Profile: Elle Macpherson
(This article originally appeared in Asia Spa Magazine)
The Body discusses the inextricable link between wellbeing and beauty
“There’s so much discussion around health and fitness, but what I really aspire to is wellness: spiritual, emotional and physical,” says 50-year-old supermodel Elle Macpherson. Known as ‘The Body’ throughout her 1980s-modelling career, the Australian native is a shining example of youth and vitality and her trademark wellness regime is regarded as the holy grail of health and anti-ageing for women the world over. Founder of a multi-million dollar lingerie business, Elle Macpherson Intimates, she executively produced both NBC’s Fashion Star and Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model and is now at the helm of a new wellness venture WelleCo, along with fellow Australian entrepreneur Andrea Bux (creator of the Invisible Zinc range of sun screens).
“I am much more into wellbeing maintenance than big body overhauls,” she explains. “I think it’s a very Australian way of seeing things. It’s not something you achieve simply through going to the gym, using expensive creams or speaking to a therapist. It’s a feeling of balance and strength that originates from within and on a cellular level.”
Many would find it hard to believe that this immaculately toned epitome of gorgeousness had her share of bad-hair days too as endless travel, being a working mum and getting older began to take its toll. “I was taking over 20 supplements a day and still not feeling good. Am I tired or toxic or getting nearly 50, I asked myself. I don’t think it’s just an ageing thing; it’s a life thing. Everyone can get into a rut doing the same old thing over and over. I wanted to tweak my lifestyle in an intelligent way and soon realised that I had been so busy being fabulous that I had forgotten that I don’t feel so fabulous,” she says, laughing. So under the guidance of Dr Simone Laubscher in London’s Harley Street, she binned the supplements and started a completely new regime based on the latest generation of alkalising food supplements.
“From the first week I started having alkalising greens, I noticed a terrific difference. She [Dr Laubscher] said that my body had become very acidic. When my body is in an alkaline state, when I am healthy and balanced, eating right and exercising properly, I feel better, my moods are stabilised and I have a positive outlook.”
On a physical level she stopped craving sugar and her energy levels improved immensely. “Every aspect of my everyday life started to feel easier as a result of my body functioning better because it is balanced and my nutrition is more complete.”
On The Super Elixir
Laubscher and Macpherson jointly perfected an ingredient combination and The Super Elixir by WelleCo was born. “Super Elixir is my 50th birthday present to myself,” she adds wryly.
“How I feel, my energy and my health are so much more important to me as I get older, as I suspect it is for a lot of women. You come to realise that if you are healthy, then you look better on the outside. Good nutrition from a natural source, with the nutrients intact can have a profound effect on your skin, hair, digestion and weight, so for me The Super Elixir is a complete regime. Taking super greens creates a natural balance between the blood and skin, allowing you to not only feel amazing but also have radiant skin. And when cells are nourished and the body is well fed, anti-ageing comes naturally. This is no anti- ageing formula. It’s real vitality.”
“I hate the word exercise. I move my body every day – run walk, stretch, massage – some form of active bodywork. The first step is always the hardest. My secret is simply to just begin – whatever it is you want to do, just begin. I schedule everything – whether it’s my son’s cricket matches or a meeting – it has the same weight in my diary.” She drinks at least three litres of water every day, another essential element in her enduring beauty arsenal.
“Beauty from the inside out is almost a cliché. At 20 you don’t even think about it. ‘Take care of your skin’ is something your mum would say. But my experience through years of being photographed extensively is that I know I feel good, more balanced and look better and happier now. If I look at pictures of when I was young, my smile wasn’t even genuine, because it was so wracked with self- consciousness. I don’t even recognise myself in some of my younger pictures.”
There were many periods over the years where she admits to not treating herself kindly by not eating and drinking and partying too much and innocently taking too much sun, “when it was cool to do so”. An older and wiser Elle takes more care now, but only because she didn’t for the longest time, she admits.
A key part of her everyday beauty regime is exfoliation. “The benefits are amazing as it removes dead skin cells, increases circulation and aids cell renewal.” She doesn’t do sun, and aims for seven hours’ sleep. “I defy anyone to do this for ten days and tell me there hasn’t been major changes in their life.”
Macpherson believes in treating the skin from within with the bio-live nutrients in The Super Elixir because relying exclusively on topical products treats the superficial layers only. She uses a natural protective daytime moisturiser and leaves her face bare to breathe through the night.
When not being ‘The Body’ at the end of the camera lens or in the boardroom, she can be found surfing in Byron Bay, reading, meditating or on Twitter and Instagram. “India Hicks makes me laugh, Caroline Murphy and Christy Turlington make me smile. Arianna Huffington is insightful. I also love @nature.”
She is passionate about taking WelleCo global. After 16 years in London, Macpherson has recently moved to Miami, Florida with her family and two dogs. Some of her wellness speak must be rubbing off on her two sons, as when asked what his mother has taught him most over the years, her older son‘s retort was “water”. “If I’m hungry or tired, it’s water, if I’m in a bad mood – it’s water.”
“This is true,” she adds. “I feel like I nag my kids, but apparently some of it sinks in.”