10 Minutes With: Sylvie Chantecaille - Neiman Marcus

10 Minutes With: Sylvie Chantecaille

NM Social Team

April 4, 2016


Spring is in full bloom, and with the change in seasons comes luminous skin. Formulated from white gardenia stem cell extract and botanicals, Blanc Gardenia Brightening Essence by Chantecaille deserves a place in every spring beauty routine.

We sat down with the brand’s creator and skincare connoisseur Sylvie Chantecaille to learn about the latest formula and her success in the world of beauty.


Neiman Marcus: We’re so accustomed to the use of gardenia for fragrance in perfumes and candles. Can you explain the benefits of using the flower for skincare?

Sylvie Chantecaille: The innovative essence is powered by a combination of exclusive white gardenia stem cell extract and botanicals with unique brightening properties—a formula developed exclusively by our scientists. This promotes a more even-toned complexion by helping to diminish the look of age spots and helping to prevent future discoloration. Combined with seven brightening ingredients, the essence of the gardenia targets pigmentation irregularities and the causes of discoloration in five key areas. The result is a lifted, firmer appearance.


NM: There seems to be a lot of research behind the development of the serum. We’d love to hear more about the thought process that led to the creation of Blanc Gardenia Brightening Essence.

SC: We’ve had great breakthroughs with plant stem cells—today’s science revolves around how we reenergize the cell. When I started 30 years ago, we were cleaning and moisturizing, and you couldn’t pass the dermis.

NM: This new formula is the definition of innovation. How would you describe the results of the Brightening Essence?

SC: The result is unbelievable clarity in the skin and a luminous, bright, and even skin tone. The new formula lessens the appearance of pre-existing dark spots.

We also used garden cress and soy extract to lessen pre-existing dark spots. Key ingredients help even skin tone and reinforce density, firmness, and elasticity. And the use of water lily extract helps make sure inflammatory irritations don’t create future damage. Finally, green decaffeinated coffee extract accelerates the natural exfoliation process.


NM: Chantecaille is known for inventive, scientifically advanced beauty products. Tell us more about how you integrate science and beauty.

SC: For me, true luxury marries incredible textures with effective, innovative science. We used this science when we launched our Gold Eye Cream using apple stem cells. However, no product is truly luxurious unless it’s incredibly effective on the skin, pleasant to use, and delivers on expectations.

As a family, we love the outdoors, animals, plants, and flowers. This made us aware of the plight of disappearing species and to our amazement; we’ve been able to use Chantecaille as a voice for change.

NM: What inspired you to immerse yourself in the beauty industry?

SC: I moved to New York in the ’70s and started a small, chic cosmetics company with my friend Diane von Furstenberg. In 1979, I launched Prescriptives at Estée Lauder, which was a complete breakthrough—women of all colors could find foundation and shades that complemented their skin.

NM: Can you share some tips on mastering the perfect spring glow? Which colors we should incorporate into our makeup for a dewy look?

SC: The spring look is romantic, bohemian, and refreshing. I’m using our new Le Magnolia Palette on my eyes and cheeks. For lips, use soft, beautiful reds with a coral effect—as if you bit into a fresh berry. Try Wild Poppy or Red Juniper Lip Chic.

Dust the eyes with delicate touches of silvery sage that brightens, whether worn on the lid or lash line. Earthy browns will define and contour, as will a shimmery, pearly white.

Flush the cheeks with a playful coral. I love giving an extra glow to the look with our Liquid Lumière highlighting fluids, using either Brilliance for a gold tint, or Luster for a pink-pearl effect. Apply to your cheeks for a strobing effect, or mix them into your foundation for extra luminosity.

NM: How do you see the skincare industry evolving? Will we ever find the fountain of youth?

SC: With the ever-changing needs of women worldwide, the key doesn’t lie in products catered exactly to what your customers think they need, but in being a step ahead and presenting something they don’t know they need yet.

We’re lucky to have a team of incredible scientists we work with closely to create innovative formulations.

The new Gardenia Brightening Essence can be found only at Neiman Marcus.


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