The Beauty Shortlist Awards 2020 have been announced and we are absolutely thrilled to have won Best Retinol Oil with Superstar. 

Superstar Retinoid Night 

What skincare ingredient can combat pretty much all skin issues? Retinol is really the only proven component in any skincare product to reverse wrinkles. It literally prompts the skin to re-generate itself. Retinol in skincare can address dryness, dullness, ageing, wrinkles, lines, dark spots, enlarged pores and pimples. Pestle and Mortar’s Superstar night oil is blended in a base of cold-pressed rapeseed oil and is the perfect non-irritating retinol solution for all skin-types. Packaged in a sleek black airless cylinder to preserve the active ingredients in the formulation, Superstar stays fresh and active with every use and will add a touch of luxury to your skincare routine. According to Founder Sonia Deasy:

‘There ought to be some luxury involved in looking after yourself – I think a lot of busy women and mums would appreciate this sentiment. I created Superstar for these women, myself included. Superstar is a luxurious retinoid night oil which works overnight to repair and rejuvenate the skin. It’s a skincare treat at bedtime which delivers visible results. Our night oil is eponymously names for what I wanted it to be – a Superstar!’

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Georgie Crawford lives in Dublin with her husband Jamie and daughter Pia. She was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 32 and has since gone on to create The Good Glow podcast. Georgie felt there was a need for women to put themselves higher on their own to do list and to prioritise self care. 

What does self-care mean to you? 

It’s time. Time for yourself to give yourself what you need. Whether that’s meditation, a walk in the park or even a date night with my husband. Self care is essential for me in order for me to give my best self to everyone else. 

If you had 5 mins to do something nice for yourself what would you do?

I love to get outdoors. In winter, to wrap up really warm and bring my dog for a walk, or in the summer I love to meditate outside. There is something so healing about being outside in nature. 

How do you incorporate self care into your daily routine?

Sleep is really, really important for me and I make sure to prioritize this. I don’t burn the candle at both ends anymore. I make sure I have time to prepare good, healthy meals for myself, I don’t push myself to be all things to everybody anymore. I have slowed right down and exercise has become a big part of my life. I listen to my gut and I really trust it. 

Do you have anything that adds a touch of luxury to your daily life? 

I’ve given myself the luxury of time. I left my job in radio last summer to concentrate on my podcast. The stories we tell on the podcast bring so much positivity to my life. Time has allowed me to spend more time with Pia, to stop and be grateful for my life every single day and to take it all in. 

When you feel like treating yourself to something extra special, what do you do?

When I need space to think and plan I always book myself into the spa. Something I wouldn’t have done before I got sick. I love having that me time to step away from my phone, to have a day of silence to spring clean my mind. 

What’s your favourite spa treatment?

A facial every time. I rarely get anything else. I just cannot resist a facial. 

What is the first thing you reach for when you are winding down?

Cleanser. I cannot sit on my couch or relax with make up on my face. I just wouldn’t be able to switch off. After we put Pia to bed, I wash my face and do my skin care routine, just so I can finally switch off. 


*As a thank you to Georgie for taking part we have made a donation to Breast Cancer Ireland in her name.



Michelle Kinsella Lee is one of Ireland’s leading freelance makeup artists with over twelve years experience in her field. She lives in Dublin with her husband, two little girls and her pug Coco Pop. Michelle specialises in bridal, editorial, TV and celebrity makeup and travels nationwide and internationally for her work. She tells us how self care has become even more important to her after having children.


What does self-care mean to you? 

Funny, since having my two girls the meaning of self care has changed for me. I used to see it as a bit of an indulgence but now I see it as a necessity to give myself those little moments. Although it doesn’t always mean spa days or nights away anymore. These days it’s a walk in the Phoenix Park on my own, a hot bath in the evening, doing my nails in peace when the girls are in bed, a reformer Pilates class – any of those little things are all filed under self care for me now.

If you had 5 mins to do something nice for yourself what would you do?

Being a Mum of a 4 year old and a 1 year old is all go so if I had 5 minutes I would sit in silence with an oat cappuccino… the dream! 

