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Elyse Taylor

Date with Kate

Date with Kate: Elyse Taylor

26th November, 2017

Elyse and I catching up in the Lexus Design Pavilion at Melbourne Cup

Australian model Elyse Taylor was discovered at the age of 18 and went on to walk for Victoria’s Secret, Dolce & Gabbana and Tommy Hilfiger and has been on the cover of Vogue, Elle and Harper’s Bazaar. The 30-year old, born in Sydney and now based in the New York, is now the face of Nude by Nature. Here Taylor chats to me about motherhood and modelling and shares how she maintains her healthy glow.

What is a day in the life of you?
Depends where I am. If I’m at home it’s spent with my daughter, my dog, drop off and pick ups from school, gym, cooking and repeat. If I’m away for work, then gym and work and FaceTime my daughter and I’m usually at an airport.

What have you been working on at the moment?
I was lucky enough to have been invited back for Derby Day and Melbourne Cup with Lexus and I’ve actually been designing my own swimwear range with the Sydney-based brand, Bondi Born which is really exciting.

What is your favourite beauty fix?
Love a good hydrating facial especially the triad facial at Dr Colbert in New York.

What is the secret to glowing skin?
I really believe it’s your diet and staying hydrated. But as for putting products on my face, I always like to use natural products like the Nude by Nature highlighting sticks to give you that extra kick!

What is your favourite travel destination?
A beach. Any beach. I’m a water baby.

How do you stay fit?
I work out 5 times a week. I love it for my mind, my body and for work.

Do you like to cook? What is your specialty?
I do like to cook but recently I’ve become nervous about cooking for grown ups because I’ve been really only cooking for Lila (my daughter) for the past 3 years. I used to make an amazing seafood pasta. And I do whip up a pretty great breakfast.

How do you juggle motherhood and your modelling career?
Like every single mother, you just do it. You try and find balance where you can and if you can’t, you try not to beat yourself up about it and do your absolute best.

What is your favourite activity with Lila?
Cuddling! I’m not sure it’s hers but we also love to bake together.

What are you most proud of in your life so far?
My daughter, always.

What has been your career highlight?
Victoria’s Secret and my Vogue covers.

Living in New York, what do you miss about Sydney?
I miss the beaches and the outdoor lifestyle.

What’s up next for you?
For me, I’ll be shooting and launching the Bondi Born swimwear range and Nude by Nature is releasing their new amazing lip colors.

What’s the secret to a good photo?
I love photos where you are able to capture special moments! But if you’re trying to take a good photo of yourself, try taking 800 hopefully you will get one that you like.

What makes you smile the most?
My daughter.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to make it in the modelling industry?
To be strong and treat it as a business. It’s extremely competitive and a lot of hard work.

How is New York different to Australia for modelling work?
There is definitely more consistent work and a larger range in types of jobs in New York. But I really do love both places and enjoy my time in both. One is not necessarily better than the other, they are just different.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Life is tough but so are you.

What do you always carry in your handbag?
Paw paw everywhere and always.

Do you have rules for how you use social media?
I use it for work purposes only.

We went to: Lexus Design Pavilion

We ate: Baker Bleu bread, Gary’s Quality Meats, Holy Goat Cheese, Bruce Colllis scallops, Kinkawooka prawns, Australia’s Oyster Coast, Nossa Spanner Crabs and Strawberry mascarpone cake
We drank: Coldstream Hills Chardonnay, Yarra Valley

Photography: Regina Karon

Date with Kate, Fashion & Beauty


17th April, 2016

Australian model Elyse Taylor was discovered at 18 and went on to walk for Victoria’s Secret, Dolce & Gabbana and Tommy Hilfiger and has been on the cover of Australian Vogue. The 29-year old, born in Sydney and based in the United States, is now the face of Nude by Nature make-up and involved with Milea swimwear. Taylor chats to me about life, juggling motherhood and modelling, and her quirky cleaning habits.

What’s a day in the life of you when you’re at home in the US?

If I have a day off, I have breakfast with Lila and then I walk her to school, with my neighbour. Our kids are the same age and go to same school. While she is at school, we go to the gym, work out and pick her up and have lunch, and then have enough time with her and just hang out. But then if I’m working, I’m up at five [o’clock] and gone. So it’s constantly changing but it’s good.

How do you juggle it all?

I’ve learnt to be a little bit more aggressive. I’ve had to say no to certain jobs, just because they’ve been back to back. I don’t really want to spend more than four or five days away from my daughter because she is just growing and doing so many things and you don’t want to miss anything. I start getting a little strange after five days. I get really anxious and hostile. So I just try and make sure that I have enough time off and enough time on.

