Sydney Sweeney 2022 Beauty Interview
welcome to on beauty, a series where we take an in-depth look at a person’s relationship to beauty, how that relationship has transformed over the years, and how they feel seen. This week we talk to the actress Syndney Sweeney, The snow first celebrity ambassador. Below, Sweeney talks about her battle with acne, her relationship with social media, and more.
I didn’t have social media growing up, it wasn’t part of my generation yet, so I mostly looked up to my cousins. They were about five years older than me and I found them so beautiful. I couldn’t wait to be a teenager like them and wear makeup and low rise jeans. I can’t believe I ever wanted to wear low rise jeans. But since I was 16, 17, my greatest beauty role model has been Brigitte Bardot. She just had this beautiful yet simple elegance to her. As a child, I always had this basic idea of what beauty was; the girls I saw in magazines or on TV were what I found beautiful.
[Social media] can be such a beautiful thing [because] I can connect with my fans and people I might never know otherwise. But it’s also a very interesting dynamic because they know the character; they know the persona online that isn’t really you. I always want to make sure that the person people see online is still part of who I am; I don’t want to disassociate myself. We can’t really control how people react to the image we put out and there’s not much you can do about it but I try to put as much Syd as possible in everything I do.
College was definitely a time of learning who I was and who I wanted to be. It was one of my first years in Los Angeles. I’m from a small town, so when I came to LA, [I noticed that] people’s values were different. People valued more materialistic things and that made me realize what I didn’t want to be. After arriving in Los Angeles, I had this learning period where I began to see beauty as more kindness to others and compassion and caring. [you have] for you; [it’s] self-confidence. I think the most beautiful thing is when [people] have the freedom to truly be who they are. I learned that over a few years of meeting new people, being in different environments, and having different experiences.
I started having acne when I was very young, so my relationship with beauty was quite adversarial growing up. My skin and my body were changing so much and there were so many hormonal imbalances. It was an ongoing battle to find the right products that worked for me. Because I’ve struggled with acne for so long, I always wanted to make sure that if I partnered with a beauty brand, it was with a brand whose products I actually used. For a few weeks I changed my whole skincare routine to Laneige and it transformed my skin. I wear a lot of make-up for work, so I constantly remove and apply make-up; my skin is in a lot of pain. And so the routine was a game-changer for me. To be able to share this journey and share what has worked for me is something really important. I used [Laneige’s] milk oil cleanser and Lip sleep mask since I was 19.
I really don’t think I started exploring beauty before Euphoria. So many of these tools [in that viral skincare routine scene from the show] are actually my tools. The ice roller is something I use almost every morning. When we were shooting that scene, the crew was like, What is that? [Then afterwards] a bunch of ADs and PAs ordered them all from Amazon. [Euphoria] taught me that there are no rules when it comes to beauty, makeup, hair or anything else, that I could take every red carpet and every photo shoot as an opportunity to me to explore different facets of myself and my relationship to beauty.