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Giving triggers social cohesion. It’s also the basis for an economy not based on money.
– Lily Cole
It’s not that I don’t believe in creativity and innovation and new ideas, and the creativity that comes with fashion, which I really respect. But one of my biggest concerns is just how cheap we expect everything to be.
I’m not against people buying clothes; I think clothes are wonderful, and I’m very materialistic myself – but there’s a way of finding a compromise. I just think we can buy less and pay more, to make sure people aren’t being exploited.
I love beautiful things; I like having nice clothes, and I can appreciate why other people do – but I’ve also started to learn more about the impact of what we buy: how things are made, how much you buy and the quality of everything.
I think models have a lot less power than they did in the ’80s, when there were, like, only 10 supermodels who could dictate the rules, whereas now there’s so many, and that changes the power dynamic and makes it a more insecure business.
Every time I have to try on a wig for work, I get excited about the colour; I’ve often thought about going for a platinum bob or also raven black, as it looks so great against pale skin. But I always end up being loyal to my red colour.
There are so many great, great vintage clothes to find; there’s a whole territory unexplored there.
I have set up several businesses as social businesses, and I am a great believer that the power of business should be used for good.
I have made a living off the way I look, and I have really learnt to accept myself for being unusual.
I’ve always gone after fears and tried to stifle them by doing them. It is daunting, but it’s more rewarding.
I was like most teenagers. I wanted to look more conventional – you know, to just be the pretty girl in school.
I always used to love couture because it was more theatrical than the runways. The runways always felt more like part of the machine.
I usually have a lip balm in my bag and mascara as well. I don’t really wear much make-up, but I like mascara because I’ve got fair colouring.
Don’t overpluck your eyebrows. A make-up artist told me this once, and I’ve always remembered it.
I kind of see clothes a bit like role-playing, depending what mood I’m in.
When I was younger, I definitely did face anti-ginger prejudice. As a child, all teasing hurts, whether it’s because you’re fat or a different race or have red hair. I had enough comments from a couple of people to make it a sore point.
Acting is something I’ve done since I was six years old, performing for my mum and my family in the living room, and I do it because my heart’s in it.
Talent is crucial. It needs to be driven by motivation, but blind ambition isn’t the key.
There’s an inherent contradiction between appreciating the beauty of clothes and creativity and individuality, and the waste around the ideas of trends and seasons.
It’s hard to appreciate the importance of the rainforest because it seems so far away, but it’s vital to the survival of the planet as we know it.
It was a scandal when I did French ‘Playboy’ in 2008, though I was never actually nude in it. I think it’s really funny that I’ll have a cover of ‘Playboy’ to show my grandkids.
There is a degree of role-playing in modeling, for sure, and you’re also in a high-profile job – there are lots of similarities for sure. But when I’m acting, I’ve got to try and be present, and I’ve got to be emotionally committed to a character, both physically and intellectually.
I’m not sure if it’s fair to call it a ‘fairy tale,’ but I really loved ‘Mulan,’ the Disney film. It was my favorite. I guess it’s not really a fairy tale, but you do get Eddie Murphy as a dragon.
As the generalization goes about the art industry, people can be really challenging and thought-provoking in their thinking and questioning the status quo, and it’s really important that the status quo can be questioned and that there are people doing that.
People do make assumptions about models. That’s their issue, not mine. It doesn’t bother me because I’m comfortable enough in my own skin – I know who I am.
If I’m anywhere close to where I can hike or swim, that’s my favourite thing to do.
I love modeling but also see it as a platform for the million other things I want to achieve and create in life.
I found going to school when I was modeling very grounding. It’s really kept my perspective on bigger things in my life.
I’m just a lipgloss, blush and mascara kind of girl. I like playing with a bright lipstick or a heavy eye… But not together!
I part-own a bookshop for some strange coincidence of reasons, and it is one of the best things I part-own in my life, or own in my life. I do not know, it just feels great.