One of the original ‘90s supermodels, Elle ‘The Body’ Macpherson talks style, supergreens and her summer havens. Read our Elle Macpherson interview, below…
What are you wearing today? A black leather midi dress with a circle skirt from Donna Karan, five-inch Aquazzura gladiator sandals, a necklace with my children’s names inscribed on it and black leather-effect nail polish on my fingers and toes.
Country or town?London is beautiful in the sunshine but growing up in Australia made me an outdoors person. WhenI was a child, we’d take off in our 1970s campervan and head to the lakes to go waterskiing. Then, as I got older, I got intosurfing and windsurfing – I remember just running around with long blonde hair and getting chocolate brown, which I would never do to my skin now!
The perfect summer weekend is… In Aspen, Colorado, where we go road biking. I love picking up new sports and biking is my latest passion. My kids have inherited their love of the great outdoors from me too. Flynn plays polo so we go to Windsor and Richmond Park a lot to stick and ball. And we have a house by the lakes in the Cotswolds where we love to fish. Fly-fishing, line fishing, you name it – then we pan-fry our spoils for supper.
Are you a good cook? Ummm… I wouldn’t say that! I feed my children – they like my crumbed veal best.
Favourite spa? I love Daylesford for pampering. I’m also really into lymphatic drainage treatments right now. Regular appointments at Dr Sebagh on Wimpole Street are my guilty pleasure.
Everything but the kitchen sink or perfect capsule wardrobe packer? I like streamlined packing. I’m a big Melissa Odabash fan so I always travel with a couple of her swimsuits. Banjo and Matilda also has amazing cashmere for lounging around in, and I love a pair or two of Met jeans.
What’s on your holiday reading list this year? Lots! My mother was the bookworm of the family. Tall, blonde, beautiful, broad-shouldered and with long, long legs, she always had a book in her hand – so I guess I inherited my love of reading from her. I just finished Mom & Me & Mom by Maya Angelou and would love to read another book she’s written called I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. My friend Russell Simmons has also published Success In Stillness, which sounds really inspirational.
You are ‘The Body’ – what do you always have in your fridge that keeps you in shape? I live near Daylesford on Westbourne Grove so I shop for fresh vegetables and fish everyday. Flynn loves taramasalata and we stockpile Australian vegemite. Then always water and my supergreens.
Ah yes, tell us about your new elixir of health… I went to Dr Simone Laubscher PhD on Harley Street a few years back as I was experiencing all these weird symptoms. I didn’t feel vibrant, my skin was dry, I was moody and craving a lot of sugar. She said that my body had become very acidic. So we started working on something to alkalize my body and we tweaked and tweaked and tweaked until we had a supplement that really worked. The result is The Super Elixir that contains 45 ingredients – including everything from fruits and vegetables to digestive enzymes and Chinese herbs – all in a ratio designed to improve the overall health and vitality of the body.
Still a gym bunny? I think I’ve de-focused on looking fabulous on the outside. As I‘ve matured, I’m more focused on feeling good and being balanced. Stable moods, strong vitality, sleeping well, great metabolism. I could run or lift weights forever, but it won’t help me if I’m not feeling good. I don’t force myself to work out anymore – I try to be happy as I am.
How can we steal some of your body confidence? When a woman walks in a room, I always look at her silhouette – the shape of her body and the presence that’s behind it. Great lingerie can change the shape of the body according to what we want to achieve for ourselves each day – whether that is to feel glamorous and sexy or carefree and sporty. That’s one of the reasons I created Elle Macpherson Intimates lingerie – to give women that power to change their body shape and know that they look great beneath their clothes.
Do you remember shopping for your first bra? I do. It was all matchy-matchy between the knickers and bra and it all had to be very pretty. I was about 13 and had nothing to put in the bra, so I had to stuff it with tissues to make it work.
How has your beauty regimen changed as you’ve got older? Less is definitely more as we age. I’m a big fan of a dark eye using black kohl in a way that looks smoky and smudgy. But it has to be teamed with paired-back skin – not much foundation, not much lipstick. Just work it with a bit of an intense gaze – that’s what I learnt from modelling. It makes you more charismatic.
Do you still see your fellow supermodels from the old days? Claudia [Schiffer] and Elizabeth Hurley used to have children at the same school so we’d see each other when we were dropping them off in the mornings. Naomi [Campbell] and I see each other from time to time and I saw Cindy [Crawford] not long ago. There’s a couple of other girls I follow on Instagram. Caroline Murphy is great and I love seeing what Gisele and Miranda Kerr are up to.
What are you working on right now? My dream is to create my own swimwear line but I’m really busy launching The Body in America, which is an evolution of my Elle Macpherson Intimates lingerie line into a performance, fit and silhouette driven sub-brand. I also want to expand my beauty product line into more gadgets and tools women can use at home.
How do you balance life with work? My bottom line is to always put the children first. My children’s schedule goes in the diary first, then I layer on my personal stuff, like my weekly lymphatic drainage appointment or a meeting with a friend. Then my work fits around that – life first, then work.
Guilty TV pleasure?I loved Glenn Close and Rose Byrne in Damages – and I watch X Factor. But only because my son loves it!
Secret talent? I’m learning the ukulele online!
On your iPod right now… Drake.
If you weren’t in the fashion and beauty industry what would you be? A lawyer or a schoolteacher.
Biggest myth about Elle Macpherson? That I’m a control freak.
Food vice… Dark chocolate and espresso. Preferably together.
Always in your handbag… My iPhone, mints, Lucas’ Pawpaw Ointment and my glasses, because I can’t see!
In three words you are… Honest, open and willing.
Greatest inspiration in life… Love.
The Super Elixir is £80 and comes in a UV resistant caddy designed by glass artist, Jasper Dowling. Re-fills, £52.
Originally featured in our July 2014 issue.