A Conversation with TRACIE MARTYN
By Eden Herbstman
Perfection is no longer impossible to reach when you follow the philosophy, advice, and treatments from skin care queen Tracie Martyn; the woman responsible for the beautiful faces of top actors, actresses, musicians, and models. Her namesake penthouse salon offers her signature facials and skin treatments, most notable for her Resculpting Facial and Rescuplting Body Treatment, which have become vital go-to products for celebrities, as they prepare for red carpet appearances, award shows, and photoshoots. Kate Winslet, Diane Von Furstenberg, Madonna, Brad Pitt, and Julianna Margulies are just some of her top clientele who swear by her treatments, and dub her products their essential must-haves. Long time client Susan Sarandon has said of Tracie’s treatments, “When I really want to treat myself Tracie’s treatment is one of the few things I know that makes you beautiful inside and out.” This achievement of beauty from inside and out is what sets Tracie apart from others in the industry.
As a certified yoga instructor, Tracie credits a calm clear mind as best for achieving beauty. Thanks to interior designer Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, who designed her salon, an ambiance of pure relaxation is accentuated through the soft hues of purples and whites, with floral and elegant accents. Pre-treatment clients are immediately placed into a zen state of mind, and leave feeling refreshed. A firm believer in the benefits of all natural ingredients, her own line of skin care products are all natural and organic to keep skin looking healthier longer. To maintain youthful appearances, Tracie also encourages her clients to drink plenty of water and green tea, to eat healthy foods, and to never commit the cardinal sin of going to sleep stressed–it will show on your face in the morning. Even though Tracie begins by inspiring a healthy attitude toward beauty with skin care, she advises her clients that beauty is more than just skin deep.
Eden Herbstman: What is the most important piece of beauty advice you have ever been given?
Tracie Martyn: To be perfectly honest, the most important thing about beauty, the idea of stimulating the skin cells with natural ingredients and innovative light and current therapies, came through years of research while I was a make-up artist helping models look their best. I cannot give anybody the sole credit. However, ironically, while I was always giving the models advice, once in a while they would draw attention to little tricks that can make a big impact. I remember one model who looked great sharing with me the importance of curling the eyelashes.
EH: Who is your ultimate beauty icon?
TM: There are many beautiful, inspiring, stylish, smart, powerful, yet gracious iconic women and I actually am blessed to count many of them among my clients. In terms of a classical beauty icon certainly someone like Audrey Hepburn comes to mind.
EH: The old saying goes “Beauty is pain.” Do you believe this philosophy, or is it outdated?
TM: Glad you ask me this question. Certainly historically that is true, I can just imagine how hard it must have been to be forced into a corset where breathing was hardly possible. In regards to skin care, when you go to the dermatologist and/or plastic surgeon that still applies. Whether its injectables or lasers that are actually designed to injure your skin so that the healing process can (eventually) leave you with better skin, yes, when at the dermatologist that saying still holds true. This is partly why I started my own beauty concept as a matter of fact. I just could not accept that there is not a better way.
Therefore, my beauty philosophy is all about “beauty is pleasure” and “beauty is pampering,” but beauty is also serious science if you want it to work. We don’t just massage the face with fragrant oils like you get at some spas, or get a mask put on etc. We target the aging process by stimulating the skin cells and reminding them to behave more like they used to when we were younger. There was a great article in British Vogue that described my concept well. Here is a quote from it: ”Welcome to twenty-first century beauty spiritual but technical; ecologically sound but based on science. Martyn’s clients leave enraptured that they have rediscovered their jawlines, cheekbones and upper eyelids without resorting to surgery that they have just spent a wonderfully peaceful hour in angelic hands.”
EH: How do you think the concept of beauty has evolved in the past five years?
TM: In terms of make-up and fashion: more natural, less is more, yet still remain artistic, playful, elegant and luxurious. The trend is not to conceal and cake on a lot of make-up, but to accentuate natural beauty and healthy glowing skin. To achieve that great skin care nutrition is very important. There are more companies out there offering natural skin care–a great change as petrochemicals belong in our car (if at all), but not on our skin. However, the chamomile lavender approach will not fix a wrinkle or improve elasticity. That is where I come in to deliver fast and reliable results with concentrated natural cosmeceuticals combined with organic skin care botanicals and skin supportive beauty technologies like LED light for instance.
EH: Your Shanti Space Lift Mist, meaning peace in ancient Sanskirt, has combinations of oils from your unique facials, Brazilian green tangerine, and Indian pink lotus flower. Do you think the fragrance focuses on inner beauty while your other products target outer beauty?
TM: I love that you picked up on that! I am a big believer in meditation and am a certified yoga teacher even if I do not currently teach. Actually, most of my products have an amazing aromatherapy effect that affects the senses and calms the mind. That is the amazing thing about my products–they have layers of therapeutic effects working on different aspects. While the essential oil, for instance in the Amla Purifying Cleanser, help to regulate sebum production so that you do not break out, you cannot help but feel happy and refreshed when you wash your face with that fresh green scent coming from the lime, spearmint and fragrant herbs. The Enzyme Exfoliant works the same way and provided the inspiration for the Shanti Space Lift Mist. Our lovely client Rosanna Arquette loved the scent so much she asked us for a candle with the pink lotus and green tangerine scent. As that project was going to be a bit too complex at the time–if we are going to make a candle, we want it to become the best organic candle on the market–we made this amazing mist instead. And Rosanna was happy (she was not the only one!). So you could say that while all my skin care products are about both outer and inner beauty the Space Lift Mist embodies that effect on the mind and spirit the best.
EH: When do you feel the most beautiful?
TM: When I feel happy and am rested. I think all of us exude a natural beauty in that state. It helps to use my products and my treatments and wearing something nice because the added confidence lets us all shine in my experience. And this is all backed by science as well: endorphins are rejuvenating, and happiness lets your inner beauty shine.
EH: Before your salon, skin care line, and status as the “Ultimate Skincare Expert,” you were a highly acclaimed make-up artist. What are the 5 must-haves that women should keep in their make-up bag?
TM: It is so great to understand both make-up and skin care so well. They are so synergistic when used properly to create the most striking natural beauty look. Apart from my Firming Serum, the rejuvenating beauty elixir (a great make-up primer) that goes on before anything: lip stick, mascara, spf-enhanced mineral-based foundation, a small mirror and tweezers.
EH: What is the best skin care advice you can give to women in their 20s to stay on a healthy regiment for the future?
TM: The key to great-looking skin is a combination of great skin care, at least bi-monthly facials, great nutrition, exercise, relaxation/meditation, a good night sleep and a great outlook on life. For luminous skin here are my DOs and DON’Ts
Eat antioxidant rich fruits like berries, drink plenty of pure water, include a good source of protein, and drink green juices. Some nutraceutical supplements can be very helpful. Something I also recommend doing every day is some form of relaxation/meditation that encourages breathing deeply and letting all the worries of the day melt.
Dont’s: Refined/processed sugars and starches, greasy foods, excess sodium (excess salt and soy sauce), and avoid petrochemicals in cosmetics at all costs because they may not only block your pores, but pose a threat to your health.
British-born Tracie Martyn is the owner of Tracie Martyn Salon located at 101 5th Avenue, 11th floor, New York, NY 1003. Tracie produces her signature line of all natural skin products available through her website.
Tracie Martyn interviewed by Eden Herbstman
Written by Eden Herbstman
Photography Courtesy of Tracie Martyn
Design by Clementine Jang
Tracie Martyn, Photography Courtesy of Tracie Martyn