It wasn’t a struggle for Tamara Ecclestone to name her latest business venture; her own life was inspiration enough.
“I feel like it’s really important to show your beauty, and I also feel like my whole life has been a show of some description,” the Formula 1 heiress admits candidly of SHOW Beauty, her recently launched collection of expensive, beautifully bottled hairstyling products.
Case in point: the 31-year-old stunner is currently sitting with us at her palatial summer home in Bel-Air, breastfeeding daughter Sophia. She doesn’t appear to notice that anyone is startled. As a for- mer model and reality star—British television’s Tamara Ecclestone: Billion $$$ Girl—the brunette beauty is used to having all eyes on her. It isn’t arrogance; it’s simply how she has always lived.
“I feel like people do have misconceptions about me,” she confesses. “It’s crazy. People could get the wrong idea, that I’m not down-to-earth, or [that I’m] spoiled and pampered, but it couldn’t be further from the truth.”
The truth is that in addition to being a self-proclaimed “loyal friend, domineering mum, a little bit controlling” and “not as laid-back” as she could be, Ecclestone is also extremely crafty; she isn’t the daughter of self-made billionaire Bernie Ecclestone for nothing. She realized there was a void in the market for a line of sleek, expensive products that could double as vanity pieces, which not only smelled good and looked good, but worked—and well. Thus, armed with insider knowledge of the industry from umpteenth years on the catwalk, as well as a burning desire to create something lasting, SHOW beauty was born.
“After years of having my hair done on photoshoots and filming and not finding a product I was totally in love with, [I realized] there was such a gap in the market for a luxury haircare line. Most of the packaging was a little bit basic, and not something you’d want to display. I wanted something that looked beautiful and obviously worked, as well,” she notes.
Ecclestone was completely hands-on with the creation of her company. She not only helped Swiss fragrance leaders Givaudan in creating a signature scent that’s present in each of the thickening, volumizing, conditioning and finishing products, but also helped to design sleek and chic packaging. The result is a brand that completely embodies decadent glamour.
Needless to say, the heiress-turned-beauty guru is proud of her creation. “The packaging is something you’d want to have out on display, and the smell makes you feel good when you use it. You don’t have to spend a long time getting ready—10 minutes or less—and you’ll look great,” she declares, adding, ”People don’t have time anymore. You’re either working, you’re a mom or both, and speed is everything…but you don’t need to compromise on luxury.”
She learned not to settle—and other tricks of the trade—from one of the world’s most successful magnates, a man she likes to call “dad.”
“He always said to me, ‘You have to be very involved. You can’t let someone else run [your business]. You wouldn’t let someone else run your child, would you? You have to be hands-on, and you have to be prepared to put in hard work, otherwise it’s not worth it.’ He said, ‘Don’t do it if you’re not going to be 100 percent on board,’” she recalls of racing CEO Bernie Ecclestone, noting that his advice was well received, as was his support for her ventures, of which also includes her London-based blow-dry bar, SHOW Dry.
“I definitely went to my dad [when I first decided to create SHOW Beauty]. It was important to me that he would believe in what I was doing. Hearing my dad say, ‘I’m so proud of you’ [was incredible]. It’s nice to hear that.”
Her father also puts his money where his mouth is, so to speak. “He actually uses the product; he uses the dry shampoo when he’s traveling. He loves it!” she says with a smile, before her tone turns serious. “My dad has always inspired me, I’m so proud of what he’s created, and I know that I’ll probably never create something as amazing as what my dad has—it’s unlikely—but I still want to create something that I’m proud of, that I have a reason—apart from my daughter—to wake up for in the morning. I want to go to bed feeling satisfied.”
She adds, “Of course, there are hurdles, and it’s not always smooth sailing, but I do have a drive and wouldn’t be fulfilled if I wasn’t doing this.”
SHOWING OFF: LESS IS MORE
Ecclestone is a firm believer that when your hair looks good, you feel good about yourself. Her desire in creating SHOW was, in part, altruistic: she wanted everyone who applied her products to feel positive results. “I wanted women to feel special and feel good about themselves every time they used it,” she declares.
And, this includes herself. As a new mom, Ecclestone hasn’t had time for the full-face make-up routine of her past. “I don’t have time to wash my hair every day,” she admits, noting that her line’s dry shampoo (endorsed earlier by her father) is the perfect antidote to greasy hair, refreshing her mane between washes. “It’s quicker,” she says. “I don’t have time to do anything. Having my hair and makeup done [these days] is very unusual. Usually, my hair is scraped back, and I’m ready to go in five minutes. I brush my hair, put on lip gloss and wear sunglasses to hide a multitude of sins.”
This is easier to do in Los Angeles than in her native London. “Less is definitely more,” she declares. “I’ve been through stages of wearing a lot of makeup, but now I realize that it’s nice to actually not have to wear a ton. I like to look natural, especially here [in L.A.]. Everyone here is so laid-back, and I really like that look,” she says.
“In the U.K., at the moment, everyone is obsessed with that Instagram makeup,” she continues. “That’s what I call it; it’s a very defined brow, a strong eye and a strong lip. It’s like ‘more is more.’ Here, people look effortless.”
Another point in favor of the City of Angels is that her 20-month-old daughter with husband, Jay Rutland, loves it so much. She has taken to the surf, the sand and the sunshine like a fish to water. It is Sophia, of course, and her happiness, that are Ecclestone’s top priorities.
On the defense, the heiress is well aware of how cruel the world can be, and she wants to shield her daughter from it. “I never want her to feel bad,” she says. “Everyone has gone through phases of feeling insecure, and I’d hate to ever think of her feeling like she’s not perfect. I want to protect her—all I really want is for her to be happy.”
That said, she intends to teach Sophia a few important life lessons. “[I’m going to try to teach her] inner beauty is really all that matters, and outer beauty is transient—it comes and goes; not to have hang-ups and self-esteem issues. It sounds so cheesy, but happy girls are the prettiest,” she notes.
By that token, Ecclestone wants to make all children feel pretty. That is to say, she wants all children to be happy. She has worked closely and actively with the Great Ormond Street Hospital for the past 10 years, even launching the “Tamara Gives Back” campaign in 2008 to raise funds for a new Children’s Kidney Center at the U.K. hospital.
“Children are so important to me,” Ecclestone says. “Being able to help and make a difference [is essential]. Going to the hospital and visiting with the patients and kids is so sad, but so inspiring. It’s uplifting to see how brave the kids are, and how strong their parents are.”
She adds, “I’m so privileged and so lucky. I just feel like it would be so wrong to not want to help and give back.”
TAMARA SHOWS OFF HER FAVORITE SHOW BEAUTY PRODUCTS:
• Premiere Dry Shampoo. It’s always in my handbag. It gives volume, has a nice fragrance and it’s quick and easy to use.
• Pure Treatment Oil and Premiere Finishing Spray. I mix [the oil] in my hand with the finishing spray and it smooths down flyaways.
• Decadence Hair Fragrance. I don’t wear perfume. It makes me feel sick; it gives me nausea and a headache, but wearing my fragrance in my hair doesn’t seem to do that. Also, the hair fragrance doesn’t have any alcohol in it so it doesn’t dry your hair out. It also leaves this nice smell [in the air] while you’re walking past, [which makes it] a must if you’re a smoker.