Sophie Elgort, Photographer


"I've always taken photos. I’d take a camera everywhere, and I have pictures and prints from all throughout my school years. After college, friends of mine were starting an ecommerce company for vintage clothes they were finding and customizing, and they needed pictures for their website. I was like, 'I’ll just do it for you.' That’s how I built my portfolio, actually. I think my mom saw some of my photos and showed them to my dad and he was like, ‘There’s something in these pictures. You could make a living doing this if you’re interested.’

I went in and showed my book to Anna Wintour—I’m mortified now that I went in then, I wish I had waited. But I showed her my book, and I had never thought about this, but she was like, ‘As the photographer, you’re responsible for the rest of the team. So if the hair is off or the makeup is off or the styling is off, that’s on you. Because it’s your eye at the end of the day.’ What she pointed out was that a lot of the makeup in my pictures was way too heavy. She said, ‘When you’re explaining the look to hair and makeup, try using words like dewy, fresh and young, so that they still feel like they’re doing something but it helps them not overdo it.’ Learning that right out of college I was like, OK, I don’t need to overdo my own makeup either.

Laura Mercier’s Tinted Moisturizer in Nude is something I’ve used for years. It’s transparent and you can still see your skin through it, which I like. I don’t wear it every day though—if I’m shooting, it gets on my camera screen. I started getting lash extensions a little while ago too, because if I wear mascara while shooting, it also gets on my camera and smudges all over my face. My lashes are dirty-blond, so I keep it subtle because I don’t want to look like I have extensions.

These Trèstique sticks are my favorite things in the world right now. This is the Color and Contour Bronzer. You draw a line and then blend it in with the other side, which is a brush. It’s great for travel. And then the Blush Stick in St. Barths Pink, which looks really bright but it’s pretty subtle when you put it on. This Matte Color and Shiny Balm Lip Crayon is my favorite, it’s like a lipstick and gloss. I love a red-y orange— I use Chile Red and Sangiovese Balm. My husband is like, ‘You’re obsessed with that stick brand.’ But I like other stuff too. Like Dior Lip Glow, which turns your lips your natural color. I was going somewhere after a shoot, and a makeup artist on set was like, ‘Let me do quick makeup on you.’ She put the Lip Glow on and let me take it. Between those two things, I don’t need any other lip gloss.

I don’t wax my eyebrows or anything because I like when they look messed up. I use Boy Brow in Blond, which is a lot darker than my eyebrows, but I like it. For eyes I like the Trish McEvoy Finish Line. You just put a dab of this on the side and put your brush in and it turns any shadow into an eyeliner. I like the Inoubliable Coup d'Oeil Eyeshadow Palette from Nars, but I’m not so particular. I have a lot of extra products, so if I were to do crazy makeup I'd probably have like a blue, but it’s not something I use every day.

For me, it’s always been about skincare. I cleanse every morning with the Foreo Luna. It’s silicone so apparently it doesn't collect bacteria like a brush. When I get out of the shower I put on Sisley Floral Toning Lotion—it’s fancy! I got it because I read about how it smells really good and also takes the extra dirt off your face. Then I put on Ling Skincare Moisture Plenish, which is a serum that just coats your face. I don’t know what it does but everyone at Ling has really good skin so I’m just going to listen to them. And then I put on the Ling Eye and Lip Soothe Cream which isn’t too heavy.

Ashley Javier, my hair guy, does photoshoots but also has his own home salon. We went platinum like four months ago. I had cut off all my hair, like so short that you couldn't pull it back. But it was cool, it worked. Once my hair grew out enough that I was kind of bored, I was like, ‘Well what’s next?’ My hair was dirty blonde, and I always had highlights, but nothing like this. The best thing about platinum hair is that you don’t have to do anything, it’s your accessory. It’s definitely high maintenance–but low maintenance, too, because everything else is low maintenance when you have it. The problem with platinum hair is that it gets very dry so you can’t really wash it, you have to rinse it. If you want to shampoo, just put it in your roots. I like Oribe Gold Lust Restore and Repair a lot because it makes it soft.

Because I try to shampoo as little as possible, I use Klorane Dry Shampoo all the time. Some dry shampoos make your hair feel squeaky, but this is the best. I use a Mason Pearson brush because I have a lot of really fine hair, and any other brush makes it look stringy. You’re not supposed to brush your hair when it’s wet, so now that I have this platinum situation, I have to be careful. Ashley has told me that there’s a fine line between platinum and bald. [Laughs] You just have to be really gentle."

—as told to ITG

Sophie Elgort photographed by Tom Newton at her home in New York on January 7, 2016.

Next up: fellow photog Sunny Shokrae embraces her gray hair, Gary Pepper's Nicole Warne abides by a 12-step Korean skincare routine, and designer Cedella Marley swears by lash and brow conditioner in The Face.