BEAUTY Modern Muse
Actress Rooney Mara speaks to HELLO! about her favourite beauty products, her fashion fantasies and following in the footsteps of Audrey Hepburn
Givenchy is launching a new version of its much-loved fragrance L’Interdit, inspired by the original composition that Hubert de Givenchy created for Audrey Hepburn in 1957. Rooney Mara is the scent’s new face and, with her diminutive frame, doe eyes and raven-black hair, she bears more than a passing resemblance to her predecessor.
The 33-year-old Oscar-nominated actress, who has appeared in films such as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Carol, has a long-standing association with the French fashion house. Its former designer Riccardo Tisci used to have her front and centre at his catwalk shows. And earlier this year,
Rooney attended the Met Gala with Givenchy’s new artistic director Clare Waight Keller (inset left), who designed the Duchess of Sussex’s wedding dress.
“They approached me to become the new face, knowing that I had been a great admirer of the brand for so many years,” Rooney tells hello!.
“Givenchy has always been my favourite label and I’ve always felt I could really be myself in the clothes – it seemed like a perfect partnership. And, obviously, the fact that the original version was Audrey Hepburn’s perfume fascinated me. It felt very special to be asked to be part of bringing the fragrance back to life.”
The new L’Interdit (which translates as “Forbidden”) is dominated by a bright jasmine note, and there are hints of patchouli in there, too. Like the original, it’s a little bit androgynous. But as fresh as this fragrance is, it carries the weight of fashion history. Before Hubert died earlier this year, at 91 years old, he had the opportunity to smell the new composition and he loved it.
What does L’Interdit perfume evoke for you, Rooney?
“For me, the fragrance feels quite rooted in something storied – an age-old desire to be bold and to push forward – but it is also quite modern. Everything about the Givenchy brand has always felt like that to me.”
What can no one forbid you to do?
“There isn’t really anything someone could forbid me to do. There are a lot of things I wouldn’t do or wouldn’t do if someone asked me not to, but if there was something I really felt was the right thing to do and I was forbidden to do it, I wouldn’t let that stop me.” What was it like shooting the advertising campaign? “To be honest, I normally loathe photoshoots and tend to feel quite uncomfortable. But because I know and love everyone at Givenchy and have for years, it was really fun and felt easy and exciting to be a part of.”
What is your daily beauty ritual?
“I don’t have much of a beauty ritual, but I always wear sunscreen and I use mostly natural products and oils.”
What are your favourite beauty products?
“Everyday Oil, True Botanicals Calm Pure Radiance Oil and Olio E Osso oil. I also use Carasoin Cold Fusion Intense moisturiser, a rosewater and Virtue hair products.”
What makes a woman beautiful?
“Being self-possessed and compassionate.”
What do you love most about Clare Waight Keller’s designs?
“Clare’s designs are utterly romantic and feminine, but also feel quite modern and edgy – I love what she has been doing. Her couture collection was amazing.”
How do you choose your film roles?
“I can’t say how I choose roles; it’s just a feeling or instinct about certain things. I am sure a lot of it is subconscious – choosing things you want to explore or get out of your system. I wouldn’t say I could play any role – not well, anyway.”
Which of your films is your favourite?
“I don’t have a favourite. I like different things about different films. A Ghost Story was the most enjoyable to watch – probably because I am not in a lot of it and because it was so meditative and strange and beautiful.”
What causes are closest to your heart?
“Animal rights is probably one of the closest to my heart. Also, in Africa specifically, the Uweza and Hekima Place foundations, who help orphaned and vulnerable children in Kenya, and any organisation that gives assistance to refugees.”