Beauty, Beauty, Verso

In the bathroom with Valère Thoelen



You couldn’t have predicted Valère Thoelen would end up in the fashion world. Or was it the influence of the famous Antwerp Six? After studying graphic design at the Antwerp Academy, this solitary aesthete worked for Versace Belgium for ten years before being appointed artistic director of the Antwerp style temple, Verso. From marble to mirrors, we checked out his beauty routine.

Interview Marie Hocepied. Pictures Oskar.

What kind of bathroom did you want? I wanted it to be open!  I wanted a hotel style bathroom, with no division between bath and bedroom. We dreamed up the pivoting door, for intimate moments. It’s quite a large room, as big as my kitchen. The renovation was masterminded by my friend, the architect Glenn Sestig. I’m not particularly fond of raw, rough materials, I wanted marble because I felt like it went well with the wooden floor. This marble comes from Van den Weghe, it has a dark feel, which fits in well with this 1930s building.

Do you spend much time in there? It’s the only room in my flat that I see in the morning. As soon as I get out of bed, I get straight in front of the mirror, I take a shower, get dressed and leave. It takes 15 minutes exactly. I never have breakfast or coffee at home.

What’s your beauty routine? I shave my head completely. Then I use the same product I’ve been using for nearly 30 years: Clinique for Men SPF21 Moisturiser. A bit of scent, currently I’m using Byredo’s Gypsy Water, then I leave.

What’s your definition of beauty? I’m convinced that beauty really exists. It’s not just a subjective question. Above all, it’s about proportion. There are some certainties in beauty: a face or a body pleases us if there’s a harmonious relationship between its various elements. Taste comes after that, and that’s influenced by cultural differences.

Any great bathrooms you remember? The ones at the Mamounia in Marrakech. And even more than the bathrooms, I just love the general atmosphere of this hotel.
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