If many years of being a beauty editor and interviewing some of the world’s most beautiful models has taught me one thing, it’s this: Genetics count for a lot. So many times in my career have I sat down to quiz supermodels with buttery complexions, thick, luscious lengths and perfectly made-up faces on their beauty secrets and have come away with no real insights at all. Because the truth is, so much of it is down to genetics. In fact, one supermodel I spoke to a few years ago informed she simply washes her face with a splash of tap water in the morning and she’s good to go.
More often than not, I would walk away feeling hard done by and wondering where I could be going wrong with my own beauty routine. It poses the question: How is it possible that all of these beautiful women that I deem icons can have such a disregard for beauty products themselves? So, after many years of feeling let down, I had started to feel a bit deflated (call me a cynic). But then, last week, I found myself sat down with Heidi Klum (via Zoom, of course) chatting about her life-long relationship with beauty, and I found myself fully captivated.
You see, it’s rare to come across someone in real life that looks quite as picture-perfect as Heidi Klum does (she herself admits that even she doesn’t look like Heidi Klum when she doesn’t have her glam on). But, at 47 years old, it’s very clear that, even when she’s makeup-free, Heidi has been doing something right all of these years. I mean, that skin?! And, as it turns out, her beauty routine is extensive. Sure, at face value, it might seem down-to-earth (there’s a definitive lack of Hollywood pretentiousness and shallowness), but her beauty values are considered, mindful and deeply integrated into her daily life. Intrigued? Keep scrolling for the six beauty lessons I learned from Heidi Klum herself.
#1: A Good Beauty Routine Comes Down to Common Sense
“A lot of beauty comes down to common sense. I get bombarded with products from all over the world, and I love trying all of those different things, but for me, the basics are most important. When I eat well and keep hydrated I can see the difference in my face when I look in the mirror. You’ve got to look in the mirror and see if there is something up. That way, you know if you break out it could be because of the garbage you ate. If you look dry and your skin doesn’t snap back, you’re not hydrated. If you just look at yourself and listen, you know what to do.”
#2: What You Put Into Your Body Is More Important Than What You Put on It
“For me, beauty is all about food. There is only so much you can do topically. I learned that a really long time ago. I’ve been in this industry since 1992 and I’ve always believed you are what you eat. Having said that, a lot of work has to go into every meal to make sure you’ve got all of the fatty acids, vitamins, antioxidants and hydration you need. We can’t do it all because it’s a lot of work to prepare. Often, I’ll find the time to do the prep (like put chia seeds in to soak overnight), but not everyone has the time and freedom to do things like this, especially as we get older! I find that a supplement is a great add-on to my already pretty healthy diet. A couple of years ago I started taking one Perfectil a day because I was getting older and thought, ‘What do I have to lose?!’ Of course, no pill will solve your beauty problems. Food always comes first, but I do think it’s a good boost.”
#3: Baby Shampoo Makes for the Best Facial Cleanser
“A long time ago, I went to see an eye doctor because I had a sty and they told me to wash my face with Johnson & Johnson Baby Shampoo. Some days I’ll get home from work and have multiple layers of fake eyelashes on and lots of makeup and they told me that Baby Shampoo will mean I can really get into the eye and clean all of the makeup out. It made sense to me! Now it’s all I use. It’s not super-harsh unlike all of these products at the moment that strip your skin. Personally, they don’t work for me.”
#4: Coconut Oil Is the Best Multitasker
“I love using just plain, old coconut oil that you get in the supermarket. Especially in Los Angeles right now [where Heidi lives], everything is so dry and I’m outside a lot. I love to lather up some coconut oil in my hair and on my body too. It’s so inexpensive and it just makes everything feel so yummy and nourished. In general, I like going more towards the natural things instead of the sorts of products that are full of perfumes and astringents. I really love trying all of those things but very rarely do I actually stick with it. I’d rather use coconut oil.”
#5: Less Is Always More
“I love transforming. That’s why I love my job! But at the same time, it’s just dress-up. It’s one thing if I’m getting ready for a shoot and I have to pile all of this makeup on, but what you do in real life is totally different. Over the years I’ve learned so many makeup tips that are fit for the camera (always more powder!), but I could never apply them to my day-to-day life. In the real world, you do real things. For filming, I have to pile it all on so that people can still recognise me! I have adapted a different look over the years. I like to show the skin more and keep things light. I think it’s nice to see the texture of your skin. If I’m not filming, I usually just go for a tinted moisturiser, mascara and blush.”
#6: Learn How to Squeeze Spots Properly
“I tell my 16-year-old daughter that she must not pick or touch her pimples, but I do it myself. Sometimes you just have to! Over the years I’ve learned how to squeeze them properly, and that’s the key. You must never do it with your nails. You need to do it with your knuckles, go deep and really get the whole thing. If you don’t get it all properly, it will take longer to heal than if you have just left it alone, and it will leave scarring too! I find that Mario Badescu Drying Lotion does the job, but only once you’ve got it all out.”
Shop Heidi's Go-To Products