Liv in the Moment
Flare magazine, May 2011.
As the face of GIVENCHY's latest scent, Liv Tyler bares her newfound confidence
Liv Tyler is trying to live the simple life. An admitted beauty junkie, she's reforming her hoarding habits and starting afresh. "I moved and threw so much away. I just want to have one cream, two pairs of jeans and one sweater that I love," says the actress over drinks at the New York launch of Very Irrésistible Givenchy L'Intense Eau de Parfum, $93, for which she's the celebrity face. "I'm going through a bit of a minimalist phase."
Her preference for a stripped-down existence in a "more is more" world is just one sign of her all-grown-up confidence. "I'm much more effortless. I really have a more specific idea of what I like and what works for me," says Tyler of her personal evolution since she first caught our eye in films such as Stealing Beauty and the blockbuster Lord of the Rings trilogy. Now 33 and a single mom to son Milo, 6, she's undergone some dramatic changes, emerging stronger, more self-assured and at ease in her own skin.
Perhaps that's why Tyler is relishing the opportunity to appear completely undone—hair au naturel and without makeup—in the campaign for L'Intense. Shot by French star photographer Jean-Baptise Mondino, the black-and-white images feature Tyler styled in tough-chic glamour, complete with second-skin leather pants and studded black bracelets. "I have no makeup on and I was a little grumpy because I hadn't had a coffee yet," recalls Tyler of the 7 a.m. shoot in Paris. "J.B. asked me to just take one picture, so he could look at the light. I went to get full hair and makeup afterwards and we shot all day, but we kept coming back to the original picture. It was this one authentic moment."
It's easy to see why Givenchy has remained transfixed ever since Tyler began appearing in the iconic French brand's fragrance advertisements in 2003. "Her personality has blossomed," says Thierry Maman, managing director of Givenchy Parfums. "We've travelled with Liv through many incarnations, followed her evolution, and L'Intense embodies the strong personality of the woman she has become."
The new juice, a voluptuous floral chypre, opens with a fresh burst of purple plum and evolves with a heart of full-bodied Turkish rose, leaving lingering notes of white musks and patchouli. And in keeping with the gritty edge that Givenchy designer Riccardo Tisci has injected into the fashion side of the label, the bottle features a silver, tattoo-like rose motif. Think sophisticated femininity with a little bit of rock 'n' roll, befitting the perfume's model muse.
Out of the Givenchy fragrance franchise (sister scents include the anise-and-roses original, Very Irrésistible Givenchy, and the berry-laced Absolutely Irrésistible Givenchy), Tyler admits she prefers this newest one. "There's an edge to it that I like a lot," she explains, adding that she has always been drawn to woodsy, earthy and musky smells, such as myrrh or the scent of a church.
The contrasting combination of a harder edge with something romantic also holds particular allure for Tyler, and the idea of intensity is equally intriguing. "Something that's intense can make you feel uncomfortable, out of your comfort zone, but it's also quite sensual. It's something that's more powerful that normal," she explains. So after seven years and three fragrances, would she say L'Intense suits her personality the most? "Right now I would," Tyler says. "It might change tomorrow, though. I have many different personalities."