“I love watching myself age on screen!” Reese Witherspoon on shattering ageing taboos & why she will never try fasting
Reese Witherspoon has become a flag bearer for feminism and equal opportunities in Hollywood and we couldn’t be more here for her. As her career goes from strength to strength, her empire grows from producing films – that put women at the focal point – to a full lifestyle company with Hello Sunshine. And, we are ALL preparing for the return of Big Little Lies, aren’t we? Tight lipped on the events of series two, Reese simply coyly confides, “you better get excited – it’s good!”
If that wasn’t enough, she will also star alongside Jennifer Aniston in Apple TV Plus’s main show, The Morning Show – and she’s produced it too. Her formidable work in film makes Reese the perfect placement as Elizabeth Arden’s Storyteller-in-chief. Are you tired just reading this? This woman is BUS-AY!
Here Reese opens up about how we can further the conversation around beauty and feminism, her foil proof (AND FREE) beauty hack and why beauty is so important to her self-care rituals…
How do you use beauty to empower you?
I love lipstick – I always have a lot of lipstick in my purse. I really feel like a strong bold colour really pulls me together and helps me put my best face towards the world. I really like a strong red like the ‘Red Door’ tone from Elizabeth Arden. I am really enjoying the new Limited-Edition Beautiful Colour Moisturising Lipstick in ‘Pink Punch’ this summer because pink is the new red (laughs!). It just makes me feel like I am ready to face the day. I feel like it finishes a great outfit, just like a great accessory.
A lot of beauty interviews with female celebrities can be quite sexist and reductive. How do you think we can further the conversation around beauty and feminism?
First of all, I want to acknowledge that this is a great question! There has been such an elevation about the way we talk about women and beauty, but we can always go further. For so many years, as young women growing up, we were just presented with one beauty standard. Now it’s so empowering for women to see themselves represented in beauty campaigns, Instagram and influencers who have all kinds of backgrounds. There’s a lot of body positivity messaging, too. I am particularly love Jameela Jamil who is addressing the way we talk to women in advertising and the importance of really seeing beauty as a universal thing, that is accessible to many with broader messaging.
Pick up a copy of the May issue of Allure magazine for the full version of this interview:
Reese Witherspoon Explains Why She’s Proud of Her Gray Hair and Fine Lines
The Hollywood powerhouse serves up some big little truths — on aging, self-involvement, and the beauty ritual that changed her life.
Reese Witherspoon is one of those famous people who serves as a pop culture benchmark for anyone watching movies in the last 20-or-so years. Just like there’s a Spice Girl for everyone, there is a Reese Witherspoon for everyone (or at least for most relatable stages in your life) — naive heroine Annette in Cruel Intentions, the plucky and determined Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, a triumphant June Carter in Walk The Line, and of course, the indomitable Madeline Mackenzie in Big Little Lies. The Academy Award-winning actress has lived many lives, but in all of them her beauty journey has evolved to become the Reese Witherspoon who gave Allure’s beauty director this 15-minute interview, beginning here.
The best beauty tutorial
“My makeup artist, Molly R. Stern, taught me how to put on fake eyelashes. She hates that I put on a full strip, but I’m from the South — I love a good ol’-fashioned drugstore strip lash. I pop it on, put a little liquid liner over it, and I feel like my eyes look more open. I made a mess the first time, but then Molly showed me how to make it better. Always put liquid eyeliner over it.”
Her biggest beauty regret
“In the ’90s, we plucked our brows really thin. I said “we” — at least I did. And it just looked awful. Thank God, they grew back, but, I mean, who knows what they might look like now if I hadn’t plucked them into oblivion! ”
The never-again lipstick color
“Brown. Like, dark brown. It looked terrible, and it was immortalized on my driver’s license photo when I was 16 years old.”
The One Product That Transformed Reese Witherspoon’s Skin
Picking a single favorite Reese Witherspoon look from the past 20 years of her Hollywood fame is like picking your favorite dessert, or lipstick, or breed of puppy, or child.
