'I've been with Reformation six years now—since it was a really tiny company. In the beginning, we would go off of pretty practical inspirations, like, ‘I’m going to a party with Mexican food so I want to eat a lot but I still want to look good. What can I wear?’ Most of our design comes from thinking about a woman's life and how she's going to wear her clothing. We need something for girls with big boobs, small boobs, short girls, girls comfortable with showing off their bodies, and girls who aren’t. The whole idea behind it is sort of an effortless, cool way to be sexy—a girl’s rather than a guy’s version of sexy.
I also sing and play rhythm guitar for an all-girl band called Bad Girlfriend. That’s usually the reason I’m going out, to play a venue. If we don’t have a gig, I won’t stay out past 1AM. Unless it’s for karaoke— Sing Sing in the East Village has the best book of songs. I also love going to see bands play, so I do that a lot, too. I love dancing and I love DJing…I’ll go anywhere if the music's good. If it's activity-themed, I do it. It's hard sometimes, because I don't drink. There was a stretch of time where all my friends wanted to go to bars and I was trying to get them to go to coffee instead, which didn’t really work. I got to a point in my life where I realized, 'I’m a lady, and I don't want to always have to go to a dive bar.' Now I won’t turn down a place that sounds cool just because they serve alcohol—my credo is more if it's beautiful, I'll go. I'll go to Lucien a lot, this really beautiful restaurant on 1st. It’s French, so they'll let you stay really late and just keep bringing you chocolate and coffee and tea. There’s Champagne there too, but it’s fine.
My going-out routine all depends on how much time I have. If I'm busy, I can't think about it. Recently I was talking to someone and I mentioned that it felt like I had given up...I just kept wearing silk pajamas with a huge vintage fur. It wasn’t some fashion statement—I wore them because they were pajamas. I never really dress practically. But if I have time, I find it really relaxing to drink some tea, pick out clothes, and put on makeup. I’m from Dallas, so I think it might be a Texas thing—all that prep-and-makeup time Texas women spend. In Bad Girlfriend, we always do a theme onstage, so if I’m getting dressed to play, it’s all about the theme—sometimes it’s men's work jumpsuits or striped t-shirts and leather pants. I wear almost all vintage and Reformation. We're a sustainable company, and I try not to shop anywhere that's not also sustainably done. Vintage makes that easy because it's recycled, so I do that more than anything else.
When I'm dressing, the music I listen to before is important, too. Sometimes it'll be classical, sometimes it'll be Ethiopian music from the ‘60s, which is so beautiful, and then sometimes there'll be weird dance music. What I listen to always has to do with what I'm looking for inspiration-wise, so it’s always changing. And I get most of my beauty ideas from film. I love looking at pictures of Françoise Hardy because she always had the best eyeliner. All those French women in the ‘60s didn't have that much on their face. They would just have a good eyeliner and keep the rest really natural, like Jane Birkin and Brigitte Bardot in If Don Juan Were A Woman. And I love the makeup in J.Crew catalogues—they look like elven creatures with all that blush.
SKINCARE & MAKEUP
My skin’s dry and sensitive, which used to be really problematic until I went to this health food store around the corner— High Vibe, where everything’s vegan and organic—and this woman was told me, ‘Oh, just don't put anything you can't eat on your face.’ She just gave me all of these natural products and now it’s all I use. There's a charcoal cleanser, Simply Divine Botanicals’ Black Velvet, and it’s solved most of my skin problems. I always put on their Skincredible Sandalwood Revitalizing Elixir before I leave the house because it really balances me out and it smells so good.
I’ve been doing the same steps for years when it comes to makeup—it’s very streamlined. If my skin isn’t broken out at all, I just stick to concealer under my eyes and not foundation. I just got the Josie Maran Argan Creamy Concealer Crayon and I’ve been using it a lot. And I love liner. The best I've ever used is Eyeko—it handles like a pen but it has this superfine brush so you can get a really perfect tip. It's so easy, it's incredible. Then use some white eyeshadow—any kind works. I do a little tiny brushstroke to the inside of my eye and smooth it out. Then L’Oréal Double Extend Mascara, because I like my lashes to be thick and sort of ‘60s-ish. And always, always a lip stain. My favorite is this NYC 16-Hour Lip StainI got from Duane Reade—a nice orangey red. It never runs and goes on like a marker. I have to wear stains because lipstick just seems to get everywhere on me, though sometimes I use a nice Chanel red. But the NYC stuff stays better. And then a little Smith’s Rosebud Salve on top.
My hair doesn’t change much. I've always had long red hair, although the bangs come and go. Normally, I just blow dry it and then I'll curl the ends, and every so often I use Wella Copper Gold vegetable dye to heighten my natural color. I get it at Ricky’s but I think they also carry it at Whole Foods. It’s all-natural and non-permanent, so it mostly just kicks up the vibrancy.
AT THE END OF THE NIGHT
I’m really bad about taking off my makeup when I get home. I always get my skin makeup off, but I just rub at my eyeliner because I don’t always feel like cleansing. If I do wash my face, I’ll use that charcoal cleanser, but not thoroughly . So I feel bad for whoever wakes up next to me because I’ll wakeup with smudge and weird rocks under my eyes.”
—as told to ITG
Brianna Lance photographed by Tom Newton. Read more Top Shelf After Dark here.