Karlie Kloss

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“I’m six feet, one-and-a-half inches—at least, last time I checked. I live in my ballet flats because they don’t add any height. Flat-footed, I’m not taller than my boyfriend, but with heels, absolutely—and he’s about 6’3. Dance was always my thing growing up, and I think that’s why I treat myself more as an athlete than just a model. I love to challenge myself physically and mentally.

But I’m not a professional athlete, I’m not a professional dancer, I’m not a professional anything; I have never considered modeling an actual job title. I have yet to determine what my job actually is but, yeah, modeling is a fun and funny gig.

Sure, I’ve had to make choices between my body and my optimal healthy look, starting a career at 15 in an industry where, as a model, my body is a part of my business. And from 15 to 21, naturally everybody changes. I’ve had to find a happy point of where I feel best and also can do my job.

I am aware that I am part of an image that other young girls see and I want to be proud of that, even though there is this double standard of being healthy and what that actually means in my industry. But I feel healthiest and most beautiful when I take care of myself in everything from what’s on my top shelf in my bathroom to eating well and doing exercise.

Maybe it’s my background in dance, but I feel most beautiful when I feel strong. My body is strong. To me, beauty is so much more about how you feel than products, and that comes down to what you’re putting in your body and how you take care of yourself. And I’ve learned that more about health and nutrition than I did when I was starting out. At age 15, 16, 17, traveling all the time, I could eat whatever I wanted and I was a stick, a twig. I wasn’t conscious about what I was eating, it was just not part of my educational upbringing in the Midwest. That was something I really learned in moving to New York, being in this city where there are so many alternative options, so many kind of foods.

As I’ve gotten—I hate to say it—older, or, as time goes on, my body responds differently and I’ve learned so much about how to take care of myself. Nutrition-wise, I think the ‘aha moment’ was when I even changed my baking. When I was 18, I stopped dancing as much as I had been, and my body started to change, and I was just eating whatever, not really thinking about it. I would always make my Gram’s butter-and-sugar, normal chocolate-chip cookies. But then I got on a health kick, and I got really big into trying different kinds of exercises, I hired a trainer, Justin Gelband, and I try to do something every day, even if it’s just stretching or a one-mile run. A body in motion stays in motion.

I’m also constantly trying different ingredients in the kitchen, or thinking about what I’m putting in or on my body. I love to try new beauty products that are cleaner, more natural, or organic alternatives that I was never exposed to growing up. Like coconut water—there wasn’t much of it in St. Louis. When my parents used to see it in the fridge they’d be like, ‘What is this gross stuff?’ It’s hysterical, my dad loves it now, but my family used to come over and I remember one time, my aunt tried the Juice Press I had and was like, ‘This is terrible! Karlie, what are you doing to yourself?!’ But being conscious of all of that, I feel different, I feel completely different.

For food, I think everything in moderation, and variety is key. It’s the same thing with products. For example, I just tried this new shampoo by Living Proof and it makes my hair bounce differently. I think it’s a combination of both switching up what you’re using and the specific product. I see the same thing with exercise: when I switch up exercises, I feel and see a difference in my body.

In terms of my beauty routine, when I’m getting ready in the morning, less is more; it’s about how quickly I can get out the door, which is why I like Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer in Bisque. I like using tinted moisturizer because it doesn’t clog pores. It combines a great moisturizer with that velvety ‘veil’ you want that doesn’t look too cakey or too covered-up. And then I use a bit of RMS Un Cover-Up in 22. My skin is very dry, so oily products are never a problem, and what I like about Un Cover-Up is that I can use it here on a pimple but also to take my lip color down a little on shoots or whenever. I have really red, bright lips and I like to mute it sometimes. This has a good texture and it has a bit of green in it, which cuts the red down but not in a drastic way that makes it look crazy, like I have no lips.

I love a cream blush because the powder alternative is too messy and it takes up too much room in my carry-on to bring a brush, and a bronzer, and a powder blush, so I always use the Laura Mercier Cream Cheek Color. It’s dewy, and I love the fact that it’s not really red. It’s that kind of '90s look that’s all about dewy and really gorgeous skin and building up from there. I like the Givenchy Mister Light for under the eyes. I like really creamy, dewy stuff. For mascara, I use either L’Oréal's Voluminous Million Lashes or Marc Jacobs’. I like his because it’s a gel and has a big fat brush, so it applies smoothly—none of that clumpy stuff.

In general, though, I work with the best hair and makeup artists in the world, so I don’t try to pretend that I’m an expert. I like to just take care of my skin and create a great foundation for these artists to transform me into whatever character on the shoot. I like to use Caudalie Gentle Cleanser with my Clarisonic to wash my face and Bioderma Crealine to take off makeup.

