Chilling With All Time Legend/Writer, Isabelle Hellyer
Chances are you’ve already trawled through Isabelle Hellyer’s Instagram and quietly wondered to yourself how it’s humanly possible for someone to look the way she does. Sorry Angelina Jolie, you’ve done a fairly bang-on job so far, but if another Tomb Raider ever hits the big screen, it’s obvious that @rottwield and her impossible face will be the frontrunner to play titular character Lara Croft.
Blessed genetics aside, the Melbourne-based honey also happens to know how to turn a phrase, covering all the big topics over at i-D and VICE. She clearly places a big onus on creative friendships, loves minions — ”they allow us all to communicate, even if we might hate each other” — and has a very attainable (in her words inexpénsivè) beauty routine. Very NEXT GEN.
We recently dropped by Isabelle’s house in Melbourne, where we poked around her (/her housemates) beauty and skincare stash, before asking some very pressing questions about minions, breakfast foods and what advice she’d give young writers starting out. Get to know the lil’ ledge below!
What’s your skincare routine (tell us about the products you swear by)?
I use whatever is in the bathroom. Apologies to my housemates. I am sorry. I do swear by olive oil, and put a few tiny drops all over my face every night, or when I can. I’ve never had particularly nice skin, but that seems to help the most. When things get rough again, I use the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion. I also swear by washing your face every single morning, and every evening. When I’m quite drunk my boyfriend does the latter for me. Very nice.
Do you wear make-up? What’s your go-to everyday product?
Hell yeah! I do almost every day, it’s fun, no? My makeup bag is a small minion, and I carry it most places. My favourite foundation is Estee Lauder Double Wear, but I’m wearing the wrong shade right now because I caught a light “tan” over summer. I really like lip stains because the stuff simply does not come off: the 3CE lip marker is the best, Benefit’s Benetint is also really good. Almost everything else in my makeup bag comes from Chemist Warehouse. They stock this W7 brand which is quite inexpénsivè. My favourite lipliner is from them, the Lip Twister in ‘Nude Dude’ — same. Their clear gloss is great for using on eyelids, and I use their Absolute Lashes mascara, because it does the job and it’s like, $4.99.
What’s your hair care approach? And the products you use?
My great friend Issy Beech cuts it for me. The kid’s got a gift. To style, I will wrap a pen in it for a while, then let it down and tease if there’s a comb handy. To hold that curl I hit it with Home Brand hairspray, which I think I should stop using because it simply does not smell great. Other days, I will just put a handful of water on top of my head and hope for the best. My hairs are inclined to stick upwards like tiny, annoying antennae. Extremely rude.
What’s the biggest beauty mistake you’ve made?
Damn, probably stealing my stepmom’s makeup all through high school. It wasn’t bad makeup, it’s just bad to steal.
Which beauty trend would you resurrect?
How do you unwind?
Playing Dartslive in whichever city I’m in. Best game. Impossible not to love. Low Ton baby!
What’s your favourite breakfast food?
I truly just have 7/11 coffee for breakfast but “in” “theory” I like bagels with cream cheese.
What’s that one word that you can’t stop saying at the moment?
I asked my friends, the general consensus was, “How is this fair to me,” “hell yeh bitch,” and “huge.”
Favourite online shopping spot?
Etsy, I love Renaissance Fair stores man. Watched too much Outlander I think.
What are you most excited for this year?
I’m going to Tokyo (Dartslive) then LA (Blac Chyna) later in the year.
How long have you been at i-D for? And what’s your favourite part about your job?
I’ve been here for almost two years. I like the people I work with a whole lot. Briony Wright and Wendy Syfret — the editor-at-large and the editor of i-D respectively — are two of the most wonderful women I know. Smart, kind, inspiring. Writing there, it’s a very self-directed job. You find your own stories, you set your own agenda. Pressure, good pressure.
Any advice for young writers?
When you’re young I think it’s better to try to be funny than earth-shatteringly brilliant, ‘cause the latter is something that comes with time (I tell myself this). Read really good writing often, it will sink in. You’ll find yourself writing better. Some of my favourite writers are Jamie Lauren Keiles, her piece How to Optimise Your Flesh Prison is a favourite (also ironic, that’s what we’re doing right now); Rebecca Haithcoat; Anne Helen Petersen (her story about TMZ is very inspiring); and Brian Feldman. My friend Lawson Fletcher writes very different work than I do, but I love his writing. Issy Beech, who I mentioned earlier, is one of the funniest writers I’ve ever read. It’s also so crucial to give yourself jobs: pitch, pitch, pitch. Editors rarely have time to assign you stories — they’re working on a thousand other things. Self sufficient writers are editor’s favourites. None of this is to say I have “it” all “worked out.” I don’t.
What’s your favourite travel destination and why?
I definitely visit Sydney the most, for business and pleasure. I love the beach. There’s some talented people up there who are very special, and make me feel excited to be alive and working with them. Charlotte Agnew, Rene Vaile, Chloe Nour, Ellen Virgona, Joe Brennan, all very clever.
What book has had the most impact on you?
Alien Phenomenology or What It’s Like to Be a Thing.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
I believe it was James Hetfield. Not even like, young Hetfield. St. Anger Hetfield. Weird.
You seem to really love minions — you’ve even fathered one — why are they so special to you?
I love them because they are the ultimate brand. They reference and perpetuate only themselves (they aren’t based off other, real things in the sense that nemo is a fish, or Cinderella is a woman) and through this they allow us all to communicate, even if we might hate each other. Kids love minions, and so do grandparents. Wine moms love minions, and somehow Tumblr does too. We all connect over them, even if, for some people, that’s cloaked in layers of irony. If we wanted to really go for it here, we could say there is a “utopian gesture” inherent in minions.
Words, Madeleine Woon.