My first interaction with the beauty industry was in [my homeland] Greece, when I started working for Seventeen magazine. I began to see a gap in the market for a skincare range that would offer natural alternatives to plastic surgery, but I didn’t have the business skills or knowledge to do anything about it. I ended up moving to New York, studying business and then working for an investment bank—first in New York and then in London. Three years in, I realized that it just wasn’t my passion. In 1999, I decided to launch Rodial. I worked from home, packed boxes—I did everything. Now we have over 100 employees around the world. Our big break came when our Tummy Tuck was put in an Oscars afterparty gift bag and got into the hands of celebrities like Tom Cruise and Angelina Jolie.
“Although we started with body products, our skincare range really drives the business. The ingredients have amazing stories. We started with our snake-venom serum, which uses a neuropeptide that copies the effect viper venom has on victims, providing a freezelike effect. Our newest launch is the Dragon’s Blood Eye Mask. It contains the red sap of the rare dragon’s blood tree from Yemen to reduce inflammation, arnica extract for dark circles and coconut fat to hydrate and moisturize.
“When you transition your skincare routine into the winter season, you need to keep skin hydrated and not stripped of moisture; the cleanser you use is just as important as the cream you use afterwards. I think the most important thing is to switch to a cleanser that won’t strip the skin and will keep it hydrated—at this time of year, you need all the moisture you can get.
“My guilty pleasure? I love The Real Housewives reality-TV shows. Orange County. And New York. And...I’ve watched all the Atlanta ones too. [Laughs] After a really hard day in the office, it puts your own problems into perspective.” ■
Jivamukti yoga “It’s very spiritual and relaxes me.” Calcium and magnesium “I take these supplements with an Emergen-C immune-system booster whenever I fly.” Mykonos, Greece “I go there to relax; it’s our yearly family holiday.” shopping “I love WilliamVintage—a vintage wholesale shop with an online presence—and Alfies Antique Market for home.” stops “I go to places in London that are simple and cool: Pizza East, Shoreditch House, the Chiltern Firehouse, Electric Diner.”