Brands We Desire: Votary

Votary is a fairly new skincare brand to the beauty market but one that has caught our attention in a big way. Not least because of its signature green glass bottles, which as well as aesthetically beautiful also acts as a natural preservative, but also because of its powerful plant oils and active ingredients, which are gorgeous on the skin.

So, who is the face behind this fabulous brand?! Launched in 2015, Votary was founded by British makeup artist Arabella Preston and business partner, Charlotte Semler. Developed to suit a range of skin types, this luxury range of natural face oils fuses modernity and simplicity  for a beautiful, glowing complexion. Regardless of your skin type, Arabella believes that these plant based oils are much better to use than creams, allowing the ingredients to absorb into your skin and reap the benefits. From cleansing oils, to oil serums, to facial oils, Votary has a full complement.

Oils, by nature, are relaxing, particularly with the aromas that go with them. So, cleansing with an oil is much more therapeutic than with a cream and as a result you are more likely to take your time and massage it in, allowing your skin to soak up the goodness. If you haven't tried oils in your skincare yet, then Votary could well be the brand that persuades you. The scent of each oil is divine, real natural oil smells, not perfumed fragrances, again adding to the sensuality of the brand.

The finest of natural ingredients goes into making these products, so without mineral oils, petro-chemicals and unnecessary preservatives, the only ingredients that go in are those that you have happy for your body to absorb. All formulations are tested by Arabella herself, and as a makeup artist and former beauty editor, she knows what works on the skin.

 “I am passionate about the skin-transforming power of natural oils – that means oils that are derived from plants – whether it’s a vegetable, fruit, seed or flower. Natural plant oils are packed full of nature’s super-ingredients such as Omega-3 fatty acids and are rich in anti-inflammatory and anti-ageing nutrients such as Alpha Linoleic and Ellagic Acid. Votary’s natural plant oils absorb and penetrate, nourishing and hydrating your skin. They won’t sit on the surface of your skin in the way creams or man-made mineral oils do. Because Votary products absorb into the skin so beautifully they make a fantastic base for make-up. I always prep the skin of my high-profile clients with Votary facial oils “ Arabella Preston, Votary Co-Founder.

A very sustainable brand, which people are increasingly concerned about today, packaging is recyclable, products are not tested on animals and animal ingredients are not used.

Developed for all skin types, you will find (and love!) an oil suitable for you. Our favourite picks are below:


Votary Cleansing Oil is one of the most beautiful cleansing oil you could use. It is light and fragrant, and super gentle. Although it can be used to remove makeup, it is just too nice a product for this function, so, for me, it is reserved for a second cleanse or a morning cleanse. It leaves your skin feeling clean and soft.

 ‘You’ve been told that clean skin should feel stretched and tight. That’s simply not true. Massage this natural oil into your skin, and follow it with a hot flannel for a fantastic way to cleanse your face and remove make-up. It leaves your skin feeling clean, soft and plumped. I use this as soon as I get out of the shower in the morning and just before bedtime’ Arabella Preston, Votary Co-Founder

I've never been convinced that tight skin meant it was clean, to me this spelt trouble! So it was good to hear an expert tell me that this was not a good thing. I want my face feeling soft and hydrated immediately after cleansing. 


This little bottle of treatment oil has been my saviour on many an occasion, and none more so than right now as the seasons change and my skin is in need of a helping hand. The Votary Rose Maroc and Sandalwood Facial Oil has been developed specifically to nourish dehydrated skin (which I have) and it does the most wonderful job. I find that most people could benefit from this oil during changing seasons, when central heating can play havoc with your skin and leave most of us dehydrated. I suffer from this condition all year round (admittedly not to the same extent in the summer months) so I have this oil on hand all the time. It quenches my skin and immediately relieves it from the stresses of dehydration. I use a few drops at night before my moisturiser. It is directed to be used alone, after your serum but I still like to apply a little moisturiser after, it just works better for me this way. It's a great product to use a few massaging techniques with, which is very beneficial to your face.

 ‘I use this as overnight first-aid for my face, and wake up to baby-soft skin.’ Arabella Preston, Votary Co-Founder

The video below, from Arabella Preston, discusses how to tackle dehydrated skin: