Jessica Alba Gets Honest About the First Time She Fell in Love with Makeup, Diversity in Beauty, and Her New Cosmetics Range

Jessica Alba - Lead
Photo: Sonia Moskowitz/WireImage

Jessica Alba is, if nothing else, honest in every aspect of her life. The star's (appropriately-named) Honest empire, which boasts a product lineup almost as extensive as her film credits, has just made the expansion into color cosmetics and skin care, though Alba's love of makeup is one that spans decades. "I first fell in love with makeup when I was a kid—it was sort of that bonding I did with my mom," she told InStyle at the New York City launch of Honest Beauty last night. "She was in cosmetology school when I was three, and I was her real-life Barbie doll head. She tried everything on me! I've always been into it, and it was really that bond. Those moments with my mom are ones I'll always remember." Factor in the detail that she's been a regular in the makeup chair since starting her acting career at the age of 12, and we'd say she's a pretty good candidate to head off a beauty operation. One of Alba's main focuses in developing the line was to showcase the beauty in diversity. "The most important thing to me was coming out with a range that celebrated diverse beauty. I'm a woman of color, I've been wearing makeup professionally since I was 12, and I always found it challenging to find my perfect shade of foundation," she said. "The undertones were either super yellow or super pink, and it's like, I'm both. With that in mind, I developed the products with the understanding that people aren't completely just one or the other, but having a nice mix of both to really show our skin tones."

On, the point is further emphasized with models with complexions varying from deep to ultra-fair, and you're able to view exactly how the product will appear on the girl with the skin tone closest to your own, further streamlining the shopping process. "Having a wide range was the most important thing to me, and also having beautiful colors everyone could wear," she added. "That was challenging because there are some things that are trendy, but don't look great on everyone, so I wanted to do the initial launch with classic, timeless products." Mission accomplished. Alba's scientific knowlege grew even more in developing the line, where she learned the intricacies of shimmery mica and the benefits of chamomile oil, but the process didn't come without picking up a few life lessons. "You don't need to conform to anyone's idea of beauty, and you should do what feels right for you. I think so many things are thrown at you as a woman—what you should look like, what you should feel like—but it's different day to day and what works for one person won't always work for another," Alba told us of the most-empowering beauty advice she was given. "Just embracing who you are, what you want, and learning from your mistakes versus letting them define you are all key things I've learned in life, and have applied to beauty as well." As they saying goes, honesty really is the best policy, especially when it comes to yourself.

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