Not only is Louise Redknapp a TV presenter, former pop star, a wife and mother of two young boys, she is also the co-founder of Wild about Beauty, a really quite brilliant paraben-free line of cosmetics. Created with her friend and make-up artist Kim Jacob, Wild about Beauty specialises in the kind of essentials you really need in your make-up bag. Over the last month I’ve been road-testing several of their products and I can truly say that they work (the Mattifying Balm is particularly brilliant for anyone with a shiny t-zone). We are needless to say thrilled that Louise, who lives in Surrey with her husband Jamie and two sons Charley and Beau, has opened up the secrets of her wardrobe for us. And, if after reading this, you want to know more about Louise’s fashion loves, do check out her fantastic blog A Style Album by Lou & Em.
Why did you decide to set up Wild about Beauty?
I’ve always liked make-up which is quite light, but still gives good coverage. I don’t want anything that sits too heavily on my skin, especially in the morning. I like a fresh look and I was really struggling to find something that worked. At the time, I had quite bad skin pigmentation, having just had my little boy, and also everything was really pinky in tone and I have quite a yellow-based skin. That’s where the initial idea came from. I really wanted something that made my skin look good.
What are your skincare must-haves?
I’m really simple when it comes to looking after my skin. I see an amazing woman called Dr Frances Prenna Jones and I use something she calls The Formula which is just morning and night and then I use our Botanical Skin Prep Serum and that’s pretty much it! I’m really two minutes, I keep it really simple.
What are your every day must haves?
That would have to be tinted moisturiser. I like my skin to look fresh as I hate feeling caked in make-up and during the day it’s quite hard to pull off a heavy make-up look. I also like a good bit of a blush to give you a glow.
How does your look change from day to evening?
I just add a bit of heavier eyeliner, maybe inside the eye to darken it up a bit. In the day I tend to use a cream shadow across my eyelid and some mascara, then come the night I’ll add some eyeliner to create a bit more of an intense look. But, I always keep the rest of my look quite similar.
If there’s one thing from Wild about Beauty that every woman should try what would you say that should be?
I think for every day then Botanical Skin Prep Serum is amazing. You feel the benefit when it’s on under your make-up and you can see how nicely your make-up goes on. I also like multipurpose products as I don’t like to carry a lot of make-up around with me. Our Safari Nights and Divine Nights palettes are for eyes, cheeks and lips and they give you a little pick me up through the day. Everything we do is quite multi-purpose- that was another thing I wanted to do. I don’t believe you need to have masses in your make-up bag.
And, I hear that Jamie is a fan of one of your products….
Well, when he does Sky Sports on a Saturday he takes our Mattifiying Balm in with him as I tell him that he doesn’t need powder. Powder, especially on a man, can really sit on the face and you can really see it on TV, so I always get him to use the Mattifying Balm instead.
What’s your daily uniform?
I always go through periods when I try something a bit different and try to be a bit more creative, but I always veer back to a really good blazer or blazer style coat with a beaten up t-shirt and a pair of jeans.
What brands do you like for blazers?
I think you can never go worong with a Stella McCartney blazer. They’re timeless. I know they’re expensive but they really are an investment. I’ve got Stella blazers that I’ve had for 10 years and still wear, because they’re cut so beautifully. I’ve just recently invested in a baby pink cashmere one and all I need to wear it with is some beaten up jeans and a t-shirt. I also think The Kooples make great blazers as well. I’m not very tall and they’re really well fitted. In the wrong blazer, I can look like I’ve got Jamie’s jacket on, so I do need something that’s tailored well. I go for different colours and recently bought a silver one from Saint Laurent which is beautiful.
Where do you buy your jeans?
I think Topshop do fabulous jeans. They always have a nice mix of styles and colours. For the money they’re good quality and a great modern shape. I also really like a brand called R13 which is really nice – they’re not skintight – they’re a little looser around the waist and go in skinny around the bottom of the leg, which, for me, is really good. I find that skintight skinnies can be a bit uncomfortable, especially if you’re wearing them all day.
What tops do you like?
