The Surprising Spot Screen Legend Ann-Margret Puts Her New Fragrance
Ann-Margret has created a sexy new namesake perfume with the help of her friend, 'Grey's Anatomy' star Justin Chambers
Ask Ann-Margret her favorite spot to apply fragrance and the screen legend giggles and says, “I spray it all over. Of course, my neck, on the left and the right, on my wrists, my decollete– and the back of my knees.”
“Well, you’ve got everything on the top,” explains the star, “so why not something below the waist?”
The 82-year-old actress best known for her roles Viva Las Vegas (opposite one time love Elvis Presley) Bye Bye Birdie and Carnal Knowledge, is collaborating with her friend actor Justin Chambers, formerly of Grey’s Anatomy, on a new namesake fragrance, Ann-Margret, annmargretperfume.com launching this month.
The two met in 1998 when they co-starred on the CBS series Four Corners. Ann-Margret played the matriarch and Chambers, the ranch hand. “I was on a horse that bucked off and she let me sit in her Lincoln town car, where she would wait between scenes, and we’d go over lines and we became fast friends,” says Chambers. Adds Ann-Margret with a giggle, “He’s not a very good horseback rider but he makes me laugh.”
From there, a friendship grew and when Chambers, the former face of Calvin Klein’s Contradiction, proposed they collaborate on a perfume, she agreed as long as all profits went to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, vvmf.org, a cause dear to her heart even since she traveled to Vietnam in 1966 and ‘68 to entertain American troops. “Those trips have stayed with me all my life,” she says. “The soldiers and nurses were so brave. It really got me.”
The two friends answered a few questions about fragrance in a laughter-filled interview.
Related: Ann-Margret's Amazing 50-Year Love Story with Husband Roger Smith
PEOPLE: Who was your best smelling costar?
Justin Chambers: “Ann-Margret because she always smells so sweet and lovely. Just like she is on the inside.”
Ann-Margret: “I’m not revealing that!”
Justin: “Come on, A.M. [her nickname] Was it Elvis, Steve McQueen, Alain Delon? She’s worked with them all.”
Ann-Margret: “That’s too private! It was Roger Smith (her husband of 50 years, who died in 2017.) He was very naturally scented.”
PEOPLE: What’s your favorite scent?
Ann-Margret: “I love gardenia. When I was young, I went to a party where all the guys gave their dates flowers and this gentleman gave me a wrist corsage of gardenia. I love the notes of my perfume– jasmine, gardenia and ylang-ylang. And I’m certainly aware of men who smell good too!”
Justin: “I like more leather smells, tobacco. I’m wearing a Tom Ford which is my favorite now. Vanille Tobac but I didn’t like cologne until I was older.”
PEOPLE: Justin, now that we know Ann-Margret’s fave spot to apply fragrance, what is yours?
Justin: “I just spray it on my chest.”
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PEOPLE: Not behind the knees?
Justin: “I might try that!”
PEOPLE: Ann-Margret, what is your beauty philosophy at 82?
Ann-Margret: “There’s no secret. I’m just happy –and eating dessert first. I’m a sweets person. That’s my favorite part of the dinner –dessert! I look at the deserts first and then go from there.”
PEOPLE: What brought you two together?
Ann-Margret: “He’s adorable and he makes me laugh.”
Justin: “She has that infectious laugh…..We sound like we’re high don’t we? We’re not. I promise!”
PEOPLE: Justin, since leaving Grey’s Anatomy last year, what have you been up to?
Justin: “I’ve been working on this perfume and I’m working on some action projects but I can't really talk about them yet. It was just time for a new chapter. I wanted to explore different things. And I’m spending a lot of time with my family." (He has four daughters, from ages 23 to 28.)
PEOPLE: Ann-Margret, you’re known for your red hair, ever tempted to change it?
Ann-Margret: “I’ve been every color of the rainbow,” she says with a laugh. “That’s why I’m a little crazy!”
PEOPLE: Well, which color made you feel the sexiest?
Ann-Margret: “Orange. I just feel warm and fuzzy and I love feeling warm and fuzzy.”
PEOPLE: Ann-Margret, you never answered who your best smelling co star was?
Ann-Margret: “Ooohh, I don’t want to answer that. I know, I know. I’m impossible to interview!”
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