Kelly Rutherford may be Serena’s mom on Gossip Girl (and a brilliant actress to boot) but this real mom is also an activist, philanthropist and, most definitely, a Real Beauty. We were fortunate enough to meet her at the launch of Zeno’s new Line Rewind – and she seriously impressed. Sure, Kelly is great as Upper East Side mom, Lily Van Der Woodsen, but she’s even better as herself! She’s smart, conscientious, worldly and passionate. She wants to leave the world a better place than she found it, sees beauty in all the right places and exudes and aura of Real Beauty all around.

How do you define beauty?
A feeling. You know, there may be a very beautiful woman – or people – but if you don’t feel beautiful it really doesn’t matter.

When do you feel most beautiful?
Usually when I’m well rested. Vitality makes me feel beautiful. When I have energy, when I’m focused. Obviously, being around my children makes me feel beautiful. You know, when they say “mama” or I get a hug, that makes me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world. And I think it comes from being in touch with… and I don’t want to say my own divinity, but it’s sort of that feeling that within each of us there is so much love. And I feel beautiful when I’m giving, when I’m being purposeful. You know, I don’t feel beautiful when I’m tired or run ragged. So I have to really take that time. But that’s part of it – you know, loving yourself enough to say, “I need rest, I’m going to take care of myself.”

What is your self-care routine?
A lot of it for me is just getting rest. For me, it’s saying, “you know what – I’ve been kinda going turbo-mom this week and turbo-Gossip Girl, and turbo-everything, and I just need to sleep in, and relax, and take that time for myself.” And that’s usually the thing I don’t do, so that’s part of now, more my regiment – taking the time to go get a massage, or really taking the time to take a nap when my daughter’s napping, just saying, “I’m napping when she’s napping.”

10 steps to a more balanced life!

Having a daughter and working in an industry that puts so much pressure on body perfection and beauty ideals, what message do you hope to be able to give to your daughter about all of that?
Well, I’m kind of a late-bloomer. So, I would definitely tell her – and this next generation of women – that a lot of it is about giving. I think so much of our joy in life… you know, we can spend so much time in front of the mirror – when I was younger, I worried so much about my body and my weight fluctuated like crazy! So, it’s so much what your mind set is. If you focus so much on beauty, if you focus so much on diet, it sort of skews your view on life and it takes you away from the joy in life. And the point is – and it’s hard to tell young people, because they’re young and they think it’s forever – but that there is so much more joy in what your giving, and having a purpose in life and a vision of what you want your life to be. And that you tend to be more beautiful and attract love and all of those things by focusing on something bigger than yourself. Your real joy comes from being a part of a group that’s doing something great or as an individual using your resources, whatever those resources are, to really do something on the planet. So we can all sit in front of the mirror while this happens – and focus on the silliness, our lines, and this and that – but, at the end of the day, men don’t care, so why?

Why you should screw your diet, literally.

Who are your female role models?
Gloria Steinem is a huge role model, Margaret Thatcher, Hillary Clinton, Queen Rania who is doing so many amazing things. Oprah. I love Ellen – think she’s amazing. Whoppi Goldberg – there are just too many to list!

What is your one must-have beauty product?
Well, Zeno Line Rewind, obviously . The thing about Zeno that’s so great is that you can add it to your skin care regiment – so it’s a wonderful thing you add to what you already use. And, like I said, I am sent so many things and try so many things and it’s such a nice addition. I also go to Dangene Bailey here in New York and Verabella in Beverly Hills – and they’re both wonderful facialists. The products I really love are Sanitas (a Belgian company) their retinol cream is really amazing. And I also use La Mer in the winter because my skin gets really dry and use coconut oil on my body.

Another Gossip Girl opens up about beauty!

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