If her tranquil tunes, laidback style, and calming aura weren’t enough indication, I can confirm Jhene Aiko is cool as hell. Being true to self is the energy she puts into the world and now more than ever, she’s reaping the benefits and inspiring us along the way. With that being said, I can’t think of a better person to be the global face of Kat Von D Beauty‘s new makeup masterpiece, True Portrait — a 40 shade foundation with buildable (and breathable) coverage.
Although she was already a fan of the brand, everything about True Portrait ($36), from its silky texture to the vegan and cruelty-free formula, aligns perfectly with the singer’s beauty and lifestyle choices. In a household where her four older siblings cared for everything from snakes to rabbits, she’s always had a major thing for pets, particularly cats.
“I currently have three cats, they are all rescues. I’m a cat foster mom. I’m literally obsessed with all things cats,” she told me. So working with a brand that shares a similar passion is an automatic win. As for the foundation itself, Aiko told me the first shade she tried was a perfect match. “I don’t like to feel like I have on makeup. I want to feel like my skin is breathing,” she said. At the same time, she also loves that the formula is buildable, so she can do a light cover on not-so-hectic days or add more when she really needs to conceal an imperfection— none of which I see during our chat. #SkinGoals.
Aiko also prefers to apply the foundation like she would a moisturizer, tapping a bit onto the fingertips and patting onto her face. “It’s a real self-care moment when you put it on,” said Aiko. True Portrait also dries down to a semi-matte finish so you can keep excess shine in check. “I have oily skin, so the liquid-to-powder formula is perfect for my skin. It mixes well with my natural oils,” she added. After that, it’s all about the brows and an occasional cat-eye.
“Everyday I make sure that I have my eyebrows filled in. I started plucking my eyebrows when I was about 11 or 12, so they used to be really thin.”
Though it’s hard for me to imagine Aiko feeling anything but confident in True Portrait or other makeup, she didn’t always appreciate comments about her baby face or generally youthful appearance. “When I was around 18 or 19, I wanted to be sexy and grown. A friend told me, ‘you’ll always be cute. You’ll never be fine or sexy.’ But as I get older if someone tells me ‘you look like you could be 17, I’m like thank you! I’m 31, so far from 17, but I’ll take it,” she shared.
In fact, it wasn’t until recently that she finally felt comfortable in her own skin— and she attributes the mental shift to her daughter Namiko. “My daughter is 10 now, so she really helped speed up me just feeling comfortable with who I am,” she said. “I want her to know that she’s beautiful no matter what. So it made me look at myself differently.”
As with anyone who is perpetually in the spotlight, filtering the good and bad comments can be tricky — but Aiko seems to have mastered a balance. “I try to practice this thing where I don’t take anything to heart too much, whether it be super positive or negative or anything in between,” she said. “I just try to keep it neutral because I don’t like feeding my ego too much. It’s a way to keep myself grounded.”
And when she’s not feeling her best, in true Aiko fashion, she simply takes it all in and goes with the flow. You can purchase Kat Von D Beauty’s True Portrait Foundation ($36) at Sephora now.