Those retro waves at the 2001 Golden Globes? To die for. Her hot pink lip at the 2016 Oscars? When are we not trying to recreate? Those perfect bangs at the 2007 Golden Globes? We bring a picture of them to our hairstylist every four weeks.
Witherspoon, an Elizabeth Arden spokesperson, knows a lot about beauty from her years as a red carpet icon — which is why we were thrilled to sit down with her this week to talk all things hair, makeup, and skin. She walks us through her biggest beauty regrets, favorite budget buys, and the changing expectations around aging in Hollywood, ahead.
What is the best investment you made for your skin?
“Well, I have to say, I started using the [Elizabeth Arden] Retinol Ceramide Capsules like a year ago, and I had never used retinol before and it has really changed the tone of my skin. I used to have a really uneven tone.”
Do you have any favorite products you can grab from a CVS?
“Cetaphil. I use the face wash, and I travel with it. I like the Revlon eyelash curler; it’s as good as any eyelash curler I’ve ever used. I love drugstore makeup, too. I remember going as a little girl to the drugstore down the street from my grandmother’s house, and I’d spend hours looking at nail polish and lipstick and blush.”
What are your favorite beauty splurges?
“I had a facial the other day and it was so nice. I thought, I need to do this more often, so I might start getting facials. It was this “cryofacial” thing, where she used a cold thing on my face. It was fabulous.”
Over the years, do you have any beauty regrets? Any look from the past where you think back and cringe?
“I think in the ’90s when we did the thing where you had brown lipliner that was darker than my lipstick — that was an odd beauty moment. For some reason, I just took that one a long way. We also plucked our eyebrows really severely. I really wish I hadn’t plucked my eyebrows, but thank god they grew back.”
Reese Witherspoon On Fighting For Gender Equality With Elizabeth Arden
Reese Witherspoon is no stranger to fighting for a cause, especially when it comes to women. The actor, producer and entrepreneur is also a co-founder of Time’s Up, so as the Storyteller-in-Chief of Elizabeth Arden, she’s a perfect fit for the beauty brand that is also a champion of women. In 1912 Elizabeth Arden marched down Fifth Avenue for women’s equality and gave out red lipstick to suffragettes as a symbol of solidarity. Now, their new limited edition lipstick in Pink Punch is continuing that legacy to unite women. For Elizabeth Arden’s March On campaign, 100% of proceeds of the lipstick will go to UN Women, a nonprofit dedicated to gender equality and empowering women around the globe. Witherspoon tells us all about it.
What does being Elizabeth Arden’s Storyteller-in-Chief entail? Working with the brand, I tell stories around the product on Instagram, in the community, talking about work here and things that women are interested in, whether that’s products and skincare or how to get ready for big events. Also, championing Elizabeth Arden and the story of her company. She was always a fierce advocate for women’s rights. It’s a really nice partnership because we have so many similarities.
What are a few of the similarities you share with her? I’ve definitely started my own businesses. I’ve worked really hard to advocate for seeing more women onscreen and I think Elizabeth Arden really advocated for women to feel beautiful and part of that is being seen, you know? (She fought for) the importance of women’s roles in our cultures, in our world, and she was doing that way before I was ever around.
What are your go-to Elizabeth Arden products? I tried the Retinol Ceramide Capsules about a year ago and I noticed a real difference in my skin. It evened out my skin tone. I feel like I have a different texture, so that’s become part of my daily routine. I’m really enjoying their new White Tea Fragrances. The Vanilla Orchid is my favorite. It just pulls you together and makes you ready for your day. I really love fragrance.
Elizabeth Arden & Reese Witherspoon Announce 2019 ‘March On’ For Women Campaign
Today [March 7th], Elizabeth Arden announces March On Pink, the next phase of the brand’s signature philanthropic campaign, through a $1 million pledge supporting UN Women in their work to advance women’s issues worldwide. To bolster awareness and efforts, a limited-edition lipstick signed by Reese Witherspoon in “Pink Punch” shade will be sold globally with 100% of the proceeds donated to UN Women.