How do you incorporate self care into your daily routine?

My skincare regime. I’m pretty obsessed with skincare. Skin is always in!! Every morning and every evening I have a skincare regime and it makes me feel amazing after I do it. It’s my little few moments to myself plus my skin benefits so win win! 

Do you have anything that adds a touch of luxury to your daily life? 

We just moved into our new home a few months ago in our dream location. It was a massive renovation/extension job – we literally only kept the front wall of the house. So it’s actually my gorgeous new kitchen that adds a bit of luxury to my daily life, I’m obsessed with it! 

When you feel like treating yourself to something extra special, what do you do?

Book into a really nice hotel with a gorgeous spa and have a night away. With some Champagne if it’s really special! 

What’s your favourite spa treatment?

A full body deep tissue massage. You can give yourself a facial at home with the right products but you can’t give yourself a full body massage!

What is the first thing you reach for when you are winding down?

Honestly?? A glass of good red wine haha! Or a hot bath with essential oils and candles – my favs are tea tree and lavender and sometimes I put Epsom salts in there too. I know some people drink their glass of wine in the bath but I’m not into that! I always bring a chilled glass of water into the bath with me. 

*As a thank you to Michelle for taking part we have made a donation to Australian Wildfire Rescue WIRES in her name


Ingrid Hoey is a fashion stylist and fashion presenter. Ingrid lives in Dublin with her husband Neil, two daughters, and a 9-year-old Bischon Frise dog that thinks she’s human. She sat down with us and shared how she practices self-care every day. 


What does self-care mean to you? 

Self care to me, is taking time out of the day to do something that I enjoy . It is doing something for myself.


If you had 5 mins to do something nice for yourself what would you do?

If I have 5 mins I make myself a cuppa and sit in the rocking chair in my kitchen.


How do you incorporate self care into your daily routine?

For me it is through exercise. I workout twice a week and try to run twice a week also.  I go for a long walk everyday with my dog regardless of the weather. I have been known to drag her around (she is TINY!) in torrential rain! 


 Do you have anything that adds a touch of luxury to your daily life? 

I have a beautiful silk eye mask by KDK , two fabulous Irish sisters, which I got as a gift. That goes on every night at bedtime!


What’s your favourite spa treatment?

A facial followed by a body and head massage.


What is the first thing you reach for when you are winding down?

Whatever book I’m currently reading!

*As a thank you to Ingrid for taking part we have made a donation to Pieta House in her name



Pestle & Mortar’s Exfoliate Glycolic Toner has won Denmark’s prestigious Beautyspace Aarets Quickfix Award 2019. According to beautyspace.dk:

“Exfoliate quickly delivers visible skin-enhancing results but also goes deeper than the surface. A smoother, more uniform complexion is achieved with consistent use.”

Exfoliate is a glycolic acid based formulation which evens-out skin tone, brightens the complexion, tightens pores and promotes skin cell renewal. With a free acid-value of 6.8% and a pH of 3.5, Exfoliate is suitable for all skin types and delivers instant skin benefits. Formulated with skin brightening and toning ingredients, Exfoliate diminishes dullness to deliver a glowing and rejuvenated complexion.

Beautyspace.dk refers to Exfoliate’s ‘uncomplicated recipe’. True to the Pestle & Mortar philosophy ‘less-is-more’, star ingredients glycolic acid, niacinamide and white daisy flower extract play the central roles in a toner that quickly delivers visible results.


Fasten your seatbelt and listen up! We’re excited for you that you’re going on holiday and all that BUT we are worried about your skin.

Did you know that the lack of humidity in an aircraft cabin is a whopping 20%-50% lower than what the skin is most comfortable in? You may not have known it, but you probably have noticed it. This decreased humidity is responsible for serious dehydration and  a dulled-down complexion. To add insult to injury, water retention caused by sitting still, munching on salty snacks and drinking alcohol on-board causes puffy under-eye bags.

So for a smooth skin landing, follow the inflight instructions below!

1.

