Rosalía on Her New MAC Collection and Using Stiletto Nails as Castanets

Named after her 2019 song “Aute Cuture,” the musician’s debut beauty line is long on glamour, from stage-worthy lipstick to crystal nail jewelry.

Welcome to Artist Spotlight #67 series on my blog.

The Rosalía of the mind’s eye is not a minimalist. One imagines the Spanish pop star in perpetual full regalia, with three-inch nails, stylized hair, and her mouth painted bright red—a signature move that resulted in a limited-edition lipstick created in 2020 with MAC. But when her voice perks up on the other end of the line, Rosalía waves it all away. “Girl, I have nothing going on today. I’m at home with my clean face,” she says from Barcelona. The musician’s voice sounds equally at ease, the warm pops of laughter giving off a conspiratorial spirit seen in her music videos. In 2019’s “Aute Cuture,” she roams the streets with a so-called Beauty Gang, whose mile-long gold talons are decorated like sword handles; this month’s “Linda,” a joint effort with Dominican newcomer Tokischa, has them aglow in iridescent eye shadow and rosy blush under late-night fluorescents.

That kind of lush presentation—makeup that’s both vividly theatrical and true to self—lies at the heart of Rosalía’s latest project with MAC. This time, the collaboration is a sweeping lineup that spans lip colors, eye shadows, a highlighting face palette, and nail lacquers alongside jewel-like nail adornments. To title it Aute Cuture was only natural. “The name of that song is written wrong on purpose because, at the end of the day, I love glam, but I love it on my own terms,” says Rosalía of that makeshift riff on haute couture. “And the mood in ‘Aute Cuture’ is a little bit sassy and unapologetic—almost like a little cat that’s really cute, but it can scratch your face in a second if you get distracted.”

Plenty of flash turns up in the collection, beginning with her signature lip shade. “There’s so much red in flamenco tradition, and that’s a big inspiration for me,” explains Rosalía, who grew up in the Catalonian city of Sant Esteve Sesrovires and began intensive vocal training in the style at 16. That heat materializes in the flame-red Rusi Woo (a twist on the brand’s bestselling matte lipstick Ruby Woo) and a matte liquid lip color called Spicy Pimenton. But she’s just as keen to have blush-toned shades—like Nuez Moscada (a warm flush) or Jalea (petal-pink)—in the mix. “I personally love contrast, in life and in art,” says Rosalía. “You’ll feel much more the softness of something when [it’s alongside] something rough or strong. And I think that softness will become even more radical because of the context.” 

It’s an implicit case for caring about pink lip gloss (as Rosalía wears to brilliantly exaggerated effect in “Linda”) when one is a pop sensation rocketing into the firmament. But safeguarding those softer elements is part of what makes Rosalía relatable—despite her fearsome claws. Even those betray a weakness. “This is a confession: It’s really difficult to remove the credit card from the ATM,” she says with a laugh. “One time I had to ask for help!” There’s the kitten-at-play side as well. “I have one TikTok where I learned that I could use them as castanets, and I just recorded myself making my nails sound as if they were castanets,” she says. “When they are pointy stiletto nails, they can be perfect.”

With the current fixation on statement manicures, Rosalía continually delivers—from the crystalline, sculptural nails she and Billie Eilish modeled in this year’s “Lo Vas a Olvidar” video (created by nail artist Sojin Oh) to the multicolored tips she recently wore to DJ in New York. The mix of nail offerings in Aute Cuture means that Rosalía’s growing beauty gang can create their own homages. The collection’s six lacquers veer from the orange-red Cayena to the blush Sal Rosa—what Rosalía deems to be a vacation essential for its wear-with-anything versatility. There’s also a shimmery gold, in a nod to her early fascination with all things shiny. “There’s something about it that attracts me,” says Rosalía. “Since I was a kid, I’ve always been obsessed with my mom’s jewelry. She used to wear gold rings and small hoops. I think that that influenced me, for sure.” 

