BEAUTY TALK: ALISON RICE
She’s the Group Publisher of our favourite dot com destinations: POPSUGAR Australia, Who What Wear Australia, Byrdie Australia and MyDomaine Australia. Alison Rice basically runs a very large percentage of the country’s consumable internet content and you didn’t even know it.
If she’s not already on your radar, we’d love to put her there because you deserve to know Rice, an industry heavyweight who’s garnered herself a bit of a reputation for being a total feminist, helping women succeed and supporting them until they do.
Our obsession extends behind her enterprising, industrious, and caring spirit into her enviably chic wardrobe filled with a mix of high street and investment designer pieces and her personal beauty cupboard showcased frequently on her insta-stories (follow her @AlisonLarsenRice) – Rice is an ex-beauty editor so she knows her stuff.
A few weeks ago this girl boss graciously invited Gritty Pretty into her Bondi abode for this EXCLUSIVE “Beauty Talk” where she shares her views on “dream jobs”, the beauty industry, being a mentor and keeping up with the internet.
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GRITTY PRETTY: Your job title is impressively long. Can you tell us what your role involves?
ALISON RICE: I know! I get a bit anxious looking at it. I lead two teams and with their help, set the editorial, product and commercial content strategy for POPSUGAR Austraila, Who What Wear Australia, Byrdie Australia and MyDomaine Australia.
GP: What circumstances led to you landing such a coveted role? Is it something you always thought you would do?
AR: I put it down to hard work, natural curiosity and being easy to work with. I knew coming into Allure Media five years ago that there would be opportunity as with any digital start up, but I didn’t chase it. You have to be patient and just get on with your job.
My journey into leadership started when I was covering my publisher’s maternity leave on POPSUGAR. During this time I worked on the Who What Wear, Byrdie and MyDomaine deal, so that was always going to be what I did after the cover role. When my publisher decided to focus on her new family, I moved into the group publisher role. That was a really proud moment for me.
I always used to say I didn’t know what my CEO saw in me when he put me in the publisher role, but now that I’m a manager I certainly do! High performers generally have a few things in common: exceptional behaviour, trustworthy, high learning agility, self-awareness and a proactive nature. We see opportunity, not extra work – and we always deliver.
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AR: Justine is the queen of skincare. She’s taught me a lot about ingredients and treatments; small things like how Fraxel is a brand name and not a form of laser! And Lisa is my healing guru – she has a really holistic approach to beauty. The Who What Wear team and I are always charging our crystals and using Venustus products.
GP: When do you switch off and what’s your PM beauty routine like?
AR: I usually get into bed at about 9:30pm. I spend an hour catching up on socials and then give my eyes a break with a book before going to sleep.
As for skincare, let it be known I’m an obsessive! I am a few years into my pursuit of perfect skin – which at one point included monthly Omnilux and DMK enzyme peels, and now looks like eight-weekly facial massage and extractions at Jocelyn Petroni, and bespoke laser facials and peels at Melanie Grant. Highly recommend laser if you suffer from pigmentation. Honestly, I look like a different person!
I am currently transitioning (key word!) to new skincare so I will be sure to report back. Without fail every night I pre-cleanse, then apply either a serum or an active, then moisturiser and eye cream. I use Lanolips on my eyelids because they can get dry.
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GP: Anyone that knows you or watches your Snapchat knows you do an 11-out-of-10 red lip. Pray tell, what is your secret?
AR: Step one is don’t bother if you have dry or cracked lips. I only wear red when my lips are in good condition, so that’s the first secret. I also have Lanolips on while I do the rest of my face, and blot it off before applying lip liner. That’s a crucial step – it really does make a difference to minimise bleeding.
I wore Burberry Kisses in Military Red on my wedding day and have been pretty loyal to it ever since. Mostly because wearing it makes me feel powerful and loved. Plus, I think blondes tend to suit a blue-red. For this reason I also love M.A.C Russian Red.
GP: What are five of your most frequently used beauty products?
1. IT Cosmetics CC Cream – It’s all I care about right now. I tell anyone who will listen to buy it. It provides the perfect amount of coverage, dewiness and has staying power.
2. Kevyn Aucoin Brow Pencil – the BEST brow pencil you will ever use.
3 R+CO Dry Shampoo Paste – I am currently trialling this for POPSUGAR Australia Health & Beauty Awards. It sounds backwards but is magic on thin, straight hair.
4. Makeup Forever Ultra HD Concealer
5. YSL Baby Doll Mascara – I like clumpy lashes.
GP: Who are you beauty muses?
1. Lara Worthington; I generally copy whatever she does to her hair. This has been true for the last six years except for the pixie cut. I did heavily consider it though.
2. Lisa Patulny, our beauty editor on Byrdie. She has that great sun-kissed, natural blonde hair – always with a perfect bend.
3. Dree Hemingway; she has the I-didn’t-try-look I’m always chasing.
GP: What’s your life mantra?
AR: Just see what happens (thank you mum); be kind and show up fully. I work really hard at living on purpose and being present in every conversation I’m in.
GP: What’s your idea of fun?
AR: Being around my husband, Tony! He makes me cry-laugh. I also find time alone pretty fun. I know, wild! But my job is so fast-paced and requires me to talk a lot so I need that time alone to recharge. Tony knows when it’s quiet time and promptly leaves the house.
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