The below is a preview of our April cover interview with Drew Barrymore. Read the full profile in our new issue, on sale Thursday.
One of Hollywood’s original girl bosses, Drew Barrymore started her first company, Flower Films, at age 19. More than two decades, countless films and two daughters later, the actress has launched Flower Beauty, a cosmetic brand that has already achieved cult status in the U.S. Ahead of her trip to Australia to promote Flower Beauty, Drew chatted to marie claire about building an empire, female empowerment and how she keeps it real in an increasingly filtered world.
MC: You’ve always been refreshingly down to earth. How do you keep the bullshit level in check?
DB: I started in this business when I was 11 months old, so my bullshit tolerance is pretty high. But I think there are some new challenges, mostly social media, that are a real tool to spread negativity. I also feel like I’ve lived my life pretty openly — I have never tried to portray this perfect existence. I don’t think a perfect life is really relatable to many people. Life is incredible, don’t get me wrong, and I have two amazing daughters who mean everything in the world to me, but life has really had its hard moments. I always say that I march in the army of optimism ….. you have to …. I also don’t ever want my kids to see me being affected by mean people. I want them to see me rise above it and face things with grace and class. Putting positivity out in the world is extremely important to me.
MC: How does that part of your personality extend to the way you want female beauty to be perceived?
DB: A smile is the best make-up, I always say. We started this “Warrior” line at Flower Beauty, because I got excited about make-up being this layer of armour that can help you fight the day. It’s a confidence booster and everyone deserves to feel good about how they look every day, but there’s still nothing better than the look of happiness on someone’s face.
MC: What is the best career advice you’ve ever received?
DB: After E.T, Steven (Spielberg) told me I was going to be getting a lot of offers to endorse things. He said it was OK to say “no”. Basically, don’t sell out just because you can. I remember that so well, and he was right, companies did come knocking and it was tempting. It was just me and my mom and we didn’t have any money, but you have to make decisions that will have the best long-term outcome, which isn’t always easy.
MC: We love the hashtag you launched, #TheWayItLooksToUs, encouraging people to be more honest on social media. How important is it for you to be an authentic voice and face amid all the filtered flawlessness?
DB: I think it’s important to show all aspects of life. There’s a temptation on social media to just show the good stuff, and I get it, there’s a lot of pressure to look a certain way or portray a certain lifestyle. But I just thought, that’s not how my life works and I’m not ashamed of it. The response was so positive, it was awesome!
MC: Which women inspire you?
DB: I’m inspired every day by different women. The mum on the street with the crying kid who keeps her cool, the author Kate Parker who wrote Strong Is The New Pretty, the women I work with at Flower Beauty, the woman who helps me take care of my kids. I love surrounding myself with people who I can look up to and learn from and I hope I can be that for them, too.
MC: What are your hopes and dreams for your daughters Olive and Frankie, and young girls around the world?
DB: There are so many incredible women out there fighting for equality and justice and accountability. I think it’s an amazing time for young girls.
Flower Beauty is available at Chemist Warehouse
Read more in the April issue of marie claire, out now.