Camille Rowe, the face of Dior’s new fragrance, Poison Girl, is smart, funny and beautiful. And, as she revealed on Tuesday, before Dior's epic party in New York, she’s also got some serious dance moves. Here, the French-American model and actress, who recently appeared in the pages of Playboy, opens up about fashion, feminism and face masks.
I hear you just moved to Los Angeles. Do you like it?
Are you kidding, I love it!
Do you drive?
I don’t know how to drive. It’s like this huge misconception about L.A. You don’t necessarily need to drive. It depends on your neighborhood. I’m in Echo Park, on the mountain, I have a bicycle, and I’m in heaven. And Lyft is great, too.
You’re wearing that super-cool T-shirt Maria Grazia Chiuri sent down Dior’s spring 2017 runway. (The white one with black letters that spell “We Should All Be Feminists.”) That’s the message I am getting from the Poison Girl campaign: Girl Power.
I’m so excited that this is happening in fashion. It’s felt so masculine for some time. It’s awesome Dior has a woman designer. And it’s awesome she’s putting out a positive message. Especially at this time.
So, Poison Girl. Is that like Nasty Woman? I saw from your Instagram that you participated in the women’s march in Los Angeles last month?
Yes! I’m definitely a Nasty Woman.
There’s another photo on your feed that I love. You’re wearing a perfectly applied face mask, smoking a cigarette, and reading Anais Nin. Was the face mask real?
Yes! It was my birthday, and I was wearing a hydrating mask from a French brand I love, Biologique Recherche. They make great products. I believe it was the oxygen one (Masque VIP O2).
The press materials describe Poison Girl as a free and sassy temptress. Are you a free and sassy temptress?
I’m free and sassy. I don’t know if I’m a temptress, (she says, laughing). I’m like, very much in love (still laughing).
I’m sure you can be a temptress. Weren’t you a Playboy Playmate of the month last year?
Yes, I was Miss April.
What was that like? It’s now the new, cooler, not-so-nudie Playboy, right?
Yeah, I was pretty excited. I’ve been collecting Playboy magazine from the '60s and '70s since I was a teenager. I think it’s cool for them to kind of go back--you know, no nudity, make it more classy, worthwhile articles. To be honest with you, I haven’t been following it; I only got that one issue. So I don’t know if they’ve sustained what they were going for. But April was good, the articles were interesting. And the shoot was fun, because it was all friends on set--the stylist, the photographer [Guy Aroch]. I brought all my vintage T-shirts with me. We had a great time.
You also did the most recent Victoria’s Secret runway show. Is it true that no one eats for, like, four days before the show?
I mean, I wish I wouldn’t have eaten for four days before the show, but unfortunately, I visited my parents (they live in Morocco, outside Marrakech) for Thanksgiving right beforehand. And we’re eaters. I was definitely eating. Maybe I shouldn’t have. Note to self for next time!
Victoria’s Secret makes me think of Valentine’s Day, you know, all that pink and red lingerie. You mentioned you’re in love? I was going to ask you if you have a crush, but I guess that’s off limits now.
Oh, I do have a crush...on Paul Rudd.
Yes, I love him. Paul, I love you.
I’m sure Paul will love THAT. So, Dior’s master perfumer, Francois Demachy, created Poison Girl, and he says the fragrance blows hot and cold. Which way do you go? Hot or cold?
I’m a warm person.
I watched the videos you did for Poison Girl on You Tube, and not only do you look really hot in them, but you dance like a pro. Did you have professional training?
I did ballet when I was a kid. But, no, I haven’t trained recently. I mean, I love dancing more than anything. And I dance a LOT. But not in public.
Where do you dance?
Um, my house. I throw pretty regular dance parties with my friends. Like, weird, psychedelic, Nigerian 1970’s music is usually my go-to for dancing.
What do you wear?
Sweatpants. Sweatpants and socks.
