June 23rd 2014
Going South: L'Wren Scott for Caudalie
October 18th 2013
Imogen Edwards-Jones pins down model and designer L'Wren Scott to find out her beauty secrets and how her love affair with Caudalie began
There are many intriguing things about L’Wren Scott, model, muse, designer and the distinctly more fashionable half of Mick Jagger. Firstly she purrs like a panther and has one of those sexy American drawls that could sell cream buns to supermodels. Secondly, at 6ft 3 in her stockinged feet she is certainly one of the tallest women I have ever met. But thirdly, she is the same age as me.
Yes! We’re both 1967 babies. But she looks really, seriously, most definitely, rather a lot BETTER than I do!
So, as she flew in to London this week to promote one of her life long loves – Caudalie Eau de Beaute spray, which she’s rebranded with a black swirling grapevine design - I pinned her up against the wall (almost literally) of a smart London club in a desperate, frantic, rabid attempt to squeeze out as many beauty truths from the Oracle in the short time we had together.
Me: My God you’re tall! (Not a great start)
L’: It’s been said before.
She shakes my hand; it is positive and strong. I like her already. She then picks up what looks like a long, tall, glass of pondweed.
Me: What the hell?
L’: It’s juice.
Me: What sort of juice? (I feel unwell)
L’: Cucumber, ginger, spinach – I am a keen juicer, a friend of mine got me into it as a way of having more energy and I remember saying to him how much I was loving all the energy and he said: “Darling you’re not supposed to eat three meals a day AND juice!” And I said: “Why the hell not?”
Me: So you do eat? What? Like real food?
L’: Eggs, granola, yoghurt, seasonal fruits – not shipped in. Lunch is usually fish.
Me: And a big fat glass of wine? (Pathetically hopeful)
L’: I am not really a drinker.
Me: Oh. What, never?
L’: Well, if I am in Mathilde’s vineyard (Mathilde Thomas, founder of Caudalie) and she brings out a fabulous glass of red wine it is rather hard to refuse, you have to think about the etiquette situation. But I can drink wine.
Me: Just not a birdbath?
L’: It is about discipline and having boundaries, I am quite disciplined, if I am not I feel it, and feel very guilty, and think oh, God I’ve got to get back onto my programme.
Me: So you work out?
L’: I do but I don’t get obsessively honed and toned in the gym. I think you need to do 20 minutes a day of movement and cardio. I have my routine (17min on the bike or the elliptical and some stretches on the mats) but if I can’t, I use the stairs, walk to work, or around the block, to get my blood going if I am tired.
Me: That’s impressive.
L’: But I am not always disciplined. I can eat packets of crisps, they are sooo bad for you, but I just can’t help myself.
L’: If they’re there, at an airport, I can’t stop myself. The salty nuts on the plane. You have to live a little.
Me: So you’re a salt girl?
L’: No, I love chocolate. I am obsessed with Rocco Chocolate. I really try not to go in the shop, though, as it is a danger zone. So I try and make a list and send someone otherwise… Have you ever been in there? Aside from the smell… it is all the old moulds from 18th and 19th Century France and the packaging and the paper, I get so excited. I love Easter as I get to buy all their eggs.
Me: Can you do a cheap choc?
L’: Oh yeah, I can do a Fruit and Nut.
Me: That’s quite cheap! Now - do you actually have a skin care routine?
L’: (She laughs) Oh God. It always makes me laugh. Your mother always says to take care of your skin in your teens and you never do. When you’re in your 20s you think maybe I should wash my face, and in your 30s you think maybe I should use cream.
Me: Don’t tell me you’re the sort who falls asleep covered in make-up?
L’: I was never a huge make-up wearer. But if I was working I would make sure that I took it all off, to protect my nice cotton sheets if nothing else.
Me: So you and Caudalie – when did the love story begin?
L’: In 1997. It was a very hot summer in Paris and I popped into the Pharmacy to get an Evian spray. I love a French Pharmacy. It is one of the first things I do when I go to France. There’s nothing like it. I get all nervous and twitchy. I’ll rummage around; find something for my hair, a dry shampoo. They have everything. Anyway, so the Pharmacist says: (she slips into not bad French here) ‘I am going to show you something so good and so new, close your eyes and mouth, keep them closed and I shall spray.’ And I was like oh my God, I’ll take it and I have been obsessed and a fan ever since. I discovered it just a year after launch in 1996. It is a time-saving device, it is a skin saver and like having a spa in a bottle.
Me: My sister is obsessed with it too. She always has it on the plane.
L’: Do you think Mathilde has put something secret in here that we don’t know about? Because I take it e-very-where. Not just on the plane but everywhere. Have you tried this one?
She sprays me full on in the face. It’s nice.
L’: They’ve just finished this one. The mint is so fresh in there, what do you think?
Me: It is fabulous. Have you tried their creams?
Me: The ones that make you look much younger than you actually are?
L’: (She leans in big time) No! I need those! (She doesn’t) But Mathilde and I have the same philosophy. She likes to keep things simple. One thing in a bottle, one thing in a cream and wear one thing, a dress – it’s all got to be simple. It was hard not to fall in love with her, as we are quite similar.
Me: So good food, good lifestyle, good spa?
L’: I am not really a spa girl. But I did go to the Caudalie Spa in New York the day before yesterday and I had the most amazing treatment. Normally I can only do 45 minutes before I have to get out. I have a short attention span. 45 mins and then I’m gone. But this was an amazing Cabernet body scrub that left me feeling so smooth and glamorous and relaxed, and then there’s a sommelier serving the most fabulous wine afterwards. I felt like a princess. I didn’t drink the wine though, because I don’t drink before flights but my two friends who I took did.
Me: Is that a tip? No wine before a flight?
L’: It’s to be avoided. I do drink lots of water on flights. I get a giant bottle. It stops the cabin crew from having to come back and forth.
Me: And your clothes. I have a friend who has lots of them because she says you design so well for the tall girl.
L’: Not really.
Me: Maybe you know the tall girl better?
L’: I am not a tall girl; I am a GIANT girl. So if I make something for me, I make the proportions much longer, that’s all. My philosophy is all about the silhouette and the female form, which is like the bottle that Mathilde and I have designed.
My new fall collection is very much inspired by Gustav Klimt so swirls and mosaics are on my mind.
Me: Who is your biggest thrill to have dressed?
L’: Your friend. It is not about whom I have dressed. It is about how it looks and if someone says: “What a beautiful girl.” Not what great make-up. Or what great clothes. A ‘beautiful girl’ means a job well done.
So there you have it: juice, go for a walk, don’t really drink alcohol, the occasional bar of chocolate and/or packet for crisps, a L’Wren Scott frock and plenty of Caudalie Eau de Beaute.