Grace Fodor on how to get better as you age
-Jun 15, Jenny Paul , Living -
Grace Fodor lives in Surrey with her three daughters and her dog Lola and cat Flapjack. After celebrating her 40th birthday, Grace noticed negative stereotypes about being middle aged and decided to turn it on its head to more accurately reflect how she feels inside and help other women to celebrate as each year goes by.
Feeling strongly that beauty is ageless, Grace was moved to create STUDIO10, a collection of skincare formulated for women over thirty five and beyond.
Grace is a passionate pro age campaigner who, like us here at Lumity, is determined to redefine age and beauty. We wanted to talk to her to find out more.
Tell us more about Studio10, how it came about, how you set it up and the biggest triumphs so far?
As I reached middle age, I wanted to celebrate this. I wanted to feel truly confident and not be limited by negative anti-ageing stereotypes that didn’t reflect how I felt or how I lived my life. This needed to be represented in advertising by the makeup brands that were trying to talk to us, but at that time the beauty industry only seemed to have a ‘one rule suits all’ approach to makeup and all I could find were dressed up versions of mainstream products that just didn’t seem to work for maturing skin. I wanted ‘quick-fix’ solutions that targeted the signs of ageing, with the best skincare ingredients, and that were easy to use. So Studio10 was born.
Grace, we absolutely love the ethos behind Studio10 – that it’s about changing the face of ageing – how important is this do you think?
It is very important, although it is interesting as I think this generation is already far less consumed with labels of any sort than we ever were, but it’s still a slow climb with ageism and we have a long way to go. There is a perception of what ageing should look like – and to an extent this is also down to our own traditional conditioning. This is what we need to change. The media and social media are powerful promotional tools that this generation have grown up with – and they are seeing more and more successful middle-age bloggers and vloggers who are current and exciting. They also need to see the benefits of a senior workforce. There are many 40, 50, 60 and 70 plus women and men out there who are successfully achieving, so we need to make sure that this continues to be seen across all forms of media. Again it comes down to visibility! The best we can do is to lead by example. If we can change the narrative now to ensure that ageing is seen as a positive and not a limitation, this will be the voice of the next generation.
Has it been hard and were the reactions better than you expected?
Starting and building a business is always hard. There is so much you have to learn and navigate along the way, but I believe that if you have the right purpose then you have a great grounding to build upon. Of course I was nervous at first about consumer reactions. I had spent so much time researching and perfecting the collection – it was so important to me to get it right. However, I could not have asked for a better reaction! Customers are so welcoming with our products and the brand so when I see messages from happy customers it reminds me that I’m definitely doing the right thing and I feel very proud.
Hardest challenge that you have had to overcome in your life?
One of my hardest challenges has been overcoming a natural instinct to be shy. I was once on a television programme called ‘Be your own Boss’ and I really had to work hard at not reverting back to my childlike trait of shyness.
What accomplishment are you most proud of?
Building a business with a purpose. I’m so fortunate to have had the opportunity to turn my passion into my career and help create a space where women can feel good about themselves at any age. And of course my three gorgeous girls.
If you could go back, what advice would you give your younger self?
To not worry so much! Particularly about a career path – which we all know is never going to be straight forward! I could not have imagined then being where I am now and the paths that lead us in different directions. When you are young you feel the need to make choices for your future all at once, but life presents so many different opportunities and diversities along the way that you realise your career can actually be whatever you want it to be – with hard work and perseverance of course. We continue to adapt and learn over the years. I’m still learning now!
How do you unwind and relax?
I love taking my dog Lola on long walks. Out in the fresh air and surrounded by nature is so peaceful – it’s easy to unwind. I love spending time with friends, and sometimes just putting my phone down and disconnecting for a while – we all need a break from that!
What’s your wellness must have?
Definitely spending time at the gym. I find exercise so therapeutic and gives me the chance to spend some time in the day focusing on myself and working through any frustrations.
It has to be anywhere in Tuscany! It’s such a beautiful part of Italy.
Best travel tip?
SPF! Being half Portuguese I catch the sun easily so I have to take extra care in the sun. I use nothing less than SPF 30 and try avoid the sun on my face. Sunburn and sun damage is just not worth it as we start to age.
Desert island disc, book and luxury item?
Book is definitely Feel the Fear and do it Anyway by Susan Jeffers – this book literally changed my life and I still dip into it now. My luxury item would have to be good sun cream. My disc would be ‘Do my own Thing’ by American Authors.
And finally, your favourite quote?
‘Do one thing every day that scares you.’ Eleanor Roosevelt.
If you enjoyed this find out what Melanie Chisholm told us about looking after your mental health or find out why Helena Christensen told us that some of the most beautiful people she has met are ugly on the inside.