Makeup artist Rose-Marie Swift with her dog (Photo: Rose-Marie Swift)
Long before the industry fell for argan oil and cold-pressed juices, Rose-Marie Swift decided to overhaul her skincare regimen. After spending months battling a slew of health-related ailments, the beloved makeup artist decided to take a good, hard look at some of her trustiest beauty products—and she did not like what she found.
Swift concluded that conventional cosmetics were too often laced with unknown chemicals and untested compounds. While she had tolerated them before, she now knew she needed an alternative. Hoping to offer just that to likeminded women and skeptics alike, Swift dreamed up RMS Beauty—a line of products so wholesome they are almost edible. In the years since, both her eponymous brand and ethos have attracted legions of fans (we count ourselves among them). We decide to quiz Swift herself on beauty, wisdom, and what it means to feel good in your own skin.
Mattie Kahn: What is your earliest memory of makeup?
Rose-Marie Swift: My mother used to wrap her long hair into a French twist and apply her powder, which over flowed with a pink marabou feather powder puff—they used feathers in those days. Then she added on her red lipstick and that was it—I was obsessed!
MK: What beauty secrets did you pick up from the family matriarchs?
RMS: Less is more. It applies also to eating super healthy for a clean spirit. The skin is a mirror to your gut!
Rose-Marie Swift in her twenties (Photo: Rose-Marie Swift)
MK: Go ahead, spill: What’s the biggest beauty blunder you made when you were younger?
RMS: Making my foundation too pale.
MK: When you look back, what do you remember of adolescence?
RMS: I was a late bloomer in the breast department, and the boys called me “T-shirt girl.” I begged my mother for a bra and she said no. I died!
MK: What is your favorite scent?
RMS: Natural skin. I hate fragrances because they are all synthetic chemicals.
MK: Doing good is beautiful because?
RMS: You feel good.
MK: What is your indulgence of choice?
RMS: I love ice cream.
MK: You feel most beautiful when you…?
RMS: Are naked.
MK: Fill in the blank: When you grow up, you hope you look and feel as good as _______ does.
RMS: I never compare myself to anyone. Ever.