Janey Meets: SEAMS Karen J. Gerrard (WIN!)

I’ve always loved a good hand cream and as we get older, and our skins thin, we need a really effective one.

I was introduced to the magical SEAMS cream recently and was so impressed I got in touch with their founder, Karen, to chat beauty, business and ageing with style!

Hi Karen, you started your career in fashion, where did the idea for SEAMS come from?

During a Millinery course at the London College Of Fashion, my hands got cut, burnt, sore and dry. I was going to bed at night with antiseptic cream on my cuts, and couldn’t find a beauty cream to help heal and moisturise that wasn’t greasy so I created SEAMS Hand Cream. It was called SEAMS as I was sewing at the time I had that ‘lightbulb’ moment!

Tell me a bit about the brand and how it came to be?

I wanted to create the best possible hand cream full of natural ingredients to mend, moisturise, soften, soothe, and protect hands, condition cuticles, strengthen nails, ensuring it was non-greasy so you can carry on working.  Originally we were used by seamstresses at London Fashion Week to moisturise their pinpricked, hardworking hands, but I found SEAMS was becoming a go-to hand cream for make-up artists backstage in Film & TV.

I was then asked for handbag sizes, set up the website and it has grown from there.

What has been your proudest moment?

I love it when customers contact me and say how much SEAMS helps their hands. I’ve just been told by one of the Professional skaters on Dancing On Ice that it’s cleared eczema on her hands! Amazing!

You’re a busy woman, any tips maintaining a great work-life balance?

Maintaining a great work-life balance is the hardest thing of all. None of us is superwoman and it’s always up and down as to what comes first – sometimes work and other times home.

I’m a perfectionist, but I’ve learnt to be relaxed when things do not get done. My children are grown up and at university but there’s still never enough hours in a day.

I would say so long as everyone is happy and healthy that’s all that matters. My biggest tip is to find time to switch off and catch up on your sleep. Not only will you feel energised, and more able to cope with what’s being thrown at you, but your skin will benefit too.

Do you ever miss the fashion side of things yourself – can you/do you still design/sew?

I don’t design anymore other than working on packaging for SEAMS! Although I still go to all fashion shows and events.

I absolutely love working in the beauty industry and have got quite obsessed with hands, we can never switch off the sense of touch. I don’t have much time to sew anymore but I do have a tapestry ready to start at home time permitting!

You’ve mentioned that you love a Night class – what was your favourite and why?

When my youngest was born, I took acting three nights a week at the Central School Of Speech and Drama, it was fun learning a new skill, took away inhibitions, and kept me in shape, and stood me in great stead for public speaking today.

What advice would you give to anyone planning on starting a business in beauty and skincare?

Go For It – Make sure your product is different than anything else out there, listen to advice from experts, and always deliver what you say you can.

What are your top tips for great hand care?

It is not until a woman is in her forties that she will start to notice wrinkles and age spots appearing on her hands, then as you reach your fifties the menopause dries the skin further.

The skin is thinnest on our hands and as we age we lose Collagen and Elastin, which leads to wrinkles and eventually saggy skin. We use our hands in virtually everything we want to do, so it’s no wonder they show our true age.

Whilst you can’t stop the ageing process here’s how you can slow it down:

MOISTURISE – Morning, Noon and Night when skin becomes dry it cracks, loses moisture then cracks further, moisturising will keep skin supple, soft and looking younger.
COVER UP –Wear gloves when washing up to protect from the drying effects of water and
detergents, and when going outside in the cold to protect from the elements, then moisturise.
EXERCISE – Massaging and stretching your hands will keep the blood flowing, and plump up the skin.
THE PLANK – Put your hands in a praying position with both sets of fingertips touching each other, then press the palms together and open again repeat 5 times.
PALM MASSAGE – Use the opposite thumb to massage the palm in a circular motion, paying particular attention to the pressure point just below the thumb.
NAIL IT – Keep nails short, the night before a manicure take off nail polish to let nails breathe, and watch what colour you use the shade in your twenties can age you in your forties, hold the bottle to the top of your hand to match to your skin tone.
SEAL CUTICLES – Once split cuticles let in water, which damages the new nail underneath. Massaging extra cream into your cuticles will keep them soft and sealed.

We’ve got FIVE gorgeous bottles of SEAMS hand cream worth £14 to win! You can learn more about SEAMS here.

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