What do you enjoy most about motherhood?

Just the milestones and watching her and seeing her personality come through because she is two now.

Do you have plans to grow your family?

I would definitely love to have more children. It’s just trying to find the right time. If it happens, it happens. It would be wonderful. But we’re just taking it one step at a time.

What’s next for you?

I have this amazing relationship with Nude By Nature, and Milea is about to launch … And then, I think I was planning on coming back for Australian Fashion Week in May.

What made you get involved and become the face of Nude By Nature

I think it was just like a natural alignment. Nude By Nature had a worldwide search for a face that was an Australian kind of beauty. When I got the call saying “it’s you”, I was so humbled and honoured.

What’s your top beauty secret you’ve learnt while modelling?

If you’re doing smoky eye, you put your foundation on afterwards … and with highlighting, just highlight the bridge of your nose and cheekbones.

Out of everything in your life, what are you most proud of? 

In life, I feel like I’m most proud of Lila, but my career probably has been over 10 years now. As a model, you never think it’s going to last that long.

When you did the Victoria’s Secret show, what was the most surprising part about that?

The grandeur of the show. You don’t realise how big it is, and how big the machine is behind it. I was also surprised at how it is like a little family – doing the catalogue, doing the commercials and then doing the show. I still keep in contact with the girls.

What’s the worst part about your job?

That it’s not forever. That’s always in the back of your mind, especially as I get older!

What’s your plan after modelling? 

There is no set plan. I would like to keep building my brands and keep moving forward and seeing where that takes us. There’s definitely a lot of opportunities, especially in the States. So it’s just trying to find the right outlet for that.

If you didn’t become a model, what would you have done? 

I like to be creative. So I think I would like to stay within the industry, but maybe in art direction or maybe on the other side of the lens. I would still like to create content for brands and stuff like that, so that’s very natural for me. I enjoy that.

Do you think Lila will follow in your footsteps?

I don’t know. If she wants to, and if she is passionate about it, I’ll support her in her work. I’d love her to have a real job, one that lasts forever. But if she is passionate about this, then, of course I’ll support her and direct her in the right direction.

Who do you look up to and admire?

I look up to other women that have children with really intense careers. Especially how they find the balance to make it all work and have success after having children as well. You don’t realise how intense and what a whirlwind it is having children and then how much you are actually taking on.

Do you have any quirky habits that no one knows about?

I really am OCD about cleanliness … I clean all the time. I can’t stop. With my nanny’s cleaning, I’ll clean over the top of her cleaning and she is like, ‘is something wrong?’ I’m like, ‘Just go find, Lila. I have to finish this’.

Do you have any fears?

I don’t really like heights … I climbed the Harbour Bridge and I was dying inside.

Where is your favourite travel destination?

My favourite personal travel destination is St Barths, especially with my daughter. It’s a quiet place, to just be with the family, be on the beach. We know the island really well so there is no surprises, which is always great, especially when you have a kid.

How do you stay in shape?

I work out and I try a lot of different diets, and a blood-type diet works best for me.

What is a blood-type diet?

Each blood type is different. I’m an O blood type, so I can have lots of meats and certain kinds of fruits. I can eat as much of that as possible and not gain weight, which is great … because before I was juicing and eating all these types of salads but I was holding all this body weight. Then, once I started that, all the weight came off, all the extra baby weight.

If you have this strict diet regime, what is your biggest indulgence?

Pizza. If I’m in Australia, I like seafood pizzas. And then, if I’m in the States, macaroni – because I try and think of like the worst possible thing I could eat after a week’s rigid diet.

Where do you see yourself in five years? 

I guess I see myself just keep working and keep planning for the future and keep building on what we’ve already been building; constantly working with different brands and just trying to diversify myself as much as possible. There’s definitely things in the States with [talent agencies] WME and IMG combining, so there is a lot more film and television options that weren’t available before, which is exciting.



WE WENT TO  Bistro Moncur, Woollahra

WE ATE vine ripened tomato salad; salad of beetroot, balsamic glazed heirloom carrot, goats curd and hazelnuts; buffalo mozzarella, figs, witlof, basil and vino cotto; pan fried barramundi fillet with mashed peas, crème fraiche and confit spring onion, sunflower seed and caper beurre noisette.

ELYSE WORE Isabel Marant top and Levi’s.

KATE WORE Bec and Bridge dress .

Date with Kate, Fashion

Date with Kate: Elyse Taylor

22nd February, 2015
Lunch with Elyse and our daughters at Bathers Pavilion. Photo: Edwina Pickles.

Lunch with Elyse and our daughters at Bathers Pavilion. Photo: Edwina Pickles.

