Named the face of Yves Saint Laurent’s fragrance, Black Opium, British top model Edie Campbell is also a keen horse rider and an art and literature buff. FAB recently spoke with the model with 100k followers to find out how she sees her career progressing, what she’s okay with revealing about her life and her daily beauty routine.
Horse Boots & Stilettos
At the Campbells, style runs in the family. With a grand-mother who was a successful model in the ’50s and a mother (Sopie Hicks) who is a former stylist and fashion editor at “Tatler” and “British Vogue”, Edie was perhaps bound to head into modeling. Starting at the age of 15, the young girl soon found herself juggling photo shoots and studies at the prestigious Courtauld Institute of Art in London. While she graduated with a first class honours in History of Art, the champion equestrian also won the Glorious Goodwood Cup, the oh-so chic British horse-race that involves as much know-how on the saddle as style among the socialite attendees. Full of humor, Campbell admits she sometimes breaks the strict regimen of riding: “I just ride. And occasionally I will play tennis, but that’s really just because I like to get dressed up in those white outfits.”
From Baby Blonde To Raven Black Hair
Since 2009, when Edie Campbell was discovered by “British Vogue” Fashion Editor, her career got a huge kick-start. Mario Testino photographed Edie alongside Kate Moss for Burberry – the campaign toured the world and marked the beginning of her modeling journey. With her delicate pout, the charming Françoise Hardy-esque doll face was everywhere to be seen, from “Vogue” in the UK, France and Italy, to “V”, “ID”, “W” and “Love” to “The Gentlewoman”, and of course, on most catwalks. Then, at 23, the Londoner decided to morph from her honey blonde locks, which had typecast her for so long as the quintessential It-Brit, into a shaggy black crop that screamed rock’n’roll at a David Bowie-era concert.
“Edie went from this baby blonde to jet-black hair but she had been playing with this idea of chopping her hair for quite some time. Yet we waited until a punk-inspired shoot to take the plunge. This transformation triggered a tremendous boost of confidence, and while she was already successful, the edgy cut got the work flooding in as designers understood what she really was about,” says model agency Viva London’s director Natalie Hand to website elle.fr. This boldness truly proved a skyrocket choice, as Edie won Model of the Year at the British Fashion Awards just a few months later. From one photo shoot to the next, Edie is a frequent flyer who never travels without her favorite books. “Novels mostly, Vonnegut and Jeanette Winterson. At the moment, I’m reading Mohsin Hamid’s new book and also a book of poems to make you cry, just to check the tear ducts are still working!”
Black Opium’s On-set Secrets
Since 2014, Edie Campbell has been the official face of YSL’s Black Opium and for the model, shooting the famous fragrance’s latest campaign in China was memorable: “It was my first time in Shanghai. It was amazing, we shot in some great places, and it was so nice to see the city by night! Running through the streets at 4am as the first few people were starting to wake and leave their houses was memorable. From dusk till dawn! All the locations we shot at were visually very powerful, so I have some amazing scenes stamped into my mind’s eye! Like the amazing Bund Sightseeing Tunnel where we shot.”
Genuinely interested in fragrance, Edie finds it rather fascinating: “I think fragrance should be almost unnoticeable on people – like a quiet hum in the background. With some people, fragrance becomes irreversibly intertwined with their identity, and is essentially used to represent them, so it’s quite powerful. It can be a person’s presence in their absence.” Her favorite scents? “The smell of horses and cut grass. And then the scents that I associate with my family and friends.”
On the make-up side, the model believes in a backstage trick called Charlotte’s Magic Cream, which works like a charm on tired and dull skin. Edie relies on it for shows but also in her normal routine. On a daily basis, she uses YSL’s Le Teint Touche Éclat Foundation to make her skin glow and erase signs of fatigue. At night, before leaving the house, she sticks to the essentials: “The Baby Doll Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils and the black eyeliner are my favorite. Because I spend so much time wearing and having my make-up done at work, I really have had enough by the time I get home! So these two products are great – minimum effort, maximum effect.”
With her porcelain skin, this natural blonde’s piece of advice to FAB is downright simple: stay away from the sun! “I am much more disciplined about putting SPF on my face because I burn like a newborn baby – SPF50 all over!” After years of photo shoots, she did her homework and has picked up many tips, among which highlighting comes up number one: “Stick some Vaseline on your cheekbones and you’ll instantly look much better!” As a beauty icon, Edie also tries to maintain a healthy lifestyle and never fails to remove her make-up at night. Not just a pretty face, sure, but still a truly inspiring model.