In the world of glitz and glamour, Alicia Keys carved her own path four years ago when she decided to shun makeup, something nearly unheard of at the time in the entertainment world. In a new chat, Alicia details that she decided to stop using makeup because it had an addictive pull on her.
"Makeup was a big thing for me; I had been wearing it since I was, like, 16 years old," she told Glamour UK. "And then, as I got into the music world, it was what you did every day to do your television, or to do your shoot. So, I did it because I thought that's what you're supposed to do. And I realized I became addicted to it; I didn't feel comfortable without it."
Back in 2016, the Grammy winner announced that she would no longer use makeup. That same year she went barefaced on her "Here" album cover.
"I swear it [was] the strongest, most empowered, most free, and most honestly beautiful that I have ever felt," she wrote in an essay for Lenny Letter. "I don't want to cover up anymore. Not my face, not my mind, not my soul, not my thoughts, not my dreams, not my struggles, not my emotional growth. Nothing."
While she still attends events sans-makeup, she said beauty products no longer have that grip on her, so she's comfortable wearing them… or not.
"I'm not a slave to makeup. I'm not a slave to not wearing makeup either. I get to choose at [any] given moment. That's my right," she told Allure last year.
In her trio of new Glamour UK covers, she wears makeup for two of them and goes au natural in another.
With the many sides of her in mind, the singer is now launching a lifestyle and beauty brand called Keys Soulcare.
"I've always had a challenging time with my skin and having to figure out how to manage it, and be in the spotlight," she said. "Having to constantly be in this crazy cycle of putting on make-up to cover the bumps and scars and then because I had make-up on under the hot lights, there were more bumps and scars. I felt like I had to hide everything and I felt really self-conscious."
"I struggled so much in my skin and really even being clear about my self-confidence and self-worth," she continued. "So, it's a dream come true, [as] I've always wanted to create something [like this] because I wanted something that would work for me when I was having difficult times; that would make me feel great and that was also good for me."