The wonderful but very wacky world of Elle Macpherson: Blessed salads, infrared saunas, sunrise shakes, a new lover and more Goop than Gwynnie… ALISON BOSHOFF reveals how, at 56, The Body really doesn’t just rely on her genes
When pictures were released last week of 56-year-old Elle ‘The Body’ Macpherson draping herself sinuously over a tree in a bikini, she still looked every inch a supermodel.
A 6ft tall goddess with perfect bone structure and the body of a 20-something, Elle told Red magazine it was down to the pursuit of ‘wellness’ rather than good genes.
However, the reality is that she is also a committed fan of Goopier-than-Goop treatments, which include an infrared home sauna and bubbling water on tap.
She prays to her salads and relaxes in her Miami ocean-front mansion, reclining on her half-million-dollar sofa.
Here, ALISON BOSHOFF reveals the glorious details that go into making up the wonderful but very wacky world of Elle.
When pictures were released last week of 56-year-old Elle ‘The Body’ Macpherson draping herself sinuously over a tree in a bikini, she still looked every inch a supermodel
EVEN ‘GOOPIER’ THAN GWYNNIE
You may think that Gwyneth Paltrow (who sells undercarriage steaming, jade eggs and candles that proclaim: ‘This smells like my vagina’) is the Queen of woo-woo wellness.
However, Elle is giving her a run for her money. The two are pals, Elle has said that she has known Gwyneth ‘since she was dating Brad Pitt’ and was one of the names at the Goop Health summit in New York last year.
With a collection of health and wellness gurus who she interviews in a podcast and with her vitamin line, WelleCo, alongside the beauty treatments she plugs on Instagram, Elle seems to be going all out to be Goopier than Gwynnie.
Last week she has rhapsodised on Instagram over the benefits of a bubble machine — a ‘personal ozone device’.
The Thera03 Bubbler claims to ‘sanitise all of your food sources by simply bubbling the low gamma O3 into your kitchen sink filled with tap water. Within minutes your tap water transforms into a sanitation station and can sterilise and disinfect all forms of unhealthy foreign bacteria, viruses, parasites the like’.
Why would bubbled water be a disinfectant? Neither Elle nor the makers seem able to explain.
Body maintenance: She trusts in treatments such as infrared saunas, above, to keep her looking as good as she did in 1987, left
Plus she enjoyed a ‘detox’ in a portable infrared sauna by the same manufacturer, posting pictures of herself while zipped inside the infrared sauna bag.
She has also had a ‘holistic sound acupuncture facial’ from Goddess Lashes for $250 (£200), and had a visit from a Brazilian beautician for a lymphatic drainage massage in search of the flattest possible stomach — the before and after pictures show that you can’t really improve on perfection.
She had a visit from a Brazilian beautician for a lymphatic drainage massage in search of the flattest possible stomach — the before and after (pictured) pictures show that you can’t really improve on perfection
Elsewhere on her social media she praises Dr Will Cole, a ‘Ketotarian’ based in Pittsburgh. Dr Will is not a medical doctor but has a doctorate after studying nutrition. He is a fan of fecal microbiota treatment — a human waste transplant — which he claims can be useful to ‘balance the immune system’ and in treating obesity.
He is also the author of a book, Eat Dirt, which aims to treat ‘inflammation’ via a highly restrictive vegetarian diet.
COVER GIRL LOOKS? GOT IT COVERED!
Elle Macpherson on the front cover of CLEO magazine in August, 1987
RECENT fashion cover shoots for Harper’s Bazaar and Red magazine show beyond any doubt that Elle has not spent the past three months sitting down with a bag of crisps and glass of wine.
The Harper’s Bazaar pictures were taken pre-lockdown but the interview was delivered during it. And she is full of the benefits of ‘wellness’ saying: ‘Beauty and being well go hand in hand.’
