September 3 2014

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The 411: Sylvie Chantecaille


French beauty enthusiast Sylvie Chantecaille grew up surrounded by creative inspiration. Her family avidly collected art, and her childhood bedroom functioned as a makeshift gallery, where a sixteenth-century painting by Pieter Bruegel hung above her bed. “It had the most amazing color scheme,” she recalls. She later pursued her passion for shades and tones by launching a line of custom-blended cosmetics with her friend Diane von Furstenberg. The duo sold their creations out of a small shop on Madison Avenue before Chantecaille went on to launch Prescriptives, a little brand that turned out to be a big hit (Estée Lauder eventually acquired it and recently folded it, sadly. We will forever carry a torch for its tailored foundations and sheer lip colors, though). From there, Chantecaille spun her expertise into a namesake fragrance house in the late nineties, which launched with just four botanical-driven scents. Further luxurious offerings quickly followed, including rose-scented waters, skin-rejuvenating creams, elegant bronzers, collectible eye and cheek palettes (many etched with nature-inspired designs in support of wildlife charities), and her latest trio of fragrances—Petales, Vetyver, and Kalimantan—which launch this fall. Beauty is also turning into a family tradition in the house of Chantecaille, as Sylvie’s daughters, Olivia and Alexandra, work to develop products and collaborations for the brand. Here, the self-proclaimed “matriarch of the Chantecaille clan” shares her beloved beauty finds from around the world.

The Pro: Sylvie Chantecaille, founder of Chantecaille Beauté.

The Hair Gurus: Frédéric Fekkai and Ludovic at Pierre Michel

My favorite hair stylist is Frédéric Fekkai; he’s efficient and does and an amazing blow-out. I see him at his salons in New York and whenever I am in L.A. and Palm Beach, too, because I know the experience will always be the best. The colorist I swear by is Ludovic at Pierre Michel, who comes to my house for appointments—you can’t beat that! Thanks to him, I am a “natural” blonde.

Frédéric Fekkai,; Pierre Michel, 131 E. 57th St., NYC, (212) 755-9500,

The Skincare Genius: Rita Ukis at the Chantecaille Energy Spa

I am very lucky to be able to work with the experts at our Chantecaille Energy Spa at Barneys in New York. My favorite facialist is Rita Ukis, who gives me the Energy Lift Facial every other month. Amazingly, it actually lifts your face.

Chantecaille Energy Spa, 660 Madison Ave., NYC, (212) 833-2700,

The Everyday Scent: Vetyver by Chantecaille

I made this just for myself. Every man I have ever loved wore vetiver—it brings back special moments and memories from my life, and to me, that means everything.

Chantecaille Vetyver Perfume, $175,

The Spa Worth Traveling To: The Spa at the Four Seasons in Hong Kong

The Spa at the Four Seasons in Hong Kong has a gorgeous view of the harbor—it’s a complete escape and very cozy. Also, the masseuses are all extremely gifted. My favorite treatments to get are the stone massage treatment and reflexology. Not only do they feature jade stones, but the technique is heavenly. After a 17-hour flight, going there is just about the only thing that makes you feel completely balanced.

The Spa at the Four Seasons in Hong Kong, 8 Finance St., Central Hong Kong, (852) 3196-8888,

The No-Sweat Workout: Pool Pilates

I spend a lot of time in East Hampton and when I’m out there, I always visit my friend Terri Villa for private sessions of pool pilates. It is the ideal workout for me since it’s challenging but pleasant at the same time. It tones you up but you don’t realize how hard you’re working since you’re in the pool.

Terri Villa, Newbody Pilates Studio, 11 Whalers Dr., Sag Harbor, N.Y., (631) 725-4820,

The Wellness Wonder: Acupuncture

Shellie Goldstein is my acupuncturist. She practices in New York and Amagansett. Her acupuncture is subtle and she reads and understands your body very well. I feel like I am being healed even though she is using needles!

Shellie Goldstein, 928 Broadway, suite 1104, NYC, (212) 388-0800; 530 Montauk Highway, Amagansett, N.Y., (631) 219-3226,

The Makeup Essentials: Personal Best

I start off by using the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler every day. As for makeup, I swear by Chantecaille Future Skin in Hazel when I am tan (and in Nude when I am not), Chantecaille Faux Cils Mascara and the palette of the season—right now I’m using our Tiger in the Wild palette. My favorite lip shades are from our Lip Chic range in Anais or Ceylon and, since I can’t live without roses, I like to use Smith’s Rosebud Salve and Chantecaille Pure Rosewater as part of my daily regimen.

Shu Uemura Eye Lash Curler, $19,; Chantecaille Future Skin, $68, Faux Cils Mascara, $38, Tiger in the Wild Eye Palette, $78, Lip Chic, $30, and Pure Rosewater, $56, all available at; Smith’s Rosebud Salve, $6,

The Culinary Gems: From New York to Paris

My favorite restaurant is Nougatine at Jean-Georges on Central Park West in New York. I just love everything about it—the natural light, the amazing French cuisine, and all of the interesting and chic people who dine there. When I am in Paris, I love to visit Le Recamier for the amazing soufflé caramel au sel; it is absolutely delicious and quite memorable.

Nougatine at Jean-Georges, 1 Central Park West, NYC, (212) 299-3900,; Le Recamier, 4 Rue Recamier, Paris, 33-01-42-22-5175.

The Must-Visit Markets: Foreign Favorites

The Mercado Central in Vallencia, Spain, is amazing. I love to pick up almond paste, fish, and vegetables there. I also love Le Marché’s Rue de Buci in the 6th arrondissement in Paris. I go there for nephle, which are tiny little oranges with gray leaves—they are unusual and delicious and often used in making cakes in France.

Mercado Central,; Rue de Buci, 6th arrondissement, Paris.

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