It’s fair to say that Anya Hindmarch, CBE is in a good position to dole out advice which she does rather brilliantly in her first book, If In Doubt, Wash Your Hair (published today 6th May 2021). At the age of 52, with five children (three are step-children as her husband was a widower when they married) and a hugely successful business (which she founded, sold and then bought back), she tackles her most thorny subjects. How to juggle kids and a career, the issues of being a women in the boardroom, how to manage stage fright when giving speeches, how to deal with insomnia and many more. All are tackled with a direct, forthright honesty and most importantly, with a large dollop of humour, that feels as though she is sitting talking to you at her kitchen table. We asked Hindmarch further about her life including how to stay calm amidst a crisis, favourite beauty products and her top London gelateria.
You call yourself a “Work in Progress’ in the book. Which parts are you working on presently and how has Covid effected this?
So many – not doing ‘dominos’ (when work worries bleed into home life and visa versa.) Not trying to be the home guru that my non-working Mother was as it is hard to do everything without paying the price. Asking my husband to write the thank you letter for dinner we both went to once in a while.
We love the part about your relationship with sugar. ’Sugar absolutely calls to me. It’s really noisy. I can hear it from another room’. Please pass on some tips on how to get over the sugar gremlin. Asking for a friend…
You just need to be aware that sugar can often be a substitute when actually what you need is an early night/some time off/time away from a phone..
We also have problems sleeping. Do you use any products to help you sleep?
I mainly focus on my breathing and try to concentrate on not allowing my mind to race. No easy feat. But there are lots of good apps for this, for example, Calm.
You say that it is important to remember that ‘life isn’t about creating the perfect table’ but this is hard in the age of Instagram. Any tips on how to deal with stress and keep our priorities in check?
Ask yourself – are we having fun? Is everyone basically happy. If so, then you have nailed it. Many people with perfect tables on Instagram probably can’t answer ‘Yes’ to this question
What are your top accounts that you follow on Instagram?
Friends. I am trying to be very strict and limit my time.
Please tell us your favourite beauty products?
I am trying to rid my bathroom of single use plastic. So brands like Faith in Nature shampoo, conditioner and body wash which comes in a recycled bottle and is refillable. And natural sponges, Salt of the Earth deodorant and refillable dental floss.
You live in London, which is your favourite park, restaurant and bar and do you have any secret places that you can tell us about?
What’s the first thing you want to do post lockdown when everything is open?
Hug my friends and family.
You must have an amazing collection of handbags – do you have a favourite? And which is your top item that you own that helps you to be organised?
My favourite is always the one I am designing next. My top item for staying organised is my filing working from home tote (£550 below).
You write about some of the amazing projects and events you’ve done in the book. Can you tell us more about your latest one, The Village please?
It is a collection of stores and a café that is on the site of my first ever store in Pont St in Knightsbridge. It will be ever changing and evolving and have many things that aren’t available online. There is also a ‘village hall’ which will house fun projects and collaborations and opens with a three week hair salon called ‘Anya’s shampoo & therapy’ in tribute to the book. Anyone can book in with friends (can take it over as a group of 4) or on their own for a hairwash and a blow dry with a delicious coffee or cocktail. For appointments, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Anya Hindmarch wishlist: