Many of us know and adore it Stacy London for her work as a style expert and co-host What not to wear. Today, however, she is less worried about looking great than living a good life. And in the new role of CEO State Of, a line of skin and body products for menopausal symptoms, is excited to help others do the same. Here he talks about his gray line and the cult color of his lips, which suits everyone well …
How did you first embark on beauty?
Growing up, I was obsessed with anything dazzling, be it clothes or makeup. StageLight cosmetics it came out when I was in seventh grade, and the coldest you could do were pots of their powder eyeshadow. It was SO GREAT. I had no idea what I was doing; I would just put it all over my eyelid and think it looks great.
What other makeup did you like as a teenager?
Clinique’s black honey is almost lipstick was the rider for my generation. Even today, that is the main thing of Clinique. It is one of those chameleon products that looks great on all different skin tones. But my relationship with makeup has changed over the years.
Well, first, I discover that as I get older, with a lot of makeup I look older. Secondly, as much as I enjoyed applying makeup, I was never good at applying it. When I worked in television, I felt so happy that professionals did it for me. But at this point I just don’t feel the need for so many fabrications. I always like to try new things, but I usually go back to basics.
What are your basics in terms of makeup?
The only thing I stand out today are my lips and eyebrows. I use Boy Brow from Glossier in black, and I also use a gray-brown eyebrow pencil from Winky Lux. It’s a miracle pen, I don’t understand it.
Do you pinch your own eyebrows? Because the shape is fantastic.
I don’t pinch them at all! It is true that they were killed in the 1990s. I met makeup artist Kevyn Aucoin while working at her Vogue, and he was like, ‘Girl, I have to put you on a chair and put you on those eyebrows.’ I told him, ‘I don’t want to live with tweezers next to a toothbrush.’ But, of course, he rolled them up, and of course, he made them very, very skinny. They grew a little, but not much, and I was trying to keep fit. Now they stay on this path. This is another benefit of aging: You have less hair!
Are you still having fun researching and finding new products?
Oh yeah, makeup is still fun – and I don’t have to be the highlight to be great. I recently took a walk through makeup at CVS and found some amazing things. I have Maybelline lipstick called Red Revivaland I am ASSESSED. It is a classic satin red.
Do you always work red?
No, I will wear another one often Pat McGrath lipstick called Beautiful Creature, which is a great everyday pink plum.
Any other makeup drugstore you like?
I don’t wear mascara often, because I wear glasses and mascara is often found on lenses. But on that same CVS trip, I took the tube Total teasing Covergirl, which remains in place. It darkens and thickens, but not too much, so it looks very natural. It is also waterproof. I’m in a crowd at perimenopause and makeup melts off my face when I have a hot flash. So I never put anything that could go down my face.
All right. Let’s talk about skin care.
I have always been involved in skin care because I got psoriasis as a child. So I was constantly putting on creams to heal my skin. I’ve been diligent all my life around moisturizing and caring for my skin just because I had to.
What does your morning routine look like?
I wash my face Glow Recipe blueberry repellent, which is very gentle. Then I’ll get dressed Sunday Riley’s tidal cream, which is an excellent moisturizer, but not at all heavy. I end with Supergoop sunscreen. I love it because it’s the only sunscreen that doesn’t make me feel like I’m going to sweat under it to death.
How about a night?
Since the pandemic, baths have been my new thing. I’ve never taken them before – maybe if I’ve been to a posh hotel or something. Now I take one at least three times a week. My overall self-help routine is about reducing discomfort in the body; I haven’t exercised for most of last year, and now I’m going back to strength training. On days when I know I’m going to be mentally and physically exhausted, I always plan to end up bathing. I use ours Lavender bath salts from State Of, and when I go out, I swing CBD body oil, for muscle fatigue.
Have been using these products for a while, right?
Yes, I dealt with the symptoms of perimenopause for a while and it changed my way of thinking about my body. No one ever talks about these things! I actually had symptoms for years before I knew it was perimenopause. You get insomnia, mood swings, dry skin, dry vaginas! But I just thought I was crazy. When I finally learned more about it, I felt a bit like a superhero – because I was still experiencing these symptoms, but I was armed with information and I could actually start managing it.
Do you have a favorite product from State?
Yes, Face oil is my favorite. All products are designed to be completely absorbed into the skin so you don’t feel sticky. The face oil absorbs instantly and makes my skin so beautiful, delicious and moisturized. And if I have a hot flash, it’s not like, uh, oh, there’s oil all over my face.
So I have to ask about the famous series. Do people keep saying that?
All the time. People have been telling me to dye my hair because I looked old, but I have a clue since I was 11! I was never embarrassed about it. I think it puts me in the same category as Cruella de Vil or Rogue from X-Men. That’s pretty iconic! There are actually simple ways I could hide this – I could split my hair in a certain way and it wouldn’t show. But I never would. That’s part of me. By the way, I no longer feel like I have this little gray line. I’m getting gray everywhere.
Was it an adjustment?
Yes, but I try to practice watching these changes with amazement and fascination, not anxiety. Because the whole world is telling us that aging is bad, and I just don’t buy it. The change is frightening, and yes, it’s weird to look in the mirror and be like, ‘That’s not me. I didn’t look like 38. ‘But I want to welcome those changes. So when I notice more gray hair, I’ll say to myself little things in the mirror, like, ‘I can’t wait to see you more.’
You’re pretty open about the term “anti-aging.” Can you talk about it?
I know, it’s such a cliché to be, “Anti-aging marketing is bad!” But I can’t stand it. To be against aging means to be against the thing that is inevitable for all of us – if we are lucky. So I can’t understand how someone could write that on a product or in an ad campaign. I hope we start to lower our expectations of beauty. And I don’t mean that we should think less of ourselves or that we’re not good enough. I think I hope we start to realize that we are good enough the way we are.
You have been very vocal in the aging process, especially since entering the fifties of 2019. How did it feel to achieve that milestone?
Sometimes I feel so excited about going on this stage that I wish I could shout it off the rooftops. I have nothing to prove to anyone! Other days I wake up and feel bad about it. This has been a difficult year in general. My father fell ill and then passed away recently. It’s something about middle age: it was time to lose my father. That loss made me feel like a child again. I suddenly felt like I was six years old and lost in the supermarket. But it really changed my thoughts about aging. It made me think less about my appearance and more about keeping my body physically strong and healthy. I’ve always been great at skin care, but now I’m getting better at taking care of my bones and muscles. Every day, no matter how I feel in my fifties, I try to remind myself that I’m lucky to be here.
Thank you very much, Stacy!!
(Photos courtesy of Stacy London.)