In Red magazine a delightful set of pictures of Elle frolicking mostly in swimwear were taken during lockdown in her garden in Miami. She tells the magazine that ‘inner vitality’ is what people find attractive, which may be easier to assert when you’re a 6 ft goddess.
She added: ‘Genetics can only get you so far. By the time you reach 50, you realise it’s all about caring for your body and your levels of vitality, so you can do the things you want to do.’
GREEN IS THE ONLY COLOUR
Elle is the co-founder and creative director of the company WelleCo, which sells ‘alkalising’ nutritional supplements.
She claims that the body works ‘optimally’ when the pH of blood is slightly alkaline and carries a urine kit in her handbag so that she can check her pee at any time.
A 6ft tall goddess with perfect bone structure and the body of a 20-something, Elle told Red magazine it was down to the pursuit of ‘wellness’ rather than good genes
Her Super Elixir greens, described as ‘your daily alkalising greens supplement formulated by nutritional doctors using 45 premium wholefood ingredients for nourishment at cellular level’ costs £62.50, fortified tea £48 and a box of immune boosting sachets £85.
Elle recently posted a picture of ice lollies made using the elixir powder. Her blend is made up of brown rice and pea protein which includes pomegranate, kelp, horsetail and turmeric.
Scientists tend to decry the fashion for ‘eating alkaline’, saying that it is pointless and based on junk science. Cancer Research UK note that the pH balance of blood is tightly regulated by the kidneys and cannot be changed for any meaningful amount of time by what is eaten. All that can be changed is the acidity or otherwise of your urine.
Her ‘Super booster’ claims to aid the libido and Elle says on her Instagram that it ‘really works’ but there is a caveat which runs: ‘If symptoms persist, talk to your health professional. Supplements may only be of assistance if dietary intake is inadequate.’
THE VITAMINS WAR GETS UGLY
HER supplement empire, WelleCo, was hatched in a garage in Peppermint Grove in Perth, Australia, by Elle’s great friend Andrea Horwood.
Horwood gave Elle an initial 50 per cent share in the ‘powdered green good’ business in return for Elle promoting it.
Business prospered, with WelleCo becoming worth around £15 million, but the pair fell out and last year it emerged that Horwood was suing Elle’s private company Rolico, which is registered in the British Virgin Islands tax haven.Horwood said that Elle and her investors reneged on a deal to allow her to buy more of the company, then sacked her and locked her out of her own office.
The West Australian Supreme Court pushed the parties into mediation, putting them on notice they had two options: the company could be wound up or Horwood’s shareholding could be purchased.
A source said: ‘Elle was like an aunt to Andrea’s teenage daughters, she would give them beautiful lingerie and they adored her . . . they are deeply hurt by what has happened . . . they wanted to burn the lingerie when their mother was sacked.’ Elle recently said: ‘Business is a journey. Sometimes things fall together and sometimes they fall apart. Things evolve.’
An interviewer who took Elle out for lunch last year wrote: ‘Our salads arrive and Macpherson takes her plate into her hands, looking down into it. At first I think she is speaking to me as she says, “Thank you, universe, for this beautiful food. I am so blessed to be here sharing with you.”
‘I start to answer her before I realise that she hasn’t finished. “Thank you for giving me your time today. Thank you for this magnificent food which Mother Earth has provided for us.” ’
She says that Elle ate just a half of her ratatouille. She hasn’t drunk alcohol for nearly 15 years and has been vegetarian since moving out of London six years ago. Her diet is mostly raw. She told Vogue magazine she ‘swears by her Miami micro-sprout dealer’.
Generally, she will have a green smoothie at 6.15am, consisting of hemp seeds, water and her own Super Elixir protein powder.
At 10.30am she will have another smoothie if she feels hungry, made with homemade nut milk, half an avocado and the chocolate- flavoured powder from her range.Lunch is a salad of kale, sprouts, cucumber, cabbage, avocado. and pumpkin seeds. Dinner will be more veg.
