A mother, a multi award-winning actor and the face of Dior’s classic J’adore perfume for more than 15 years, Charlize Theron talks about her love of fragrance, her exercise routine, and being “crazy” when it comes to hair.
On her beauty rituals
I’m raising two kids as a single mum so I don’t have a lot of time, but if I’m honest, when I do have free time it’s not [spent doing things that are] beauty related. It’s what Netflix show can I binge? Or what book can I read? But I do have two daughters who love beauty. My youngest one will always instigate mask night – we put masks on and she takes the lead in that. She’s definitely into it, there’s a lot of, “can I do your makeup?”, or, “can I put lotion on your feet?”. She loves products and she’s always stealing mine.
On her morning routine
We start really early. The girls’ bus leaves at 7am so we’re usually up at 5.45am. I usually wash my face really quickly and brush my teeth, and I always, always put sunblock on. I don’t go out without it no matter what, even if it’s grey I always put sunblock on. Then I usually go straight to the gym right after I drop them off so that it’s out of the way. Then I’ll come back and take a shower and start moisturising.
On her feelings about fragrance
The thing I like most about fragrance is that it’s the smallest act that you can do for yourself, but it has a huge effect. I feel like fragrance is definitely a mood enhancer – it’s just so easy and I definitely take full advantage of it. For me it’s also associated with such nostalgia, like when my children say things like, “that smells like you, mum”. Smell is so connected to those very, very treasured moments, so I have a deep love for it. I think it’s maybe one of those things we don’t value as much as we should. I don’t have a ritual with scent, but I do always have fragrance out in my room or bathroom. I walk past a bottle and think, “oh, let me just spray a bit of this.”
On the make-up tricks she’s learned
I think the older I’ve become the more I’m about not matte-ing your face down and wearing a tonne of powder. I think having actors look natural is something that’s so celebrated in film that I’ve kind of brought that into my [approach to the] red carpet and even editorials that I shoot – not wanting to look like [I have] a matte face. I think a lot of us are so hypersensitive about not wanting to look like sweaty pigs! [But] I don’t think it’s very flattering on women, especially as we get older. So you don’t have to use a powder.
On her favourite hair transformation
I feel like my favourite one is always the latest one. It took [hairstylist Adir Abergel] and I close to two months to figure this one out [Charlize recently unveiled black hair for her role in The Old Guard]. He’s such a creative human and we travel a lot with each other, and we love sending each other references and things like that. Me and I think Kristen Stewart are the two craziest people when it comes to hair. I really have no fear about any hairdo. He’s like, “let’s cut a bowl!”, and I’m like, “yes, let’s cut a bowl”. You haven’t lived your life until you’ve had a bowl cut! So, yeah, it’s fun. I’m really proud of where we ended up on this one.
On her gym routine
I really love getting the gym out of the way in the morning – it’s when I have the most energy. For me it’s very motivational and it’s like the best caffeine in the world, my brain is not good when I don’t workout. Between 7am and 8am in the morning I’m always doing something. I’m either at the gym or I’ll do Pilates or a hike – that’s the one hour I tend to take for myself. It’s a way for me to start my day and feel balanced.
On exercise as a mood-booster
I don’t do any exercise in my life that I hate. Everything that I do I love, and I love switching it up. I love when I go and lift weights and I work with somebody who’s going to make me do things that I haven’t done before, so it’s constantly a challenge. I’m very into Pilates, I’ve worked with the same teacher for close to a decade now. I have a [reformer machine] in my house and she lives close to me, so most of the time our workouts are here at home. She’s just a gem. Right now I’m shooting an action film so I’m deep into learning martial arts which I’m really into, it’s such a brain challenge.
On the three beauty products she always keeps in her bag
Lip balm, sunblock and WaterWipes!
This post originally appeared on Vogue UK