Yolanda Hadid: 'I think Gigi and Bella are much better, smarter and taller versions of me'
Yolanda Hadid, mum to supermodels Gigi and Bella, suffered a six-year battle with Lyme disease. Now hosting a TV model talent show, she tells Katie Wright what she learns from her famous daughters
As mum to famous models Bella and Gigi, and with more than a decade as a successful model in her own right, Yolanda Hadid knows a thing or two about the fashion industry.
Discovered in her native Holland aged 16, the blonde beauty was soon shooting all over world, but she quit the catwalks in the mid-Nineties to move to Los Angeles with then-husband Mohamed Hadid, with whom she also has a son, Anwar (18).
Inheriting their mother's good looks and tall, athletic figure, it was inevitable that Gigi (22) and Bella (21) would follow in her footsteps. They have had remarkable success, with hundreds of campaigns and collaborations with designer brands.
Having nurtured her own offspring, the 54-year-old is now turning her attention to the next generation of wannabe supermodels with new TV show Making A Model, but this isn't just a carbon copy of every other modelling competition on the box.
Rather than go it alone, the girls compete alongside their mums for a weekly $5,000 prize and a modelling contract for the winner at the end of the series.
"I feel the mother-daughter relationship needs help in today's world," Yolanda says.
"I think a lot of mistakes are made because mums think their children should be exactly the way they are, and my philosophy is the opposite - I think my girls are much better, smarter, taller versions of me, and I learn from them every day.
"Business-wise, they taught me how to be on social media. It's one of the greatest gifts they ever gave me, because I was down and out in bed for the majority of six years, and during the time they started their careers, I found so much happiness seeing pictures of them every day."
After suffering extreme pain and fatigue for months, Yolanda was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2012 (while filming The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills) and has been open about her struggle with the chronic illness. But she's now doing well. In fact, she looks incredibly healthy and youthful at 54, but that's not down to invasive Hollywood treatments.
"I haven't done any Botox or anything chemical that could interrupt my immune system - I am all-natural today and have been for six years," she says.
"Getting enough sleep and drinking enough water seems to work. Yes, I'm ageing, but I want to do it gracefully and healthily, because I will never take another chance on my health."
There are a few essentials that the model mum relies on, however. Here, she shares her beauty must-haves...
What are the top beauty products you can't live without?
"Epsom bath salts with lavender oil - I'm obsessed with them, I use them every night [in the bath]. I like coconut oil because I put it in my hair and on my skin and everywhere. And my water, I'm obsessed with water. I've become very allergic to anything that's synthetic, so everything I use has to be completely clean."
Vita Coco Coconut Oil, £6.99 for 250ml, Holland & Barrett
Dr Teal's Pure Epsom Salt Soaking Solution Soothe & Sleep with Lavender, £7.99, Boots
Are there any tips you've picked up from make-up artists that you've found particularly useful?
"I love the moisturising stuff. As your skin gets older, it's all about drinking enough water and using highlighters, making the skin look dewy and plump. I feel like the more make-up I put on today, the worse I look. When I'm working, my make-up artist mixes things up and I wear it for a couple of hours, then wash my face and get on with my day. I like to keep it very simple."
What's your favourite make-up brand?
"Lately I've been using Maybelline, the Gigi collection. I'm obsessed with it right now. I love the Taura lipstick and I love her little airplane kit - it's small enough that you can put it in your purse. She has some great products. She really thought it out and it's very practical."
Maybelline x Gigi Hadid Eye Contour East Coast Palette in Warm, £13.99, Boots
Maybelline x Gigi Hadid Matte East Coast Lipstick in Taura, £8.99, Boots
What's your signature scent?
"I don't wear perfume, I mix my own essential oils instead. It's so funny, because I didn't really go out of the house for many, many years, but now when I go somewhere for work, people say to me, 'Oh, you smell so good,' and I'm like 'It's just essential oils, it's really nothing'. I mix Doterra oils - a little bit of lavender, a little citrus, a little patchouli. It creates this really light smell that I've really grown to love."
Doterra Lavender Essential Oil, £24.95; Patchouli Essential Oil, £31.95, Amazon
Making A Model with Yolanda Hadid, Thursday, Lifetime, 9pm