Jennifer Rock talks cars, SPF and her driving pet peeves

Cars, whether we like it or not, become an integral part of our lives. Quickly, they become something we depend on and a majority of life's interactions take place within those four doors. From road trips to football training, school plays to dates; a car comes with us everywhere.

Soon, the little bits and pieces of our lives stay in the car, like a spare pair of shoes and a much-needed moisturizer. And it suddenly becomes the go-to search point for missing items. It also can become a form of escape, from singing bad 1980's songs at the top of your lungs, to just taking a quiet minute alone just for you.

With all this in mind, we decided to ask skin expert Jennifer Rock aka The Skin-Nerd about everything car-related; from her favourite Volvo model to her driving pet peeves.

What is your favourite Volvo model?

My personal favourite is my current baby, the Volvo XC40. Sexy, safe, spacious, yet not too bulky for nipping across the city centre. I love that it is super comfortable and connected for long distance travel, with plenty of room in the passenger footwell for at least two pairs of heels... Not that I would know that.

Is road safety on your radar as a driver?

As a person who drives an average of 1000km per week, you witness all sorts of irrational decisions being made on our roads and it makes you become alert to your own behaviours and how best to react. I'm a parent too, so I'm definitely very safety-conscious.

What are your must-haves in your glove compartment?

At any given time, in my glove compartment, you'll find a Cleanse Off Mitt, a spritz, SPF, hand cream, toothpaste, a phone charger and plenty of snacks as I essentially live in my car.

Do we need to wear SPF while in the car?

Why wouldn't you? Of course, you do. UVA rays, the UV rays that get to us year-round, can travel through glass so it's important that you SPF up your face, hands and any other exposed areas.

What is your favourite song/playlist to belt out in the car?

I spend so much time on the road that I need to spice it up constantly. At the moment, my main driving song is "Let Me Live" by Rudimental. It reflects my personal life at the moment, as everyone is giving me advice on how to live happily but I am actually ridiculously happy each day anyway. Singing in the car is a form of therapy in my eyes.

Do you have any driving pet peeves? 

I am actually quite a calm driver! I used to be annoyed if people didn't thank me for letting them into lanes ahead of me and then I learned about the concept of the "transactional thank you". I don't want to be a person who only does nice things in exchange for appreciation! Now, I let folk out in traffic and if they say thank you, great, but if not, I reckon I've been polite and am happy out with myself. You really have no clue where someone has been or are on their way to, so judging or being irate doesn't do anyone any good.

What is your earliest driving memory?

Being brought on a road trip and singing "She'll be coming 'round the mountain..." in Mayo - I couldn't understand why there was so much grass and no beach! It was a family holiday, we had a boot full of loot with a classic tape cassette for the tunes.

I also remember being chauffeur driven to recorder, ballet, hip hop, speech and drama and grinds. The joy of having friends in the car with your parents and speaking in secret code has not been forgotten.

What’s the best road-trip you have ever been on? 

Matt and I went to Australia with a partner of mine for three months. Some of the best days of my life were on that trip: whale watching, swimming with dolphins, working on a farm, driving the ocean road and cycling for hours! The three of us lived in a small van where our kitchen folded down into a bed. It was fantastic.

Your top tips on how to keep a child or teenager occupied on a long journey?

I have this down to an art-form: it's just music and games. I still make poor Matt play Eye Spy. Music is a language that can calm or distract anyone. It's certainly a part of Matt's life now. He looks forward to blaring his questionable music taste when I drop him to school.

How do you make a long-drive more comfortable? 
My phone is my life, and having my XC40 integrate with it easily and safely makes all of my long drives much better. I can play my Spotify and call totally hands-free to get some work done. The heated seat and steering wheel definitely help too.

For more information on all Volvo models visit www.volvocars.ie/eva
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