Beauty may be in her DNA, but Danielle Lauder’s theater training inspired her capsule makeup collection, Estée Lauder ACT IV.
Written By JANNA JOHNSON O’TOOLE
VIOLET GREY profiles female beauty entrepreneurs who are considered industry game changers because of their individual approach to business. Each one entered the conversation in her own manner and maintained a steady, if not unparalleled, trajectory with her indomitable spirit.
While she has aspirations for the silver screen, Danielle Lauder’s stage experience paved the way for her latest project: a limited edition capsule collection for beauty giant Estée Lauder. “When I was studying film and theater at Northwestern University, I didn’t have professional lights, equipment, or makeup artists. I combined my film knowledge, including [comprehension] of three-point lighting, to try and master the art of makeup for different settings,” she says. “From this, I was inspired to create a makeup collection around the concept of looking beautiful in any light, while illustrating my love of Hollywood glamour.”
The result is ACT IV (a nod to cinema and being a fourth generation Lauder), a curated collection of seven products for the face, eyes and lips—with a few notable omissions. “The collection purposely doesn’t include foundation and concealer—it is about the extra embellishments you can add to your routine to enhance your skin and add a touch of radiance,” she says.
Lauder’s personal must-haves include the Lip Duet Tint & Balm. “Its unique dual-ended packaging makes it portable, functional and multi-purpose,” she explains. “You can use the balm and the tint together, or use them separately by swapping in either shade of the Luxe Lip Creme to customize it to your liking.” And she preps skin with the Cinemattic Complexion Liquid. “I use it as a primer before I put on my foundation as it gives a really beautiful blurring effect.”
Here, the Los Angeles-based actress shares her extensive skin care routine, her favorite homemade beauty hack, and the lessons passed down from her great-grandmother Estée Lauder (who, fun fact: also had Hollywood aspirations).
First thing you do when you wake up?
Crack my neck.
Seven to eight.
Thirty minutes on skin care, another 30-40 minutes if I’m creating a full makeup look.
Typical skincare regimen?
I wash my face when I wake up and apply a toner or clarifying lotion (such as the Estée Lauder Micro Essence Skin Activating Treatment Lotion or the Clinique Clarifying Lotion 3). Then, I use the Act IV Lip Duet Balm to moisturize my lips and pair a rose quartz face roller, and massage my face for about 10-15 minutes. For my eyes, I use the Origins No Puffery Cooling Roll-On and dab a bit of Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair all over my face and neck. Depending on how my skin is behaving in the morning, I might do a mask before I put my makeup on.
Hair situation in the a.m.?
It's usually quite messy and can get oily. I don't like to wash my hair every day so I use dry shampoo on my scalp and usually put my hair up.
Your signature beauty look?
For daytime, I like to keep it pretty simple. I color in my brows, put on the Act IV Cinemattic Complexion Liquid, a little foundation and my favorite Act IV lipstick and head out.
I love LA because you can get physical activity almost anywhere. I have a trainer twice a week; I do boxing, rowing, or the gym on the other days. Mostly, I love hiking the Will Rogers State Park or up to Point Dume and seeing the sunset.
Go-to breakfast and a.m. beverage?
Scrambled eggs and lots of water.
Foolproof self-care move?
A homemade mask of aspirin and honey.
F*cking Fabulous by Tom Ford or Origins Ginger Essence.
An expensive-but-worth-it product or treatment?
A microcurrent machine.
See my self-care move, above. A homemade mask with either aspirin and honey or egg whites works wonders.
Bedside beauty essentials?
Aquaphor, makeup remover wipes, eye jelly and under eye cream.
Last thing you do before bed?
Crack my neck!
Of course I admire [my great grandmother] Estée Lauder and my grandmother Evelyn’s dedication to making every woman feel beautiful.
Best advice you’ve ever received?
Self-care, skin care, and sunscreen. My grandmother always stressed the importance of self-care and skin care and would lather me with sunscreen all over my body and make me chug a bottle of water before I left the house.
Highest point creating Act IV?
When I finally held the first pieces of the collection and saw how my vision and all of my Pinterest and mood boards were brought to life. I can’t even describe how exciting that was!
Lowest point creating Act IV?
Honestly, the waiting. We’ve been working on this collection for almost two years, which has felt like forever. But I’m so happy it’s finally here.