Those tones—rose gold, warm copper, metallic pink, and shimmery gold—turn up in an eye shadow palette as well as in a quartet of face highlighters embossed with the musician’s repeating R motif. But the sparkle takes its purest form in Rosalía’s nail decals: self-stick crystal adornments shaped like teardrops or organized into flowerlike clusters. “It’s like jewelry for me,” she says, emphasizing that there are no limits, no rules. “Personally, I’ll be wearing them everywhere—to the bakery shop in the morning or for a dinner at night!

VANITY FAIR

Mented Cosmetics – No One Should Be An Afterthought

“One night over a glass of pinot, we sat down and asked ourselves why it was so hard to find the perfect nude lipstick. That conversation sparked an idea, and that idea became the brand we are building today. We created Mented Cosmetics because we believe every woman should be able to find herself in the world of beauty, no matter her skin tone. We know you’ll love being put first – because when it comes to beauty, no one deserves to be an afterthought.”

Welcome to Artist Spotlight #41 series on my blog.

“From our original nude lipsticks to eyeshadow palettes to blushes, each of our makeup products is perfectly pigMented to match your skin tones. We want all women, from light to tan to dark skin tones, to feel like they have makeup that actually works for their complexions, so we’ve created the shades to help accomplish that. Start with our shade finder to find your perfect match and then begin building your collection today! We guarantee you’ll find your new go-to or a fun addition to your makeup routine.”

Lip Products

Buy Here

Face Products

Buy Here

High Brow Pencil

“Our High Brow Precision Pencil gives you the definition you want while staying put all day. It’s waterproof, precision-tipped, and lasts for 10+ hours.”

Buy $15

Cheek Products

Buy Here

Eye Products

Buy Here

Nude Nail Collection

Buy Here

Accessories

Buy Here

When it comes to inclusivity – Mented has got you covered!

SHOP MENTED COSMETICS
MENTED COSMETICS ON INSTAGRAM

9 Beauty Products You’re Better Off Buying From the Drugstore

Let’s face it: As beauty-obsessed as we all might be, many of the products themselves can be downright pricey. Considering the fact that we need to own enough lip and nail colors to practically match the entire rainbow (because you always need to have a shade on hand that can match what Kylie Jenner or Gigi Hadid just wore, obviously), it all adds up pretty damn quickly. 

This is where your neighborhood drugstore comes in. A splurge on a luxe product every now and again is just that: a splurge. It’s something you’ll proudly display on your vanity and use sparingly, but your drugstore makeup products become your most reliable pretty quickly. And, a good number of the drugstore brands — whether you’re talking hair, skin care or makeup — actually use similar (if not the same) technologies as mass prestige brands since they tend to be owned by larger companies that also have mass prestige brands under their umbrella, so the methods are passed through the company.

Mascara

Mascara may be the most obvious, as the drugstore brands have been doing mascara correctly for eons. Not only do they have varieties ranging from volumizing to lengthening, drugstore brands like Maybelline, CoverGirl and L’Oreal also boast new launches multiple times throughout the year to stay on top of the trends. For example, there are several formulas offering iterations of the runway’s “spider” lashes at the moment. 

L’Oreal Voluminous Butterfly Mascara, $8.99, available at Ulta.com: My ultimate drugstore mascara? L’Oreal Butterfly Effect, which I hoard in bulk. This mascara has a winged brush — like a butterfly wing, hence the name — and adds that perfect hint of volume to your lashes while also helping to lengthen and separate. Basically, it’s my cannot-live-without desert island beauty product. 

Liner Pencils

Liner pencils tend to wear down pretty quickly, so there really is no sense in dishing out a lot of cash for them. Of course, you should always make sure they don’t run or smudge too much, and that they draw a clean line without tugging the skin. 

Maybelline Eyestudio Master Precise Skinny Gel Pencil, $7.99, available at Ulta.com: My personal favorite is Maybelline’s new Eyestudio Master Precise Skinny Gel Pencil, which is similar to the company’s beloved Master Drama pencil, which is no longer on the market (to many a fan’s dismay). The tiny, precise tip of the new gel pencil helps even the most amateur cat-eye artists get their flicks right though, and the gel glides along the skin ever so easily. 

Makeup Wipes

Makeup wipes are every lazy girl’s answer to a clean face, as well as the easiest way to remove dirt and grime while on the go. So, whether you’re a frequent traveler or you spend a lot of time at your significant other’s place, the makeup wipe will be your best friend. 

