Drew Barrymore Tells Us Her Go-To Derm Treatment, Favorite Skincare Products and the One Item All Women Need
The walls in Drew Barrymore’s NYC bathroom are covered with the happiest kind of art: family photos, plus drawings and love notes from her two daughters. And every square inch of the white-tiled countertop is covered with the happiest kind of chaos: hundreds of balms, creams, serums, and Flower Beauty lab samples, organized with military precision. Five minutes ago, the actor/producer/author/entrepreneur shot a short, sweet and spontaneous how-to video with her new mesmerizing Flower eye pigments. Yesterday, she put in a 17-hour day on the set of The Stand-In, a rom-com in which she plays dual roles: Candy, a discontented movie star, and her eager stand-in Paula. The production will wrap just as Santa Clarita Diet returns to Netflix for its third season this spring. But right now, at this moment, Barrymore has only thing on her mind: excavating a 10-gallon Ziploc bag of sheet masks from the top of her linen-turned-beauty closet.
NewBeauty: I’ve never seen so many sheet masks outside of a K-beauty boutique. How did you get so many?
Drew Barrymore: I made them! I discovered JayJun on my first research trip to Hong Kong for Flower Beauty. I had popped into a drugstore in a subway station underneath a weird mall and grabbed their Baby Pure Shining sheet mask. I tried it and was instantly impressed. Two days later in South Korea, I had already arranged a meeting with the company, and we collaborated to launch three masks [JayJun x Drew Barrymore] in Asia.
NB: When you’re in a foreign drugstore, jet-lagged and you don’t speak the language, how do you shop smart?
DB: It’s almost like going into a wine shop. You’ll see a product on the shelf and something about the label speaks to you, or maybe you’re in the mood for that varietal. If you’re in the mood for a sheet mask, that’s what you’ll focus on. I’m not crazy about trying tons of color cosmetics—you can get those anywhere. For me, it’s all about the skin-care formulas—what’s that latest innovation you don’t have access to because it’s all the way on the other side of the world.
NB: Congrats on winning a NewBeauty award for your lip duo! What inspired it?
DB: What made me fall in love with lipstick was this mid-’80s double-ended lipstick pencil from Shiseido. Both ends had the same shade, but one side was a buttery finish and the other was completely matte. If you love a shade, how brilliant to have it in two different formulas! And then later I would look at someone like J.Lo on TV and wonder why her lips could so prismatically capture the light. So I created a two-in-one, my Flower Mix N’ Matte Lip Duo ($10), with one very wearable color on one side and an illuminating lip gloss in the same tone on the other. It won’t change the shade at all, but will pick up the light. Actually, it’s three-in-one: this end, that end, and the two ends together!
NB: Have you always been a beauty obsessive?
DB: I grew up in a makeup trailer, so I knew what makeup was. All of it. But they don’t really do much makeup on kids. They put you in a chair and put a puff on your nose and make you feel a part of it. While we were making Firestarter, they would spray a lot of sticky, wet, viscous glycerin on my face to look like sweat. I was covered in fake blood before anyone ever put lipstick on me! And then in real life, at night, I was going out with a lot of adults who were certainly wearing makeup. There’s nothing like early ’80s rouge! Boy George and Adam Ant were the thing. At 10, I was at dance clubs wearing eye shadow in a straight line out to my temples. I was really into chartreuse and gold, glittery-fine sparkle, like olive-green snakeskin. I’ve always felt that getting ready for a date is the best part of an evening: It doesn’t even matter if the date isn’t great, you get to take a moment and be feminine. Put on some music and dance while you get ready and do your makeup. I was filming all day yesterday in prosthetics and color contacts, looking at all the glues and adhesives, and fake noses and eye bags, and eyebrow additives. I’m into the theatrics, the art, all the crazy stuff you can do to transform your face, age yourself, change your hair, look like a different person. When I would work with Kevyn Aucoin, he was really into that. He loved making women into other women. He made me into Myrna Loy.
NB:What other tricks have you learned on set?
