You may consider mega model Lily Aldridge’s hottest runway moment to be in 2015 when she walked in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show® sporting the $2,000,000 Fantasy BraTM. Or, perhaps it was any of the legendary Fashion WeekTM catwalks she has prowled down, including for Carolina Herrera® and Diane von Furstenberg®, during her iconic career. Yet, actually, the 34-year-old entrepreneur’s proudest career moment did not involve showing off the svelte figure she’s known for at all.
It was quite the opposite: she confirmed it was when she showcased her growing baby bump in a skintight dress on the Brandon Maxwell® runway during New York Fashion WeekTM in 2018. “I had just announced my second pregnancy, and I walked his show in this beautiful red dress that showed off my baby bump,” she recalls. “I received such an overflow of love and support that day — it’s one of my favorite runway memories.”
Some of her most meaningful memories with her family, however, are far more low-key than those glamorous moments. Aldridge prefers fresh mountain air to the hustle and bustle, which is why she escapes the stresses of everyday life in Nashville, Tennessee. There, she resides with her husband, Kings of LeonTM lead singer Caleb Followill, and their two children — Winston, born in late January 2019, and Dixie, 7. In fact, it was the time spent in the mountains that inspired the creation of her second fragrance, SummitTM. “For the last 10 years, I have planned annual trips to Blackberry Farm® in the Great Smoky Mountains — whether by myself, with my husband, or with the whole family,” she shares. “Every season in the Smoky Mountains is magical; Summit, for me, encapsulates all of those feelings.”
Keep reading to get more insight into Aldridge’s life, including her passion for sustainability, her beauty routine (which features the ultimate pencil for lip contouring), how she carves out time for self-care with a packed schedule, and more.
Spotlyte: Tell us about your new perfume, Summit.
LA: Summit is a gender-free fragrance with a cologne-like scent. It's darker, deeper, and cozier than my first scent, HavenTM, with notes of tobacco, leather, and spices. It's sultry and edgy — which makes it an interesting counterpart to Haven.
Spotlyte: Do you switch back and forth between fragrances for different occasions?
LA: Haven is inspired by my home in Nashville. I love my garden and having fresh flowers in the house, and Haven perfectly encapsulates that. It’s a soft floral scent with notes of rose, peony, and musk. The floral hits you first, and then, throughout the day, the musky floral smell kind of stays with you. I wear Haven more for my day-to-day life, and Summit feels more appropriate [in winter months].
I went to The Met [GalaTM] with Richard Quinn this year, and I was spraying Summit all over myself while getting ready. I was wearing a very edgy outfit with a lot of latex. Richard thought it smelled good, so I was spraying it all over him and the backseat of the van we were in before we walked the red carpet. That’s a memory of Summit I’ll never forget.
Spotlyte: What is your first fragrance memory?
LA: Perfume makes me feel nostalgic. It reminds me of being a little girl and my mom buying me a rosewater spray from Whole Foods® (then called Mrs. Gooch’s®) so that I could have a scent of my own. To this day, I still love the smell of rosewater.
Spotlyte: You’ve said the mountains of Tennessee help you escape daily stresses. What are some of your favorite family memories in the mountains?
LA: For the last 10 years, I have planned annual trips to Blackberry Farm in the Great Smoky Mountains — whether by myself, with my husband, or with the whole family. I have so many special memories there, like doing cooking classes with [my 7-year-old daughter] Dixie and making s'mores on the open fire. Every season in the Smoky Mountains is magical; [my fragrance] Summit, for me, encapsulates all of those feelings.
Spotlyte: How do you recharge while leading such a busy life?
LA: I recharge when I am with my family — cooking with Caleb or picking flowers with Dixie. Home is my haven. When I am stressed, or just completely exhausted or emotional, I think about home and know that once I am there, everything will be OK.
Spotlyte: Can you talk about the sustainability aspect of the perfume packaging and why that is important to you?
LA: I’m an online shopper, and this is an online brand. I love trying new beauty products, but I would get so frustrated by all of the extra packaging and waste that was coming to my house. When I was creating Lily Aldridge ParfumsTM, I wanted to make sure there was as minimal waste as possible while still getting the package to arrive to customers in one piece. There’s still so much more I want to do to make my brand more sustainable. It’s been a huge learning process, so I can’t wait to keep evolving by trying to do more and do better.
Each fragrance features a wood cap from sustainable forests and an outer carton that doubles as a shipping vessel, made of 100 percent recycled paper, to minimize waste. For each tree used for the caps, five more are planted. Haven has a seeded paper drop card to inspire others to care for Mother Earth by planting wildflowers. Summit includes one scented incense card for consumers to burn in the comfort of their home.
