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Model Barbara Palvin on wedding beauty, infrared saunas and the one trend she just can't get behind

“I learned everything 'beauty' through the industry,” Barbara Palvin tells me via Zoom one sunny winter afternoon. The model is reflecting on her 17-year career, and how far she's come since being scouted at the age of 13 on the streets of Budapest.

She’s been named a Victoria’s Secret Angel, walked countless runway shows, from Chanel to Miu Miu and Prada, appeared in editorials for glossy publications such as this one, and now, aged 30, is an ambassador for Giorgio Armani Beauty.

barbara palvin
Karwai Tang - Getty Images

Being a model often means working within a collaborative space in order to create that magical moment, and that’s something Palvin finds herself recreating off-set for red carpet appearances.

“I've always been a beauty girl. Red carpets are my favourite events because I really like to brainstorm with my team for about two weeks before any event,” says Palvin. That ‘team’ often comprises of hairstylist Owen Gould, make-up artists Charlotte Prevel or Tobi Henney, and stylist Marc Eram. “You need to give credit where it’s due. We usually pick the outfit first and then send all our thoughts and meet in the middle, although we often have similar ideas.”

red carpet the 80th venice international film festival
Dominique Charriau - Getty Images

From a '60s-style Bardot bouffant to deep berry lips paired with a Lara Croft-style braid, its clear that Palvin enjoys experimenting with intricate hairstyles and high-glamour make-up. Ahead, she shares her off-duty beauty staples and why matte finish make-up is often the more elegant way to go.

My beauty philosophy is…

“That less is more and to let your inner beauty shine. I know it sounds cheesy, but I see it on myself – when I'm in a good mood, my pictures look much better.”

Not all trends work for everyone…

“I like that the stronger lip liner look is coming back, like in the '90s. One that I never really liked was dewy skin; I couldn’t get into it. I usually like a more matte finish on my skin. The Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation will give you glowier skin but we’ll always put a little matte powder on top because I prefer it that way. Some people can pull it off, I can’t!”

barbara palvin beauty
Claudio Lavenia - Getty Images

I’m constantly inspired by…

Supermodels. They’re usually on my moodboard when I’m preparing for the red carpet.”

My grandma’s one beauty tip…

“I think she just wanted me to drink my milk in the morning! She always told me to have a glass of milk to have beautiful skin.”

barbara palvin beauty
Mondadori Portfolio - Getty Images

My current favourite beauty products…

“I like plumping lip glosses such as the new Giorgio Armani Prisma Glass (launching April 2024). You do a liner and then you put a gloss over it and it makes your lips look a little bigger.

“When I’m travelling, I usually have my Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation. I also typically bring a brown and a black mascara – black for the night and brown for the day so it's more natural. I always have lip balm with me, too. If you go through my bag, there are about five lip balms in there. My favourite is Burt’s Bees.”

My hair routine…

“I let it air-dry; I don’t use heated tools if I don’t have to. I put a little oil at the ends of my hair. There’s a dry oil spray that doesn’t make it greasy but adds shine. At work, we also use the Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil because it protects my hair from the heat and makes it shiny.”

barbara palvin beauty
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis - Getty Images

My wedding beauty…

“I just wanted something timeless and natural. We wanted to highlight my features and not overpower them. The process was stress, stress, stress, and then you try to calm down on the day of the wedding. And then cry! You need a lot of waterproof mascara.”

My bridal fragrance was…

“Something new, actually! All the guests got a scented candle from Jo Malone London, the English Pear and Freesia, as a wedding favour. Jo Malone London sent me the matching fragrance with it and I loved it. It’s a sweet smell. I usually go for a lemony scent that’s fresher and lighter but I fell in love with it. Everyone complimented my fragrance that day, and I was like, ‘Well, you guys have the candle now!’.”

In the lead up to my wedding I…

“Did the keto diet with Dylan [Sprouse, Palvin’s husband] and my sister. It’s a lot of things I love – meat, fat and not much dairy but heavy cream and cheese. We have a gym in the house so we’d work out together and then I’d use the infrared sauna every day. The infrared sauna is so good for your health, I try to use it daily. My skin feels so much nicer from it.”

My beauty advice for future brides...

“Try not to stress and sleep more. Whatever your dream wedding is, that’s the day to live out that dream.”

In my downtime…

“I binge watch Netflix shows. I like having something cosy in the background, like Gilmore Girls or Friends. I love the holidays. My sister and I love decorating, we put up Halloween decorations on 1 September and in November we’re prepping for Christmas.”

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