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MY STYLE

MY STYLE.

The Daily Mail (London, England); 4/24/2006

Byline: KAREN HOCKNEY

Padma Lakshmi, the actress and wife of Salman Rushdie, on why she loves glamour, so long as it's comfortable

PADMA LAKSHMI found fame as an international model and cookery writer, and was last year voted one of the world's most beautiful women by Harpers & Queen.

But she is probably still best known for being the wife of controversial writer Salman Rushdie - although that's set to change with her acting role in Sharpe's Challenge.

She stars alongside Sean Bean as the beautiful but deadly Indian regent Madhuvanthi in the twopart ITV1 drama which concludes tonight, and is hoping it will lead to more acting work in Britain.

The 32-year-old Indian-born star, who has modelled for Vogue and Elle, divides her time between New York and London. Here, she describes her personal style.

WHAT'S IN YOUR CAPSULE WARDROBE?

I LOVE espadrilles - they are comfortable but they're not flats. I also love tank tops in cotton, wool and cashmere.

Whenever I'm flying, I wear a black jumpsuit by Fornarina. It's so comfortable: in winter, I tuck it into boots, and in summer I wear it with sneakers.

I have a couple of old printed silk dresses that also go into the suitcase really easily. When it's hot during the day and cold in the evening, you can wear them alone or with jeans and boots.

I like to look good without looking like I'm trying too hard, but I want to be comfortable, too.

IF YOU WANT TO LOOK GLAMOROUS, WHICH DESIGNER DO YOU RELY ON AND WHY?

ALBERTA FERRETTI. Her clothes (inset, far right) are very feminine and beautiful, and she cuts fabulous lines while still creating things which are comfortable to wear. It doesn't matter how good you look - if you are unable to move easily, that's not sexy.

WHAT BRAND OF JEANS DO YOU WEAR?

I LIKE Paper Denim, Cloth and London Denim. I like jeans that are low at the front and high at the back. I hate seeing that thong thing hanging out - it's really cheap. I love my Stella McCartney skinny jeans, which are ruched at the bottom.

HOW DO YOU STAY IN SHAPE?

I BOX three times a week and do plenty of exercise; it's the old-fashioned way. I eat like a pig, though. I love carbs and dessert, and I drink wine.

I've been eating as much as Sean [Bean, her costar in Sharpe's Challenge] eats on this production, but I'm lucky that I have a high metabolism.

DESCRIBE YOUR SKINCARE ROUTINE I'M REALLY careful about not being exposed to the sun. While filming Sharpe's Challenge abroad, I made them bring a parasol to my trailer every time I was called.

For everyday skincare, I wash my face and dry it, then use regular honey to draw all the impurities out of my pores. It's a natural detox for your skin.

I use a collagen-stimulating serum by Ayurmedic, and vitamin C powder that comes in little test tubes from Space NK. Christine Chin is my facialist in New York and she is brilliant. I use a lot of her products, including her Daily Renewal skin firming complex. I like Nuxe products, and I use a lot of Neal's Yard essential oils that I make into bespoke perfumes for my girlfriends.

I mix them with Epsom salts and jojoba oil. I use tea tree oil if I have a spot.

WHAT BRAND OF BAG ARE YOU USING AT THE MOMENT?

BE AND D bags are so groovy, they are selling out in New York.

They are two New York designers who I met in Paris a couple of seasons ago and I just fell in love with their bags.

I have two of them now 49- and I'm lusting after a gorgeous python-style one.

IS THERE A FASHION ITEM ON YOUR WISH LIST?

AFTER each work project, I reward myself with a gift and this time it's going to be a beautiful choker from Amrapali jewellery in Jaipur, India.

They stock antique and Victorian jewellery as well as more contemporary designs and have just opened a shop in London's Knightsbridge.

WHO IS YOUR STYLE ICON?

I HAVE lots - I really liked all the Bond girls, especially Ursula Andress.

Maria Callas was striking, with amazing cheekbones, and I think Kate Moss has great style.

IF YOU WERE ON A DESERT ISLAND, WHICH FOUR MAKEUP PRODUCTS WOULD YOU CHOOSE?

CARMEX lip balm, an eyelash curler, a black pencil and a stain that I could use on my cheeks and my lips.

The older I get, the less makeup I wear.

COPYRIGHT 2006 Solo Syndication Limited
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