Elyse Taylor traded working in a bakery for modelling and has since been a face of Estee Lauder and walked on catwalks for the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger and Victoria’s Secret. The 28-year-old Australian, who is based in New York, gave birth to her daughter, Lila Louise, 11 months ago and has since returned to modelling, visiting Australia as an ambassador for Bonds to mark its centenary year. She chatted to me about motherhood, the “nightmare” of getting back in shape, and why modelling was far from her mind as a youngster.

Congratulations on becoming a mother. 

Thank you. It’s amazing. I mean, I’m sure you’d know. It’s challenging but it’s amazing and so much fun.

For you, what’s the best part about being a mum?

I don’t know – just getting to know her. I love when she reaches for me and says, “Mum, mum, mum”. And then at the middle of night, I’ll sneak her into my bed when we’re travelling. It’s amazing. It’s just little things that are incredible.

Did you take some time out from work when Lila was born?

Yes, I took the first five months off, just getting back into shape and spending time with her and I was breastfeeding as well. I just wanted to be with Lila and get used to everything. I wanted to spend as much time with her before I had to start travelling again because getting away is quite hard.

It must be hard being a new mum and travelling for work. How do you juggle it all?

I’ve become more selective with all my jobs. I make sure it’s worth it, and if I have to be away for more than four days then I’ll take her with me.

You look incredible!

Thank you, I try. Lila had me up at 3am this morning! But it has been a long road. It took me six months to get back into shape. It was a nightmare.

Why was it a nightmare?

To get back into shape. I put on 20 kilos during my pregnancy and you see other models bounce back straight away but I didn’t, I had to work really hard.

How did you get back in shape?

I had to try different things because the stuff I was doing before [my pregnancy] just wasn’t working anymore. So I started training [with] Justin Gelband, who does Model Fit. And then he put me on a blood-type diet.

What does that involve?

I’m an O blood type. So for me it’s more of a meat-based diet. If I stick to that and I’m really strict about it, then I can still eat a lot and lose a lot of weight. But it took me good six months with a lot of training as well to lose the weight.

What was your fitness regime?

I worked out four days a week for 90 minutes. His workouts are a bit strange. You do weird kind of high-repetition leg weights – like a Tracy Anderson workout.

Did you feel the pressure from the modelling industry to bounce back?

Not directly. But it is there because you get replaced, and I did get replaced with certain brands I worked for. If I step out [of work] there’s a hundred other girls that can take my place. So it’s hard. I don’t feel the pressure from them directly but it’s from myself.

What are you working on at the moment?

This trip, I came back to Australia for the Bonds 100-year anniversary campaign that I shot alongside [actor] Jai Courtney.

How did this all come about?

I’ve had a really long relationship with Bonds. I was the face of their underwear a couple of years ago. So I’ve grown up with them and we have become like a little family. So it’s nice to be able to come back and see familiar faces, especially now with Lila. She was in couple of shots. It is so nice to have her on the set.

When you were younger, did you envisage your life to be the way it is today?

No, not at all … I was working at Bakers Delight. I got fired because I used to eat all the custard scrolls and then be too sick to work [laughs].

How did you get into modelling?

My friend was modelling at the time. It just appeared to be a lot less work and more money than Bakers Delight! [laughs]. So she took me down to her agency and the rest is history.

So you had no aspiration to be a model when you were younger?

No, not really. I didn’t think about it. I was kind of just like a tomboy and was like, “Let’s go to the beach and chase boys around.”

What has been your biggest career highlight?

Definitely my first cover of Vogue. That meant a lot to me. And Victoria’s Secret show is always fun and crazy.


What’s it like to be a Victoria’s Secret model?

It’s amazing. For a model, you couldn’t ask for a better job. It’s just so much PR. It’s all about the girls. They really take time to make the girls a household name.

Modelling opened so many doors. Are you going to expand your career?

Yes. I’ve done acting courses at the New York Film Academy through a private tutor and I’ve auditioned for some pieces. I’d like to get into presenting and experience another side to this job. And I would like to set up my own business. I’m open to collaborations and doing my own range of products that is baby-orientated.


WE WENT TO The Bathers’ Pavilion, Balmoral Beach.

WE ATE Salad of poached salmon and green vegetables with avocado, quinoa and citrus dressing; green salad; salad of Jinnai goat’s curd with beetroot and asparagus, vincotto and walnut oil dressing.

WE DRANK Herbal tea and sparkling mineral water.

ELYSE WORE Vintage Levi’s and Alexander Wang shirt

LILA WORE A Bonds baby suit.

I WORE a Manning Cartell top and skirt.