I love it. It’s like that Kesha song. Before you got his gig… I mean now I am sure you wear Poison Girl every single day, but before this were you a fragrance kind of person?
Not so much. I love body smells. I think maybe it’s the French in me. But I feel like it’s a really good touch. I’ll put perfume if I’m going out. You know, the two times a year I have to go out.
Ah, so you’re a homebody. And we already know you’re in love. So, are you a cook or do you order in?
I do cook.
What do you make?
It’s kind of boring. Vegetables. Fish. Healthy. That’s the way I eat.
You’re right, that’s boring. How about three words that describe you?
I feel like I’ve answered that question so many times that I should have a go-to three things…hmmmm…
Ha! Yes, forgetful… I’m nice. And, I don’t know. Without sounding pretentious, maybe well-read.
Who are your favorite authors?
It’s hard to choose. I like a lot of the Russians. Norman Mailer. He’s one of my favorites.
Do you go to the theater?
You know, I used to. Especially in France. I used to go see a lot of plays. But I don’t go that much anymore. Which is a shame. And I think about it a lot. The fact that I should go to more plays.
Going back to feminism. Taking into consideration recent and current events--do you have advice for women your age? What should they do now? What do they DO with this situation?
I think joining a women’s group is really important. Because there are a lot of actions we can actually take, concrete things we can do. Which can get overwhelming, because there is so much information out there. But joining a women’s group can be great. It helps you kind of stick together, gives you the feeling of being in it together. It feels so lonely, in a sense. Pain in general I think is just a really lonely thing. Joining a group is great, getting out there, you know, marching, that’s really important. It’s nice, because I think people are actually getting the idea that it takes more than a hashtag to actually move things. I think we’re moving in a good direction, like we’re on a good path.
Now for more shallow questions. Do you have a current fashion obsession? Something you just got, something you want?
Honestly, I like Dior’s whole spring collection, and also the haute couture.
Well, now you get to wear Dior all the time, so that works.
Seriously! It’s a beautiful company and I have always liked their clothes, but Maria’s clothes resonate with me so much more than past designers. Other current obsessions? Hmmm. You know, I’m really a denim and T-shirt girl, so I’m happy Dior’s making some great T-shirts.
High heels or flats?
I like both. I wear flats more. I love slides. Give me a slide with a sock. My friends had to do a full intervention last year because I was wearing Birkenstocks and socks in November. They were like, chill, Camille. Oh my gosh, I know! My new obsession--Elder Statesman cashmere socks are my favorite ever. And Beatrice Valenzuela slides.
Any secret French beauty tips or skincare weapons?
I think less is more. I love beauty, and I love trying out products. I’m kind of a sucker, so I would ask everyone what they recommend and go try it. So for a second, I was putting 200 things on my face, and I was breaking out and my skin got really sensitive. So I narrowed it down and now, I know minimal product works better for me.
Favorite physical feature?
Well, I love an imperfection, so I love when my freckles come out when it’s sunny.
Oh, girl, where do I start? No, you know, I’ve accepted the way I look.
A woman you admire, past or present?
I have really amazing girlfriends. There’s a lot I admire about them. One of my best friends, Lauren Cohan, is a director. She’s killing it in, let’s face it, a very masculine industry. And she’s not killing it by not by being, excuse my language, a bitch or trying to act like a man. She’s the most lovely, sensitive, feminine human. And that resonates with me. I like that she doesn’t pretend to be anyone else, and keeps it real.
Well, after speaking with you, I think you’re the perfect Poison Girl. You know, I’m a hundred years older than you are, and I wore the original Poison when I was in high school. The new juice is fresher, younger, a little less sultry. And I love the name, and the girl-power message.
I think I relate to her in the sense that my freedom is everything. Even though it’s a relaunch of a perfume that’s been around a while, it feels so contemporary and of the time.
In one of the videos, you give a hot dancer guy a Poison Kiss. So dare I ask, who do you want to give a Poison Kiss to?
Oh my God, Paul Rudd!
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