Skip to main content Skip to header navigation

Beauty chat with Refinery29’s Annie Tomlin

Ever wondered what goes on in a beauty editor’s head? You’re about to find out! Over the next few months, I’ll be chatting all things fashion and beauty with some of the brightest minds in the industry. Up today? Annie Tomlin, Beauty Director of

Annie Tomlin
Interview: Annie Tomlin

Editors speak

Ever wondered what goes on in a beauty editor’s head? You’re about to find out! Over the next few months, I’ll be chatting all things fashion and beauty with some of the brightest minds in the industry. Up today? Annie Tomlin, Beauty Director of

SheKnows: What are some of the summer fashion trends you’re dying to try?

Eyelash curler

“[An eyelash curler] instantly makes you look more awake.”

Annie Tomlin: I really loved all of the stripes that we saw on the runways, especially the vertical ones. I always wear horizontal striped shirts because I want to be a French girl, but I really think that vertical stripes are fresh. I am also a late convert to wedge sneakers, but I don’t care if some people say they’re starting to go on their way out. They’re still comfortable, and I love that.

I’m also trying to get the courage to wear the cutout trend. It can be so alluring. It’s not something that you would wear to the office, obviously, but if you’re going out with your friends at night, I think it’s fun.

SK: What are some of the beauty trends you can’t wait to try this season?

AT: We’ve all really been loving that shocking bright pink that popped up on a few runways. The other thing we’ve noticed is that nail art is still happening, but there’s a return to a more natural nail. Milky-white semi-sheer nail polish is also a runway trend that’s very easy to pull off, and a bit different. We also saw people wearing some darker tones, which you usually don’t think of for the summer, but I like it — it’s a little unexpected!

I think overall, people don’t necessarily follow beauty trends so strictly. I think the biggest beauty trend of all is that people are very in tune with their individuality, however they define it. Part of the reason we launched [our recently debuted project] Beauty Nation was that we see how many different styles of beauty there are, and people are so excited to talk about how they define beauty.

Annie Tomlin's product picks

SK: What are your three beauty essentials?

AT: I love trying out products — it’s a great perk of the job — but in my day to day life, I’m pretty low maintenance. For me, sunscreen is a must 365 days of the year, at least SPF 30. Especially when you know you’re going to be outside, it’s so important to reapply… you have to be vigilant, because even if it’s not a sunny day, your skin still needs protection from UV rays.

Also, I’m in that fun stage where I have fine lines and blemishes — lucky me — and when I’m not swearing at them, I’m swearing by Skinceuticals Blemish + Age Defense. It’s pricey but it is so worth it!

And then the other thing that I go back to again and again is Moroccanoil, and I know everybody loves it, but there’s a reason. I use the Moroccanoil Light, and what I like is that you can use it for a blow dry or [to tame flyaways]. These three products are kind of the ultimate low maintenance beauty trio.

SK: What are some of your bargain beauty and fashion guilty pleasures?

AT: For beauty, I don’t have any guilt buying drugstore pleasures. I swear by CoverGirl’s Lashblast mascara: It’s so affordable, it volumizes, makes my lashes look longer and it’s such a good formula. It doesn’t clump, and it doesn’t flake. That’s my number one drugstore recommendation.

As far as fashion goes, I love following fashion. I personally have moved away from jumping on every trend by looking for the cheap-chic bargains. Instead, over the past year or so, I have really been trying to buy fewer things, but buying well-made, high-quality pieces. That way, I’m choosing what I love and will use for years to come… But, I will say, it’s hard for me to pass up good bright costume jewelry!

Diane Kruger and Janelle Monae

SK: Do you have a celebrity fashion crush?

AT: Definitely! I think I’ve never seen Diane Kruger look anything but stunning, whether she’s on the red carpet or just walking around the city. She’s a woman who really knows her style. She does her own hair and makeup, too. I think she is just so polished and timeless, totally classic.

I also love Janelle Monae. She has an amazing signature style with her black and white palette. She can pull off a suit like no one else, plus she has great hair and is almost always wearing a bright red lip.

SK: What’s one piece of beauty advice you’ve learned on the job that you’ll keep with you forever?

AT: The best one is something that people may have heard, but I don’t think people do very often, and it is to use an eyelash curler. I know that the device itself can look like a tiny instrument of torture but it’s not, and it instantly makes you look more awake… If you’re someone who’s very, very busy and tired, get an eyelash curler. You will be positively amazed by how much more awake you look.

More beauty interviews

Demi Lovato speaks up: Bye-bye bullies, hello beautiful
Kat Graham talks empowerment, beauty and giving back
The Hunger Games‘ Willow Shields dishes on fashion and film

Photo credits: Sarah Balch, Lia Toby/, Ivan Nikolov/

Leave a Comment

Comments are closed.