Interview by, Alexandria Haynes
NU EVOLUTION is a cruelty-free luxury beauty brand, which uses natural & organic ingredients and sponsored all of the makeup used for the BERENIK SS17 runway presentation. Thank you, Kelly, for taking the time to sit down and chat with us about beauty, what it means to you, and how Nu Evolution’s mission to supply the market with healthy makeup options fits into your lifestyle!
“No problem, thank you for having me!” Kelly answers, lifting her head with a smile.
A) How long have you been modeling?
K) “Ooh I’ve been modeling for a few years now, on and off I would say about 8 years! I started very young and then I took a two-year hiatus” she shakes her head laughing. “I got caught up in my personal life but then modeling found me again and now I’m back!” She states definitively.
A) How do you prep for fashion week? Walk me through your night before, “pre-show” beauty routine.
K) “Hmm… my night before beauty routine? Well, it's important that you at least take off your makeup, even if you're too tired to wash your face, at least remove your makeup! I use African Black soap to wash my face, I also use a scrub to exfoliate, and I try to do that every other day because when you over exfoliate you produce more oils. I also use Shea Butter, it does wonders for the skin and it's organic! I’ve also been using a black mask; I just try to use up the products that I have before I buy more. Also, a good product is the Aztec Clay Mask,” “Oh yeah, I have that at home!” I interject. Kelly smiles cocking her head to the side, “yes! That stuff is the bomb!”
* Kelly is able to share one more beauty secret with me before she is whisked away from her chair in hair and makeup to wardrobe to get dressed for the show. *
“Another beauty secret that I want to share with people is calamine lotion! When I have like a clogged pore that might turn into a pimple I just put a little dab on it, and it’s been working wonders!”
After the show: I catch up with Kelly. I ask how she felt the show went and how crazy backstage was, she tells me she stepped on some glass and was bleeding right before the show, but quickly quips “the show must go on! We chat a bit more and then resume our interview.
A) Do you have a go-to exercise routine to prepare you?
K) “Exercise routine?”
*A gentleman, who stops to introduce himself and tell Kelly she is beautiful, interrupts us. She graciously accepts his business card and thanks him several times before he leaves. *
“Ok exercise routine. During fashion week I don't have time to exercise, walking is the best exercise I’m getting. I’m doing it all day every day! But prior to fashion week, I’m an outdoors sort of girl, I’m not too fond of the gym. However, I have taken a liking to lifting weights just to you know define my muscles”, she says with a smirk and a slight body roll. “But I really love to rollerblade! It’s what I tell my friends if they are trying to get lean. It’s THE best thing to do! All you need is a week and I guarantee an inch off that hip. Deadass! Also biking, like those Citi bikes, they’re all over, sometimes I’ll hang out on the Upper East Side and I’ll bike back to Brooklyn!”
A) What type of music or artists do you listen to when you're getting ready for your shows, or to go out?
K) “Well, it depends, I like to listen to soulful music. I’m a huge fan of Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Ab-Soul, Kendrick Lamar; I love conscious music. Music that will speak to my soul! I’ve been listening to a lot of Thunder Cat; I love Thunder Cat like I am obsessed with him! But you know I like the turn-up music as well”, she says with a little shoulder bounce.
A) So like I said earlier, Nu Evolution is a cruelty-free luxury makeup brand that uses natural & organic ingredients in their products.
K) “Oh, so you don't test on animals? Awesome”, Kelly chimes in. “Nope”, I assure her and we continue.
A) Specifically, because you model how important to you is it to know what's in your makeup or what's being put on your face backstage?
K) “What is very important to me, that I express to makeup artists all the time because you know when you sit in the chair they ask you “oh is there anything you're allergic to?” And the first thing I say is “I’m allergic to dirty brushes!” Because when you get a zit from a dirty brush that zit does not go away! So I just ask them politely “please sanitize your brush before using it on me”. I'm not a germaphobe or anything... however, this is my money maker!” She says with a laugh.
A) How do you pick beauty products, what's most important to you in a product and why is it important to you?
K) “Oh, that's a good question!” She pauses to think. “I’ve been using a lot of natural and organic products lately because I’m a firm believer in sometimes “less is best”. So lately for example when I’m in the shower, I like to use raw organic honey. I use it as an exfoliator but at the same time I use it to hydrate my face as well, and it brightens my skin! I also like to use, you know if you grind up coffee beans, the nicotine in from the coffee beans, if you mix that with some brown sugar and maybe like a teaspoon of olive oil and you can use that on your face, your whole body! Not only does it exfoliate but it brightens your complexion as well. You know, I’ve been trying to go the more towards the organic route.”
A) If you could only wear one thing, what's your must have makeup item? What color?
K) “If I can only do one, my must have makeup item is my gold deposit, because I love to be golden! I live my life like it’s golden- Jill Scott! I like to be radiant, that's my favorite, like my must!” Kelly declares.
* Want to “live your life like its golden” like Kelly?
Try some of NU EVOLUTION’s golden options such as: “Portofino” Pressed Bronzer, “Versailles” Eye Shadow, & “Bling” Lip gloss. *
A) Ok, last question! In regards to beauty, what is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
K) “The best advice I’ve gotten? Hmm... now you're making me use my thinking cap” she pauses a while, thinking over the question. “The best advice I was given was I’d say to not pick my face. As much as I wish I could practice it, just do not touch your face! If you have to do extractions do them the right way, just don't use your nails! You know this may be off topic, but once you are comfortable in your own skin you won't have any insecurity when it comes to how you look. Once you learn how to accept yourself, how to love yourself, you’ll feel beautiful regardless of what you have on your face. You know, what you put in your body, it will reflect on the outside. So that's the best advice I was given, or actually, maybe I just gave!”
A) Well, whatever you are doing, it's working!
(Final look of Kelly Gervais for BERENIK's S/S 2017 show)
This interview has been condensed and edited.