Spotlyte: Other than Summit, what products are you obsessed with at the moment?
LA: Windsor EdwardsTM Lip Balm: I’ve been using this lip balm for years. I’ve given it to friends who are equally obsessed with it.
Tata HarperTM Repairative Moisturizer: I love it because it’s 100 percent natural and non-toxic, which is important to me, especially when I was still nursing. It keeps my skin healthy and glowing.
Honest® Hand Sanitizing Spray: I am a well-known germaphobe, and I love Honest because it’s on the more natural side.
WaterWipes®: I’m a mom on-the-go. I had a hard time finding natural and gentle brands when Dixie was a baby. She has sensitive skin and these were my go-tos. I still use them to take off makeup.
Chanel® Translucent Powder Compact: It’s one of the first luxury beauty products I bought when I could afford it. It still makes me happy when I see it.
Spotlyte: Do you have a signature makeup look or product?
LA: One of my favorites is the Serge Lutens® lip liner, which is perfect for lip contouring — if you overdraw your lips a little, it just looks like the shadow of [them]. In most photos, I’m either wearing that or Tom Ford’s® Sable SmokeTM.
Spotlyte: Do you have a must-have hair product for keeping winter strands healthy?
LA: My natural texture is really curly, but if I let it dry in braids, the top will stay a little bit flatter. I use a leave-in conditioner spray from Christophe Robin®, detangle with a metal comb, and then put it in braids or, if I need something easier, a bun. I also really love Olaplex® — but for most of my pregnancy, I stopped using it. However, the other day I noticed it was in Sephora’s® clean section, and I’m so happy it’s back in my life. They should promote that more!
Spotlyte: Other than Nashville, what are some of your favorite places in the world and why?
LA: So many amazing places! But I absolutely adore Rome. The Hotel de Russiesm in particular is phenomenal — they have an amazing spa.
Spotlyte: What is your go-to spa indulgence?
LA: I love hot stone back massages and a good facial — especially after a long shoot. There’s nothing more relaxing.
Spotlyte: Your job can be demanding and changes every day. How do you keep a schedule with two young children?
LA: A lot of support from my family! I’m lucky to have a great support system around me.
Spotlyte: With two kids and a booming business, how do you find time for self-care?
LA: It is so important to show love to oneself. As a working mom, it's hard to find time for myself. Any free time I have, I want to be with my family — but I have realized how important it is to carve out even 10 minutes for self-care. For me, that means waking up very early and allowing 30 minutes of quiet before the kids wake up; time to meditate or take a walk through my garden or do a face mask.
Spotlyte: How else has your routine changed?
LA: Once you become a mom, your beauty routine [becomes] different, because it happens whenever you have time to do it. When I was still nursing, I only used clean and natural products. I generally always lean towards these types of brands, but there are definitely some that aren’t that I have and love in my routine. As you can see on my YouTube® channel, I have perfected the eye-mask-in-the-car routine. Instead of dreading traffic, I embrace it — more time to close my eyes and relax.
Spotlyte: Why did you decide to start your YouTube channel this summer? What's been your favorite video so far?
LA: My YouTube channel gives my fans a firsthand look into my life as a model, mom, entrepreneur, you name it. I have a few favorites, but I had a lot of fun filming a recent video on my skincare essentials while en route to New York. It shows quite a few of my skincare must-haves (all of which can be done on a plane). I think people have learned a lot from that one!
Spotlyte: There is so much pressure on moms to "bounce back" after having a baby. How are you focusing on your own health and wellness after having Winston in February?
LA: I love Ballet Beautiful® by Mary Hellen Bowers. I’m able to do the classes remotely when I’m on the road or home in Nashville, so I can keep my routine consistent even when I’m on the road.
Spotlyte: What music do you listen to in your house?
LA: Lots of country mixed with pop, but my favorite is when Caleb sings and plays guitar to us in front of the fire.
Spotlyte: Do you have any favorite family holiday traditions?
LA: I love cooking with my family. Caleb is a great cook, and so is my mom. I like to recreate her recipes — but the best holiday tradition is just being together as a family.
Spotlyte: You are the girl who has everything. What’s a gift you’re hoping to receive under the tree this year?
LA: I’ve been eyeing the Bvlgari Serpenti® 18k White Gold Ring… I’d love for that to be under the tree. Maybe Santa will bring it to me!
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