It’s fair to say Kate Fowler started out ahead of the beauty game with her particular gene pool. After all, the New Zealand native is the sister of none other than Victoria’s Secret model Georgia, who she affectionately ribs on Instagram for one upping her in photographs. (We think that one’s too close to call.) Having split from Australian hospitality royalty Justin Hemmes in 2018, Kate is navigating a fresh chapter from her stunning new Dover Heights home, which despite her only having lived in a few months is already immaculate – including the happy décor accent provided by her two little girls' tutus and stuffed parrots. She shared her refreshing philosophy on the importance and excitement of buying second hand fashion, the magic of an eyelash curler and what she cherishes most about beach days with her daughters.

“When it comes to beauty, I’m a minimalist at heart. I steadily refine my products both through trial and error, and with advice from trusted friends and insiders.

I’m not very affected by brand or hype, so tend to go for proven essentials (think micellar water, a good SPF and a lightweight moisturiser) and hardworking active ingredients – the ABCs! I’ve found when I stick to a core group of products, real results start to show – plus you can get a better sense of which products are working better than others. When I swap products out, I give my skin time to adjust and can gauge any effect that way. It’s a little by little approach and the overall results I’m experiencing have been worth it.

In the morning I cleanse with Bioderma Sensibio H2O. I really massage it into the skin to wake up my face and drain any puffiness.

After rinsing, which I always do to remove any residue, I apply Aspect’s vitamin C serum which really tightens and brightens, and is the perfect wake up call. It’s the best vitamin C product I’ve used so far, and makes others I’ve tried seem a little less stable and a bit weak. While it sinks in, I use Dermavidual eye cream. Then I pat on Emma Lewisham’s Pigmentation Correction Serum. I’m really excited about it, because other options for tackling post-pregnancy pigmentation (any mums out there, I know you hear me!) were worryingly toxic. Results are my priority, but natural credentials are an obvious plus so it’s great to see a clean product outperforming cosmeceutical grade products in its category. I’m loving the results so far.

My beauty look is fresh and dewy, nothing too heavy.

I go for bronze, nude and pink tones on the eyes, sometimes with a glossy finish. Then I add a little mascara, lips in a shade just deeper than nude, and some glow on the high points of my face. Sometimes I will just leave it at that in terms of what I do at home, and apply some makeup on the go – I always have the basics in my handbag or the car. But when I have time I will apply the bareMinerals bareSkin Serum Concealer as my final step before leaving the house – it’s great because it’s really hydrating and never cakey (my pet hate).

On hot days I’m always after something super light for my base, so lately I have been loving Chanel Les Beiges Eau de Teint.

I mix it with a few drops of Nyx foundation if I am after a bit more coverage – it’s my dermatologist’s pick for best noncomodegenic cover. I like a bronze glow on eyes and cheeks, and use either Chanel or Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick in Ibiza. The Chanel is a great multitasker for around the eyes and also for cheeks and contour lines – it’s really sheer and dewy, with just enough colour to provide definition. I use Mac lip pencil in Whirl with a balm over the top – the one by binu binu from Fourth St. Home is great. I brush up my brows with Benefit Gimme Brow (I find the key is to not go too dark) and apply Chantecaille Faux Cils mascara which has separates really well and doesn’t have the awful chemical smell other mascaras do. It’s my ride or die.

Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation is my go to for a night out – the coverage is buildable and really glowy. I’ve been using it since high school.

Soleil Tan de Chanel is my favourite for serious contour – it gives good bronzed definition with no shimmer in sight. My sister put me onto Hourglass Liquid Eyeliner, which is great and easy to apply. Actually, now that I think about it, she has put me onto lots of these products! After all, she’s watched some of the industry’s best artists perform their magic day in and out for years so I definitely take note of what’s in her kit. She’s great at doing make-up. I use Anastasia Brow Powder Duo on my brows, feathering it on with an angled brush so it looks natural. I love Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro in a deep red which I kind of smudge in. It stays put really well. Jillian Dempsey’s eye glosses are amazing and add a bit of drama. And then I finish off by tapping on some RMS Living Luminizer for a nice highlight.

At night I do a face mask if I’m feeling like my skin needs something extra.

First, I double cleanse with Bioderma and then often apply one of my favourite masks – either  NIOD Flavonone Mud for when I’m feeling dull, or Rationale Immunologist Mask when I need a boost of hydration. If it’s not a night I think I need a mask, I use the Emma Lewisham hyperpigmentation serum again followed by Ultraceuticals MD Ultimate A Serum. I often don’t need a moisturiser on top of that in the warmer months, but when I do I would go for Dermaviduals DMS-Base Cream High Classic or a bit of Nuxe Oil. I also like to pop on some lip balm at night – I use either Nuxe lip balm or Kiehls’ Buttermask for Lips, which is great overnight – it quickly softens the lips and really stays put.

I recently rediscovered the magic of an eyelash curler.

I tried a lash lift once, which was great, but I never quite made it back for a second one. A curler does the trick and the effects seem to last several days for me. A couple of my other best beauty tips are to keep a spare toothbrush on hand as a great way to exfoliate your lips for smooth application of lip colours (especially the deeper ones that really highlight any texture), and not to overlook your brows! I would choose doing mine even over mascara – they’re so key to framing the face. I dye mine at home every now and again and it’s so easy.

