Laura Csortan, TV Host

Laura Csortan has had an impressive career in the beauty spotlight.  After winning Miss Australia at 20 she went on to host a variety of travel shows including The Great Outdoors, and later The Wheel of Fortune. In addition to working the speaking circuit as Master of Ceremonies and being an ambassador for a range of brands, she also recently launched her travel website, Laura Csortan Gypset Travel.

We caught up with the TV star in her gorgeous home in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs, where she revealed the beauty secrets she learned from pageants and how she manages to stay unfailingly gorgeous on the go. 

Seasoned traveller Laura Csortan in her Eastern Suburbs home

Seasoned traveller Laura Csortan in her Eastern Suburbs home

I’m an adventurer...

I love to travel...that never gets old! I travelled the world for almost a decade. I did an Italian Travel show and soon after I found myself hosting a show for The Discovery Network where I was based in the USA called the World's Best Beaches. I was the action girl, so most of my stories either consisted of getting wet in the ocean or sweating! Waterproof mascara was my favorite - the Maybelline one. My job also sees me doing so many different things such as being a face of the races and doing other endorsements, getting to work with amazing companies and interesting people. My job is very diverse, which I love. 

I was Miss Congeniality… 

I started [modeling] when I was at university, won Miss Australia at twenty, did Miss Universe and Miss World. I was totally the ‘break the rules’ girl like, ‘Come on, let’s get pizza!’ I really enjoyed it. At that age and for that time, it was just the best thing I could have ever experienced. In the rehearsal, you have to smile for about four hours straight. It was so clichéd but we seriously did put Vaseline on the teeth [to stop our smile from sticking] and sprayed hairspray on our butt to keep the bikinis [from riding up]. I learnt about contouring when I did Miss Universe from the South American girls because they were all about sculpting their face. We used bronzer and darker foundation under the cheeks and I couldn’t believe it. 

Laura learnt many of her makeup tricks in her early pageant days

Laura learnt many of her makeup tricks in her early pageant days

Luxe shoes and scents finish an outfit 

Luxe shoes and scents finish an outfit 

My personal style is smart yet casual…

I'm quite our-doorsy so that suits my lifestyle. I have to switch it up constantly to suit my ever-changing schedule. I’ll spend a day in my workout gear exercising and walking my dog then I'll put on a smart/casual dress or suit for a meeting then perhaps slip into a dress for an evening event or dinner. I love Camilla and Marc, Watson & Watson, Kookai, Camilla, Alice McCall, Neuw denim and Prada. I mix up classic pieces with “looks of the moment” to keep my wardrobe in the moment. I love my Celine sunglasses - they go with everything. I have an extensive shoe collection, my classic black Guccis with gold trim have served me well. I have worn Tom Ford fragrance for years; it's my signature scent. I have also recently introduced Velvet Orchid along with my long time friend, Black Orchid. Bvlgari has also been a favourite, Jasmin Noir is is divine, so sexy. 

I like to keep my beauty look natural…

If I’m heading out to an event I love to be a bit more daring with my make up, perhaps a dramatic eye or a bright lip.  I love to stay looking bronzed but don’t sun bake so faking it is the best way! I love St Tropez Bronzing Mousse to give me a natural golden glow, ModelCo Cleansing Foam and ModelCo Bronze Dry Touch for extreme sunscreen and colour. RCK Luminous Body Glow gives me ‘red-carpet’ legs when I haven't had time to get a tan. It goes on instantly and looks great! 

Hair and body essentials from ModelCo, St Tropez, RCK and London

Hair and body essentials from ModelCo, St Tropez, RCK and London

A Prada beauty bag and Hermes travel wallet keep Laura organised on the road

A Prada beauty bag and Hermes travel wallet keep Laura organised on the road

I keep makeup minimal…

Oxygenetix foundation is amazing; it allows my skin to breathe while giving incredible natural coverage. It’s actually healthy for my skin, which I love and I can wear it on long flights knowing it's doing me good, while looking good! The Revlon ColorStay Moisture Stains are great to change-up a look and are also named after different cities in the world. Clinique powder goes everywhere with me, it’s great for touch-ups and setting make-up. Laura Mercier blush gives a beautiful colour and glow, I love it to top off any look. Clinique Chubby Sticks are moisturising and the range of colours are fantastic. I always have a heap of them floating around my handbag and travel cases. I also use them on my cheeks. 

I love little finds while I travel…

I bought Tocca perfume in LA, it reminds me of that particular trip every time I wear it.  Diptyque Baies is my fave room spray. I discovered Cle De Peau foundation at Barney's in Beverly Hills. I was looking for great natural looking coverage, the make-up assistant tried some on me and I was sold! It's so natural and gives a beautiful glow that lasts all day. I'd never heard of it before but now I'm hooked. Mini Chanel perfumes are perfect for hand luggage. My Prada beauty bag is great for trips away and my Hermes travel wallet is perfect for my passport and documents. 

Laura recently discovered Cle De Peau foundation in LA

Laura recently discovered Cle De Peau foundation in LA

Palm Beach candles light up the bathroom

Palm Beach candles light up the bathroom

I use Omnilux weekly…

Which I get at All Saints Cosmedial Clinic with Joseph Hkeik, I find that it stimulates the collagen and gives it that little extra boost. After my travels when my skin is drawn from all its moisture, looking flat and dull, it gives it the lift back up it needs. My mother always had a great approach to skin-care and it’s certainly rubbed off on me. UltraCeuticals keep my skin glowing so I use their products every day along with Cosmedix Serum. I love to keep gorgeous scented candles in the bathroom. Palm Beach is among my favourites. Sanctuary Spa Creme Soufflé feels incredible and I love to smear it all over after a bath or shower. Puretopia Lotion is natural, you can feel the goodness the minute you put it on. I like to change up the products I use on my skin. Healthy eating and lifestyle are also huge factors for me. Makeup can only hide so much! 

We all do our own hair on travel shows.

You start in the morning and you’ve got to go all day. Because I have a natural curl as well, when I’m in humid places I use a beach hair spray and encourage it. I also put in a leave-in conditioning treatment. I put it in my hand and scrunch my hair up in it then when I go in the water it doesn’t get as knotted. It gives it a bit of body, a bit of curl but it also protects my hair - that’s a little secret of mine. I have long hair which is often unruly, O&M Frizzy Logic Shine Serum keeps it in check. When I'm travelling I don't always have time to wash my hair so dry shampoo is the next best thing, I find Polished London one of the best for my hair.

Laura's essentials include Ultraceuticals and Tocca fragrance

Laura's essentials include Ultraceuticals and Tocca fragrance

Laura with Abbey, her dog. 

Laura with Abbey, her dog. 

You never look better than after an exercise session…

I try to do something daily even if it’s just taking my dog on a really long walk or doing a yoga class or pilates or a more intense class like F45. I give my body a break every so often and I do an Eat Fit Food week, I just started today actually with Eat Fit Food, I do the 5 Day Cleanse program which I find really helps. My skin never looks better after exercise, drinking lots of water and a balanced diet.

Credits: Interview by Sigourney Cantelo; photography by Titus Pengelly; Hair and makeup by Sarina Zoe; arranged by Ahtra Elnashar.