BeautyView: Rachel Polla, PR Manager, Union Bancaire Privée

In the continuing quest to learn things that I did not know about my amazing sisters , I turned this week to Rachel, five years younger than I am. While she currently works in private banking, she worked with me at Alchimie Forever in Washington DC for almost a year at a time she needed a break from Geneva and when I really needed her help. And, being the only one of the four Polla girls fluent in Swiss German, she still takes care of our beloved Swiss German Alchimie clients. Rachel is, as her answers indicate, a true woman, grateful for her femininity (but don’t let that make you underestimate her!). No wonder when she walks into a room, everyone turns to look at her, and feels a little happier…

AP: What city were you born in? RP: One of the best places to be born in: Geneva, Switzerland.

AP: What city to do you live in? RP: The only one that I’ll always call home: Geneva.

AP: What is your middle name? RP: I was named after Isadora Duncan, the great ballerina.

AP: What is your astrological sign? RP: I am on the cusp of Virgo and Libra, so it depends on the magazine. I’m lucky because I can always choose the better horoscope for the month!

AP: What is something about you most people don’t know? RP: I tend to get what I want even if its not the traditional (or most linear) way.

AP: What is your most prized possession? RP: What I learn from life.

AP: If you could have dinner with the person of your choice, who would it be? RP: It’s difficult to choose one. Perhaps Nelson Mandela to understand how he managed to survive, forgive, and lead a nation into more humanity – although he must be heartbroken to see that his nation still suffers a lot.

AP: Describe your fashion style in three words maximum. RP: Classic, comfortable, sexy.

AP: Do you wear a watch? If yes, what model? RP: I used to wear none; I now have two, that I both love because of what they represent. I met a wonderful man during my 29th year and for my 30th birthday he gave me a beautiful pink Chopard (a 1000 Miglia). And, surprise-surprise, my mother gave me the watch she wore for the last 10 years that my dad had given her, also a Chopard – so I think of both when I wear it.

AP: Diamonds or pearls? RP: I’m such a girlie girl, so I’m going to say diamonds.

AP: What is your #1 beauty secret? RP: I have three… 1.Wear Kantic calming evening cream from Alchimie Forever. 2. Great genes. 3. Being loved by the most wonderful man I’ve ever met.

AP: What fragrance do you wear? RP: It depends… Traditionally, Number 5 from Chanel. I also like CoCo Mademoiselle. Right now I’m wearing Jean Paul Gautltier’s fragrance  for women – a gift from my 2 lovely step children.

AP: Botox or not? RP: Definitely. Because my father is probably one of the best injectors in the world

AP: Hair color: natural or not? RP: Not. To be as blonde as I feel, I have to highlight it…

AP: What are your special diet tips, if any? RP: I would say eat with pleasure, enjoy…

AP: What do you do for exercise? RP: I run. Including after my 3 year old daughter who can be as naughty as she is beautiful.

AP: What are three things that you always have in your fridge? RP: Champagne, orange juice… More champagne.

AP: What is your cocktail of choice? RP: A champagne cocktail (with cognac and angostura) or a cosmopolitan (when it’s well prepared).

AP: What is your secret to work/life balance? RP: Never sacrifice one for the other; it’s all about organization (one of my mom’s best advice).

AP: How many miles do you fly per year on average? RP: Not so many… I would like to travel more and discover some of the world’s treasures.

AP: What are your three top tips for travel? RP: 1. Always take a few necessities in your carry-on (so you can manage a day without your suitcase if it’s lost). 2. Never forget that apart from your passport, you can always buy the rest. 3. If you travel with kids, choose a family friendly place; if you are traveling as a couple, choose the opposite.

AP: 3 songs on your ipod right now. RP: On top of the world from Barbie (my daughter loves it). And lots of Lana del Ray (especially Million Dollar Man and Radio).

AP: What book are you reading right now? RP: The one I am trying to write.

AP: Quote to live by? RP: Most anything Lao Tzu said… he is filled with wisdom (“failure is the foundation of success” and “to lead people, walk behind them” are two of my favorites).

AP: What is your worst pet peeve? RP: People who underestimate me because I’m a kind, pretty blonde – so many reasons not to underestimate me! And people who don’t take responsibility for their own mishaps.

AP: What time do you usually wake up in the morning, and how many hours of sleep do you usually get? RP: Around 6:50 am. I used to get more sleep before I started living with my new man. I need 7 hours and a bit more sometimes.

AP: What is your favorite thing about the beauty industry? RP: The fact that I grew up surrounded by it.

AP: Least favorite thing. RP: False promises. You don’t get Botox-like results with a cream!

AP: Who is your mentor? RP: I am still looking for a professional mentor. As for motherhood, I must say that my Mom was a great example of how to be a good working mother.

AP: Words of advice for young women starting their careers today. RP: Don’t deny the fact that you are a woman, use it well. It is a precious gift. Never forget that life is 90% about hard work and 10% about luck and opportunity. So be prepared to put in the hard work to get what you want.

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