Adut Akech on Her Best Beauty Advice and Hour-Long Skincare Routine

adut akech interview
Adut Akech Has an Hour-Long Skincare RoutineJacopo Raule - Getty Images
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Supermodel Adut Akech and Valentino are a match made in beauty heaven. One of creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli’s muses, Akech is the longtime face of the brand’s Born in Roma fragrance and, as of this summer, the newly named ambassador for its makeup line.

Her mega-role with Valentino—plus countless other major modeling gigs—means Akech is booked and busy. With a schedule like hers, she’ll be ready for a break come Christmastime—even if the weather back home doesn’t exactly scream “winter wonderland.”

“I’m from Australia, and our Christmas is, like, a 40-degrees [Celsius] hot day,” Akech says. Still, the holiday gives her family an excuse to come together; activities include a big family breakfast and sibling makeup sessions. “I have three sisters who are beauty girls, so half the time I’m like, ‘Can you just do my makeup for me?’”

Spoiler alert to those sisters: Their beauty stashes may grow a bit this holiday season. “I’m excited to give some of my Born in Roma fragrances and some Valentino makeup!” the model says of her gifting plans.

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Ahead, Akech sat down with to discuss her newly expanded Valentino Beauty role, her philosophy on beauty, and what exactly goes into her hour-long skincare routine.

What does it mean to you to be an ambassador for Valentino Beauty and Born in Roma?

I’m finally living a dream of mine. I think it’s every little girl’s dream to be in a position like this, and it still doesn’t feel real. I absolutely love working with Valentino. I’ve been there with the fragrance, Born in Roma, since the start five years ago, and to now transition into makeup as well is just the ultimate dream.

What does beauty mean to you?

Beauty means, to me, to be your true, authentic self and to not be afraid to play with makeup and be as creative as you want to be. No one makes up the rules for how you choose to see beauty. You make the rules, and you go all out—whatever makes you feel the best, inside out.

How would you describe your beauty routine?

I take my time with my skincare. More than I do with my makeup. But I believe that if you do the skin prep right, the makeup will be so easy, and you don’t have to spend as much time doing it. I take, like, an hour to do my skincare—it’s a moment I get to myself where I get to just do something for me, and it’s therapeutic.

It takes an hour! What products do you use every day?

I use a few different toners, some moisturizers, a few different serums, some facial tools. It’s not that I have so many products, it’s that I really take my time with it. Before you know it, it’s [been] 45 minutes to an hour. It’s “me” time.

What makeup products do you always have in your bag?

Definitely some sort of a lip balm or a lip gloss. I’m more of a gloss [person], even if it’s a pigmented gloss, rather than a lipstick. I don’t often wear foundation. So I would say some sort of lip product, a blush, and maybe a brow pencil. Those would be my top three.

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What is the best skincare advice you have, or have been given?

Just figure out what works for your skin. Don’t follow what everybody else is using on their skin. That’s why when people ask, I say, “I will tell you what products I use, but I don’t know if they’ll work for you or not.” I have sensitive skin, so I opt for things that are on the more gentle side and don’t have fragrance in the products.

Sometimes, you don’t see results right away, and you tend to think, Oh, it’s not working for me, so let me get something else. But I think [it’s about] just being patient and giving it a fair shot.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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