Tell us a little about yourself?
I am wife to an amazing husband who is the most patient cheerleader I could ever ask for! I am also the proud mother to an energetic and loving 3yr old boy Joseph, through who I have learnt an incredible amount about myself, and the meaning of true love. Together, our family of 3 is all about fast sports cars (I’m a mum living in a boys world) and living each day as if it were our last, which means a lot of spontaneous travel!
My journey pre-motherhood was centered on an extremely focused corporate career path. I spent a lot of my career life working in beautiful and exotic cities and countries around the world, but I have always found my way back home to Australia.
Since becoming a mum I made the difficult yet most rewarding decision to quit my job and become a full-time stay at home mum. And I haven’t looked back since. Those who know me know that I am always looking to keep my mind active, and so it’s no surprise I am an avid reader. I read every single night! My husband used to take me on out on dates (pre-parenthood) to the local bookstore and we’d have dessert and I’d pick a new book to read. These days I have converted to the dark side and use my trusty Kindle. I can honestly say outside of spending quality time with my family, reading is my happy place and I hope to have a little library in my house one day.
You are the founder of Malo and creator of the amazing Nappy Rash Spray.
Tell us a bit about Malo and what inspired you to start your own business?
As a new mum living in a modern age, I began to notice that while many baby products were still a relevant necessity today (for example nappy rash cream) the way we had to use them had not “changed with the times” to help make life easier for mums lifestyle today.
I was a mum who travelled, got my nails done, was doing baby coffee dates and always on-the-go. I found that many traditional baby products on the market had not adapted to address the new challenges that modern mums faced in our new millennium, like changing a nappy in the middle of a restaurant or car boot. I started travelling overseas with my son when he was 4 months old, and I quickly realised I was not alone. Many mums I spoke with were too travelling and out with their bubs from a young age.
In fact, I began to notice a lot of my lifestyle hadn’t really changed when I became a mum, so it was no surprise that bub needed his nappy changed everywhere and anywhere. My biggest issue was that each time was a struggle (they don’t teach you this in prenatal classes!) because I was fighting the battle between the dirty nappy, the baby, and my free hand covered in nappy rash cream.
I will actually never forget the single moment that broke me. I was on an overseas trip, in the middle of a busy department store and dealing with the messiest poo-explosion I’d ever seen. There was no restroom in sight, so I had to change my little one in his pram. Here I was juggling the dirty nappy, the pram, my handbag and I was up to my armpits in gross nappy rash cream. And I remember having a mini meltdown thinking there must be an easier way.
It was the moment that inspired me to start working on a spray solution as soon as I got back to Sydney. I didn’t realise it would take almost two years to develop, but with the help of a local Sydney based team of pharmacists we blended the perfect harmony between plants, fruits and vegetables and created our hero product Spray.
Natural, plant-based and Australian made was very important to me. While it made the process much harder, it was definitely worth it. My ethos was always simple, a traditional remedy designed for the modern mum.
Describe motherhood in 3 words?
Unconditional True Love
What is the best advice or support you have received about motherhood?
I will always remember talking about motherhood before I was a mother, and trying to “plan” the right time. A close friend would always tell me ‘you can never perfectly plan to be a mother, and you can never plan to be the perfect mother’. And that’s when I realised that motherhood is a journey, and it will come when you think you’re not ready, but you will be, and when you think you’re not perfect, but you will be.
What is important to you when choosing goods for your little one?
Since becoming a mum I have really paid close attention to baby products and what actually goes into them! Some of the ingredients can be really scary. I always choose natural, toxin-free and environmentally friendly and vegan products.
It would be unwise with all the knowledge we have today to assume that if we grew up with them, that they are fine. Big misconception. I truly believe if you know better, you have a responsibility to do better.
What are your dreams and hopes for your child?
With all the current uncertainty facing us, humanity as a whole, I can only hope and dream that my child can live a lifetime never having to experience things like Coronavirus or war.
In an ideal world I would love for my son to be able to have the freedom and ability to live each day as he chooses, travel the world, experience new learning’s and know a love like the unconditional love of his own child one day.
As a parent, what sustainability issue needs the most focus?
Sustainability as a whole is an important topic, but I feel the discussion starts at home. I think there is a big misconception or stereotype associate with being “sustainable” and I think this needs to be debunked.
I don’t believe you are either environmentally conscious or not. While it is important to understand that big change is needed as a whole, individually there are small steps that we can make to help contribute without feeling overwhelmed.
For example we recently made the switch to reusable steel & silicone straws. I was only thinking the other day how much we have already saved in both costs and environmental footprint just from that one switch.
We are living in an uncertain time, what has helped you and your family cope with what is happening in the world?
For us this has certainly been an incredible change to our “normal”. We have raised our son on the foundation of freedom of choice, free expression and the ability to learn through travel to new places and experience different cultures.
Our focus has now shifted to our ‘micro world’, the world we create at home. Reconnecting with nature for example has been a great. We have for the first time planted veggies and flowers, and are watching them grow and understand the ecosystems that comes along with them, like our resident ‘snail’ named ‘Nail’ because my son can’t pronounce the ‘S’ yet hehe.
Image supplied by Sonia founder of Malo, via her Instagram account @malo.thelabel