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Stella Maxwell on Meditation, Aloe Vera, and Maintaining a Healthy Mind

It was one of the first truly sunny afternoons in May when I walked into the Karl Lagerfeld store in SoHo. I was on my way to meet Stella Maxwell, a 28-year-old Belgium-born, New Zealand–raised model who’s a regular on the Victoria’s Secret runway each year. The sunlight poured in through the windows, giving everything in the store a sort of shiny glean that matched what I imagined Maxwell’s aura to be. Soon enough, the lithe model appeared before me, 5’10” and all limbs. I’d seen her before, backstage at fashion week, though there was something different about her this time around. She exuded an unwavering calm, a quietness we don’t see often from celebrities—they’re always expected to be “on,” commanding the conversation. But she put me at ease in that moment as we began shooting her Polaroids.

In perhaps two minutes flat, we had over 15 usable shots. “Killed it,” she said, peering over as the images developed. Each one came into view, peppering the table with her unique features—sharp jawline, impossibly huge eyes, and high cheekbones. We sat down to chat about her latest gig as the face of cult Australian makeup brand ModelCo's collection with Karl Lagerfeld.