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Lucky For Life: Barbara and Charly Sturm

There’s a reason the friendship bracelet has long been the sartorial symbol of platonic love. Colorful, characterful and one-of-a-kind, it’s an apt embodiment of what true connection feels like. As we get older and our relationships (hopefully) mature, there’s something lovely about the humble friendship bracelet evolving with us. A favorite for over twenty years, the Lucky bracelets’ personalizable charms and intricate woven style are the grown-up version of a childhood favorite.

Here, we take a closer look at some of the dynamic duos we admire, whether they’re friends, sisters, or mothers and daughters. Because let’s face it, there’s something about the bond between women—how it blossoms, survives and thrives over time—that’s just so intriguing.

Barbara and Charly Sturm aren’t just mother and daughter—they’re also best friends with a shared love of all things skincare. After studying orthopaedic medicine, Barbara migrated to beauty and started her own eponymous line, Dr. Barbara Sturm, which she now runs with Charly by her side. Based on a holistic, anti-inflammatory philosophy, it’s beloved by women all over the world (not to mention pretty much every celebrity you can think of). We chatted to the duo about working with family, learning from each other, and maintaining a love that is so much more than skin deep.

I don’t have a nickname for my mom, but she calls me “Schnecki” - a German term of affection that also means small snail.

Dr Barbara Sturm  and Charly Sturm

Image by Getty Images

Would you describe your relationship as a typical mother-daughter relationship? If not, why not?


Charly:
Yes and no. My mom had me when she was very young and we always had a very close knit relationship; not just mother and daughter but best friends as well, and that still hasn’t changed. Even now as we work together we have maintained a very close relationship and tell each other everything.
Barbara: Completely agree. I love our relationship and am proud to be so close with her.

What’s something you’ve learned over time about the other that’s surprised you?


Charly:
It’s difficult to find something that truly surprises you when you know the other person so well and especially when she’s your mom. I guess I am often surprised at how gracefully she manages to make things work out and fall into place, sometimes with minimal planning. I am a big planner and tend to think way too far ahead and she’s always taught me that sometimes it is important to just be in the moment and let it be.
Barbara: I am always surprised at how mature her decision making is at such a young age. She overlooks every situation so well and most of the time will draw the right conclusion...It’s made me listen to her even more.

When was the last time you called the other and why?


Charly:
Probably five minutes ago to talk about something that has happened or to ask the other for advice.
Barbara: Yes, we talk every day, multiple times, always checking in on each other, discussing get-togethers as well as everything work related, as she plays a big part in the business now.

What’s your favorite trip you’ve ever taken together?


Charly:
We have luckily had so many amazing trips together but one of my favorites was when my mom, my sister Pepper and I went to Positano, just the three of us. It was a beautiful time we took to recharge and spend in nature. (And eat incredible Italian food, of course.)
Barbara
: I love traveling with my girls, and Positano is our happy place. I feel so happy and relaxed when we are all together there.

What is the last gift you gave the other and what was the occasion?


Charly:
I gave my mom a phone case with her initials as one of her belated birthday gifts. And she got me a beautiful Anita Ko necklace for my birthday in February.
Barbara: A customised Mont Blanc pen for her birthday.

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What’s the best advice you’ve either gotten from or given to the other?


Charly:
To always be respectful and treat people with kindness. To learn that you can’t please everyone and that’s okay. That sometimes you just need to accept that “it just is what it is.”
Barbara: This makes me happy. My mother said the same to me and I always want to pass that on to my children.

How are your styles different? How are they similar?


Charly:
Our styles are quite similar; we both love a pair of jeans and a white t-shirt. But sometimes I think my mom has a cooler style than I do; she’s less scared to take a risk and will wear cool patterns and colors whereas I often feel more comfortable by keeping it simple.

What do you admire most about each other?


Charly
: Her incredible work ethic, passion, and kindness with everyone she meets. People when they meet her usually will tell me how great she is and how much they love her immediately afterwards, and they’re right!
Barbara: Her kindness, sweetness and consideration for others.

What single word best captures your relationship?


Charly:
Limitless? I don’t know!
Barbara
: Everything.

Young Dr Barbara Sturm  and Charly Sturm

Do you have any nicknames for each other? If so, what are they?


Charly
: I don’t have a nickname for my mom but she calls me “Schnecki” (a German term of affection that also means small snail).

Let’s say you have to get a tattoo that captures your relationship (or perhaps you already have!). What would it be?


Charly:
I would love a little heart. Simple and cute.
Barbara
: I would get a little ‘Schnecki’.

What colours and symbols did you pick for your Carolina Bucci Lucky bracelets and why?


Charly
: I chose the Lucky Bracelet with Purple and Turquoise silk and an owl charm, symbolizing intuition. I thought it would be a good reminder for me to learn to trust my intuition more.
Barbara
: I just wanted lots of colour... and they are beautiful!


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