DB: They used to re-powder women all day long, and after 15 hours of hot lights baking it into your skin, the makeup looked so cakey. High-definition stopped people from piling it on, and everyone got inspired by the rice-paper sheets. It became more about blotting and lifting up the oil rather than trying to matte it with more and more powder. Then there was this perfect storm where makeup in general just got a whole lot lighter. Everything became about tinted moisturizer, instead of heavy base makeup. And color correctors! Which was Ben Nye’s approach: he made up all the glamorous women in film in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s, and then created his own line 50 years ago. His kids run it today. I love that legacy. Sometimes I like to think my girls will be involved in Flower Beauty one day. Olive would be a chemist and Frankie would come up with all the marketing.
NB:When did you start taking skin care seriously?
DB: When I was a teen, I washed my face with a bar of clear vitamin E soap. Nothing. Moisturizers always broke me out. They still do on my chin. My chin is like a completely different neighborhood on my face, and you don’t go there after dark. Any product that goes on my chin will screw it up. In my late 30s, I started taking my skin seriously. I like scrubs and all of that stuff, and acids and tingling, but I’m still a firm believer in the most gentle face washes. I always want to have a lot of moisturizer and serum, and that’s why I love the new Flower Beauty skin elixir ($16). The goal was to create a formula that makes your skin look like you’ve just left a workout class: pinky, plumped and dewy—like when you have your own body’s blush on your cheeks. My dear friend stole it from me recently, which is a sign she truly likes it. She called it a wake-up for your face and makeup. I love the freshest, dewiest face. I have a phobia of clogged-looking skin. It goes back to watching women’s skin get baked under hot lights.
NB:You’ve tested thousands of products: what’s the one every woman should buy?
DB: At one point in your life, you will need lip liner. That’s what I’ll tell my girls. You won’t think you’ll ever need it, and then one day you’ll see that lip liner isn’t just for fun. It’s a necessity.
NB: Beyond sheet masks, do you have any go-to skin fixes?
DB: I love the Clear + Brilliant laser. I do it once a year to slough away my sunspots. I also try to get a facial once a year, but I just don’t have the time to go more frequently. I’m obsessed with Augustinus Bader’s rich cream ($265) and Shani Darden’s Retinol Reform ($95)—it has a little tingle when you put it on. Dr. Dan’s CortiBalm ($7) is really good for hydrating dry lips. And my Clinique acne gel ($27). I just spot it on any arriving friend from out of town in the form of a zit and say, ‘Go back to where you came from!’”
NB: Do you have any healthy habits you swear by for feeling good?
DB: Just behaving. Being as nice as I can. Not being a total A-hole. Just being in a good mood at work, not losing my cool when my kids lose their cool. Not sweating the small stuff. I’ve realized that even when the little things aggravate you and seem really big and monumental, or even very public within your own circle and you just wish you could hide your problems, you just can’t lose your cool. Be nice through all of it. That’s always when I feel the best, no matter what. Go put it out in some private corner and then show up and just be good to everyone.
NB: Has becoming a mother changed your ideas about beauty?
DB: I do feel like I’m on an upswing. I just went through a couple of hard years, and I can see it wearing on my face. It’s not about aging, it’s about how I am on the inside. There’s also a very long period when you’re raising kids when it takes it out of you. When it depletes your ability to take care of yourself because your new job is doing nothing but taking care of someone else and you love it. I’m not all about working from the inside out—I’m not big on meditation—but I do think your outside cannot hide your inside. I’m now determined more than ever to show my daughters that aging is a luxury. If we’re lucky, we are all going to age. I just want them to be at peace with who they are and not what they look like. If they are good, cool people, that’s all I care about. That said, I feel like people— myself included—have a 2019 new-battery recharge. I’m one of many who are coming out of a semi-difficult hibernation. Like in the spring. And hope springs eternal!
NB: Do you have any advice for women out there who need to recharge their batteries?
DB: Would it be cheating if I said to face mask?
I’ve started sorting Drew’s older red carpet appearances. I’ve added over 3,300 high quality photos from all of her appearances from 2017 as well as stills from her talk show appearances from 2017. I have sooo many more photos to sort through. Enjoy!
