Being dubbed the “face of the 21st Century” as a pre-teen model by Karl Lagerfield would force any young woman to develop thick skin fast.
But while the world recognizes Kimora Lee Simmons as the former headstrong empress behind fashion empire Baby Phat, she has recently taken a turn for the softer side with her new skin-care line, Shinto Clinical.
You’ve made this jump from flashier ventures to something more subdued and personal: skin care. Does that signify a recent growth or maturity in your life?
I never looked at it that way but I guess it is quite accurate when you say it like that. But I look at it more like — I’ve been in fashion, I’ve been in the business.
I feel like fashion and beauty go hand in hand.
So while the essence of the ingredients and the history and what it means is more simplified, I’m giving you the same flash that you would see in any of my lines.
The packaging is tremendous, the smell is great, it’s very luxurious.
I’m still giving you that effect and look of a high-end line.
You’re often perceived you as being extremely confident, but is there any part of you that gets nervous when something you’ve invested so much time in goes international?
I normally would say no, but since you put it like that — ya. I kind of put my heart and soul into this.
I think that has been part of my success formula.
I’ve been on the runway since I was 10 years old. I’m famous because of fashion — it’s not the other way around. I’m not famous because of some sort of behaviour or some sort of shock value. People are tired of people making their riches off public humiliation.
People want some genuineness and transparency. I know my products, I know the lab, I know my chemist, I know my factories, I know the people who work in them, I know what’s going on and I think you can tell that from the BS.
Everything you touch seems to turn to gold. To make us all feel better about ourselves, is there any job you think you wouldn’t be good at?
No. I’m sure I could think of something crazy like construction — but any reasonable thing that you could give me and I could give you, I think that we should assume that we can conquer it.
Women are very strong, very resilient, even far beyond what you think on the surface.
Any situation we get ourselves in, I think nine times out of 10, we’re going to make it way better.