When your mother is none other than Vogue Paris’s iconic former Editor-in-Chief, Carine Roitfield, it could be tempting to rest on your laurels as part of fashion royalty. Not so for Julia Restoin Roitfield, who, with her distinct creativity and drive, has carved out her own identity in the fashion world as a model, art director and graphic designer. Though it has to be said, even her strong work ethic is evidence the apple does not fall far from the tree – there’s also more than a touch of la mère in Julia’s aesthetic (think strong brows, lots of black), and in her playful, laidback sensibility. And yes, there’s another generation to watch: Julia is mother herself to seven-year-old daughter Romy. Now just imagine that dress up box.
“I am pretty minimalist in my approach to beauty. I used to love to try everything that I kindly get sent, but in the end I find I always come back to my favourites.
The standby products I know I can rely on include Embryolisse moituriser, and Biologique Recherche’s cleanser and Lotion P50. I also love the Eve Lom cleanser. Sometimes I will use an oil like Vintner’s Daughter. I don’t really use serums or toner… I never understood the difference between them all. I think the key to good skin is to always clean your face well, sleep a lot, and drink a lot of water, more than spending money on tons of products. I do love face masks, the rehydrating and moisturising ones. I love all the Japanese and Korean ones, and buy them in bulk on Amazon.
When I am wearing makeup, a trick I have learned is to tap on moisturiser over it, to make it look more fresh and dewy.
I try to wear as little makeup as possible during the day unless I really have to. I always brush my eyebrows though. I use the Givenchy brow pencil. Mom taught me to never pluck my eyebrows. When I have extra time to spend on my skin I use the NuFACE device that tightens. I also love my Odacité jade facial tool, and my GloPRO roller too. And I always leave a mask on before going out, or whenever I am on a plane, to make sure my skin is extra moisturised and glowing.
My day to day makeup is pretty minimal. I just don’t have time to put that much makeup on unless I have a big event. I also think the less you put on your face the better your skin is over time.
I love Pillow Talk lipstick and lip contour by Charlotte Tilbury – that combination makes my lips look a little plumped. I never use foundation but I use RMS Un-Cover Up concealer and add a bit of definition with the Kevyn Aucoin contour powder. I also put on loads of mascara (any mascara) and use my lipstick on my cheeks for extra blush. I always look at old photos of Jane Birkin or Romy Schneider for makeup inspiration but they kind of wore a lot of it and I am really way more minimal.
I blow dry my hair a bit too much.
To help save it, I am now trying to reduce washes to every three days instead of every two, and use Klorane or Batiste dry shampoo in between. For shampoo and conditioner I have been using Kiehl’s shampoo for coloured hair and their olive oil conditioner. I will sometimes put some MOROCCANOIL on the ends.
My personal style is Parisian Rock Kitten.
My favourite designers include Alaïa, Tom Ford, Alexandre Vauthier, Christopher Kane, and vintage Calvin Klein (especially the minimal ’90s Narciso Rodriguez era). My favourite recent purchase is a Christopher Kane embellished mini dress I wore to the CFDA awards.
I’ve always wanted to do something creative, manage my time the way I wish and not work from an office… so I guess I have always wanted to work the way I do now.
My current roles are creative director and founder of romyandthebunnies.com and, coming soon, juliarestoinroitfeld.com. I appreciate that my work means I am always meeting new people, travelling, and in charge of my time so I can spend more of it with my daughter.
Growing up I wasn’t very coquettish.
French teenagers in my day didn’t really wear makeup. I don’t think French girls wear a lot of makeup in general. I had a bit of a grungey period and I used to look up to Shirley Manson, the lead singer of Garbage, for inspiration, so I dyed my hair red and wore black eyeshadow. Other than that I wasn’t really into makeup. I think the first product I ever used was maybe some mascara I borrowed from my mom. In terms of beauty now, I’ve been going to the same facialist in New York for ten years, Nachi who runs Mist Beauty. And I just go for massages when I can at my local nail place.
I love natural beauty. I am a bit sceptical of all the airbrushing and retouching on social media. It really gives a fake idea of beauty to young girls.
In terms of my own looks, I like my eyes, my freckles and my nose, which is odd, because as a kid I hated it. I fell off a horse and broke it which created a huge bump, but now I love it. I don’t love everything though… let’s just say my abs are not as toned as they used to be.
I take care of my health with lots of running, healthy food, and massages.
I run a lot so I can do it anywhere, any time, which is good as I travel so much. I love a green bowl or a smoothie at Juice Press to start the day, which I add collagen powder and flaxseeds to, and an oat latte from Joe The Art of Coffee. I eat a lot of seafood, whether out or at home. I do a pretty good roasted salmon with roasted seasonal vegetables, and I am also very good at making fish tacos, even making the sauces and salsa from scratch. And I make a very good banana bread!
When it comes to getting older, we have to take care of ourselves and make the best of it.
I feel great when I go for long runs, but I feel my absolute best when I wake up on Sunday morning from a good night’s sleep. Feeling properly rested is such a good feeling. And enjoying a glass of red wine in the evening, of course.