Part of being a model involves being in and out of a makeup chair, which can lead to plenty of wear on the skin. But today’s top catwalkers, including Hailey Baldwin, thankfully have a secret weapon when it comes to keeping their skin in top shape: Dr. Barbara Sturm. “I’m really big on moisture.… The one I’m always reaching for is from Barbara Sturm,” Baldwin shared earlier this year. And she’s not alone—Kim Kardashian West, Gwyneth Paltrow, Cher, Angela Bassett, and Kate Moss are all fans of the skincare guru. Here, Dr. Sturm shares her secrets about how anyone can get that supermodel glow.
How do you assess what someone needs for his or her skin?
Most skin problems come from inflammation, and inflammation comes from the wrong use of products, harsh ingredients, harsh treatments, lots of makeup, lack of sleep, and diet or hormonal problems—there are so many causes, but it’s all being caused by inflammation. So my whole approach is to reduce inflammation. We have products designed to do so and ingredients that remove inflammation and hydrate the skin. The key is hydration and anti-inflammation. If you have problems with your skin and go on our regimen, your skin will become better because of this anti-inflammatory approach.
How long does it take for someone to see improvement?
You will get an instant glow through hydration and the products. The Sturm Glow is pretty easy to achieve. For problems like pigmentation issues or big pores, this will take longer and get better over the course of weeks.
How can someone else achieve a glow like Hailey Baldwin?
The mask is amazing for achieving a glow. You leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes, and when it’s dry you peel it off and polish your skin without water, then put your serum on top, then your cream, and you have the most amazing glow. You can top it off with the Glow Drops. After that, people love their skin so much that they don’t want to put makeup on. If your skin is healthy and glow-y and looks alive, then people would rather not wear makeup, unless they are going to an event.
For someone who travels as much as Baldwin or yourself, how do you find a routine and stick with it?
To me, it’s very easy because I don’t need many products, and the ones that are always with me on the plane are my moisturizer and serum. Those I apply on the plane. And when I get off, I do a mask right away, and always use the Hyaluronic Serum with my moisturizer.
How would you describe your general skin philosophy?
When I suffered from super-dry skin and blackheads, I tried every product on the market and nothing worked for me. I thought to myself, "I need a great moisturizer." My scientific background is fighting inflammation, so I designed a cream myself. At the time, I used the anti-inflammatory protein of my own blood. It healed my skin, and I transported it into an entire line all about anti-inflammation, hydration, nutrition, and activation, which keeps the cells from dying. It’s all about skin health and keeping it strong to fight everything from outside. If the skin looks healthy and hydrated, then it’s also glow-y.
Is there such a thing as over-hydration?
I don’t think so. Honestly, when I’m in the clinic and have a product in front of me, I put it on all the time because it’s so good. In the winter months, especially, you want more hydration. In the summer, you need hydration when you’re on the beach. Hydration isn’t a problem, but if you’re talking about cleansing your face, there’s a problem. Over-cleansing and over-exfoliation is a problem.
Are you not a fan of the double-cleansing approach?
People scrub their skin over and over, and what happens is it dries out your skin and make it vulnerable. Also, I wouldn’t recommend makeup wipes; you can get it off with a foamy cleanser and a towel. With makeup wipes, you rub the makeup in, and you hurt your cells.
Is it necessary to cleanse more than once a day?
Always cleanse your face in the evening. In the morning, I take a shower and that’s it, so I don’t cleanse in the morning. But some people prefer to also cleanse in the morning. I don’t think it hurts. I like less cleansing. We have a natural balance in our skin and hair, and we don’t want to overdo it.
What is the most common myth about good skin?
Many people look for a quick fix like lasers, acid peels, and microneedling. Overdoing it and being too aggressive with your skin yields the opposite results and damages your skin and causes premature aging. Don’t be aggressive with your skin; just love your skin.