I just found this one moisturizer that I really like: Earth Tu Face Hydrate + Repair. It’s kind of waxy, but it’s really hydrating and is probably injected with coconut oil. I love all oils, coconut, olive—I actually use olive oil on my skin weirdly enough. I like taking a basic cream, like Embryolisse, and mixing in a drop of the Decléor Neroli serum or Rodin oil. Especially in the winter, my skin gets really dry so I do whatever I can to moisturize. And for lip balm, I love Bag Balm because it does the trick but it doesn’t smell good, I’ll tell you that. [Laughs]

When I started doing research into nail care and nail polish, I found out that being ‘five free’ is really important—it means the product doesn’t have the unhealthy additives. Deborah Lippmann’s are ‘five free,’ but that also means eliminating a lot of the ingredients that make the polish harden, shine, etc. It’s a lot like baking gluten-free and vegan things. It’s creating the same delicious end-product—great nail polish—but without the easy go-to chemicals, or the butter, sugar, eggs, and dairy. Weird metaphor, but Deborah’s ‘five free’ mission was when I first became interested in finding other products that share that same clean—or cleaner—message. I like Tatcha’s products, the Ren Gylcol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask, and Harry’s razors, the ones made for guys since they don’t have women’s versions yet.

I’m super simple with my hair but I do love Harry Josh’s new line of tools, the dryer and his new straightener, too. My hair grows really slowly, so I’m not trying to do anything intentional to it, but it’s taking forever to grow out. Right now, I’m liking the Après Beach Wave and Shine Spray by Oribe, and also the Bob Recine hair oil, which gives shine but doesn’t make it droop.

Otherwise, Source Naturals Liquid Melatonin is really, really good. It’s a homeopathic solution to help you sleep. I’m knocked out in like 10 minutes; it’s really potent stuff, so it’s the last thing I’ll do before going to bed.

What else…I kind of fell off the Invisalign bandwagon and didn’t complete my first round so I had to do it again; this is Invisalign: Round Two. But the next time I do an Into The Gloss interview, hopefully I will be done.”

—as told to ITG

Karlie Kloss photographed by Emily Weiss in New York on March 18, 2014.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • femme_noir

    I should probably be commenting on the Top Shelf, but I can't stop wondering how long it took to tile that bathroom.

    • a67penguin

      Femme Noir- I thought the same thing! Love it though!

    • chicnoir

      Hello cousin :)

      I love the marble bathroom counters. Gorgeous and very upscale spa like.

    • Veronica

      They make panels of mini-tiles stuck that you can lay out, like a section of carpet. When they're lined up and grouted, you can't see the difference; I think they have them at Home Depot.

  • Laura Mason

    SCORE.

  • SJ

    Amazing Top Shelf! Loved that Karlie seemed really interested in maintaining a healthy strong body and wasn't just following certain fads. Gorgeous bathroom too.

  • http://weareatlove.com/ Wear Eat Love

    Great post!
    http://weareatlove.com
    WEAR EAT LOVE

  • Bells

    Thankyouverymuch, ITG
    *heavy breathing*

  • Ruby

    Genuine, humble, and funny. No BS, no humble brags, no apparent motive to sell anything she makes either. I never gave her a second thought before (she was just a VS girl and, like, Taylor Swift's friend), but what a cool girl in her own right!

  • http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk/ Jessica Rose

    I love the fact she has three sisters...and their names all begin with a K too!!

    http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk

    • Lauren

      Kardashian Approved

      • Neelam

        With Karlie and her sisters, and her Kookies, it's cute and clever (klever?), but when the Kardashians do it, it's tacky and cheap. I can't help but apply double standards

  • rebecciiy .

    YEY! awsome top shelf

  • http://rosewatersaffron.wordpress.com/ Sharareh

    Oh Karlie, love her since the very first time I saw her in German Vogue years and years ago!

  • http://www.atdorsia.com/ Eliza

    Loveeee Karlie, and her amazing bathroom. Her skin is flawless!

  • http://classversussass.com Class Versus Sass

    Liked this interview, good tips

  • bijoux

    I remember seeing her on ITG years ago and might be why I became hooked on this insight into what was previously just a two dimensional image. Yea to Midwesterners and the innocent naivete we had about food while growing up! It's ok, I ate a lot of cheez wiz and grandma's cookies too :) Also what a great reminder of the law of motion.

  • Lauren

    Obsessed with Karly!!! Go ITG GO!!!

  • Mallory Baskett

    Does anyone know who makes the rings Karlie is wearing? Love them!

  • Eleanor Rigby

    Karlie Kloss always seemed like a down to earth, smart girl. I like the idea of feeling fit and strong, and how it can enhance your feeling of beauty and well-being. Seeing her evolve and take Harvard Business school class, I have the feeling that the reign of Karlie Kloss will go much further than just a modelling career. Even if she's skinny, I always find that she looks healthy, and not just fig and plain like a lot of models.

    I've been on a binge of buying compulsively ITG recommended products- shopping spree for the last two or three years and I've been feeling just better when I really started to train and eat wholly. So I totally second her comment even if I'm not close to be a supermodel like her. Being toned makes me feel way better, in and out.

    Although I heard it does not contain the best ingredients, this tinted moisturizer from Laura Mercier has never deceived me since day 1. (AKA after seeing so much ITG top-shelf using it). PS: Great bathroom indeed.

