Katrina Kaif says her make-up and skincare regime is a mix of Kay Beauty and common sense

Indian actress and beauty entrepreneur is at once exacting and experimental

Indian celebrity Katrina Kaif says skin-friendly ingredients are a must in make-up. Photo: Kay Beauty
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“An everyday journey.” That’s how Katrina Kaif defines her role – one that she takes very seriously – in the beauty brand she co-founded in 2019. Kay Beauty might be a cosmetics company, but skincare is at the core of every formulation.

The brand launched in the UAE this month, in partnership with the Apparel Group at Indian retailer Nykaa’s first beauty store, Nysaa, in City Centre Mirdif, Dubai.

“There still exists a misconception that make-up is not good for your skin,” Kaif tells The National over a Zoom call from her family home in the UK. “But every product, which we spend months researching before retailing, has a skin-loving ingredient, be that camomile or almond oil. Applying skin-friendly formulations ensures you not only look good, but also feel confident.”

To that end, the Indian celebrity recommends beauty mavens learn how to distinguish what works for their skin and doesn't, relying on instinct, observation and plain old common sense.

“Some obvious parameters to consider are the way a product feels on your skin and the way a colour transfers on your complexion,” says Kaif, whose cruelty-free brand caters to a range of skin tones – a must in the multicultural hubs that are India and the UAE.

“It’s all about the texture, so how does a lipstick transfer on your lips? Is your make-up transferring in the same way as when you try a swatch on your hand and when you apply it on your face? Kajal should run smoothly rather than drag across the eye line. The same goes for foundation, which should always respect the natural texture of your skin. These are all crucial performance points for me as a discerning make-up user,” she explains.

Flawless skin remains the best base for make-up, and Kaif is on top of her game when it comes to the skincare aspect of beauty. However, she notes, this often goes well beyond lotions and potions.

I always start my day with four glasses of water
Katrina Kaif, actress and beauty entrepreneur

“I think nothing can take the place of a healthy lifestyle, by which I mean everything from your diet and exercise routine to self-care practices. Eat clean, avoid sugar and inflammatory ingredients, and do yoga. These are age-old hacks, passed down over the generations, and they work.”

To that end, Kaif reveals of her own regimen: “I always start my day with four glasses of water. What’s in that water can vary, from boiled ginger or lemon to fennel or cumin seeds.

“Next I spend a little time with myself, whether it’s a breathing routine or a bit of meditation or yoga, which I think is transformative and can impact all areas of your life, from physical and mental to aesthetic.”

The one pre-make-up ritual Kaif swears by, especially when she’s due to take a turn on the red carpet, is icing the skin. “I can be experimental with my make-up when I'm on the red carpet or during a fashion shoot, where you get to try out new things. But I always ice my face beforehand. I find it wakes up the skin, closes the pores and allows for smoother make-up application,” she says.

Having said that, Kaif is partial to a smoky eye and dewy skin, which she reckons are evergreen trends here to stay, while an overly complicated make-up routine is a fad that's had its day. “Most of our lives and the world around us are moving at such a hectic pace that everyone would do well to simplify their beauty routines,” she says.

Formulating multipurpose products was one of the founding principles of Kay Beauty
Katrina Kaif

“Yet, one crucial product to incorporate daily is a good quality sunblock, especially given the hot climes in India and the UAE. The impact of not using sun protection might not show up today, but it does eventually. Likewise, using a gentle cleanser that does not strip the skin. If your initial cleansing process is wrong, every other process from there will be unbalanced and you'll be stuck in a catch-up game,” says Kaif in her trademark matter-of-fact way.

The jet-setting actress is also a fan of multipurpose products. “That was actually one of the founding principles of Kay Beauty, which launched with an eye crayon and a lip pencil, both of which are completely multi-use. To date, about 60 per cent of Kay Beauty offerings are multi-use.”

Her personal favourite is the Illuminating Liquid Luminizer, which she likes to mix with a foundation or a cream blush for that extra glow.

As the brand prepares for its UAE debut, the actress says, “I am so excited because the country is known for its discerning eye for beauty.” She says she would like to come to the Emirates more often for on-ground events and interact with consumers who she’s confident will take to the brand.

Celebrity factor aside, Kaif says: “You can’t go wrong with a formulation that’s both kind to your skin and impactful on the outside.”

Kay Beauty is available at Nysaa in City Centre Mirdif, Dubai and online at nysaa.com

Updated: May 02, 2024, 8:49 AM