Our Head of Sales for Europe and the Middle East, Valerie Bucek, has a passion for clean beauty and travel, and she can't resist a designer handbag – or a Wiener Schnitzel!

"My background is in marketing but I moved into sales because I like the more fast-paced environment. In marketing things go slowly, and you're working years ahead. I love that in sales I can create strategies, but things move quickly and you see the results of your work sooner. You're always in stores, and on the move, looking into new markets.

"I've worked in high-end cosmetics for a long time, but La Perla Beauty feels really different because it combines luxury with its clean beauty mantra. Creating sustainable products is so important for our future, not just for brands, but for the planet and for us personally.

"One of the easiest things we can do at home is recycle, so I’m a big fan of that. I’m mindful of packaging when grocery shopping, and I check ingredient lists for anything that isn't sustainable. I now get around by bicycle, when the London weather permits! I like to do my bit, and I love how La Perla Beauty does too, with its ethically sourced ingredients and refillable bottles."

What does our motto 'confidence is beautiful' mean to you?

I believe that you exude true beauty when you are confident. I think confidence acts like a layer to your beauty, It's like your aura, and it bridges the gap between what's visual to everyone else, and what's inside you. Carrying yourself in a confident way gives you that extra something – as they say in French, that je ne sais quoi!

What's your favourite hobby?

I love to ski. It's a great way to enjoy nature and gives me a real sense of freedom. When I rush down the slopes, I feel like nothing can stop me. Living in a big city where's there are lots of limits, it's nice to be able to let go and feel free. My hometown of Salzburg is my favourite place in Austria because it's so close to the mountains.

One of our key concepts is 'by women, for women'. Is this important to you?

Definitely. Firstly, I think it really forms a strong bond between the women who use the products and those who create them. It reminds me of a sorority, a supportive community. From a personal perspective, I don't know what I'd do without my group of girlfriends in London, especially during lockdown. I lived in Paris for six years and some of my friends from there moved here at a similar time, so we've shared important experiences.

Who is your inspiration?

From both a career perspective and a personal one, it would be Diane Von Furstenberg. As the daughter of two Holocaust survivors, she hasn't had it easy. Despite this, she's worked hard to create her own fashion label while also being a great mother. I love her strong personality and how she proves you can do both family and business at the same time.

Do you have any secret beauty tips?

I wouldn't say it's a big secret but flying, especially long-distance, can be tough on your skin. I always slather on lots of body lotion and put on one of those chic face masks. I look like a ghost but I don't care! It helps you stay refreshed and hydrated which is all that matters. I'm yet to try it on the Eurostar but maybe that's something I need to explore – under my face mask, of course!