• Culture

From Hollywood actress to ethical jewellery designer, inside the life of Nikki Reed

The designer and mum reveals her approach to simple living 

She’s best known for playing vampire Rosalie Hale in the Twilight series but more recently, actress Nikki Reed has become an unexpected advocate for breastfeeding and doing motherhood her own way. These days you’re more likely to find her championing ethical jewellery design, practising acro yoga or doting on her daughter than attending red carpet events.

She and husband, fellow actor, Ian Somerhalder physically and metaphorically avoid the trappings of Hollywood (they live in an eco-friendly architectural home in Venice Beach), and since having their daughter Bodhi Soleil Reed, their lives have slowed down and shifted focus. But what you might not know about Nikki (and what we love) is her passionate belief that, “the small decisions we make on a daily basis can collectively save the planet’’.

This philosophy is at the core of her ethical jewellery company, BaYou With Love, which prioritises ethical labour and sustainable production, along with using only recycled gold, and offering customers the option of cultivated – or man made – diamonds, which by their very nature are conflict free.

“I wanted to create sustainable products that were luxurious, as often people feel they have to compromise in one area to achieve the other,’’ she explains.

“I believe we are living in a time where people care about what they consume, what they wear, and the story behind each piece is as important as the piece itself. My hope is for this to open up a conversation that goes beyond BaYou With Love on ways for all of us to live with a more conscious approach.”

Nikki wearing some other ethical and sustainable BaYou With Love jewellery

We recently chatted to Nikki about everything from why she is so passionate about earth-friendly design to what she does in her (very little) spare time. Here she reveals her philosophy for creating a sustainable life.

  1. You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to try

No one is perfect, we are all a part of the degradation of the planet and we all use resources, but we can make small choices on a daily basis that minimise our impact. Living sustainably is inclusive not exclusive. Just because you don’t drive a hybrid car or you forget to bring reusable bags to the market doesn’t make you a bad person and it doesn’t mean you can’t try in other areas. If everyone did one thing a day that would have a huge impact. 

  1. Choose the balance that feels right for you

I don’t really do work/life balance well if I’m being honest. I work insane hours, and I’m usually working weekends as well. I get up at 5am to start work so I can take a break to be there for my daughter for all of her classes throughout the day, and I work until midnight every night after she goes to bed to make up for the hours I missed in the daytime. It’s definitely an intense time right now! I love being a mom, and I love my company, so I’m trying my best to do it all!

  1. Seek out mentors and like-minded women

I am surrounded by insanely powerful women who inspire me beyond my imagination. A woman named Graziela Kauffman is a big sister and mentor (@GrazielaGems), Gregg Renfrew (@Beautycounter) and so many others. It takes a village and it takes women supporting and uplifting each other. There is room for everyone to grow and we are truly stronger together.

Nikki with her friend and stylist Lindsey Dupuis Bledsoe

  1. Make time for self care

I love a good face mask, and I love making products. An ideal day off for me would be cuddling with my baby and watching Paw Patrol, making a honey algae mask, taking a bath, and doing a scalp scrub.

  1. Exercise will bring you joy

I do a sport called acro yoga when I have free time. Which is never. Ha! But I train hard when I do find a second. It’s my favourite sport, and one that my brother and I do together.

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