Following last year’s limited-edition March On lipstick in Elizabeth Arden’s classic red, this year’s March On campaign ushers in a new, powerful pink shade. Inspired by the next generation of young women leaders and enacting great change, Pink Punch unapologetically embraces women’s boldness and femininity.
“It’s an incredible time to be a woman. The work we’re doing with Elizabeth Arden and UN Women is igniting real change and increasing possibilities for women globally,” says Reese Witherspoon, Elizabeth Arden’s Storyteller-in-Chief and female advocate. “I’m in this for all women – for my daughter, my mother, and all the amazing women in my life.”
Reese Witherspoon Says Daughter Ava Phillippe, 19, Taught Her How to Apply Highlighter
Reese Witherspoon has been pampered by Hollywood’s hottest makeup artists since before her daughter Ava Phillippe was born. But these days, the 19-year-old is one of the few people the actress trusts to give her makeup tips.
“I learn a lot from my daughter [about makeup],” says Witherspoon, revealing that Ava honed her skills by watching YouTube tutorials. “Her understanding of how to apply it is so extensive.”
Speaking to PEOPLE about her latest charitable makeup collaboration with Elizabeth Arden, Witherspoon, 42, adds that Ava’s application techniques are especially solid when it comes to eyeshadow and highlighter.
“If I have to do my makeup for a dinner or something, I’ll be like, ‘Ava, can you fix my eyeshadow? I can’t remember what goes in the crease,’ because she has this intense knowledge about how to shade. It’s crazy.”
“She [also] taught me how to put highlighter on my brow bones and the top of my cheekbones. I really liked the way it looked, so now it’s just become part of my makeup routine.”
Witherspoon says her look-a-like daughter has been a pro of sorts for a couple of years. “She knew how to do a beautiful red carpet look by the time she was 17 years old.”
Of course, Ava’s makeup expertise isn’t the only thing the doting mom admires about her daughter.
Last summer Witherspoon threw a joint graduation party for her high school graduate, Ava, and her junior high graduate, son Deacon.
“I’m so proud of her,” says Witherspoon of her daughter, who’s now in college. “She’s just an extraordinary young woman who is passionate about the world, and making change, and helping people. I feel really privileged to be her mom.”
See Reese Witherspoon’s Empowering New Lipstick Collaboration with Elizabeth Arden
Reese Witherspoon and Elizabeth Arden are teaming up again to empower women through beauty.
One year after the brand and its Storyteller-in-Chief launched the March On campaign to provide support for women’s issues worldwide, and commemorated moment with a charitable red lipstick, they’re continuing the mission, this time with a vivid pink.
Witherspoon says the bold tone is her favorite. “It’s a strong color that inspires optimism, so it felt like the perfect color for our March On campaign,” she shares with PEOPLE.
Last year, Witherspoon and the brand kicked off the initiative at the UN on International Women’s Day, March 8, 2018. Along with the announcement, the brand pledged one million dollars, including 100 percent of lipstick proceeds, to UN Women, an organization that advocates for gender equality.
“I think the lipsticks we have created are a great way to extend the legacy of Elizabeth Arden, who cared so much about women’s rights and the freedom of women worldwide,” says Witherspoon of the ongoing campaign, adding that she is “enormously happy to be collaborating with a brand that I love, and that is dedicated to making women’s lives better.”
This year, the actress will be spending International Women’s Day on set, but will celebrate the day nevertheless.
“I love International Women’s Day because it’s a time to reflect and help women all over the world. I feel like I’ve had an extraordinary amount of privilege growing up in a country where I have a lot of rights, and I think it’s important to shed light on women who don’t have the same.”
To celebrate our 16 years online, here we are spotlighting 16 of our favourite Reese things from the past 16 years. You will see a new one upon refreshing or changing the page.
"It took me years to be the woman my mother raised. It took me 4 years, 7 months and 3 days to do it, without her. After I lost myself in the wilderness of my grief, I found my own way out of the woods."
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