I love a bit of a pattern, but I don’t do a lot of it. I also prefer long sleeved tops and if I want the sleeves shorter, then I’ll roll them up. Even if I have a t-shirt then I’ll roll the arms up a little as I like that look. If I buy a vest I always try and get one that’s quite angular at the back. I like a racer back as I think it’s more flattering on the shoulders. If I want to invest in a nice tank then I go for Alexander Wang. If I want something dressier then I love some of Isabel Marant‘s tops, which are so easy to wear. I like getting value from clothes and you can wear her tops from day to night – for work, meetings, lunch or dressed up in the evening. She’s great.
How about shoes?
I love shoes! They’re my thing. Because I keep my clothes really simple and because I don’t have the figure for lots of different styles, shoes are where I can experiment. I really think that they can change an oufit. I’m 5 4 so realistically I need a heel. On the school run or going to the shops I’ll do a flat, probably a biker or a Chelsea boot. Justin Deakin is a great men’s brand that’s just started doing women’s Chelsea boots, which are really comfortable and cool. Wen it comes to heels, there’s obviously your Manolos. If you want a classic pump and you want to invest, then go for Manolo Blahnik as you’ll have them for life – they’ll never date. Otherwise, I love Aquazzura and Sophia Webster. Wearing a statement heel is a way that you can be a bit quirkier. You can wear a rolled up jean with a strappy sandal and it makes the outfit something you can wear in the evening.
How does your style change from day to evening?
For me it’s all about the shoe and the bag. I’m often in a pair of jeans and a black vest in the day, but if I take a pair of shoes for the evening, then I don’t need to change anything else. My friends all laugh at me about my bags. I tend to take a big bag out with me on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays – It’s the start of the week so I’m not in clutch bag mode. I have a big week to get through, lots of things to carry, I’m not planning on having a late night….Come Thursday, when I feel like I could stay out and have a few cocktails, I get my clutch bag out – they all laugh at me, “ooh, so it’s a clutch bag night then!”
What about jewellery? Are you a magpie?
I don’t tend to buy expensive jewellery. I have a couple of nice pieces that Jamie’s bought me – although they’re still more fashiony type pieces rather than classic jewellery. I like fun jewellery. I wouldn’t dream of browsing in a high-end jewellers, I much prefer a shoe shop. If I want something chunky and big and I don’t want to spend a fortune there’s a brand called Alona, which is great for chunky gold rings and statement necklaces.
For something finer and prettier I love Daisy Knights. I like jewellery that you can play around with and layer, so you can wear more than one thing together. I have friends who love real jewellery, but I just can’t get my head around it. Also, it’s about your lifestlye and what fits into your life – fun jewellery is much more ‘me’ than serious jewellery.
Tell us about handbags….
I like handbags but I tend to go for more of a classic style during the day. I have handbags that I love and cherish and treat almost like people – I’m very respectful of the handbag! I’m not someone who buys the handbag of the moment and I don’t buy handbags every season. I just have a couple that I love and look after and like to use. Louis Vuitton’s Sofia Coppola bag is my favourite.
Saying that, I do like quirky clutches as it’s quite a nice way of introducing a fun element to what you’re wearing. You can go to Accessorize and buy a really cool little beaded bag or there’s Charlotte Olympia who makes really fun bags. I also like the ones that Kenzo have recently done.
I think the best shop out there for children, by far, is Zara. They do the best cut jeans and tracksuit bottoms, which my boys love. They just want to be comfortable. If I want to get something a bit more special then I like Scotch & Soda.
I like a really minimal look at home. My favourite shop is B&B Italia , which is very basic and not particularly brimming with personality! However, I do like art and even though the house is quite minimal in colour – it’s all grey, white and black – I try and create a bit of personality through art.
On Christmas Day do you glam up or chill out?
It depends where I am. We’re actually going away this Christmas and staying in a hotel, so it will be the first Christmas that I’ll glam up a bit. Jamie has to wear a shirt and tie, so I’ll probably do a dress or a smart pair of trousers. Normally at home, if I’m entertaining and all of my family and Jamie’s family come, then I’m so busy tidying and arranging everything, that it’s really hard to be glam – especially with all the kids, there’s always a lot of kids at my house. This year I’ll definitely glam up a bit but I don’t normally.
On Christmas shopping in heels..
Yesterday I was Christmas shopping and I was wearing a boot with a small heel on. Thankfully, I took my flats with me as by 12 o’clock the heels were off! There was no way I could do serious Christmas shopping in a heel, however much I love them!
What’s on your Christmas wishlist?
I would really like a pair of Alaia style shoes. That would be a nice Christmas present.