Simple Micellar Makeup Remover Wipes, $5.99, available at Target.com: These deliver the cleaning benefits of micellar water without stripping your face of its natural oils. I personally am a micellar water junkie, singing it’s praises time and time again — my skin’s tone has greatly improved since jumping on the bandwagon, and I won’t be going back anytime soon.

Blush

Blush is one of those products that can be fun to experiment with a few different shades depending on the season. You want soft pinks and corals to brighten up your cheeks in the warmer months, and can go a bit deeper in the winter. And then, of course, there are various formulas and textures, adding an entirely new layer of experimentation — so why fuss over high-end brands? 

Flower Beauty Transforming Touch Powder to Crème Blush, $12.98, available at Walmart.com: Trust me when I say that this is one of the best blushes on the market today. Drew Barrymore’s line boasts an exclusive “liquid powder” technology that literally transforms the loose powder blush into a crème right when you apply it to your skin, helping it to blend easily and set quickly. 

Mousse

While mousse frequently conjures up memories of crunchy curls circa the ’80s, it’s actually back with a vengeance. And luckily for you, like Warnke mentioned earlier, many of the top hair-care companies work together on their technologies (i.e. to prevent aforementioned crunchy curls). So, the mousse of today helps your hair to form a curl, without the frizz or stickiness. 

John Frieda Luxurious Volume Perfectly Full Mousse, $6.99, available at Drugstore.com: My current favorite comes from John Frieda, and is a reinvention of its Perfectly Full Mousse. The new version has a lighter feel, so that you’ll have that touchable curl with hold — but without the crunchiness that we all tend to associate with a mousse product.

Nail Polish

Since nail polish is addictive to collect, it’s in your best interest to find a drugstore brand that you love — and that lasts. With all of the polishes to choose from these days, this can be an overwhelming task. To make it easier, many of the top brands have developed some sort of “gel effect” polish, which essentially means that it will last longer; the technology may vary in some ways from brand to brand but, in the end, the purpose is for it to last up to two weeks — the same as if you were getting a professional gel manicure. 

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel, $9.99, available at Ulta.com: After testing all of these new gel effect formulas, my favorite, hands down, is Sally Hansen’s Miracle Gel. You have to buy the top coat separately in order for it to work, but it truly does last almost to the two-week point — and that’s through washing dishes, swimming and more. 

Dry Shampoo

Since most of us love to extend the life of a blowout (or let’s face it, we just like to wash less frequently, because it’s a hassle) dry shampoo is often our best friend. We all own bottles and bottles of the stuff, so it better be cheap  — but like RiRi says, it also better work.

Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Dry Shampoo, $6.19, available at Ulta.com: There are countless dry shampoos you can get at your drugstore, but my recent favorite is Not Your Mother’s due to the fact that it absorbs oil quickly and leaves a matte texture for that perfect bedhead finish.

Lip Gloss

Since we’ve already told you that lip gloss is back in a big way (the proof is in your Instagram feed), it’s due time to try out a new sheen. Many of the best new glosses are drugstore brands, like NYX, Milani and Flower Beauty.

NYX Cosmetics Butter Gloss, $4.99, available at Ulta.com: My all-time favorite gloss is actually an Instagram fave as well: NYX Cosmetics Butter Gloss. The sweetly scented gloss gives medium color coverage and high shine. But, the best part is that the formula isn’t sticky and actually stays on your lips, as opposed to most glosses that come off after drinking or eating. 

Eyeshadow (Sometimes)

Everyone needs a few great shimmering nudes, and Milani actually has a fantastic palette to start with — for under $10! For folks looking to build up their eye-shadow collections in general, drugstore palettes are a great place to start, and both nudes and soft metallics are the essential starting points. 

Milani Everyday Eyes Powder Eyeshadow Collection in Bare Necessities, $9.99, available at Walgreens.com: Milani’s palettes are my favorite for essential colors, like shimmering nudes as a baseline for a smokey eye. This Everyday Eyes Powder palette is one that I always have on hand (or is an easy palette to stick in my bag for travel) and will cover all of the bases. 

FASHIONISTA article