Makeup mogul Bobbi Brown was not looking for a celebrity spokesperson for her successful cosmetics brand under her namesake. She met celebrity mom Katie Holmes through a mutual friend. Katie's clothing line had Bobbi thinking if Katie would ever consider nabbing a spot as spokesperson. Bobbi had always seen Katie as a role model for women—a grounded, beautiful, hardworking mother—and the perfect embodiment of her empowering slogan for Bobbi Brown Cosmetics.
Read on to see Stylebible.ph's exclusive webcast of Katie Holmes and Bobbi Brown chatting with Eva Chen about beauty, life, and success:
Eva Chen (EC): You always look amazing on the red carpet. Is there a way you prepare for the red carpet or mentally prepare yourself before you go out there?
Katie Holmes: You know, I feel really lucky because you get to work with wonderful makeup artists like Bobbi and I always try to wear what I like. I know people are—you know, they're out to get you and judge what you look like, but at the end of the day, I'm a girl from Ohio that is now on the red carpet, so it's kind of exciting.
But even women at home, when you go to a party, you want to look good and you want to be comfortable. It's about finding a look that works. And makeup is really important in that.
EC: How do you suggest women find what works for them?
Bobbi: Well, first of all, it's really good to have a lesson and find a makeup artist at one of the counters that you like the way they look. Often you go in and you see someone that's got really bad makeup, and you wonder why you don't look good. So find someone that looks like your style. And try it, and if you don't like it, say thank you, wash your face, and go to someone else. And look at magazines, get ideas, read some manuals, and just experiment. And don't microscope and look in the mirror too much. That's my big advice for women.
Katie: Well, I feel like we've all learned a lot from our mothers in terms of archetypes of beauty and kind of our expectations of beauty.
EC: Did you ever receive any beauty tips from your mom or other women in your life that you still use today?
Katie: Yes, my mom always said never put soap on your face and always moisturize. And beauty is from within... but makeup helps.
EC: So as an actress and as someone who's so in the spotlight, do you feel like there's a constant pressure to look perfect?
Katie: I try to look nice at, you know, school functions and things like that. And I do want to look nice. I don't like seeing a terrible picture, but I also don't let it dictate my everyday. And I'm very much on the go. But I do try to put some effort in, yeah. And Bobbi's makeup really helps because when you're getting up very early in the morning, it's like, oh my God, I need some blush, I need something to make me look like I'm alive. And so it's very, very helpful.
EC: And I think ultimately, you look beautiful all the time, but you're very relatable to women, I think, as a mom, as a working mom, as someone who's always on the go. What do you think—besides the qualities I just rattled off—what else do you think makes Katie relatable to all of your customers?
Bobbi: I mean, I think that Katie's beauty comes from not just how she looks on the outside, but I really think her personality on the inside, it really comes out. And she emulates, with her smiley face and her happy eyes, she emulates, you know, a happy person. Definitely—happiness from within, that makes a big difference.
EC: Let's talk about beauty mistakes.
Bobbi: Women don't realize that every woman has their distinct shape of eye. And also often women have two different shapes. That happens often. So you have to compensate for it. And that's what a good makeup artist could really teach women, how to look at yourself and just deal with the things that are unique about you.
EC: Have your definitions of beauty evolved through the years?
Bobbi: It's always changing based on who you're inspired by, I think, and where you are in your life and your goals and what you're interested in pursuing at that given moment. I think my beauty evolution has definitely been appreciating looks that are interesting and different.
EC: Would you say, Katie, since becoming the face of Bobbi, your definitions of beauty have changed, or has your beauty routine changed at all?
Katie: Since becoming the face of Bobbi, my appreciation for beauty has been strengthened. And my daily routine is different because I have... I have more of an awareness of what works and what doesn't thanks to Bobbi. The Shimmer Brick really works along with the blush, and the cream foundation really helps. I feel good about myself.
Bobbi: When you want to look polished, you wear, you know, the compact foundation, the stick foundation. When you're not working, you can even just use the stick on parts or a tinted moisturizer.
EC: So in your book Pretty Powerful, there are six chapters that focus on different kinds of pretty: pretty natural, pretty radiant, pretty strong, pretty classic, pretty authentic, and pretty bold. If you had to categorize yourself as one of them and then Katie, and vice versa, what would you guys say?
Bobbi: Well it's funny, because I see myself in every single one. You know, pretty natural, yes, I'm natural because I don't really like a lot of fluff. You know, pretty radiant, because I put on nice extras and I like shine. Pretty authentic because I always try to tell the truth and be a good person. Pretty bold... it's not because I wear red lipstick; it's because I take chances. Powerful! No, that's the whole book, it's powerful. Also classic—pretty classic. I think I like very simple, classic things. So even though I took the women and put them in each chapter, if—and it's funny, I don't know—if I knew Katie when I did the book, what chapter I would put her in. Probably not bold; probably authentic, probably classic, probably natural. I don't know, yeah, because she's a little bit of all of that too.
EC: And would you say there's one that you identify with the most?
Katie: I think pretty classic.
EC: What makes each of you guys feel pretty?
Bobbi: For me, it's when I'm on a vacation with my family and I'm rested and my husband tells me I look pretty. That's probably my favorite.