Her children, Flynn, 22, and Cy, 17, by her ex, financier Arki Busson, are living with mum at the Miami mansion. They are provided with a separate fridge because hers smells too vegetable apparently.
Australian Vogue quoted the children last year as having insisted on their own because hers ‘smells of green’. Son Cy says that she often nags them to ‘drink more green juice’ or ‘drink more water’.
Son Flynn added: ‘My mother is a perfectionist, I don’t think that’s a secret. It’s one of her greatest qualities. Everything she does has to be up to scratch.’
Flynn, who has just graduated from college, spent the festive period in the Bahamas with a crew of friends including Chloe Stroll, the daughter of retail billionaire Lawrence.
Elle is not on good terms with second husband, businessman Jeff Soffer, but is close to Busson (they split in 2005). Their son Flynn gave evidence during a court fight with actress Uma Thurman over Busson’s custody rights for their child Luna.
Elle is also close to French photographer Gilles Bensimon, her first husband, who she speaks to ‘every week.’
Romance with anti-vax doctor
In 2017 she started dating Andrew Wakefield, the man who claimed that the MMR jab causes autism. The pair were spotted smooching over a basketful of red onions and dried apricots at an organic market in Miami.
He was struck off the UK medical register in 2010 for unethical behaviour and misconduct.
He then moved to America where he is lionised in certain anti-vaxxing circles (Donald Trump and Robert De Niro are fans), with his wife Carmel and four children.
He and Carmel, who settled in Austin, Texas, are said to have separated in early 2017, and in November of that year he met Elle Macpherson at a ‘Doctors Who Rock’ awards ceremony in Orlando, Florida.
Brian Burrowes, who edited Wakefield’s 2016 documentary Vaxxed, said: ‘He’s obviously a bit infatuated. He did say to me, “Brian, how did this happen?” I laughed and said, “I really don’t how this happened.” I’m just really happy for him.’
His business partner Polly Tommey said: ‘Elle is such a sweetheart. She’s got him on these shakes now for his lunch and dinner. They are really, really happy together. He’s deliriously in love and we are all thrilled about that.’
Elle declines to comment on the romance but follows his podcasts on Instagram and he follows her, although they tend not to comment on each other’s posts. Last month she told Red magazine: ‘Kindness is the new cool. I believe love is actually all there is.’
MAGICAL MANSIONS IN MIAMI
Elle spends most of her time at her Miami home. She bought it after splitting abruptly from beetle-browed property billionaire Jeff Soffer in 2017.
Soffer is rumoured to have had friendships with other women that Elle thought impolitely close. He reportedly gave her £60 million when they parted after four years — and she left their Miami mansion, above, when they split.
She started anew with a £6.5 million house in a fancy development in Coral Gables, also in Miami, where the gardens boast oak, orange, mango and palm trees and ordinary mortals are kept at bay by gates and security guards.
Elle spends most of her time at her Miami home (pictured). She bought it after splitting abruptly from beetle-browed property billionaire Jeff Soffer in 2017
There are tennis courts and a communal marina, plus a private salt water pool and outstanding ocean views. Inside, the house has seven bedrooms and the property is more than 8,000 sq ft.
An ‘at home’ feature with Architectural Digest last year revealed a jaw-dropping collection of art probably worth as much as the house itself — three Warhols, plus works by sought-after modern American artists Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat as well as British artists Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin.
The article also revealed that the living room boasts a polar bear sofa and chairs by Royere, which fetch around $500,000 (£400,000) at auction. Kanye West says his Royere sofa is the favourite part of his house. Jennifer Aniston has one, too.
Elle did her cover photo shoot for Red magazine in the gardens of the house. She spent lockdown there, posting on Instagram: ‘I’m choosing to do things I’ve been promising myself for ages. Sharing laughter and supporting friends through Zoom, cleaning closets, writing, practising a wellness programme.’
She also has an £18 million house on Harbour Island in the Bahamas, where she and the kids spend Christmas.
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