Talking to all-American model Arizona Muse

By Janetta Mackay

Top model Arizona Muse behind the scenes at the 'Modern Muse' campaign shoot.
Top model Arizona Muse behind the scenes at the 'Modern Muse' campaign shoot.

How could anyone resist someone with that name?" said Vogue editor Anna Wintour of Arizona Muse.

Shortly after Muse's breakthrough season in 2010, the most powerful woman in fashion publishing devoted a feature in her magazine to the rising star, saying, "When I look at Arizona I see shadows of Linda Evangelista and Natalia Vodianova, but most of all I see her, a gorgeous, smart, grown-up".

High praise indeed for the strong-browed brunette with the direct gaze and the obligatory long limbs who has now ascended to the top echelon of the modelling world.

With a baby born before she hit the big-time, the now 25-year-old Muse was never the standard story. She credits breastfeeding and starting an exercise regime for the first time with getting her in the best shape of her life post-baby, leading to the reignition of a career that had been going nowhere fast.

She was then picked to model exclusively for Prada, and has since walked for a host of big names, becoming an editorial favourite and starring in campaigns for Louis Vuitton, Isabel Marant, Fendi and Yves Saint Laurent.

Estee Lauder signed her as a spokesmodel last year and she makes her debut appearance for the fragrance Modern Muse, on sale from next week, with a campaign shot at the Guggenheim.

For the record, Arizona Muse is her real name. She was raised in New Mexico, but named after the state of her birth and now lives with her son, Nikko, in Brooklyn, New York.

Viva couldn't resist asking her to muse on muses.

Do you think your name helped secure the Modern Muse campaign?
It was all just a happy coincidence. Estee came up with the name, and the beautiful packaging. I am just honoured to share the name with such an iconic scent.

When did being a muse come to mean something more to you than a family name?
My earliest memory of what a muse is comes from when I was a child. I was really into animals and nature - they were my muses.

Models are often described as muses, but which ones do you consider really are?
Carolyn Murphy. She has had such a long career with Estee Lauder.

How would being described as a muse sit with you?
I hope one day I will be considered a muse. I would like to inspire people to be the best they can be.

As a model whose career took off post-baby, was this a plus or not?
I highly recommend getting your career established first.

What have been your career highlights thus far?
Probably my first season on the runway for YSL and Prada, the Louis Vuitton campaign and being the face of Modern Muse.

What does the future hold?
I would like to take an acting course and I look forward to more campaigns with Lauder.

Please share a few quick-fix beauty tips.
Add Advanced Night Repair [serum] to your foundation, it makes your skin glow. I put lipstick on my finger and pat it on my lips - it gives colour, but not too much.


Watch a film of 'Modern Muse Moments':


- VIVA

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