COCO Chanel once said that a girl should be two things: Classy and fabulous. When I met Astrie Sunindar-Ratner for the first time, I knew. This girl got that memo.
On the day of our shoot, she’s togged out in a perfectly-tailored, just-over-the-knee black dress (rather redolent of an iconic silhouette from Victoria Beckham’s earlier collections — or Holly Golightly, obviously). The dress is accoutred, simply but deftly, with a string of pearls, juxtaposed with a thick chain necklace that’s more contemporary. Her hair is fabulously coiffed so that she could tousle it willy-nilly as Blake Lively would, and still, somehow, looks amazing. Her make-up — it’s exactly the right amount: Enough to please the camera, not too much to the human eye.
I could see Astrie hanging out with Chanel at 31 Rue Cambon. I could picture her dancing gracefully with Truman Capote as his swan/muse as C Z Guest looks on. Or having an intellectual conversation with
Zelda Fitzgerald over a Gin Rickey, or two… But I digress.
The founder of The Beauty Candy Apothecary is no lady-who-lunch — she’s classy and fabulous beyond her stylish appearance and poise, and she is a woman on a mission.
With her multi-label lifestyle boutique, she hopes to “create a shopping haven for women and men where they can find well-curated and high-quality niche products without necessarily spending a fortune. I want my customers to walk out feeling good, and wanting to come back for more!” She walks her talk, too, choosing to use products from the likes of Tata Harper and Maison Balzac herself.
A businesswoman. An advocate of quality life. A wife and mother of two… and only 35. How does Astrie do it all and find time to look after herself? What’s a day in her life like? In the spirit of #BeKindUnwind October, I ask the questions, so you can just take notes.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Strive to be the best that you can be, but accept that we all make mistakes and we are not perfect.
What is your idea of living well?
Astrie Sunindar-Ratner: To live a healthy and happy life.
Do you save yourself some “me-time” every day?
ASR: Yes. Every morning, after the kids are off to school at 7am, I jog for 30 minutes to an hour, and then I have coffee by the river at Toby’s Estate.
Walk us through your day.
ASR: 6am. I get up before everyone else, have a cup of tea in the balcony, and enjoy some quiet time before the craziness begins!
7am. Kids are off to school, then I jog or go for my pilates session (with Johnson at The Moving Body and Yin Yoga at Como Shambhala).
8.30am. I always have a glass of cold pressed juice when I get home after exercising.
Although I don’t take long to get ready, I really enjoy my morning beauty ritual.
10am. By this time I’m usually at the office or the shop unless I have a meeting.
7.30pm. The kids are in bed. It’s dinner time for my husband and I. We love to catch up over a glass of champagne or wine.
9pm. We watch some TV and catch up on some work. We usually have our laptops in bed. If I’ve had a stressful day, I like to unwind with a warm bubble bath before bedtime.
Are you a healthy eater?
ASR: We try to eat healthier meals as a family, like steamed vegetables with brown rice and grilled fish for the kids, and chicken or a steak for me, but we also love going to our favourite restaurant Da Valentino. I’m a
sucker for good pasta.
Any advice on beating stress?
ASR: Be very organised with your time but don’t be too hard on yourself. Strive to be the best that you can be, but accept that we all make mistakes and we are not perfect. Stay positive and be grateful.
Where’s a good place to go for a getaway when life gets a bit much?
ASR: Travelling is something I really enjoy! Tokyo is our favourite city as a family.
What’s your secret to a successful/happy life?
ASR: Dream big, have courage and be kind. Do what you love, respect others, follow your intuition, know when to stop, take a breather and enjoy the little things in life.
So, Beauty Candy seems to advocate quality living, too.
ASR: Yes, for sure! Becoming a mother has
I always have a glass of cold pressed juice when I get home after exercising.
changed the way I shop. Quality comes first. I wanted to create a shopping haven for women and men where they can find well-curated and high-quality niche products without necessarily spending a fortune. I want my customers to walk out feeling good, and wanting to come back for more! Hence the name Beauty Candy.
(Note to Astrie: And you’ve succeeded! I always walk out of Beauty Candy feeling good. I always want to come back for more — whether or not I can afford to is another discussion. I’m sure I’m not alone in my sentiment.)
What do you look for in your own beauty products?
ASR: I use only natural/organic beauty products for my skin. I have been using Tata Harper’s products for over two years, and my skin has never looked better.
We want more details on how you take care of your skin, body and hair.
ASR: Skin — I drink Kangen water and use Tata Harper products. Hair – I trim my hair every six months, and I use David Mallett Paris products and serum. Body – I’m obsessed with Susanne Kaufmann Detox Oil Scrub and Tata Harper’s Body Oil and Body Balm.
And how do you take care of your mind?
ASR: Lots of laughing and cuddles.
ASR: … enjoying the little things in life.
The Beauty Candy Apothecary is located at Mandarin Gallery (#02-27).
Photography: Mr Kite
SHOP THE STORY: ASTRIE'S PICKS
"Writing everything down makes me feel better and less anxious about forgetting things."
Monogram notebook, Studio Sarah
"Reading at night in my bed when everyone is asleep, and smelling the scent of this candle is pure bliss."
Candle (in La Blanche), Maison Balzac
"It smells devine. I always feel so relaxed after bath."
Herbal Whey Bath Nourishing, Susanne Kaufmann