About-Face says perfection exists in every body, and every face.
Singer and writer Halsey (Ashley Nicolette Frangipane), has launched her first beauty range, About-Face. The vegan makeup line is designed by the pop star who often does her own makeup before performances. The line is suited for all skin tones and types.
About-Face is very “’90s-heavy, very Myspace scene queen, very emo revival,” Halsey says.
“I was an art student, so I paint and I still paint,” she explained to Byrdie. “Makeup has always been something I’ve just been naturally drawn to because I’m very dextrous with a brush and I know a lot about color.”
But it’s also taking aim at conventional beauty standards, positioning itself to help people express themselves, not cover anything up. To make that point there are no foundations or concealers in the range.
“Makeup is an art and art is about happy accidents, not any one ideal of perfection,” Halsey said. “I always feel the most free when I am creating looks without following any rules. The beauty industry has norms, but I want to encourage people to challenge those standards and allow things to be imperfect and fun.”
The singer told Byrdie that the name, About-Face, is a triple-entendre. She says its three meanings are: “1. to go in the opposite direction 2. stands for her initials and 3. when shortened, can be interpreted as the phrase ‘as fuck.'”
One of the other beauty industry norms the singer is bucking is conventional ingredients. The line is vegan — both free from animal ingredients and animal testing. But it’s also free from harmful ingredients often found in skincare products like parabens, synthetic fragrance, and even gluten.
“I have an autoimmune illness, so I’m very sensitive to what goes on my face,” she said. “And a lot of my audience, they’re really young, and I just don’t want anyone putting stuff on their face that’s going to hurt them down the line.”
That consideration also extends all the way to the packaging. “I just didn’t want to do something boring,” she said. The holographic packaging and materials are recyclable and biodegradable.
Halsey isn’t the only pop star with a vegan makeup line. There’s Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty, with a number of vegan options; Selena Gomez’s Rare Beauty is vegan and cruelty-free; Lady Gaga’s line Haus Laboratories is vegan, as is Ke$ha’s Kesha Rose.
But Halsey hopes her intimate connection to the line separates her from the pack.
“I really hope that people know that I’ve always done my own makeup, so this is coming from a place of a lot of experience, and a lot of love for the art,” she says. “I meticulously designed all of these products. Everything from the ingredients to the names of every single one of the products—it was entirely of my own love, and design, and approval, and involvement.”
For the Rebels
Halsey says the product range is for anyone, but especially for those who feel like rebels, outcasts. “I feel like I never really see makeup anymore that’s about being fucked up and dirty and grungy and just wrong, and so much makeup used to be about that,” she says. “It’s something for the generation of e-girls and e-boys out there,” she says.
“I think so much of makeup these days is about changing what you look like, or correcting things,” she says. “I love makeup as an art as much as the next person. I admire the tremendous amount of skill that it takes to do color correction, but as someone who has spent a really long time trying to look different than I do, it was really relieving for me to be able to look at myself and go, hey, that’s your face. There’s nothing you can do about it. So you better love it, because that’s the one you got.”