  • K

    Love Karlie so much!!! <3
    Don't do Invisalign, Karlie. I think this (cute incisor) is something unique about you, and it looks great on you, but if you really need to do so, we will always support you!

  • Wes

    Boyfriend? There goes my chance :'(.

  • softy

    so. much. bathroom. & product. envy. but i do hope her clarisonic is capped since it's kind of lying down. =)

  • kathS

    why is she growing out the karlie?!

  • kathS

    also, I want to know about her eyebrows. and her boyfriend.

  • Kristen

    She's 100% right about that Melatonin. That stuff rocks.

  • Yassira

    She is too gorgeous, too smart, too elegant and too inspirational and her top shelf is what a top shelf should be like. Filled with elegant smart products that don't just let the marketing bucks do the talking but actually have great content based on great brand philosophies, research and quality ingredients

  • Emilia Musena

    ...ah...my girl crush:down to earth and very very veeeery smart and just wooow.i want mooooore Karlie <3<3<3

  • sara

    Karlie's first Top Shelf was when I first got into ITG and makeup! The next day I went to Sephora and bought myself a Caudalie beauty elixer, even if I didn't really know what it was for, haha.

  • SWF77

    She seems so polite, grateful, and gracious!

  • Aurélia Diotima Bode

    I love Karlie Kloss. She's been getting a lot of critique a year or so ago, about being too skinny- but I recon she's gorgeous and looks so healthy, fit and happy!
    http://www.i-bode.com

  • Holly Skelton

    Karlie is beautiful and has such a refreshing outlook on health and fitness.

  • Harv Harvey

    keep moving good body & mind needs to exercise :)

  • mamavalveeta03

    She is adorable! Her parents raised her right....but I have a feeling she could've been raised by wolves and still turned out OK.

  • noa

    hey ITG - are you sure that Karlie uses the Oil-free version of Laura Mercier's tinted moisturizer? She said her skin is dry so that's why she doesn't mind oilier products like RMS Un Coverup. Is there a benefit from using a oil-free TM with an oil-based concealer?

    Love this Top Shelf! Thanks for featuring her again!

  • Tanya

    That made me tear up. She's a keeper.

  • Christina

    For someone so health conscious she should use more organic products. And ditch the Crest 3D toothpaste! Use an organic, non-flouride toothpaste. Sad that people think just drinking coconut water or green juice makes them healthy.

  • Rapunzel

    Is she still using Viviscal?

  • Ana

    I think it's because she is a bit dull. I have never found her to have that spark as a model. She's cute and seems sweet enough, but she seems so plain.

    • sarah

      seriously? thats not nice, especially as she is the most divine creature.

  • http://www.thefieldingreport.com Emily Trout

    I always enjoy reading about Karlie- there aren't too many making it big out of St. Louis so I like to follow her career. And yes, she's pretty spot on about the general knowledge, or lack thereof, when it comes to healthy eating, organic, of-the-moment health trends. But we're getting there!!

  • Yan

    I'm dead curious about that pink bar of soap in the 15th photo!

  • http://BikePretty.com/ Bike Pretty

    Yeah, I think she downplayed just how ambitious she really is. She worked really hard for years to make it to where she is now. Wish she would own that a little bit more.

    It reminds me of the idea of "invisible work" and how women's work is undervalued.

  • http://BikePretty.com/ Bike Pretty

    this! A thousand times. I just commented on this upthread. Is it false modesty? Obviously she took/takes her modeling career extremely seriously.

PRODUCTS MENTIONED

Laura Mercier
Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
RMS Beauty
RMS Un Coverup
Laura Mercier
Laura Mercier Creme Cheek Color
Givenchy
Givenchy Mister Light Instant Light Corrective Pen
L'Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes
L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes Excess Mascara
Marc Jacobs Beauty
Marc Jacobs Beauty Lash Lifter – Gel Definition Mascara
Caudalie
Caudalie Instant Foaming Cleanser
CLARISONIC
CLARISONIC PLUS Skincare Brush Kit
Bioderma
Bioderma Crealine Travel Size
Earth tu Face
Earth Tu Face Hydrate + Repair
Decleor
Decleor Aromessence Neroli Essential Serum
Rodin Olio Lusso
RODIN Olio Lusso Luxury Face Oil
Bag Balm
Bag Balm
Deborah Lippmann
Deborah Lippmann Nail Lacquer
Tatcha
Tatcha Gold Camellia Beauty Oil
Tatcha
Tatcha Aburatorigami Japanese Beauty Papers
Tatcha
Tatcha Supple: Moisture Rich Silk Cream
Tatcha
Tatcha Radiant: Deep Brightening Serum
REN
REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask
Harry Josh
Harry Josh Pro Dryer 2000
Oribe
Après Beach Wave and Shine Spray
RODIN by RECINE olio lusso
Rodin by Recine Olio Lusso Luxury Hair Oil
Source Naturals
Source Naturals Liquid Melatonin
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