Blame it all on Carla. That’s what I tell everyone who asks when I became such an obsessed traveler. She had come to study in the U.S. from Italy on a student visa and was my best friend. When I was 17 my parents let me return home with her after school finished. I stepped off the plane and—whooosh!—just like that, I fell in love. With Milan. With Italy. I’ve been chasing those love affairs ever since. And happily (for you and me), since my work is my life and my life is my work, I get molto fixes for my travel habit.
The stamps that have covered the pages of my passports over the years are a mash-up from countries in every corner of the globe, where I’ve hit over 100 cities. I’m a city lover—that’s where I find the culture (confession: hitting the Gucci flagship in Florence counts as art hunting of the best kind in my book), personalities, food (the smoothest, most delicious gelato anywhere on the planet is the half-limone, half-menta gelato at Gelateria Bandirali in Crema, Italy, by the way), and opinions that give me a better understanding of the world.
But you know what really makes me keep racking up those frequent flier miles?Sure, taking in the newest beauty trends in far-flung pockets of the planet is never not fun (hair tapestry, anyone?). But coming face to face with a mix of fabulous women, hearing about their most annoying beauty issues and then discovering new ways to nix them—that’s my heaven.
Which brings me to my fave insider tip: When I traveled to Greece, my eyes were opened to a country whose people embrace nature in almost everything they do and make. Watching them utilize this magnificent country’s indigenous plants and herbs helped me realize the power of natural extracts and their beauty benefits. (In fact our Color Shield Shampoo was formulated with botanical extracts inspired by what I saw there.) I’ve learned that whether it’s the food you put in your body or the beauty products you use on your body, there’s never too much of a good natural thing. Thanks, Carla.