All Blacks legend Dan Carter on living life with purpose

From philanthropy to inspiring others and the debut of a new fragrance, All Blacks superstar Dan Carter has never been more passionate about life.

He’s a household name in rugby union circles, but there’s much more to Dan Carter than being an international sporting superstar.

The three-time World Rugby Player of the Year, who hung up his boots in 2021, concedes retiring from almost 20 years of professional competition was challenging, but ultimately rewarding.


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Dan Carter’s new life purpose

“My purpose before hanging up my boots was to be the best rugby player I possibly could,” the All Blacks legend says.

“When you take that away, what is my purpose? You’ve got to work out who you are now that you’re no longer a professional rugby player.”

While Dan describes retiring as “almost a loss of identity”, the new life chapter kicked off a powerful “repurposing” process that revealed one clear theme – his obsession for winning.

The New Zealand champion wants to share that knowledge and the experience gained as a successful athlete to inspire and help others.

It has led him to write a book titled The Art of Winning, and is a deep dive into leadership, strength and resilience.


Get a sneak peek behind the scenes of our August cover shoot with All Blacks legend @Dan Carter. The three-time World Rugby Player of the Year has been busy creating his debut fragrance, aptly called DC10, now available at @Chemist Warehouse Official. Look out for this edition at your local Chemist Warehouse store. #covershoot #dancarter #dancarterfragrance #behindthescenes #dc10 #chemistwarehouse #chemistwarehousefragrance



Dan Carter’s debut fragrance

The 41-year-old has also been involved in creating his debut fragrance, aptly called DC10 Sport, now available at Chemist Warehouse.

“All my mates call me DC,” Dan says, while the number 10 represents the jersey he wore for much of his career.

Dan remembers as a youngster secretly trying on his father’s aftershave.

“I’d see him putting on Old Spice,” he recalls.

“I put it on and it was literally like in the movie Home Alone; it was burning my face – I was far too young, I wasn’t even shaving – but I was putting this stuff on my face because that’s what my father did.”

Dan describes his debut scent as fresh and masculine.

“A fragrance with a real sporting theme just seemed to make sense,” he says.

He enlisted the help of family and friends to come up with a shortlist of fragrances, before selecting the one that stood out most to him.

The New Zealand Chemist Warehouse ambassador is no stranger to the grooming aisles.

“I like to keep it simple,” Dan says of his daily regimen of moisturising and sunscreen.

“I like to finish with a bit of fragrance – it’s like the icing on the cake.”


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Dan Carter on being a dad

While Dan enjoys developing new projects, his biggest joy is being a dad.

He shares four sons – Marco, 10, Fox, 8, Rocco, 4, and Cruz, 2 – with wife Honor, herself a former international hockey player.

While his Saturdays are spent “playing Uber driver” for his sons’ sport, Sundays are a different story.

“Sunday is my favourite day because you look at the calendar and there’s actually nothing in there,” he says.

The family like to spend Sunday mornings outside, whether it’s walking their beloved dog Herbie or hiking along one of Auckland’s many trails, from Mt Hobson to Mt Wellington to One Tree Hill.

Afternoons are spent playing with his children in the backyard.

“My two oldest boys are right into soccer,” Dan says.

“It’s challenging me – I’m not a soccer player and I’m not very good at it, so I’m getting a few hidings in the backyard from my kids at the moment.”


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Life lessons and mental strength

It may be a long way from his international sporting days – he was part of the World Cup-winning teams in 2011 and 2015 – but Dan is keen to pass on the lessons he has learnt to others, particularly the importance of mental strength.

In his early playing days, Dan didn’t enjoy the pressure or big moments.

“Your mind starts drifting off to ‘there’s 80,000 people watching, geez I hope I don’t shank it’,” Dan says.

But over the years, he has learnt to accept and even lean into that pressure.

“We all go through life having our own little battles with our mind, so it’s important to have some tools in place to help control that,” he says.

Dan developed a specific routine with his kicking to stop all distractions.

“I used to push my feet into the ground and just feel my toes pushing against the ground for a couple of seconds,” he says.

“When I’m feeling that external feeling, all of a sudden I haven’t had negative thoughts for a couple of seconds.

“I tell myself to breathe, visualise the ball going through, breathe again, look at the part of the ball that I want to kick, go and kick, and then … you’re back into your routine.”

Dan Carter’s proudest achievement

Not one to rest on past glories, Dan has also launched a fundraising platform called the DC10 Fund to support UNICEF’s work with underprivileged children.

“It’s one of the things I’m really proud about,” Dan says.

“When I finished playing, it wasn’t the Rugby World Cups that we won; it wasn’t the World Rugby awards that I’d won – they weren’t the things I was most proud about.

“The thing I am most proud about is being able to help support and inspire the next generation.”


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Written by Bianca Carmona.