved one, in a way I had died, I was not me anymore, I could no longer trail run, go to the gym, swim, kayak, cycle, enjoy pilates or yoga. I had zero energy for friends or being social, I had hit the wall at high speed and my entire identity of being a happy, bouncy and active person died.
Depression set in which was further compounded after being diagnosed with Postnatal Depression (PND) following the birth of my son. My father died just before my son turned 2 and within 6 weeks my adored pooch also died. He had been by my side for 11 years living in 3 different countries; my faithful and the most loyal companion a human could ask for, died in my arms.
For along time after this accident I was in crisis, my joy and passion in life of being able to exercise had gone - while I recovered from my physical injuries, little did I realise it was the ongoing mental trauma that was my biggest challenge.
I worked in day spas, with a Football Team, Alcohol and Drug Rehab Centre, Spinal Unit Recovery Centre and eventually ran my own successful clinic incorporating Lymphatic Drainage, Myofascial, DORN and the full spectrum of massage therapies from sport rehab to facial.
During my practice I came across all types of issues and conditions, I enjoyed incorporating aromatherapy (essential oils and plant oils) into my practice and developing my own blends and balms to help soothe and calm client’s bodies and minds. My curious brain started to research plant based skincare and I began to make some of my first formulations for my own reactive skin.
Time to make a choice—to be angry, and I was for a long time, I had been living in constant cycle of "stress" my body was inflamed it was time to go back to basics, start again and rebuild my health and along with it my life.
I was raised an ‘organic’ child, in the English countryside, vegetables and fruit were grown at home and Mom cooked with raw ingredients, from scratch, she taught me how to grow and gather herbs and use them as skin and hair care products.
I had lost my way in this world, strayed from my truth and my connection to nature, I worked only on what I could put into myself rather than what
I could get out of myself. I started eating only organic, and locally grown, seasonal food, cutting out wheat and dairy and slowly restoring my
I learned to practice self-care and self-love, as a stubborn empath I was great at caring for others but did not ask for help. Creating FIFTY7KIND provided mental stimulation and helped alleviate the frustration from not being unable to exercise for the joy but also for the stress-relieving effects.
By the end of 2019 I was about 90% back to full-health and able to exercise again, daily 5-10k walks and gentle trail runs were back in my life along with gentle yoga and mountain biking. November 2019 was the launch of FIFTY7KIND'S first product 'TANU Skin Affinity Coactive Serum'.
In March 2020 our entire family income disappeared overnight. I lived in a constant state of stress, unable to digest my food properly when I did actually eat. In May I was experiencing unexplained pain, I pushed on until October when I went to see Doctor; by this time I was struggling to walk, and suffering from the effects of broken sleep due to being in constant pain. I also entered the next life stage of 'the perimenopause' which was also contributing to my inability to have restful sleep, I was a hot mess literally!
I was finally diagnosed in March 2021 with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disorder, RA occurs when your immune system mistakenly attacks your own body's tissues. Currently there is no cure, medications are available to help lessen disease progression, and reduce systemic inflammation.
My immune system is now suppressed by medication, I practice intermittent fasting and follow an anti-inflammatory diet. These lifestyle adjustments have helped greatly - I do believe in and holistic approach not just in my skincare formulations but my life style choices too. Chronic stress causes disease, selfcare is not selfish, it is critical part of our wellbeing and ongoing health. Read The Holistic WellCare Blog where I share all things 'well-being' for skin, body and mind.
This I know for sure.
AT A GLANCE
I am a Guinness World Record holder
EVERY DAY BEGINS WITH
ENGLISH BREAKFAST TEA
(AND A JOURNAL)
Largest Simultaneous Massage (2010)
SUSHI IS MY
SOMEWHERE in NATURE
JAPANESE SENCHA TEA IS MY AFTERNOON "POWER-UP"
Tea, daily time in nature, exceptional skincare, podcasts, deep and meaningful conversations, books you can hold, trekking in the mountains, laughing until it hurts, real food, love and kindness.
Hustle culture, unconscious consumerism, racism, gender inequality, discrimination, plastic-pollution, deforestation, lifeless skincare, greenwashing, small-talk, fast-fashion, and mosquitos.
agree? we are probably a great fit