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Reminiscing With…Tarte’s Maureen Kelly


Cover GirlBeauty 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: Maureen Kelly, founder of Tarte cosmetics

The Product: “My mother was never overdone—just natural and fresh. Her beauty philosophy, with five kids, was to add a touch of anything that would bring a healthy glow to her skin, and it had to be quick. I was probably 12 or 13 when she let me use this cream blush compact from CoverGirl. It contained two shades and was meant for lips and cheeks. Before I was allowed to use it, I remember being caught applying it to my Holly Hobbie doll’s cheeks—I wanted hers to glow, too! It had this slightly sticky consistency to it, and I would rub the brighter color all over my cheeks and the lighter shade on my lips. I know I went a bit overboard, but it made me feel glamorous and grown-up. At the time, I had a girl crush on Sloane from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, so I added tons of blush in a stripe that went straight up from my cheekbones to my hairline, in the hopes I’d look more mature. My mother quickly pointed out that less was more, a philosophy I truly believe has helped shape Tarte. This dual-sided compact actually helped inspire the first product I launched Tarte with—our cheek stain. I loved the idea of multitasking makeup. Little did I know my obsession with a healthy flush would launch my cosmetics career, but at least I’ve finally mastered how to wear blush without that eighties stripe.”

Beauty Insider