QUICK CHAT AVEC HANNAH ALMASSI
Hello Hannah, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am the editorial director of Who What Wear in the UK, with just over a decade of experience as a journalist in the fashion industry both in print and digital. My greatest joys in life are shoes (preferably Prada), my husband (preferably buying me Prada) and my cat Folly (hopefully not chewing on any Prada goods in my wardrobe). I’m a huge vintage shopping fanatic, far too into karaoke for some friendships to last, and I love to be in the sun—that kind of dry, dry heat would be my ideal climate every day, and I’m half-Persian, so really I shouldn’t live in London at all…
How does a day at WWW office go by?
It’s very varied: sometimes I’ll be spending a day diving into analytics and being laser-focused on strategy, other days the team will be shooting something fun (like our We Try Before You Buy series) or capturing the wardrobes of Britain’s coolest girls (we recently had the pleasure of stepping into Adwoa Aboah’s closet). There are days where I’ll be in back-to-back meetings or attending press days and events, and occasionally I’ll actually find the time to write a story or seven!
Let’s imagine you’re off and without your phone for the day! What would you do?
Hopefully I’d be on a quiet beach on a remote Greek island with a great book on my Kindle. When I’m on holiday I often lock my phone into the safe in my room so that I avoid the temptation altogether—when your life revolves around digital and what’s happening right now in the fashion world, it can be hard to switch off voluntarily.
Do you have a secret beauty routine? What are the essential products?
If the secret is that there’s barely a beauty routine, then yes! I am shamefully low maintenance and always thinking I should make more of an effort in this department. I often find that fashion industry girls often prioritise their clothes over their hair and makeup, so I don’t think I’m alone in being “allergic” to a hairbrush or having the most basic skincare regimen is unusual?
I do like using a Foreo cleanser—it makes me feel like I’m a beauty pro by having a gadget that actually works. I use it to clean my face twice at the end of each day, because I’ve been following Jeanne Damas’s cleansing advice ever since I interviewed her a few months back.
Creme De La Mer lip balm is my favourite lip balm, but it’s too expensive for me to justify it as a regular purchase.
Perfume is an essential for me and I always hope that I pick something unique: I am currently into Romilly Wilde’s Idle.
DROOLING OVER hANNAH AND HER FABULOUS CLOSET
If you could create a gang with 3 woman you admire, who would they be?
I’d choose three women I know and adore already. My Who What Wear UK editorial team—Emma, Nell and Isabel—is kind of like a little gang in its own right.
hOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?
I have to ask this question a lot of other people and they always reply with the same answer: eclectic. So much so that it’s become a word I really hate! So, annoyingly, my style is kind of varied (read: eclectic) day-to-day but I would say a few things always remain: ‘70s influencers, lots of red, unusual prints, gold earrings, vintage buys and sensible heels.
What’s your top 3 places in London?
This changes all the time, but at the moment…
The Leopard Bar and Lounge at The Montague Hotel: This is just around the corner from Who What Wear UK’s Russell Square office, so it has become a little after-work spot for drinks thanks to its brilliant leopard décor and relatively under-the-radar status. Even the waiters wear leopard waistcoats.
House of Vintage, Cheshire Street: This is such a well-curated edit of designer and non-branded vintage goods, I never fail to find something special. As it’s not directly on Brick Lane (which has become increasingly commercial over the years) this is one of my top secret spots in east London for thrifting. It’s not cheap, but it’s not as pricey as its west London counterparts. My last purchase was a purple Yves Saint Laurent wrap top from the ‘80s.
The Dorchester Spa: Probably one of the most luxe spas in London, I always dream of having a treatment in one of the rooms that leads out onto its own private jacuzzi! Even the massage beds are divine with their fluffy pillows and duvets.
What would be your 3 favorite pieces from our store?
I’m a big fan of Maryam Nassir Zadeh’s shoes and would always try to get them in NYC before they became more readily available across the world. These tortoiseshell-print sandals will go with everything and yet still generate compliments:
The Rixo girls just KNOW how to lure me in with a printed dress—never using obvious cuts, colours or prints, these beautiful, flattering styles are the kind of pieces you’ll keep for a lifetime. I actually have this one and wore it to fashion week in February layered with a roll neck, tights and a coat because it was such a cold day:
What’s your best memory from Paris?
Being with old colleagues from my Grazia days during PFW: one year we had a complete nightmare when our apartment wasn’t booked on the right dates, we walked around at night during a heatwave and lugging our suitcases around trying to find a hotel room—it was a disaster but so hilarious. All four of us ended up in one awful room together with a bottle of cheap wine from a Chinese takeaway downstairs and the remnants of our M&S food spree we had done hours before on the other side of the Eurostar!