Rachel Brosnahan knows a thing or two about retro beauty. After all, in ‘The Marvelous Mrs Maisel’ she plays a 1950s housewife turned stand-up comedian, for which she has won a pair of Golden Globes.
On December 6, Midge Maisel, with her red lipstick and perfect coif, is back for Season 3 of the show (on Amazon Prime). Off-screen, Brosnahan, 29, takes a far more modern approach to her off-duty beauty.
My grandmother June was fabulous — glamorous and fashionable. I always aspired to have a piece of that. I definitely borrowed bits and pieces of her in the creation of Midge.
I probably eat a pound of lipstick on the show. We wear so much lipstick that I started exploring more organic, or clean, lipstick. Recently I’ve become obsessed with Ilia lipsticks. They’re clean and so heavily pigmented. Once it’s on, it doesn’t move.
If it’s my day off, though, I rarely wear a lipstick.
I use a tinted moisturiser. I really love the one from Chantecaille. I also like RMS concealers for under my eyes and for any kind of redness. If I need something heavier, I use a Nars Radiant Creamy one. I have trouble colour matching — I’m always in between a few colours — and Nars has the perfect shade match for me. I use my fingers for everything.
I love the Too Cool for School Milk Tint pink liquid blush. It’s a cheek and a lip stain. I also like a filled-in brow — I use the Chanel eyebrow pencil.
Then I throw on some mascara. I like Chanel, the volume one with the really fat wand. I’m always putting on mascara in the car. That’s my kind of brand: make-up you can put on in a car.
No matter how I try to be five minutes early, it’s always happening in the back of an Uber or taxi. But I live in New York. I see women doing it in LA while they’re driving, and I’m terrified. Stop that, Los Angeles!
Sensitive Skin Issues
I have really dry, sensitive skin, and I’m always looking for products that are gentle but can take off the heavy make-up I wear to work every day. We use waterproof eyeliner on set, and then there’s 14 hours of repowdering and piling it on.
I’ve been using Cetaphil for 10 years. My mom introduced it to me when I was in high school. I wouldn’t have become a Cetaphil ambassador if I didn’t actually use it. I use it as a regular cleanser and then again with a cotton round without water.
Recently I’ve been patting Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum on after. Our set make-up artist got that for me, and I’m really into it.
I’m a huge advocate of sunscreen. I use the Cetaphil daily cream with SPF 15. If I need something more, I use the Drunk Elephant Umbra one with SPF 30. It goes on really light, and it doesn’t feel like it’s sitting on top of my face.
I really love masks. The SK-II sheet mask is a go-to for me. Also, love a beauty tool. Lisa Aharon, my make-up artist, introduced me to a face roller called ReFa. It’s the one that looks kind of like a heart, not the penis-shaped one! I love it. At night, I do it with the Vintner’s Daughter serum.
It’s hard to say what state my hair is in right now. I’m naturally blond and naturally incredibly curly. When I was in high school, I either let it run wild or straightened it. Now thankfully I have a lot of help. But I’ve coloured it quite a bit in the last few years, and now it’s dry. So that’s my main focus: getting the moisture back in.
I’ve been using John Masters Organics shampoo and conditioner. And I’m a huge Olaplex fan, especially since I’ve gone blond again. I use the No. 3 twice a week at least. I also use the Christophe Robin Shade Variation mask. It looks purple, and it prevents my hair from going brassy.
It’s funny because people are confused when they see me blond. I was 17 or so when I dyed my hair pretty severely dark. My friends and grandmother were horrified. I’m such an advocate of natural beauty, of embracing who you are at your most natural, but I actually feel more myself with dark hair. I always have. I started my career with dark hair. So when I went blond again, everyone thought I had drunk the LA Kool-Aid.
On the show Mrs Maisel measures her thighs, her waist, all her measurements, and that would give me so much anxiety in real life. I can be a little Type A, but that takes the cake. Honestly, it’s difficult to stick to a routine when working such long hours. But I’ve learnt that your best is enough. That is, let go of thinking you have to stick to routine.
Yoga helps me stretch out. I like SoulCycle. A friend of mine is a SoulCycle instructor, and I go with one of my best girlfriends. But I also try to get a lot of sleep. We live in a culture where we’re encouraged to do all things at all times. It’s impossible and not sustainable.
I’ve seen a huge difference when I prioritise sleep over other forms of health and wellness. So much so that I might choose to sleep more than to wake up and work out.