Ariana Grande Enters the Wellness Game With R.E.M Beauty Chapter Two

When faced with the scenario of being stranded on a remote desert island, you’d probably whittle your beauty routine down to the absolute must-haves. What products can you not survive without? I pose the question to Ariana Grande, an unlikely candidate for an indefinite stay in the wilderness, via Zoom, even though she could have an emergency helicopter chock-full of her favorite products delivered in a pinch. But on the off chance one of the world’s biggest superstars is (god forbid) down and out, she wouldn’t choose an eyeliner for winged cat-eyes or voluminous hairspray for her ponytail—she can do without those. After pondering for a few seconds, she gives me her answer: “A lash serum,” she says matter-of-factly. “So that if I’m in the desert for a long time, I can produce a long lash while I’m there, and that can be what I did with my time.”

Grande isn’t bringing just any lash serum, though. Her can’t-live-without item is plucked directly from chapter two of her R.E.M Beauty line, titled “Goodnight ‘n Go,” after the song of the same name from her 2018 album Sweetener. In November 2021, Grande watched her dreams unfold right before her eyes. “I feel so thankful. [R.E.M Beauty] is a lovely celebration of a lot of amazing people’s hard work. I feel really relieved and excited for what’s to come and thankful for the response so far. It makes me so happy,” she gushes.

R.E.M Beauty—the brand Grande named after her favorite song of hers—was inspired by REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, the deep stage of sleep where your eyes move rapidly and vivid dreams occur. “I decided to name it ‘R.E.M’ because I feel like that song really encompasses a lot of my favorite parts of my sound sonically,” Grande said at the time of its launch. “And also, REM rapid eye movement—focusing on dreams and focusing on the eyes and the eyes being our best way to articulate, better than you can with words sometimes.” Chapter one covered all bases: an everyday eyeshadow palette, lipstick and glosses, highlighters, mascara, and of course, lashes. But a flawless makeup look begins with a good prep routine, which is why chapter two tells the story of “wellness and makeup being holding hands,” Grande says.

“What also makes chapter two so exciting is that we’re expanding our color story a little bit with our eyeshadow palettes, where we have more bold, fun, like ‘60s mod colors to play with,” she says. Keeping in line with the futuristic dreamscape theme, chapter two—which launches on on March 21—opens with three new five-pan metallic eyeshadow palettes—Groovy Baby, Smitten Kitten, and Gogo Boots—and metallic gel shadow pots named after love languages: Affirmation, Quality Time, Communication, Touch, and Gifts. The collection also includes a clear eye gloss that serves as a topper for the metallic shadows or can be worn alone, plus two new Dream Lashes styles and a two-in-one cheek and lip stick—Grande’s other desert island product (“Isn’t it funny? I’m on an island and I’m thinking about blush?”).

But the true stars of Goodnight ‘n Go introduce a new category for R.E.M Beauty and one of her favorite drops so far: skin prep. “I suppose ‘Goodnight n Go [introduces] a relaxation element, as a lot of these ingredients and some of these products are very calming and soothing, and are made with restful ingredients,” she explains. “I think it is something that we forget sometimes, but skin prep is the most important step.” In fact, the greatest beauty tip she ever received was to protect and properly prep her skin before makeup application, which is the message behind the addition of the Cooling Blurring Undereye Balm, Calming Face Mist, and the Lash & Brow Boosting Serum. Here, Grande breaks chapter two down for us.

Cooling Blurring Undereye Balm:

“We’re all on-the-go and working, so sometimes you don’t get a full night’s sleep, or you might have naturally dark eyes like me, or if you have an early call time, the Cooling Balm helps to prep the skin for makeup and give you that energizing little fluff. It’s one of my favorites. It is so cooling and fluffy and refreshing. It can even be used as a primer.”

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Calming Face Mist:

“I use the mist either before or after makeup as a setting spray, and throughout the day to refresh my face and give a little spritz. Our face mist has some lavender in there, and it just feels so calming and soothing and cozy. I know this sounds kind of crazy, but l use it as a pillow mist because it has lavender essential oil in it—that’s always been super calming for me. I always keep a little lavender in my purse. So I’m a big fan of the mist.”

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Lash Serum:

“The texture is so cool and light. Right now, we are focused on the skin prep side of things. I think knowing how important it is to prep skin and take care of eyes before application really helps with how good our makeup is.”

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Marrying wellness and beauty together was birthed from Grande’s own personal wellness journey, which she credits to therapy. Clasping her hands together as if she’s about to lead a prayer, she leans into the camera. “I thank God every day for my therapist and for meditation,” she says. “Therapy is probably the most important commitment or thing you can build time and space for. I know that it’s like cliché, but I feel so thankful that I have the access to therapy and that I built space for it in my life. I love it. It’s been a big part of my life for a long time.” Therapy, meditation, and a lot of bath soaks to be specific. “We love a bath, we love a soak, you know what I mean?” she jokes. Though bath soaks aren’t in R.E.M Beauty’s future anytime soon, Grande is open to expanding her skin prep selections further down the line. She remains tight-lipped about how soon we can expect new skin treatments, just as mum as she is on expanding into complexion products, which she previously teased in a recent video with drag queen Gottmik earlier this month. “I just used a bunch of products that I can’t show yet, so I want [people] to know that there’s much to look forward to,” she coos, admitting that some are currently in the nascent testing stages.

“It is coming in one of our upcoming drops. I really love our complexion products—I have been using them for a long time. I use them on The Voice every day, I use them in my campaign shoots, I use them for work all the time. They are coming, they are coming, they are coming,” she says, rubbing her hands mischievously. “Not yet, but they are coming.”

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