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April 20 2014

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Beauty Nostalgia: Reminiscing With…Poppy King

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Beauty Nostalgia is a weekly column on Beauty Counter in which we ask influencers, tastemakers, and some of our favorite industry experts to wax poetic on the sticks, salves, and sprays that helped shape who they are today.

The Pro: Poppy King, founder of Lipstick Queen

The Product: “Lipstick has been the basis of my career, and I was 7 years old the first time I tried it on. My mother had just come back from Biba in London, where she bought back this oxblood-red lipstick. I remember sneaking into her room in our house in Melbourne to take the lipstick from her enormous art nouveau vanity table. It was quite dark because I didn’t want to put the lights on. I wound up the lipstick and put it on my lips. I remember the smell was waxy in that sort of seventies-lipstick way, and the color was very opaque, almost stiff. I suddenly felt like a superhero. My father had just passed away around this time, and I think I needed something to make me feel strong. My mom raised my bother and I and she worked so hard for everything we had. She was a clothing designer and had a very downtown idea of glamour—she wore this lipstick with a simple smoky eye and very pale skin. This moment changed the course of my life; it was the first time I got a sense of my own potential. Years later, when I launched my first brand, Poppy, I created a lipstick called Lust that was inspired by my mother’s Biba lipstick. She’s in her seventies now, but she was such an influence on me, and she taught me that sometimes you just need these little things—like lipstick—to make you feel strong.”

Photo: Courtesy of Poppy King

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