Most of us don’t realise the connection between beauty and mental health, but for singer and actress Selena Gomez, that link is clear as day. Which is exactly why she founded beauty brand Rare Beauty. Her vision: To promote self-acceptance and create a space in the industry that supports mental well-being across age, gender identities, sexual orientations, race, culture, physical and mental abilities, and perspectives. Here, the pop star opens up about how growing up in the limelight has shaped her idea of beauty, her motivations on pushing ahead with the launch even at the height of a pandemic and more.
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You made your first television appearance at the age of 10 and have stayed in the limelight since for nearly 18 years—suffice to say you’ve grown up in the public eye. Has this had an impact on your ideas of beauty?
We’re constantly bombarded with filtered and photoshopped images, and over the years, I used to think I had to wear makeup in order to look beautiful. Now, though, my perception has completely changed. I view makeup as a fun accessory, not something I need. And that’s what I want to share with others—that our differences are what make us unique and beautiful. I’ve worked a lot on self-acceptance and it has been life-changing.
Some consider makeup frivolous, especially during a pandemic. Why did you decide to go ahead with the launch last September anyway?
I feel that there’s a strong connection between how we talk about beauty and mental health, and I think we should discuss both. My hope is that with Rare Beauty, we can have open conversations around beauty and change the industry together. The community has given us great feedback on what they want to see and because of that, we’re building this brand together. Some of our mental health posts on social media are among the most saved, which shows that people are truly interested in learning more, and I love that we can be a resource.
What were some of the challenges you faced when launching Rare Beauty?
We had to change our approach to the launch, but the team did an incredible job, working together and introducing the products in creative ways. I’m such a people person, so we stayed in constant communication and found innovative ways to connect.
How do you hope Rare Beauty can help people struggling with their own ideas of beauty?
With all the unrealistic images everywhere, it’s hard not to feel the pressure to look a certain way. At Rare Beauty, we’re all about celebrating what makes you unique because that’s what makes you beautiful. The more we can embrace our differences and practise self-acceptance and self-love, the more we can change the conversations around beauty.
Has your own mental health improved with the launch of your brand?
My mental health is something that I work on daily. It’s not a destination but a journey, and I’m proud of where I’m at currently.
Which are the three Rare Beauty products you’re most proud of?
The Perfect Strokes Matte Liquid Liner, the Liquid Touch Weightless Foundation and the Soft Pinch Liquid Blush. The liner is similar to a calligraphy pen, which makes it really easy to use, and has over 1,000 bristles, so it just glides over your lids. I’m not a fan of how foundation feels on the skin, so we made sure that ours is truly weightless. I can wear it for a full day of shooting and I never feel like my skin can’t breathe. As for the blusher, when I say this is pigmented, I mean it! I love that you can pick a dewy or matte version and that it lasts all day.
Rare Beauty launches in Singapore on July 15 2021, exclusively at Sephora stores and Sephora.sg.
For more info about Rare Beauty, visit rarebeauty.com.