Travel Make-Up Free

A dry aeroplane environment paired with occlusive makeup creates the perfect conditions for break-outs. Coupled with this, a full face of make-up will most likely appear smudgy and sloppy after hours in a cabin. So embrace your natural self, go make-up free and land smoothly!

2.

Spritz on-board

Using a refreshing, hydrating facial spritz on-board will fight dehydration and maintain the skin’s protective barrier. It also feels energising and calming all at once – just the remedy for a stuffy flight!

3.

Top-up with a Skin Serum

Bring a multi-tasking product on-board like a Hyaluronic Serum to plump-up skin and seal moisture into the skin. Perfect for warding-off stressed skin, flakiness and dullness.

4.

Drink Water

We don’t mean ‘drink water and alcohol’. We mean drink water only! Hydrating on-board is essential so drink up the H2O and save the celebratory beverages for when you land with your glowing complexion.

Simple Skincare Solutions


1.

Use an Exfoliating Skin Toner

Winter often leaves us with dry, flaky skin and more skin cells dulling the surface of the complexion. Before travelling, it’s essential that dead skin cells are sloughed away – otherwise, you’ll end up with flakiness, dry patches and an uneven complexion. Start using a mild acid toner such as a glycolic-based exfoliator as soon as your holiday dates are set. Glycolic Acid works wonders for dull skin, minimises pores and has some impressive hydrating properties too

2.

Lighten up your Moisturiser

If you switched to a heavier moisturiser for Winter, now is the time to lighten up. Pestle & Mortar’s Hydrate is formulated with squalane – an ingredient which is not only super-hydrating but also has low comedogenicity. It is unlikely to block pores. Squalane also plays a role in protecting the skin from UV radiation. In addition to containing the super beneficial squalane, Hydrate is lightweight and easily absorbed by the skin. It is the perfect travel-prep moisturising solution , providing essential hydration without clogging pores.

3.

Use a Serum

Lock-in moisture with a hydrating serum. Now is the time to ensure that your skin is getting maximum moisture after prolonged exposure to harsh Winter conditions. If you are serious about prepping your skin for travel, a hyaluronic serum is your best friend. Hyaluronic Acid, contrary to its name, is not harsh – rather, it’s a polymer that attracts water to an amazing extent. Pure Hyaluronic Serum will hold water on to the skin when applied over damp skin and skin will look and feel plumper, more hydrated and smoother.

Simple Skincare Solutions


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Pestle & Mortar co-founder and CEO Sonia Deasy has made the final 24 in the prestigious EY Entrepreneur of the Year™ Programme 2019. The EY Entrepreneur of the Year™ is a world-class development programme that supports, advises and connects a community of entrepreneurs, championing entrepreneurship throughout the island of Ireland. Over the past 22 years, Ernst and Young has been on a mission to celebrate Ireland’s bravest and most inspiring entrepreneurs.

Finalists in the programme are challenged to step back and think differently about themselves and their businesses and create relationships with former winners and Alumni with a view to helping to grow their business further. This year, the theme for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year™ programme is ‘Be Brave, Be Bold’. Finalists will be challenged to leave their fears behind and face risk head on, with a calculated courage that has already seen them define their lives along the road less travelled.

Sonia Deasy

Sonia Deasy is co-founder and CEO of Pestle & Mortar, an Irish skincare company which launched in 2014. Since the phenomenal success of her first formulation Sonia has catapulted the company onto the global stage. As a direct result of Sonia’s visionary formulation ethos, Pestle & Mortar has experienced exceptional global business performance for a company that was founded just five years ago. Sonia’s innovative formulation strategy is inspired by her sixth-generation Indian heritage in natural healing. With a formulation ethos of ‘less-is-more’, and a mission to enhance and protect natural beauty, Pestle & Mortar is a skincare brand that is committed  to providing simple solutions for beautiful skin. By combining natural extracts with high-performance technological actives, Sonia creates the most effective skincare solutions using as few ingredients as possible. Pestle & Mortar’s value systems have garnered a loyal customer following, testament to Sonia’s unique vision and flair for innovation.

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