I read Nigel's book and love the fact that it's about a lot more than how to look more beautiful, it's about the essential elements such as honesty, spontaneity, charm, compassion, giving back, and humor that will bring out your inner beauty. Nigel is generously offering a copy of his new book to a lucky Trust Your Style reader, and I think you'll enjoy his formula for what equates true beauty.
mj: I loved your story about how you arrived in Milan as a young model and had no place to stay your first night. Can you talk about how self-sufficiency creates confidence and why this is such an attractive quality in a woman (or any person)?
nigel: Thank you and although an absolutely true story it's not an experience I recommend. You just never know what curve balls life will throw at you. The question is how will you deal with it? My stubborn nature and sheer determination to make things work got me through that night and paved the way for the rest of my life. Self sufficiency enables you to take control and lead the way. That said I had the luxury of knowing that my folks were there if I needed them. I never claim to be a "one man band," in fact I would be no one without the team of friends, colleagues, family and especially my wife by my side in support and in guidance. The Beauty Equation sets out to show you that it's not about questioning everything you do nor is it about thinking you have all the answers. True confidence is knowing when to ask for help and when to make a hard decision that might be uncomfortable for you. That's what makes you a leader.
mj: Who are the people that most influenced your understanding of what true beauty is?
nigel: My wife is an extremely selfless individual who knows little of her true beauty yet leaves a wake of open mouths behind her as she glides through life working quiet miracles. The ability to be humble and modest in your success and let the results do the talking for you are attributes I've always admired. I have been quoting Gandhi and Mother Teresa for years and truly I look up to no one more than them.
mj: Who most influenced your own style?
nigel: I do not reference many other artists and like to approach every project with an open mind. Of course I admire photographers such as Richard Avedon and Irving Penn and film makers like Orsen Welles, Alfred Hitchcock and Martin Scorsese. Their ability to not only voyeuristically capture history and the moment but provoke it make them the legends they are today.
mj: Who are a few of the most stylish and charming people that you've met?
nigel: Style is all about your ability to pull off whatever look you're working. I have had the luck of meeting many stylish and charming individuals in many walks of life. From celebrities such as Jennifer Garner, Russell Brand, Tyra Banks and Jane Krakowski to designers like Vera Wang, Valentino, Nicole Miller and Pamella Roland to tribal leaders from the Maasai Mara, children suffering from pediatric AIDS and school teachers in Cite Soleil, Haiti. I am always seeking true confidence combined with natural charm and style. Believe me, if you keep your eyes open it's everywhere and often where you'd least expect it.
Thank you Nigel for stopping by and best of luck with your new book! If you'd like a chance to win Nigel Barker's Beauty Equation, leave a comment below about what true beauty means to you.