Exclusive: Taylor Hill Talks Bowl Cuts, Pink Hair, & Embracing Your Natural Beauty

Photo: Courtesy of L’Oréal

You might not know much about Taylor Hill, but the striking model's star is set to rise to new heights this year. At just 20-years-old, Hill has already been a Victoria's Secret Angel for nearly two years, was named the face of Lancôme, and most recently, became one of L’Oréal Professionnel's newest ambassadors, alongside Hailey Baldwin.

Hill is the face of the brand's Majirel Colour Correction campaign, a makeup-inspired hair color service that corrects color and enhances your natural shade in the way that makeup can complement skin tone, and the brand's re-launched Série Expert range, which tackles damaged hair. Hill, whose luscious, thick brown hair is all-natural, couldn't be a better poster girl.

This is the latest of many campaigns for Hill, who has worked with high street names including H&M, Topshop, and Forever 21 and designer brands from Miu Miu to Jimmy Choo. Refinery29 met Hill in Paris with L'Oréal Professionnel this week to talk hair icons, embracing your natural beauty, and the benefits of coconut oil.

More hair than I know what to do with

A photo posted by Taylor Hill (@taylor_hill) on

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When you have five minutes to get ready, what do you do to your hair and face?
I put my hair in a bun and then put a hydrating moisturiser on my face, get dressed and go. That's what I usually do before I go to work. I use Énergie de Vie products from Lancôme, so I have a night cream and a day moisturiser. It’s really easy because I don’t have to think about it.

What's your approach to hair and makeup when you're not working?
Usually I keep it simple and basic. I work so much I think it’s good to give yourself a break from makeup to refresh your skin and have a chill day on the hair. I usually don’t heat it or style it, so it stays kinda like low key.

How do you take care of your hair and skin when you’re travelling so much?
When I’m on the plane I usually put my hair in French braids. Skin-wise, I like to put coconut oil on before I leave for the plane because it soaks in and lasts a lot longer. Otherwise you have to add a lot of skin care, and I just like to pass out and wake up.

Do you put coconut oil on your hair as well?
You can. I don’t because it’s tricky to wash out and I haven’t mastered the technique yet. Otherwise it leaves your hair quite oily. I’ve used it before and three days later it’s fine, but I can’t do it before a job because it goes a bit stringy on the ends. But it does do something good. I usually stick to hair masks that are rinsable.

Which masks do you use?
Mythic Oil by L’Oréal Professionnel. When you have a bath, you dunk your hair wet in the bath, put it on and wrap it into a bun and then rinse it out in the shower after. That's usually my hair mask routine if I do one. I don’t understand how you do it if you don’t take a bath. Do you wet your hair in the shower, put it in, sit around and then go back in the shower? I usually do it during a relaxing bath.

When do you feel most beautiful?
When I get to be more myself, because a lot of my job is being transformed or looking a bit different. I love feeling comfortable and wearing what I want to wear — a sweatshirt, hoodies, and pants, things like that.

What’s your signature hair and beauty look? How would you like to be known?
I always wear a bun and people always ask me how to do the perfect topknot. Makeup-wise, I do cat-eyes a lot, just the black line.

Who are your hair heroes?
I love Gisele Bündchen. Everyone’s always like, 'I want the Gisele'. I think that's it. I can’t think of anyone else who has really amazing hair.

What's the worst hairstyle you’ve ever had?
I’ve never really dyed my hair a different color. When I was really young my mum cut my hair like a boy — to eyebrow level — because I'd complain about it itching in my snowboarding helmet. She cut my sister’s and my hair really short and I cried. I was afraid everybody would think I was a boy so I wore a lot of pink.

Did she use a bowl? Or did she just go for it?
She’s a hairdresser so she just did it and it actually looked cute. It would’ve been really cute if I was older, but I was so young that I thought I'd look like a boy. I hated it.

Who are your beauty icons? Is there anyone whose look you admire?
It’s hard for me to pinpoint exactly because the message I like to spread is 'love yourself, be confident and be who you are'. So for me it's about embracing myself and my own traits instead of trying to look like somebody else or doing things that other people are doing beauty-wise. Of course I admire amazing things about other women, but they’re usually personality-based. I'll think, 'She’s so funny', 'She’s so sweet' or 'Look at all the amazing work she does with this charity'. I focus on things like that instead of what they look like because I’ll never look like them, I’ll only ever look like me.

How has your approach to hair and beauty changed as you’ve got older?
You just come into your own. Everyone goes through that awkward phase where you don’t know what to do or you maybe overdo it. You'll see old photos of yourself and think, 'Why did I do that?' But everybody goes through it, so I think it’s funny and nothing to be ashamed of. Embrace your weirdness, people.
Were there any particular products you loved as a teenager?
I couldn’t tell you specifically because I started modelling so young. I never went through that crazy experimental phase, so that’s always a tricky one for me to answer.

Do you regret that you didn’t have a chance to go through that phase?
No, I’m really happy. I wouldn’t have done it any other way.

It probably means you have far fewer embarrassing old photos than most of us…
Probably, but I do have some embarrassing photos from when I was about 12. I was really nerdy at school. I love them.

Where do you get your hairspiration?
L'Oréal Professionnel’s Style My Hair app is really cool. You upload a photo of yourself and it allows you to change your hair color and style. You can use the app, bring your phone to the hairdresser and they can actually see you with the hairstyle. That’s probably what my mum would say was the most difficult, because she used to work in a salon and was a hairdresser for 35 years. You can't make someone look like somebody else. I’m sure she’d love the app.

Who in the fashion and beauty industry do you enjoy working with?
I love working with Lancôme. It’s so easy, we shoot with Mert [Alas] and Marcus [Piggott], who are some of the best photographers ever. They’re really chill, they know what they want, they get it done, they get the shot and it’s just from the neck up most of the time. It’s fun and they have really good energy. They base it on who you are and not so much on the product you’re selling. I feel super genuine with it and the same goes for L'Oréal. It feels a part of my life because it’s professional, it’s salon-based and my mum’s a hairdresser.

Is your mum proud of what you’re doing now?
For sure.

I bet she enjoys all the free products…
She does, yeah. She’s always like, 'Make sure you get me some' and I’m like, 'OK!'

Are there any celebrities whose haircuts you admire?
I really like it when [celebrities] chop all their hair off, like Natalie Portman in V for Vendetta when she shaved her whole head. That’s really cool.

Would you ever do that?
No, it’s so drastic. It’s admirable because she really went for it.

Are there any hairstyles you’d like to try but are too scared of getting?
Yeah! Pink or something, but I will never, obviously, because of my career. Also, my hair would never be the same and I get so many compliments about my hair colour. I’m like, 'Thanks, it’s all mine'.
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