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Padma Lakshmi’s winning recipe for beautiful skin and top style

Gorgeous Bravo star Padma Lakshmi sits down with us to chat about her red carpet style, what we can expect from the new season of Top Chef and her simple beauty routine you can do with your next room service delivery. Seriously!

Top Chef/Top style
Padma Lakshmi

Lakshmi, sipping a heavenly-looking espresso drink in honor of her Nespresso U partnership, practically glimmered under our camera lights — her wavy brown hair, perfect makeup and sexy leopard dress could stop anyone dead in their tracks. We’ll admit, we stared blankly at her beauty for a good 30 seconds — even though she claimed she was on a new weight loss routine after wrapping up the latest Top Chef. (What is there to lose? We’re not quite sure).

Only a few days after her major Emmy moment, Lakshmi couldn’t wait to talk about her striking orange gown and her beauty and style secrets.

Padma Lakshmi at the EmmysSheKnows: We loved your Monique Lhuillier dress! How did you go about picking that bold color?

Lakshmi: It was actually one of the first dresses I tried on, and I didn’t try that many on. I was heavier, so I wanted something that would accentuate my curves — I didn’t want to try and hide that.

SheKnows: What was your beauty routine leading up to the red carpet?

Lakshmi: I took an hour for hair, an hour for makeup — and that was it. I kept it really simple. The dress was so beautiful, it didn’t need much.

SheKnows: What is your beauty routine off camera?

Lakshmi: I have to say, the biggest thing I wear is sunblock. I have dark skin, and I don’t tan evenly, but I tan easily, so I try to keep sunblock on as much as I can. However, it does tend to clog your pores, so I do very simple things. I put tea tree oil in a big pot of boiling water, I put a towel over my head and I use that to clean my pores. Then I use ice water to close my pores before I put any moisturizer on at night, or any sunblock on in the day — that helps keep my skin clear.

I think simple remedies are the way to go because you always have access to them. Another one I use is honey. Even when I’m traveling or on the set of Top Chef , I can always find that on my room service tray, and I use that on dry skin to pull the impurities out of the pores. That suction and sticky/gooey of the honey will pull out all of the bacteria in the pores, and then you just put your head in the shower and it all washes away.

SheKnows: What are the five pieces every woman needs in her closet?

Lakshmi: I think two pairs of jeans — one wide leg and one skinny. One black dress, and also a black jumpsuit that fits well, a comfortable pair of shoes that can go from day to night and one cocktail dress, not in black. Everyone wears black, and it just gets boring. I think a beautiful winter white, or a fantastic jewel tone, like purple is another way to stand out. Whatever size you are, find a dress that makes a statement.

SheKnows: What can we expect from the new season of Top Chef: Seattle?

Lakshmi: I didn’t know what to expect because I’ve never spent any time in Seattle, but it’s so beautiful. That part of the country is so lush, and they are really big foodies out there. We were very lucky. We had a lot of amazing people come on the show, and we had an abundance of a bunch of different food products that were local that really formed the season.

Watch the interview

Fashion credits

On Padma: Rachel Roy
On Bobby: AllSaints Spitalfields

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Heidi Klum exclusive: Her new clothing line
Lauren Conrad exclusive: Her style tips just for you

Photo credits: Matthias Clamer/Bravo, FayesVision/

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