Skincare tips for tired mums: Elemis co-founder Noella Gabriel gives us permission to 'do less' when it comes to skincare

Noella Gabriel, the global president and co-founder of Elemis, exclusively shared her top skincare tips with our Shopping Editor

An image of Noella Gabriel alongside three Elemis skincare products
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Noella Gabriel, the co-founder of Britain’s number-one skincare brand, Elemis, has shared the secret to an easy skincare routine for tired mums - and it’s all about doing less.

Ask any sleep-deprived mum about her skincare routine and there's a good chance all she cares about is how to look less tired and ways to reduce dark circles under her eyes. Most of us haven’t found the time to cleanse, tone, and moisturise properly since before our kids were born. And as for regular facials? Forget it. When my kids were small, I often used a baby wipe to ‘cleanse’ my face and dabbed excess Sudocrem over my eye bags during nappy changes.

Nowadays, my kids spend more money on skincare than I do. And yet, as perimenopause takes a firm hold, I think it’s time I treated my face to something more than the odd squirt of E45 cream. After all, we know that many of the changes we go through as mums can take their toll on our bodies - and our skin doesn’t escape. Taking the time to follow a skincare routine, no matter how basic, can have a positive impact on your health and well-being too. Motherhood is as good a reason as any for showing our body’s largest organ a little bit more love.

Happily, GoodtoKnow was recently invited to the launch of Elemis at Galgorm, a new collaboration between the iconic British skincare brand and an uber-luxurious spa hotel tucked away on the banks of the River Maine in Northern Ireland. 

Noella Gabriel, Elemis co-founder and a trailblazer in the skincare industry for over 30 years, exclusively shared her number one skincare tip for tired, time-poor mums with GoodtoKnow. And since Noella famously believes that every product in the Elemis range 'must deliver real results', we reckon her advice is as reliable as it is relatable.

Skincare tips for mums

  • Facial oil is a mum's best friend - and oils are lighter than ever 
  • Cleansing matters - don't cut corners on it
  • Consistency is key to taking care of your skin

Noella rates facial oil as a time-poor mum’s easiest hack for simple skincare. 'Single mum myself - I have a 25-year-old - so I know all about [being] time poor and I would honestly say to everybody here - and you can quote me - your best friend is oil,' she told GoodtoKnow.

'I am going to be controversial because everybody goes ‘Oil?’ But [facial] oils are not like they were even five years ago. Oils... have evolved. The more oils you add [to a product], it catalyses the molecule to be much lighter. It’s when you only get one oil that [a product] is heavy and sticky, like almond oil, but when you buy an oil that contains seven different variants of oil, it’s the sum of all the parts and you get a lovely light texture.’

Noella added: 'Hot compress for one minute and then get two drops of facial oil and put it on, that's the way I would go'. 

Noella Gabriel, cofounder and global president of Elemis

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Aside from oil as a skincare staple, Noella also recommends a cleansing balm. ‘Personally, don’t cut corners on cleansing,’ she added. ‘Cleansing balm is a good friend when you’re a mum because you’ve got the balm, which changes to oil, and then [becomes] cleansing milk. Dip your fingers in a little bit of lukewarm water, and bring it up [to your face] and it changes to a milk which supports the skin’s acid mantle.'

Noella's final word on the best skincare tips for tired, time-poor mums is this: 'Do less, be consistent, and just don’t forget to do your little bit.'

Words, indeed, that could apply to motherhood in so many ways.

Elemis Pro-Collagen collection: our verdict

At the launch of Elemis x Galgorm, Elemis treated us to an incredible bag of goodies and I cannot lie; I'm utterly hooked on the products I've tried so far.

My favourite of all the treats I've tried, it turns out, is the very product that Noella recommends: Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm. Nothing else I've ever used comes close to this for giving that squeaky-clean skin feeling that usually only follows a facial. And, unlike lots of cleaners I've tried, this also leaves my skin feeling deliciously hydrated and nourished. (The same cannot be said for a baby wipe...) No wonder cleansing balms are going viral on TikTok.

And as for the smell? It's honestly no exaggeration to say that I look forward to getting out of bed so I can slather my sleep-deprived face in a scoop of this stuff. I even found myself feeling fresh-faced and confident on the school run without a stitch of make-up after using it consistently for a week.    

For more guidance on the best beauty buys for buys mums, check out the best eye creams for dark circles and our CeraVe cleanser reviews or treat yourself to one of the best perfume dupes that smell like designer scents.

Heidi Scrimgeour
Deputy Editor

As a parenting specialist for more than 15 years, Heidi has written for most national newspapers and for a wide range of consumer magazines, including Mother & Baby where she was the Shopping Editor for six years, looking after regular consumer features including buying guides and gift roundups.