Today’s interview is with the beautiful Rei – all around superwoman and creator of Front Row Beauty. I was excited to interview Rei because I admire her taste in not only makeup and beauty, but also fashion – she always looks impeccable, from head to toe! Rei is down to earth, super charming, and manages not only her beauty site but also a full time job in consulting. Enjoy meeting the fabulous Rei!
Who are you? What do you do, and where do you live?
My name is Rei, and I grew up in Sydney, Australia. I work as an IT consultant for a large financial company. I am a funny and laid back girl with a relaxed approach to life. I can come across quite shy and introverted, but once you know me I tend to expose the chatty and quirky side of me. I am also a dog lover – I only have one dog for now and I wish to adopt more in the future.
I just turned 30 this year, and I am proud of it! I am at this age where I have gained a stronger sense of myself, being more confident and I have a clear vision of where my life is heading to. I am currently expecting a baby which is the best thing to ever happen in my life – it’s a life changing experience that makes me feel more accountable but complete.
Can you share more about your interest in beauty and makeup, and how you got started with your site?
I was deeply influenced by my mum . She was very precise and attentive to quality and details for everything. I used to ‘steal’ her makeup when I was young, and when I turned 16 she took me the department store and bought me an entire set of Dior makeup and Lancome skincare. I was completely hooked into anything related to beauty ever since then!
So naturally I dreamt of starting my own blog to share my thoughts, but I never had the courage to do so as I didn’t think anyone would be interested in what I had to say. It was my husband who encouraged me (partly because he was bored of me showing “my ever-growing collection” only to him!).
Can you share some of your favorite beauty products – that you would buy again and again?
I can’t live without the very basic makeup items such as my Shu Uemura eyelash curler and mascara, Kate eyeliner, Cle De Peau concealer, Fresh Sugar lip balm and Chantecaille Future Skin foundation. Brands wise, I am a loyal fan of Chanel and Suqqu and I tend to collect new pieces from all their new collections.
I know that your blog focuses largely on higher end beauty products. Could you share some of your favorite drugstore/cheaper finds?
There are so many great drugstore products I love! I have been using the Neutrogena’s eye makeup remover for years. Klorane’s dry shampoo is another staple for me. The French drugstore brand NUXE has a fantastic range of skincare. Also if you happen to be in Switzerland, don’t forget to grab a few bottles of sunscreen from their local brands. There is a reason most Swiss women have beautiful porcelain skin!
For makeup, Bourjois foundations rival high end brands, and Maybelline does the best mascaras! Last but not least, the Korean and Japanese drugstore brands make the best and most affordable masks and eyeliners.
What about skincare – can you share some favorite products? What have you used over and over again?
What’s a piece of skincare/makeup advice that you adhere to?
I never over cleanse my skin and would never use anything harsh that strips the natural moisture off my skin. If time allows I also use a mask almost every day! For makeup, I like to keep my complexion looking as natural as possible and mainly stick to neutral earthy tones to enhance my features and make them appear more symmetrical.
Can you share a little bit about your style? What are some favorite pieces in your wardrobe?
My style has alway been ‘less is more’. I opt for clothes that have a minimalist design, with a modern vibe to them. Just like my makeup collection, my wardrobe mainly consists of hues of black, white, and grey, but recently I have been adding pieces with vibrant prints and bold colors in classic cuts.
I like to invest in accessories – handbags, shoes and jewellery, as they help to complete an outfit. My favourite pieces are everything I have collected from Hermes so far. I just got into Hermes last year, and I was a very lucky girl who was able to get both Birkin and Kelly in one year from the shop! I would love to collect a rainbow of them one day, but at the moment I am looking into buying a new house (and the housing prices in Sydney are notoriously expensive) so I have to put my quest for Birkin on hold until I find the dream house!
You are pregnant (and a gorgeous mama to be!) How has your style changed as you’ve been getting further along in your pregnancy? What are your favorite items to wear currently?
Well, after a period of trial and error, I have come to an conclusion that the normal maternity wear is just not for me. These days I am either in a shift and flowy dress or anything that has a draped and deconstructed silhouette. My favourite items to wear are my Helmut Lang blazers paired with a boyfriend tee and a legging. Or a rainbow of shift dresses which I cannot stop buying since I became pregnant! [
What’s a piece of advice about style that you could share?
Know your style, know your lifestyle and know your body shape, and always shop on the basis of that. As you age, the focus should be more shifted towards the quality and cut of the clothes. Styling is about creating this head to toe image that is a reflection of yourself, so don’t put yourself in anything you don’t feel comfortable in. And don’t buy things just because they are discounted – make sure you absolutely love them!
What are some of your other passions and hobbies?
I am a big foodie and love travelling. My husband and I have a mission to visit every 3 Michelin star restaurant in the world, so we always plan our trips based on our bookings with the restaurant. Discovering cheap and authentic Asian food is also a big part of our weekly routine.
Finally – please share something surprising about yourself!
I just recently took my braces off after two years, and none of my readers knew I had them!
Rei is so stunning! I was so happy to have the opportunity to do this interview – as a long time reader of Rei’s site I’d always wanted to see more of her fashion side, so I loved learning more about her very chic style. Also I have to mention that when Rei and I initially did this interview, she was a few months away from giving birth – she’s now just a few short weeks. Such an exciting time. Thank you very much to the beautiful Rei and best wishes to the momma to be! For more of Rei, please visit Front Row Beauty.