Windsurfing Champion Katie McAnena chooses an organic beauty regime26/02/2014
by Kira Walton
Katie believes that there is growing awareness among Irish people of all the natural resources available on the island, an example being the seaweed used in VOYA products which we’ve written about in a previous blog. ‘We’re so lucky to have this product growing on our coastline. It’s such a unique product to Ireland, to our coastline, to where we’re from, to our water temperature and the environmentally friendly way VOYA harvests it makes it completely sustainable and a renewable resource which is so important.’
A VOYA must-have for Katie is ‘Softly Does It’ moisturiser.
‘It’s great for my skin which is often dry after surfing but it’s really light which is perfect as you don’t want anything too heavy when you’re in the sun.’
‘When I was in Donegal with seaweed all over me, I was laughing thinking, this is exactly what VOYA represents; natural organic health and beauty. VOYA has achieved so much and it’s a real family business which is lovely.’
‘What they represent is a company that is completely Irish. It’s Irish owned and designed and they’ve managed, through the recession, to go from strength to strength. They have shown that there is a demand in Ireland and overseas for quality, home grown products.’
Her training as a doctor informs her beauty routine.
‘As a medic, I know the detrimental effects of putting highly chemicalised products into your body and hair. It accumulates and it’s not good at all. VOYA is totally organic, totally natural and it works. That combination is a miracle as far as I’m concerned! People are really keen for products like these.’
Be sure to treat yourself: Katie’s wise words
Although Katie is continuously balancing both careers, she would urge everyone to find the time and get out on the water or treat yourself to a girl’s night in.
‘At the moment, I’m working 80-100 hour weeks as an orthopaedic surgeon so I’m a weekend warrior in terms of windsurfing. But in Ireland, there’s no reason why you can’t be on the water every single day. The Irish coastline is littered with amazing waves and as long as you have a good wetsuit and a hardy skin, you can go out 365 days a year on some sort of vessel. If there is wind you can windsurf, if there are waves you can surf or paddleboard and if there’s no movement on the water, you can stand-up paddle board.’
Last year was unique as Katie took a year’s sabbatical from medicine and traveled all over the world to compete in windsurfing competitions in Hawaii, Barbados, Cape Town, Peru and Mexico. This year, she’ll focus on competitions in Ireland and the UK as well as training trips to Morocco and Maui. Either way, she’ll be driving up and down the coast of Ireland in search of the perfect wave.
‘Strandhill, Lahinch, Tramore, Portrush…all these seaside towns are all getting really popular because of watersports which is great. I’m going to keep balancing both lives because you need that balance in your life. There are times when one takes precedence over the other which is fine, I have to work to make money to travel but I love medicine as well, it’s a great career. I think you need to challenge your body and mind at the same time.’