In part one of our interview series, we were lucky enough to catch up with the seriously lovely, Anna Weatherlake.
Anna is an accomplished journalist with a degree in politics, blogger with her fabulous website Earth by Anna and fiance to Australian test cricketer, Peter Siddle.
Hi Anna! Tell us more about your blog, Earth by Anna.
I have been a vegetarian all my life and went vegan about five years ago and I’ve always had a huge passion for cruelty-free, environmentally friendly and sustainable living. When I started Earth by Anna (www.earthbyanna.com), I was on the other side of the world with my partner, Sids, not working and living out of hotel rooms. I have a journalism and politics degree and have always enjoyed writing, so I combined my passion for cruelty-free living with my passion for writing and Earth by Anna was born. Now it’s a hub that people can turn to when they want information or advice on cosmetics, skincare, home, travel, food, anything really that is all based around the simple philosophy of being good for you, good for the animals and good for the environment. I really enjoy doing it and I’ve developed quite a loyal following over the past year, which makes me really happy as it shows people are actually thinking about the choices they're making and what impact they could have not only on them, but animals and the environment as well.
What prompted you to make the leap from a vegetarian diet to a strict vegan lifestyle?
It was honestly a gradual progression for me. When I learnt how bad dairy was for my body and realised i’d been brainwashed into thinking it was healthy my entire life, I made the change pretty quickly. And it was the best thing I ever did. I feel so much healthier, i’ve got more energy and I don’t miss animal products at all. I gave up dairy products, eggs and honey at the same time and refrained from purchasing leather, silk, wool etc not long after. It makes me really happy and content knowing nothing i’m eating, applying to my skin or wearing is causing animals any harm or having a detrimental effect on our already fragile environment.
Favourite vegan beauty product?
I am a sucker for a great highlighter and the Luna Bronze Gradual Tanner. Both are necessities in my bathroom cabinet and I always travel with both.
You must travel a lot with your job and with your fiance, Peter. What is your long haul flight beauty saviour?
The first thing I do when I get on a long-haul flight is take my makeup off. I think it’s really important to give your skin a chance to breathe. I also apply a really thick coating of moisturiser and an eye cream. But, I honestly think the most important thing to do is drink a bucketload of water. An air hostess once told me that for every hour you fly, you lose a litre of water (i’m pretty sure that’s what she said, ha!). So I drink, drink, drink and I always feel better for it when I get to my destination.
What is your favourite place to holiday and your best skin care tip to protect your skin?
Tough question. I love the Maldives, but I often find myself being a bit of a go-getter when i’m on holidays. I like to be out and about doing things and exploring which would probably make Italy or Switzerland in the summer my favourite places. Or New York. Crap, I have too many favourites!
Regardless of where I am holidaying, I only allow myself small doses of full sun exposure and I always use an SPF, especially on my face. I really like the Jane Iredale Dream Tint SPF Tinted Moisturiser.
Our female readers will be interested to know and be honest, do you ever get a bit blase about watching the cricket?!
Ha! Yes! About four days into a test match on a bowling day when no wickets have been taken for most of the day, then you’ll often see me napping in my chair or reading my book. I really enjoy the cricket, but at times it can be testing sitting there all day when not much is happening on the field.
What's your guiltiest pleasure?
Hot Chips. Get me every time. Drowned in vinegar and (vegan) chicken salt. I could face plant into a bowl of them.
Do you have any handbag must haves?
A portable phone charger, reusable shopping bags, sunglasses and a water bottle.
Which celebrity wardrobe do you lust after?
I really love Lara Bingle’s style. I think she is stunning and she has a certain masculinity to the way she dresses, which I really like. If I could make her whole wardrobe cruelty-free, i’d be in heaven. I’ll take Christine Centenera’s in a cruelty-free version too, please!
Please share with our readers what beauty secrets you have to protect your skin from the sun.
Just keep out of the sun. That's all. Get your 20-30 minutes a day and then just avoid it if you can. Apply an SPF to your face and if you're not keen on sunscreen, use an organic coconut oil on your body. It contains a natural SPF and is nourishing and hydrating on your skin. And always wear a hat!
Who inspires you?
Sids, my partner, is an amazing man. He is the happiest, most genuine and most optimistic guy I know. He’ll do anything for anyone and I’ve found his journey over the past four years, giving up alcohol entirely, switching to a vegan diet and doing a 180 on his life incredibly inspiring. Not many people could have done what he’s done. It’s a credit to the man he is.
Your sister, Linda, is working on something exciting. Can you tell us about it?
Yes! Linda has just launched an amazing business called Neena, which is an online platform for skin, makeup, hair, kids, mens and body products that are all cruelty-free and free from animal-derived ingredients. It’s something the market has been calling out for and Linda has really nailed it with the products and brands she’s stocking. It’s so nice to be able to go and shop on Neena knowing that whatever i buy from there is cruelty-free, vegan and a healthier alternative for my skin and body. It’s a really fantastic business. You can check it out at neena.com.au
Finally, what's next for Anna Weatherlake?
I am slowly, but surely, working on something that i’ve been wanting to do for a long time (slack). I don’t want to give too much away just yet, but I’m hoping to have something in production and in the big wild world by the end of the year. It’s something to do with fashion, that’s all I’ll say!