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Olivia Kim, VP of Creative, Opening Ceremony

Olivia Kim
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Olivia Kim
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“I love tattoos—I love the idea that it’s permanent, and I love the idea that it really marks where you are in your life at that time. I think people are scared of that permanence but I feel like, it’s ok, you can always move on, you can cover it, you can take it off if you don’t like it. I remember everything about each one. I got the first one when I was 14. My mom went out to dinner and my sister and I had a party, and as soon as all the people came, I left with a friend who was older and had a car—he was a senior and I was a freshman—and we went to a tattoo parlor in middle-of-nowhere New Jersey and I got a butterfly on my stomach. So then after that, I got a Jenny Holzer phrase along the bottom of my stomach, and then I just started going from there. I have, like, the gross tramp stamp…and then I started getting into this idea that I wanted things that were really pretty—I didn’t care if they matched or not, and I met Scott Campbell who’s one of my really good friends. We would just hang out and play. Another friend of mine, C-Jay, focuses on miniature tattoos—he puts on these gemologist goggles and looks up and his eyes are HUGE, and he uses really tiny needles. I have so many tattoos. They’re everywhere but my legs—my best friend Carol won’t let me do my legs. I also want some on my feet but I’m not allowed…so I think I’m going to sneak them. I always wear socks, even in the summertime. But I love pedicures—I go all the time with Jen [Brill]; we go once a week together at Spazio. My hands are really chipped right now—but it’s all OPI, and she just laid it on really thick.

I buy all my makeup at the duty-free shops in airports. They have the whole range of everything so it’s like one-stop shopping. The best one is in Hong Kong. First of all, that airport is insane because they have a Prada strore, they have a Gucci store, they have a Miu Miu store, Versace, Bottega…and then their cosmetic department is bigger than, like, the whole floor of Bergdorf. And they have things you can’t find in New York—like that Chanel Jade nail polish, it’s been sold out forever, but they had it there. Best discovery ever. I think the girls are super on trend over there, so when Chanel launches the new corals, they forget about the goth-y greens or the dark reds. My new thing is liquid eyeliner. I’ve always been a smudge girl—eyeliner: smudge it. Lip gloss: smudge. Lip pencil: get it on and smudge. But I recently discovered the Chanel liquid eyeliner and it’s so amazing—it’s like a felt-tip pen so it’s really manageable. And I’m a mascara crazoid—I’ve tried everything, and I always come back to the Chanel ones... Inimitable and Exceptionnel de Chanel. And I’ve always loved fragrance; I’ve always worn perfume. I used to steal my mom’s Cacharel Anaïs Anaïs, in a white jar with flowers around it. She would keep it in her glove compartment, so when she’d pop into a store and I stayed in the car I’d spray it. Now I love masculine scents. I’ve been wearing the same perfume for maybe six years—Comme des Garcons Kyoto. It’s a super woodsy, incense-y smell. I always go back to it; I’m a creature of habit. I also buy things three at time, like a lipstick. One to keep in my purse, one to keep at home, and another because I’ll lose it—I lose them all the time.

I wash my face in the morning—I don’t wash it at night. I’m so lazy with that. Plus I love the way you look when you wake up in the morning and you have a little eyeliner under your eyes, kind of sexy, bed-head seductress. I use Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel which is amazing, then I spritz it with a toner, and finish with Kiehl’s Daily Facial Moisturizer. And I use a sunblock every day—SPF 45 in the winter, 60 in the summer. I really like Dermalogica’s, it doesn’t have that SPF smell to it. And I always wear eye cream, year round. I use Chanel Sublimage—it’s to die for. Then once I week I run into the Dermalogica store in SoHo and go to the pod—I’m obsessed with the pod. They do a 20-minute-facial. I see Colleen, and I’m like, “Colleen, forget the mask, forget the Vitamin D, just extract my pores.” And that’s all she does for 20 minutes. And I’m lying there in the middle of the room with my feet up, with a zillion windows facing Grand Street.

My hair is a saga. Obviously I’m not a blonde, but I’ve been wanting to go blond since I was 18. I’ve never dyed it all—never Manic Panicked it, never Kool-Aided, always just kept the color natural. And then last year I said, ‘I’m just going to do it.’ I asked Jimmy Paul and he said, 'You have to go to Maya at Bumble & Bumble, she’s an amazing Japanese colorist and she used to do her hair white.' So I set up a consultation with her and when I got there she said, 'Please don’t do it. You’re going to ruin your hair.' And I was like, 'I don’t care.' You know how it is when you’re so set on something? I’m such a Virgo. So I leave the consultation and run right up to the appointment desk and say, 'I need to book a triple-process.' It took nine hours. It goes from black to orange, to orange, to orange, to white. Then I let it grow out for a really long time because I love having my roots dark. I go for touch-ups at Momotaro in midtown, it’s right next to Burger Heaven so I’ll grab a burger while the color changes. Before I changed the color I was really no-fuss about haircare—shampoo, conditioner maybe, whatever. Now I do a couple new things—there’s this amazing shampoo called Shimmer Lights for people with silver hair—its purple shampoo. You can buy it at Ricky’s or Eve’s Beauty Supply, where I always go because it’s close to the store. Or I’ll use Kiehl’s. I really like their leave-in conditioner. And I’ll just use a Japanese hair cream, to lay down some of my frizzoids and baby hairs. But I never brush it—I don’t even own a brush.”

—as told to ITG