As this month is all about Signature Style, Fashion & Beauty here at Design the Lifestyle YOU Desire HQ, I got up close with the lovely Clémence von Mueffling @beautyandwb where she talks about her new book, French Beauty Secrets and more.
Tell us a bit about yourself:
When did Beauty & Well-Being become important to you?
Beauty has always been an important foundation for my upbringing. Both my mother and grandmother were beauty editors at French Vogue, so they began teaching me the ultimate beauty tips while I was learning my ABCs. I began paying more attention to health and well-being when I had my children and started becoming more conscious of the ingredients that actually go into my products and foods. Since then, I have always valued organic products, clean formulations and brands with eco-friendly philosophies.
What sparked your passion for healthy food and living?
When I moved to New York 12 years ago, the urban environment was immediately overwhelming. I felt the need to create healthy habits at home and in my work environment so I wouldn’t feel so burdened by the intensity of the city landscape.
What does your day-to-day life look like?
Mornings are busy! I wake up early to get my twins ready for school. I drink room temperature water or warm water (in the winter), with or without lemon. Aiming for an ‘au naturel’ makeup look, I’ve established a makeup routine that is light and quick. Once I arrive at the office, I have breakfast and my workday can start. When I am not in the office, I try to incorporate 45 minutes to an hour of exercise, whether it is walking, biking, doing Pilates or practising yoga. More recently I have started boxing, which is a fabulous cardio exercise.
Can you share your journey on becoming Wellness Guru?
I am not sure that I have reached wellness guru status yet, but my expertise in the field of beauty and wellness has reached a new level since publishing my book, Ageless Beauty. Throughout the writing process, I conducted copious amounts of research and interviewed some of the most renowned beauty experts and medical professionals in France.
Tell us about your book ‘Ageless Beauty’.
Ageless Beauty is a book that weaves wisdom from three generations of French beauty editors with insider tips from the world’s top beauty experts. Creating a wonderful guide that any woman can cherish throughout her life, I share both timeless and age-specific information in three categories: Jeunesse (20-35), Plénitude (35-55), and Maturité (55+).
This book lifts the veil and shares the very best, research-based French insider beauty secrets about products and methods at every price point for people of all ages! While I do discuss some luxurious treatments, I also explore many free routines that can truly help bring out your most beautiful self. You won’t find any fads or temporary trends, just tried-and-true tips.
What are your top 5 tips on starting a Self-Care Practice?
- Don’t over-scrub or exfoliate too often. Treat your face as you would treat your favourite silk blouse: care for it delicately like a precious, sensitive object.
- People underestimate the power of massage. You can drastically improve the quality of your face by massaging your face regularly. Massaging tones the skin improves circulation and minimizes lines. Best of all: it’s free! You can also improve the appearance of the skin on other parts of the body, such as your legs, your feet, and your décolleté, through massage.
- One of my favourite tried-and-true beauty rituals from Ageless Beauty guarantees the skin an ethereal glow: double-cleansing. The ritual doesn’t have to be a chore– think of it as a relaxing nightly treat for yourself, especially if you find products with a fragrance you love.
- Enhance your best features, and work with what you’ve got! Everyone has something to be proud of!
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. Even the smallest changes to your beauty routine can make a difference, and that’s something to feel good about.
Can you tell us the importance of having a beauty regime in your forties and how to get started?
It is never too late to start a routine or improve an existing routine! In your 40s, the quality of your skin is changing and it is important to change your skin regimen with it. Instead of turning to harsh treatments, use adequate hydrating products, regular massage your face, and use a good SPF when you go outdoors.
What is your advice on staying on top of your overall well-being?
Good sleep and nutrition are essential, as well as strong spinal flexibility and joint mobility. This has nothing to do with muscles, a flat belly, or a hazelnut-shaped butt. People think that muscle work is everything, but too much muscle development impairs mobility. You need your muscles, of course, but deep muscles.
Consider deep stretches that will tone and give length to your muscles. If you start later in life, yoga or tai chi are your best options. Hatha yoga is the best for movement. Swimming and walking are also always easily available to everyone.
Remember, a young body is a flexible body. If you want to stay young, you have to move. Vitalité is key!
What are your top 7 French Beauty tips?
- Double cleanse!
- Massage your face.
- Don’t use harsh treatments!
- Invest in a good hairbrush, like Mason Pearson.
- Find a signature perfume that makes you feel good.
- Reduce your sugar intake to 28 grams per day at most.
- Be kind to yourself! You can strive for healthy skin, but it does not have to be flawless.
Which are your top daily beauty products?
- Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Botanical Cleansing Oil: To start my cleansing routine, I first use cleansing oil. Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Botanical Oil is incredibly silky and smells so wonderful. It is a great way to relax after a long day at work.
- Camelia and Rose Hydrating Cleanser by Pai: This milky cleanser is perfect my cleansing routine because it is very gentle and perfect for sensitive skin. Rinse with a wet piece of terry cloth et voilà.
- By Terry Hydra-Bronzing Tinted Serum: The light texture melts instantly into the skin and immediately gives me a luminous tan. I use a sponge to apply it evenly.
- Sisley Instant Éclat. I usually mix and match products that give me the best results. Mixing products with a complexion enhancer, such as the Sisley Instant Éclat, adds a sheen that gives me more luminous, radiant skin.
- Alexandra Soveral Midnight Oil: Alexandra Soveral is a famous facialist based in the UK who makes her own line of skincare from 100% organic ingredients. The Midnight Oil is one of my new favourite beauty products. I massage it thoroughly into my face in the evening and always wake up with a healthy glow.
- Kure Bazaar natural nail polishes are “formulated with your well-being in mind.” I am always impressed with how beautifully and effortlessly their polishes last. My favourite colour for the Spring/Summer is Vinyl.
- A hand and feet cream by La Roche-Posay. Feet and hands always look so much better and younger when they are well hydrated!
- A natural deodorant from Soapwalla! After recently trying this brand, I’ve fallen in love! The smell-good deodorant is made of totally natural ingredients that are actually effective in combatting sweat and body odour, unlike many organic deodorant brands.
- A good hairbrush by Mason Pearson. This is one of my absolute “can’t-live-without” products whose quality makes all the difference. For several years, I have been using a brush that features a mixture of nylon and natural boar bristles, both of which are completely smooth to prevent friction or breakage.
- A black mascara: Le Volume de Chanel. Used by the 3 generations of beauty editors of the family, this mascara has never failed us. It is definitely a beauty-editor-approved must-have!
- My perfume: Tuberose Le Jour by AERIN. It is the perfect daytime scent with a delicate mix of Neroli, Orange Flower, and cool Jasmine. I find it to be feminine and luminous at the same time.
What are the highlights of your career thus far?
Publishing the book! Without publishing my book and promoting it at events and talks across the US, I wouldn’t have met so many wonderful women in my field of work. The book will also be published in 2020 in Russia, Japan, Vietnam, and China!
What are you currently working on?
At Beauty and Well-Being, the month of September issue is dedicated to Inspiring Women. I am currently working with my team on generating a list of fabulous women to interview in that special issue.
Do you have any words of wisdom that you would like to pass on?
Our goal should be to become the best possible version of ourselves, outside and in, at any age.
*Do connect with me on Instagram at @DesignTheLifestyleYouDesire for behind the scenes, daily updates, inspiration and more!