Second of all, because we’re launching this series with the amazing Laura Mercier who has been promoting sensual and refined beauty care with her line of cosmetics for the last twenty years. I’ve told you about her products many times—I love them!
And finally, because I get to announce that I was chosen to be one of Laura Mercier’s ambassadors! It’s a big honor for me to be chosen by a brand that not only promotes real beauty, but was also created by a woman I deeply admire. I’ll tell you more about our collaboration in upcoming posts, but in the meantime, I’m very happy to share this interview with you on beauty French-style with the incredible Laura Mercier.
How did you fall in love with makeup?
It’s going to sound cliché, but probably when my mom would start getting dressed to go to dinner and to dance – which my parents did about every night. So she was preparing herself with these beautiful dresses and this banana chignon and she has green eyes, so she would do green eyeliner at the time, and mascara and orange lipstick, and everything was perfectly done and I was fascinated. I think that really triggered my passion.
Are there any specifically French beauty secrets that influenced your makeup line?
I don’t know if it’s a secret, but I’m definitely influenced by the French perception of beauty. It’s the sense of, do what you can to deal with your flaws, but keep your skin as fresh as possible. Be yourself, try to be natural, don’t over do. Maybe that’s the secret, because if you force it too much, you’re going to miss the point.
Your makeup is all about being unnoticeable, enhancing natural beauty. How do you communicate that to women?
By all the techniques and all the teaching and all the energy we spent in trying to push women to have the right vision of themselves. Really it’s getting them to the level of comfort and understanding that you don’t have to wear the mask.
What would you say is the number one mistake women make when it comes to make up?
Too much. Especially in America. Not enough in France! [Laughs]. Like everything, it’s really a question of balance. No extremes are great. Although if you are an artist, and you have a very outgoing personality and you play with makeup and have fun, and you wear it very well and carry it very well, it’s ok! It just has to suit your personality.
What can American women learn from French women?
You have to feel it. The French woman loves to feel sexy – even if she’s going around the corner to get the baguette. Even if the French woman has dirty hair and is smoking on the terrace of a café, she wants to feel sexy. The American woman will put on the outfit to be sexy. That’s really the confusion. You don’t have to show body to be sexy.
What can French women learn from American women?
I would love for French women to get this sort of discipline from the American woman in general – especially the working American woman, who will always have clean hair, a little something, makeup, well dressed. She will give effort every single day. French women tend to be a little lazy and they will do themselves to go out or go on a date, but for work they kind of let it go.
How do beauty standards in American differ from France?
In France it’s more effortless, the French like fresh skin, makeup has to be done where foundation is really into the skin so you don’t see it. You want to see beautiful skin, you don’t want to see makeup. Have fun and experiment with makeup, but it’s really about keeping your skin fresh.
What are the essential beauty products every woman should own?
It doesn’t exist in the Laura Mercier vocabulary! It’s about your priority, what is your priority? Is it brows, mascara, camouflage for pimples? Is it a rouge? Your priority is the essential.
What is your philosophy when it comes to makeup?
It’s about expressing your personality. Not hiding yourself, feeling confident, being able to learn to correct certain things that make you feel better. It’s all about feeling better and confident, and to show off yourself! Makeup is a big part of that, but it’s not just that! It’s beauty in general – knowing what you can do for yourself that makes you feel good and feel pretty.
How can one achieve a quintessential French beauty look?
As a joke, I would say just throw a red lipstick on with nothing else. Or get a little booster with a tan with a bronzer or a darker tinted moisturizer – that’s very French too. I really think brows and mascara, if there is nothing else.
What is beauty for you?
Beauty is everywhere. It’s something that makes you feel good. It’s something that is pleasant – beauty is everywhere, in every sense of the world. Something that gives you a feeling of positivity and pleasantness.