My wardrobe staples include wide-legged denim, tank tops with a twist, chunky soled shoes, and vintage bags, usually woven or embellished. My style is clean eclecticism – if that’s even a thing!

I am more led by the detail or fabrication of individual pieces than the brands per se, but do find myself returning again and again to brands like Paris Georgia, Christopher Esber and Albus Lumen for elevated but hardworking wardrobe heroes. Of course, I’m also endlessly inspired by giants like The Row and Jil Sander.

I recently bought some silk Dries Van Noten scarf print trousers from consignment store APT75 in Double Bay that are really special. Di Nuovo in Paddington is also a favourite haunt.

I rarely buy things new – it seems the most interesting pieces are the ones that endure and are passed on, so I can’t resist the hunt and, happily, this habit helps me to bear more lightly on our planet. I really recommend developing good relationships with a cobbler, seamstress and dying service – I love seeing new life breathed into the pieces I can’t quite say goodbye to.

My hair is pretty low maintenance – I am a bit of a hair sloth! I have never owned a straightener or even a hair dryer.

I’m a ‘wash and wear’ girl through and through – if I comb it and set my parting while it’s still wet, then it air dries with a bit of waviness, which is always welcome. I have recently started using the Olaplex range and my hair truly feels like someone else’s – in a good way! Christophe Robin’s hair masks, which I get from Inès, are also a real treat. I love bumble and bumble’s Brilliantine for shine, or “languid polish” as they describe it (who can go past that!). And if a horrible hair day strikes then I also use it for the trusty slicked back look – it gives an almost but not quite wet finish that feels supple and natural.

I do a lot of swimming with my girls and am out in the sun a fair bit, so my hair can get quite stressed.

I love a gloss treatment at Koda Cutters to top-up the shine factor. If I have a special night out coming up or my skin feels especially dull I might have an Omnilux yellow light treatment at Jocelyn Petroni – the warmth is lovely and gives you that ‘lit from within glow’ we all crave. My ultimate indulgence is one of her facials. I had my first facial ever (!) with her only a few years back after the birth of my first daughter, Alexa, and it was a religious experience. I also love to go to Spring Spa in Auckland, where I’m from.

We’re definitely our own worst critics – it feels like real beauty has a lot to do with embracing imperfection, which is a journey!

I’m in no way perfect, but I try to appreciate the good of what I’ve got and not be too picky about the things I don’t love. My nose has a few kinks in it owing to some sports accidents as a kid. It does bother me sometimes, but I’ve learned to look at it as giving my face a bit of character. It can be scary seeing those first lines and greys taking hold but for me, older women have a different kind of grace and confidence rooted in something deeper than just physical beauty – it’s hard not to aspire to that.

I do love my tummy, for all of the miracles that lie beneath! Since becoming a mother I’ve come to look at our bodies with a new sense of amazement.

I’m lucky to have bounced back pretty well from pregnancy, but I like the signs of stretching that remain because they remind me of the wonders the body is capable of, and to keep taking good care of it.

I’ve recently been learning some more about the devastating impact of ovarian cancer as part of Camilla & Marc’s campaign to fund research into early detection, and that’s been a powerful reminder of how important it is to tune in to our bodies and freely share knowledge that can safeguard our health, or, at the very least open our eyes to the possibilities.  (Ed. note: you can purchase Camilla & Marc’s limited edition t-shirts, the sales of which go to funding ovarian cancer research, here).

My dad is a professional golfer and is always on the floor using rollers, balls and all sorts. I’ve slowly caught on, and do a bit of that at night when I can. It really makes a difference.

The occasional massage and magnesium bath work wonders too. Using heat packs at night helps me to ease chronic headaches by releasing neck and facial tension. To help me relax, I try to choose reading or meditation over Netflix! TV really took over when I had my girls. I found, like many of us I suspect, that it’s just a little too easy, so I’ve decided to kick that habit and got back to the books, and I haven’t looked back. It’s a much better way to wind down. I love Salman Rushdie and Zadie Smith. I’ve just finished Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo, which was an incredible read.

After having children, I was after something restorative so started yoga (at Dharma Shala in Bondi) and Pilates (at both Fluidform Pilates and Balance Moves).

Breastfeeding and carrying my children around really affected my body’s alignment and these exercises helped me to find the core stability I needed to better support those activities – I only wish I had done more beforehand. After a few weeks of Pilates sessions I found I no longer needed the chiropractor sessions that had previously been keeping me in action. Now that things have settled down a bit at home I’ve introduced a bit of cardio. I play tennis once a week and catch a spin class at Shelter in Double Bay when I can, which is a lot of fun (think loud music and a dark room –  it’s club vibes minus the hangover).

Mum taught my sister and I to put your best foot forward but always be yourself, which was an incredible lesson for us, and one I hope I can pass on to my own daughters.

Mum has always been very fuss-free when it comes to her routine and products. No preening – just some lipstick and mascara, a brisk hair brush and out the door – tidy and with a smile. I know that I feel my most beautiful after a day at the beach with my girls, wearing nothing on my face at all (except SPF, of course!). That mix of salt and sun is so good at releasing any tensions. And I love experiencing nature with them; the things they find and the way they interact with them are astounding. More often than not they break into song on a whim after a little while outdoors. Doesn’t that say everything?”

Story by Zoe Briggs, photography by Camilla Quiddington, styling by Kristin Rawson, hair by Keeva O’Neill from Judena Hair, makeup by Jason Branigan.

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