I’ve added HD screencaps of Drew from the last 3 episodes of The World’s Best. Who is your favorite act? Sorry for the delay in updates. I’m in the middle of doing a big move so my time online is limited. Once I am moved and settled I will begin adding a bazillion missing photos to the gallery. Enjoy!
In honor of Drew’s birthday, I’ve added screencaps of Drew from her role in the 1989 film See You in the Morning and the 1992 short-lived series 2000 Malibu Road. The screencaps are not high definition because the projects are from so long ago and not big projects that were re-released on blu-ray. Big thanks to my friend Kayla for her help. Enjoy!
It’s been 15 years since Adam Sandler tried to make an amnesia-stricken Drew Barrymore fall in love with him daily on an idyllic Hawaiian island in 50 First Dates. The film marked the second of the unofficial Barrymore-Sandler trilogy that began with 1998’s The Wedding Singer and concluded, at least for now, with 2014’s Blended. But it’s also an unexpected rom-com, given the very traumatic nature of the ailment suffered by Barrymore’s Lucy after a car crash leaves her waking up every morning with no memories of anything that happened to her after her accident. Sandler’s Henry, a notorious commitment-phobe, finds himself drawn to Lucy and making her fall in love with him from scratch every day.
In honor of the anniversary and as part of EW’s romantic-comedy-themed Untold Stories issue, director Peter Segal revealed some original script details that could have changed the story completely.
50 First Dates… in Seattle?
“Originally, the story was written to take place in Seattle, and when we decided to change it to Hawaii, it took on a whole new personality, and now I can’t imagine movie not having been filmed there because the island and the people became very unique characters and an innate part of the film that was never originally planned. [Seattle] would have completely changed the tone. One of the things I’ve been very proud of is that the soundtrack for the movie won a gold record, and it was very specifically ’80s covers that were done with an island vibe, and obviously we couldn’t have done that in Seattle.”
50 First Dates… in a Cafe?
“The original script, most of it all took place in the cafe, and one of the first things I did when I came on board was, I said, ‘We really have to open up the movie because it feels very claustrophobic. We’ve got to get out of here, right now this is playing like My Dinner with Andre over and over again.’ Once I encouraged Adam to open up the movie and the script to write new scenes in the Kualoa Ranch, then came all the ideas of tying him up and using the penguin as a decoy, and Drew saving Adam with the baseball bat, kicking Rob Schneider’s ass. All those were a result of that, and they became some of the more memorable, hilarious scenes in the movie that were not there originally when it took place all in the cafe. It was fun to open that up.”
50 First… Kisses?
“50 First Kisses was actually the original title of 50 First Dates, but marketing found that the term ‘kisses’ was turning off guys, so they changed it to 50 First Dates.”
An Alternate Ending?
“This ending is very different from the original script version, which had Lucy waking up in bed and immediately looking at a mural on the ceiling that tells the story of her accident and life since. As her eyes pan from left to right, she turns to see Henry lying next to her in bed, and in this version, they didn’t have children. It was a mural that she painted that, unlike the mural in her father’s garage, which they painted over each day so she had a blank canvas to work on, this one Henry left up so that when she woke up in the morning she could see a pictorial timeline of her last day to reintroduce her. So by the time she finished panning with her eyes from left to right, she would come to rest on Henry, and unlike earlier in the movie when she woke up in bed with him and he was a stranger again and she screamed and had a reaction, it was a way of reintroducing her to her life again. And we thought that was fine, but it wasn’t until the idea came up of completing Henry’s journey and seeing him fulfill his dream of studying walruses in their natural habitat, the idea came up, well, what if Lucy, her father, and their child were all there with him, and that just seemed really exciting and very emotional to me. The hardest thing in movies is come up with a strong beginning and a strong end, and if you have that, you’ve got a shot, and I think to this day, it’s the best ending to any movie that I’ve done.”
A Cure for Lucy?
“The studio debated, should Lucy be cured and it be a happy ending? And I’m so glad everyone supported this bittersweet ending because that’s what was so heartbreaking about it, that she has to re-experience this every day. And it’s so amazing what Henry does for her every day. It breaks your heart for both characters, what one has to go through and the other has to endure, and I think that’s part of the charm and heartbreak of it.”