Melissa Hemsley (right) : Our mum got us started thinking about good food. Our childhood was very frugal, and the idea was that you didn’t waste your money going out to eat. You ate at home and she taught us to cook because we were expected to help. She taught us how not to waste, how to make leftovers more interesting, how to feed a crowd.
Jasmine Hemsley (left) : Everyone thinks that loving food is to eat with gusto and finish in 20 seconds. That isn’t loving food. That's just the warm sensation in your belly, which can very easily turn into bloat. So we always say to people, if you really love food, you would take your time. What’s the point of saying you make the best risotto, getting all the ingredients, taking the time to cook it, and then it's all gone in 10 minutes?
MH : We wrote a cookbook because we know the best way to get people to change their approach to health is through the food that they eat. There are so many lifestyle elements in it, too. Like tips and tricks. We write about what you should stock your pantry with, 10 things to do today, tongue scraping, chewing. It’s not very sexy, talking about chewing, but it’s so important. Our mum used to say growing up, “Don’t distort your mouth.” And we’d be like, what? She meant chew small amounts.
JH : If you slow down, you can connect better with your food. And when you think about food so much, it’s impossible not to think about how it connects with everything else. The skin is the largest organ, so what we eat affects it. It’s unavoidable.
MH: Jasmine’s five years older than me, so I learned a lot about beauty from her—by stealing her stuff. Which I still do now.
JH: I think that's something that will never die. Melissa could be a professional makeup artist and we'd still share products and do each other's makeup.
MH: Sisterly sharing.
JH: It's a birthright, I think, as the elder sister.
MH: We’re both a bit frivolous when it comes to what products we buy. One of our favorite brands is the Alexandra Soveral range. She's a very underground, bespoke facialist. She grows all the herbs and flowers in Portugal. Angel Balm is officially a cleanser, but I just stick it on my face like a mask, or use it on my lips. She has her Floral Rain Spray, which is hydrating. I also love her Mandarin Kiss Healing Lip Balm.
JH: Pai is for super, super sensitive skin—I don't know if it's big here yet. I put their Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil on and I went “Wow.” And Tata Harper is amazing. Her Concentrated Brightening Serum was something I tried just after we had handed in The Art of Eating Well, when I was feeling pretty grey. It was January or March, and I saw a difference the next day. She has three beautiful oils—one for stress, anxiety, and there's a sleep one. I have to stop myself from sniffing it and just randomly falling asleep during the day! I brought her Replenishing Nutrient Complex with me on this trip because it comes in an easy roller tube.
MH : We actually believe you shouldn’t wear sunscreen all of the time. You need to let the skin breathe and get vitamin D and not wear sunglasses. You do need a bit of SPF, obviously, and DeVita is the only one we ever recommend.
JH: It's is the best sunscreen I've ever put on. It's like body lotion. You could use it every day.
JH: We're quite sallow skinned so I think there's always got to be some element of color in what we apply. Melissa stole the lipstick look, so I don't get to wear lipstick.
MH: We can both wear lipstick! We both always wear a liquid eye. That's because I find eye shadow literally impossible.
JH: Some say that the pencil liner is softer but it kind of goes everywhere. It actually looks nicer when you don't smudge it. But our days are at least 10 hours long, with a party at the end, so there’s no time for pencil.
MH: We need things that won't slide or sweat off.
JH: That's what I'm wearing now— RMS lip2cheek in Smile.
JH: We met Kure Bazaar in a coffee shop in Liberty's. The guy representing them had all these colors and we started painting our nails at breakfast time in a coffee shop and no smell. We discovered Priti NYC quite recently. They do a nail varnish remover without all the scary stuff in it.
MH: I use coconut oil for conditioning my hair. I don't wash it a huge amount—but when I cook, I have to wash it or it’ll smell like onion. When I can, I’ll just wash my fringe in water.
JH: The trick from modeling was to not wash all your hair. Just the roots. When I start to smell, I use a Green People roll-on and I'm pretty happy with it.
MH: But you're not a very sweaty person.
JH: No…but the thing is, you want something to help with the smell but not stop the sweat. It's a really good form of detoxing. So just gotta let it flow, ladies.
—as told to ITG
Melissa and Jasmine Hemsley photographed by Tom Newton.