“I’m from the south of France, in Bordeaux—both my parents are French. I have family there and also in Paris, so I always traveled back and forth a lot. After finishing school, I went to Italy for almost six years and worked for Roberto Cavalli, and then I decided to come back to Paris for Balmain. Now, it’s been three, three-and-a-half years at Balmain. I’m twenty-six.
Balmain womenswear and menswear is the same for me: I like sexiness. That’s why I’m in fashion—because I love the body of a woman or of a man. It’s always playing with a part of the body but still being modern and keeping the sexiness, and showing a bit of your body. You can always have oversized jackets but you have to wear it over maybe a skinny pant; or, if you have a skinny jacket, it’s always nice to have an oversized pant. But I actually think the face is the sexiest part of a woman’s body, because I think the ‘sexy’ is more in the emotion…when you see the [Balmain] show, they have their hair really simple, the makeup really simple, and they can wear what they want. They can wear a white t-shirt or the dress, but if there is emotion in the eyes and promise, and the flow in the hair, for me it’s really important. I think we have the most beautiful girls in the world, in our shows, and I would never try to hide their beauty. I think they have beautiful hair, they have beautiful eyes, the lips—I like the individuality completely. I’m very attracted to that look of no makeup. The clothes that I’m doing are really really strong in some ways, they are really rich and overworked, so if the clothes are strong, I just want a more simple and natural face. But, I think, what is important for me is that they can wear these clothes as they wear their pajamas. They don’t go to sleep in their makeup—that’s the point. When they walk on the catwalk, or when they try things on in the fitting, I just say, ‘Have the attitude that you’re wearing pajama pants, or switch to jogging, or if you’re in a dress, try to make it yours.’ Then you have your simple hair and makeup, everything you are now, and you have your garment or your super boy sweatshirt and boy pants…I think that looks super cool.
For guys, I prefer more natural if possible. I like hot boys, but it’s just more about the emotion you give, you know? You can be skinny or you can be super muscle, it’s just what your face is showing to the world. So, I think it’s not only about the body, it’s more about the attitude. You can have an amazing leather perfecto jacket with a shirt and it can go super well with a muscle boy that came from Cuba, but it can be completely wrong for a skinny guy from Russia. It’s all about the attitude and all about how you want to act, you know, in the street. In Paris, there are a lot of androgynous and super skinny boys, and I was super skinny when I was young too but not anymore. I did a lot of football; I was a soccer player…I keep the legs. [Laughs] Now, I’m trying to build a bit more of a chest, but it’s not working for me—building muscle. I’m sad about that. I’m trying every morning to go to the gym. Every time, after holidays, like in Miami, I say, ‘They’re all beautiful here. I have to come back to Paris and work out.’ And I do for one week and then I can't anymore. I put on the music that I wanted on my iPod, I look at the clips on the TV screens and everything, to run…but it’s just impossible. Sometimes I take my bike, or my rollerblades, from the gym to the office, but only in summer. I try to eat really well; that’s something, for me, that’s important. Even when I’m in the office and it’s kind of rushed, we try to eat well.
For my beauty routine, it’s all about the cream. [Laughs] I always had the same moisturizer, Lichtena—it’s something that I bought in Italy. I was more dark when I was young, but when I grew up more, I’m a bit more fair. I think it’s the weather in Paris…my skin is maybe used to sun in the South. I don’t know. It’s weird. I’m using a lot of Skeen; it’s a men’s line. I was in my gym at one point, and there was a guy who was selling this, and now I can’t use anything else. I love it. From this line, I use a lot of things—there is a thing that is like a powder for under the eyes that is good for after a big party. I like the soap too, for the body. I should use more things for the lips. I have one Labello, strawberry. I use Nivea deodorant—it stays for twenty-four hours, I swear. I shave every two or three days, but I like it best when it’s clean. On other men, I like a little bit of a beard, but on me, no, because it’s not everywhere…I don’t have the perfect beard when it grows. It’s not perfect like Brad Pitt or those kinds of guys, like Leonardo DiCaprio, when you see them and you’re like, ‘They’re hot!’ He’s so hot. I remember him in Titanic. And Romeo + Juliet. I watched it last night, you know. I was in the office playing music and at one point, we were like, ‘Okay. ‘90s.’ We were listening to Britney Spears, ‘Hit Me Baby One More Time,’ and we thought, ‘When was ‘Hit Me Baby One More Time’?’ In 1998. So, I was just realizing, it was fourteen years ago. At one point, I was just like, ‘Okay. When was Titanic?’ It was around the same time. I realized we saw that when we were super young—my team is really young—so we watched some clips from the movie. We watched Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio in the car scene. It was love! I was crying like a baby when I first watched that. And then after, we went to Romeo + Juliet—we listened to the music from the soundtrack. At one point, you’re just like, ‘Fuck. I’m really old now.’”