IN CONVERSATION WITH TRIXIE MATTEL
interview by JANA LETONJA
New York Times’ bestselling author, comedienne, CCA nominee, TV fixer-upper and Billboard charting musician Trixie Mattel launched her new line, Solid Pink Disco, from her cosmetics line Trixie Cosmetics on 20th November.
Trixie, how did your career in entertainment world begin?
If we’re talking from the very beginning, it was me forcing my family to sit on a couch and watch me reenact ‘Little Shop of Horrors’, playing all the roles. But if we’re talking about really beginning, I think it was when I got my first job at a gay bar when I was 21. I walked into La Cage in drag on my 21st birthday in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and this drag queen came up and offered me a gig the following Wednesday. That’s where it all started.
Many fans can remember you from competing on the seventh season of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ and later winning the third season of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars’. How did this experience impact your career and your recognition?
Well, it’s a platform right? It’s a double-edged sword because having the whole world look at you can be really good or really bad, depending on what the whole world sees when they look at you. I got really lucky on both my seasons. Even when I dropped the ball, I think I dropped the ball in a humane way. I think people look to me for recognition of the human flop experience.
Your persona is inspired by your love of Barbie dolls. How did your love for Barbie dolls start and also developed throughout the years? How does it inspire you in your endeavors today?
When I was a kid, I loved dolls. I loved My Little Pony and Polly Pocket and Barbie and any super hyper feminine toys like that. I loved them, but I wasn’t allowed to have them. So my experience with them was mostly walking the toy aisle and dreaming of these toys. The look of the hair, the silhouettes, the makeup, all that was burned into my brain since I was really young.
In 2019 you launched your cosmetic line, Trixie Cosmetics. What prompted you to launch your own cosmetic line and how did the whole business begin?
Unlike every other celebrity fronted makeup line, I have clocked five plus years experience in retail cosmetics behind the counter. I’ve worked at Sephora, Ulta and Mac. Watching people shop for makeup 40 hours a week was so educational, but I learned that drag queens and normal people want the same things. We want products that are priced well, are easy, if not fun to use and perform really well. That’s how I got the idea for Trixie Cosmetics, which is basically professional formulas, but in fun packaging. Back in the day, all the good formulas were in plain packaging and then all the fun packaging was cheap product. Our dream was to make the middle, where it’s a quality product and it’s fun packaging.
Just recently, you launched your new line, Solid Pink Disco. Tell us more about it and its products. What inspired this line?
We were thinking of doing a holiday party-like collection that was like a holiday, almost like an office party, but taken to the club. I was starting to tour Solid Pink Disco, my touring pink themed dance party, and I was like “Well, a pink disco is a very holiday vibe”, so then we had the idea to basically set the scene of the holiday collection at Solid Pink Disco. It’s a good way to promote my tour and my makeup company.
Which product is your absolute favorite and a must have from this newest line?
I love the Disco After Dark palette. I know it’s a pink collection, but a silver, black and gray scale smokey eye palette is essential makeup bag stuff.
In your opinion, what is the one beauty product a woman should always have in her bag and why?
Perfume. I think you should always have perfume because the way you smell has such a lasting impression on people. And I always believe in smelling good in drag.
All of Trixie Cosmetics products are cruelty-free, as should be the norm for all cosmetics products out on the market. Why is this aspect of the beauty industry so important, not only in general, but for you personally?
I’m a lifelong vegetarian. So for me, having a personal lifestyle that is about being a vegetarian, it was important to make products with choosing synthetic waxes instead of furthering the imprint on the bee community, or sourcing packaging from recycled materials, or using a biodegradable glitter, clean formulas, etc. There are always options when making makeup and so if somebody doesn’t choose to make these things a priority, they just don’t care.
You also decided on proceeds from all sales being donated to The Bee Conservancy. What made you decide to donate all proceeds from sales, and particularly to The Bee Conservancy?
When I started the makeup company, I was reading a lot about the impact that the beauty industry has on bees and bees are such an essential part of what makes the world go round. The bee conservancy is dedicated to researching and promoting the wellbeing of bees. I’m still on the fence about whether or not I like people, but I can get behind bees.
What can you tell us about your upcoming projects? What are the dreams and goals for your career in the future?
I’m always doing my regular shows, my Netflix show ‘I Like to Watch’ and my Wow Presents Plus show ‘UNHhhh’. And my YouTube channel is about to hit 2 million subscribers, which I’m very excited about. And I’m just DJing all year. I’m excited to do more EDM tracks. I had a really good time putting out an EDM track last year. I always have a million things going on, but honestly, now that I finished my renovation for season two of ‘Trixie Motel’, I’m a homebody. I just want to sit at home and bake brownies.
photography by ALBERT SANCHEZ & LOELLE STUDIOS