Most of us can only imagine how demanding the life of an international model, business owner, and philanthropist can be. However, Flaviana Matata makes it look so easy. When she’s not gracing the campaigns of world-renowned brands such as Naturalizer, Fenty Beauty, and Kenneth Cole, she’s empowering young girls in her home country of Tanzania through education. It’s no surprise that Shea Moisture and Beautycon chose to honor her at The Beauties Inaugural Honors ceremony in NYC earlier this month in celebration of the beauty festival’s 5th anniversary.
From all her success as a model, you wouldn’t have guessed that Flaviana once studied electrical engineering.
Growing up in Tanzania, Flaviana understood the importance of education. More importantly, she knew that with any career path she took, helping young girls get an education was her purpose in life. Seeing that 70% of the 130 million out-of-school children being girls, Flaviana dedicated herself to being the change that she believed in as a child. Through her non-profit organization, the Flaviana Matata Foundation, she has transformed the lives of many girls by sponsoring their education and helping them start businesses and careers as nail technicians. Flaviana walks the talk, and then some.
In addition to her hard work as a model and philanthropist, Flaviana has launched a nail line, Lavy. The line, which includes non-toxic affordable nail lacquer, is currently only available in Africa, but according to Flaviana and the brand’s official site, Lavy will be making its way to the U.S. and online soon (and we’re patiently waiting on it). Until then, we encourage you to stalk the brand’s Instagram (the colors are smoking hot).
Flaviana sat down with HelloGiggles to talk about not following trends and her supermodel secrets to flawless skin. Take notes.
HelloGiggles: What are some nail polish colors that you’re excited to wear for spring and summer?
Flaviana Matata: To be honest, I love the lime green. For me, when it comes to nails, I don’t follow the trends—I refuse to do that. You know, some colors will always be popular, like red and yellow. I wear those colors all the time, whenever I feel like it. Today I’m wearing orange. I just got my nails done, but I’m not one of those girls that will be like, “It’s winter, I need to calm down with my nail colors.” I don’t follow trends; I set them.
HG: What three beauty products are with you wherever you go?
FM: My cleanser, an acne cleanser. I don’t have acne, but it works well with my skin. And then my moisturizer. I use Peach & Lily; it’s a Korean skin brand. Lastly, the hand cream from my line, Lavy. It’s moisturizing, but it’s not greasy. It’s unscented and contains no perfume.
HG: What extra things do you do for your skin beside your everyday skin care routine?
FM: I do facials once a month. With all the makeup and the pollution from the air, it’s always good to make sure you remove the dead skin and everything that goes into your skin. But to be honest, the secret is I never used to drink water, so I didn’t have glowing skin. If you look at my pictures from two years ago, it’s different from now. I didn’t have glowing skin then, so I drink a lot of water now. At least one-and-a-half to two liters. I put my bottle of water beside my bed. When I wake up, that’s the first thing I do, drink water.
HG: What’s your favorite act of self-care?
FM: Massages. I love the spa, the spa is my happy place. I do massages and go to the sauna any chance I get. Bamford Haybarns Spa in 1 Hotel (Brooklyn, New York) is one of my favorites. I wish I could do a massage every day.