Jo Malone, MBE, is founder of luxury fragrance and lifestyle range, Jo Loves. At 50, Jo has a true entrepreneurial spirit that is enhanced by age.
As an entrepreneur in the field of fragrance and beauty, you know the industry inside out. Do you feel that it talks to you directly as a woman of beauty+ age?
I’m not much of a skincare consumer, because I make all my own skincare, but it’s not all about age any more. Women are reaping the benefits of skincare education from a decade ago – to moisturise, to cleanse and to shield from the sun, so we’re looking better than ever. Brands are obsessed with turning back the clock and yet we can’t. It’s not possible. Trust and brand integrity is so much more important than empty promises – and celebrity endorsements? They don’t really mean anything to me. I like products to exceed expectation – the moment a brand over-promises, they lose their integrity. For older women, brand trust is the key – I want to know the story, what the product can really do and even know the chemist that created the range. Women will buy and buy from a brand that truly delivers on a promise.
I’ve recently discovered Josie Maran Argan Oil which my skin absolutely loves. I make my own recipe by mixing it with Cetaphil Cream that I buy from Duane Reed in New York to create a concoction that my skin loves – I don’t need to moisturise again for two days.
You create your own fragrances – has your taste in fragrance changed over the years?
I think my memory bank is bigger; my olfactory library is more expansive in a way it couldn’t have been twenty years ago. I’m more confident in what I like and more willing to say no to things I don’t like. I’m more likely to wear heavier and woodier fragrances than I was when I was younger. In fact, my next fragrance which launches in October is full of personality and bold, identifiable notes which I wouldn’t have created 20 years ago.
Are the beauty and fashion industries ageist, do you think? We know that chasing youth is what they’re built on, but do you feel they’ve got caught in a time warp with who they think they’re talking to?
I think it was ageist. I don’t think it’s quite so bad now, but the obsession with getting older and somehow trying to eliminate ageing needs to end. Skincare is about so much more than knocking off ten years – you can plump your skin, you can make it look glowing and vibrant – without trying to deny its age. Look at Diane Keaton as someone who is aging beautifully. I don’t like to see older women with facelifts so severe they stop them looking like themselves. We don’t need to do that anymore.
If you could describe your most beautiful moment ever (when you felt beautiful inside OR out), what would it be?
I was at Parrot Cay in Turks and Caicos and it was at a time when I felt my creativity had returned. The sand was white, the sky was vibrantly blue, my fingers and toes were manicured to perfection, I was wearing a white swimming costume. A sting ray was swimming beside me. I’d been eating well, and was rested. I just felt at that moment that I had the kind of beauty that I truly wanted.
Which of your own fragrances speaks loudest to your inner 20 year old, and why?
It’s Pomelo – my best fragrance friend. I can be any age with Pomelo and be whoever I want to be – it’s a reminder to enjoy life.
Jo Loves, 42 Elizabeth St, London SW1W 9NZ
*all products are sent to me as samples from brands and agencies unless otherwise stated. Affiliate links may be used. Posts are not affiliate driven.