Katie: I think I feel pretty when I've achieved something that I've set out to do. That makes me feel pretty.
EC: If you, Katie, for instance, you grew up in the spotlight and you have a lot of young women looking up to you now. What advice would you give young women that you see or that you meet or kind of look up to you as a role model?
Katie: My advice would be to appreciate who they are and take care of themselves and be good to themselves. And, you know, really take care of their bodies, their mind, their soul... everything. And be the best version that they can be, and just keep being positive and grateful and just keep going.
EC: We talked a little bit about beauty rituals. I want to know if your beauty routine has changed since you've become a mom.
Katie: Yes, since I've become a mom, my beauty routine has changed. I just do things more quickly. Less time, I guess, and more on the go.
EC: And speaking of being on the go, I want to hear about what are in both of your makeup bags all the time. What's always in your handbag?
Bobbi: Right now I'm working on a mini [makeup bag], so I have everything really teeny. But in my bag, I always have my wallet, I always have my iPhone, I always have my mini iPad, because that one [regular iPad]'s too heavy, so I usually leave that one at home. I have a case with business cards and some discount cards, you know, or my insurance cards—things I don't use every day. And then my makeup bag. I now am working on a mini one, so I have, I have every little teeny thing, so I could do a full face. I have a palette that has my corrector concealer, foundation, pot rouge, and then little teeny eye shadows.
EC: And what are the things that you think every woman should have in her makeup bag?
Bobbi: Certainly a lipstick or a lip gloss. Certainly to touch up your concealer corrector, your blush. I mean, I think your eyes should pretty much stay on all day. Everything else needs a bit of touch-up.
EC: Cool. And how about you, Katie? What's in your bag, what's in your makeup bag?
Katie: Well, my makeup bag in my bag has the Tinted Gloss and the Shimmer Brick and a brush. And that falls alongside some crayons, a wallet, iPhone, a pair of shoes, some tissues.
EC: Let's talk a little bit about red-carpet beauty. Shine a light: I think a lot of people think that celebrities just get out of the limo or their car service and it took them five minutes to get ready. On average, how long does it take you to get ready for the red carpet or have people get you ready, I guess?
Katie: You know, I think that there's probably... I would say two hours of fitting. And then once that's decided, what outfit you're going to wear, then there's half an hour of maybe tailoring. So then you're at two-and-a-half hours, and this would be on a separate day. And then the day of the red carpet, you know, you would try the dress on or outfit on, make sure it still fits. And then once you sit down in the chair, it's usually... you want to give yourself two hours.
EC: Wow, so for the 15-year-old girl or the 13-year-old girl who is like, Oh, my gosh, she looks amazing, she always looks like that, the message is: It takes... it's like a 24-hour process. And it takes a village.
Katie: Yeah, it takes a village. And it's something where, you know, if you know you have a red carpet thing coming up in, let's say, a month, you're drinking more water, you're exercising more, you're eating really healthy because you know that that's coming. It's not like you hear, oh, there's a red carpet today. I mean, you're prepping.
Bobbi: And HDTV is not exactly a woman's best friend. It shows everything. I mean, I think it's a good message for young women just to know that it's a process.
EC: What are your favorite multitasking Bobbi Brown products that you would recommend for busy moms such as yourself?
Bobbi: The Pot Rouge, because you can do the lip and the cheeks. Shimmer Brick you could also do on your eyes. And I know that you have a very healthy lifestyle. I've heard the legend of your coconut kale shake. You know what, I just... I love to eat healthy. I happen to feel really bad when I eat food that's not good for me. And it's been an evolution over the years, and I find the older I get, the healthier I really have to eat. Clean, simple, but I still love really good flavor. I always tell people try to eat healthy 90%, and the 10%, if there's a piece of pizza, but if it looks like a really good pizza. If it looks like just your average, awful... don't waste your calories. I mean, my personal indulgence is always a good tequila on the rocks or a martini. You know, I have to watch every calorie, and I'm on the treadmill every day, and I have to work really hard.
EC: And, Katie, what are your indulgences? You mentioned Babycakes earlier.
Katie: My indulgences... You know, I like pasta, I like a good steak. But, you know, like Bobbi, when you're kind of... during the week when you're working, working, working, you're on the go, you can't have things slowing you down. So I eat pretty healthy during the week and then—oh, I love Mexican food too. Basically I do love all different kinds of food. But there's healthy Mexican food. I mean, there's healthy every kind of food, if you just look for it. And eating cleanly is kind of everything. Right, and portion control, you know, not overdoing it.
EC: Let's talk about work/life balance. It's basically—it seems impossible, but I feel like both of you have achieved it to some degree. What are your secrets?
Bobbi: Well, I think that with work/life balance, you have to make sure that the important things are taken cared of, whether it's a business meeting, a dinner, or, even more important, your kids' school concert that is really important to your child. So I always scheduled my work life around some of the important dates. I would always call the principal and say, Can I just—please let me know when the holiday sing-along is and teachers conferences. So it's about being organized and planning for it, and it doesn't always work out, but you do your best. And I think prioritizing your time. And for me, it's being the most efficient... you know, especially with work.
EC: And when are you the happiest?
Bobbi: I am the happiest on a vacation.
Katie: You know, I'm the happiest when my child is happy.