“I try not to let the paparazzi affect what I do or wear, but sometimes they do. I think, as women, we’re constantly judged on everything we do and say and wear. I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about it, but at the same time there’s moments when I just don’t care. Of course, those are the times they catch me and say ‘Look at LeAnn! She looks so frumpy.’ Well, of course I do. I just rolled out of bed and am basically in my pajamas! I have to have those days, though. It’s just too intense not to.
I grew up in the South, and my dad basically thought I was a boy half the time. I was hunting with him and playing in the dirt when I was 2. But my mom, she’s a real Southern lady. So, when I’d braid my hair and let it be naturally wavy, she’d be like ‘Do you want to do something to your hair?’ I love it because I had the best of both worlds. Now, when I’m on the road and touring, I’m constantly doing my hair and makeup and worrying about what I’m going to wear. That’s a lot of my time—so when I’m home, it’s nice to just chill.
I’ve had really bad psoriasis since I was 2. You’d never know it now, but I’ve been dealing with it a long time. I had to wear a lot of long pants or jeans and two or three pairs of pantyhose in the summertime. It was a nightmare. I started taking a biologic drug. I take a shot every two weeks, and I hate needles, but that’s what I had to do to get my skin clear. I went through every type of treatment known to man. Now, I'm on Humira—it was a shot in the dark, and thank God it worked. I do break out every so often, but I have topical stuff that I put on for that.
When I was younger, I always wanted to hide it and never wanted to talk about it. My doctors told me I’d be surprised at how many celebrities have it and don’t want to talk about it. When they say beauty is way more than skin deep, it’s hard for people who have psoriasis to wrap their minds around that. Some people even think it’s contagious and want to stay away. I’ve had it under control for about 10 years, so it’s been this liberating thing for me to be able to wear shorts and a bikini. People make so much fun of me and my bikinis, but I would walk around naked if I could because I was one big scab at one point!
I have three different kinds of lotion that I apply when I get out of the shower or pool. I have this thing with my skin feeling tight all the time, so I carry lotion with me wherever I go. I love Jergens BB Body Perfecting Skin Cream, and I have this Clarins Extra-Firming Body Cream that I put on my thighs. I’m a white girl—seriously, so white—so I spray tan. James Read has this Tan Accelerator that smells like cinnamon. It’s so good.
My assistant, Kiki, and I love to spray tan so much, so we finally bought a machine and started to spray each other. The machine is like $500, so we save so much money. We do it once or twice a week. It’s like a car wash.
I’m a big face-product person, so I have like seven things I put on my face. I use a line called Ayur-Medic. I usually don’t like a full line of products, but theirs is amazing. I also use a little bit of SkinMedica. I do basic washing and serums and that sort of thing at night, and in the morning, I’ll wipe my face down with toner and put on sunscreen.
It’s difficult living out of a suitcase on tour because I’m constantly dragging my stuff around. Sometimes I’ll just get lotion and face wipes because you don’t always have wash cloths and the sink in the bus is tiny and just not conducive to full-on washing. I’ll do Burt’s Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes and lotion and brush my teeth. Sometimes it gets down to just that.
My hair usually gets washed every three or four days because I have extensions, which I love. The great thing about extensions is that I don’t have to think about doing too much to it. After I wash it, I braid it and let it air dry. I love dry shampoo—the Drybar Detox Dry Shampoo is my favorite thing ever. I actually set off an airplane fire alarm once because of it. It was pretty funny. KMS California Hair Play Sea Salt Spray is good, too, but it takes a lot of that to make my hair do something.
Carnal Flower by Frédéric Malle is my favorite perfume in the world. I’m generally not a scent person, but I bathe myself in this. I buy a lot of fragrances because I love what they smell like in the store, and then I never put them on. This is the first bottle I’ve ever gone through. I’m on my second one.
I keep it pretty clean when I’m on stage. We play a lot of festivals in the summer, so sunscreen and a ton of moisturizer is mostly it. Thank God I have good skin now. I only need just a bit of Laura Mercier's Secret Camouflage Concealer and Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 Sunscreen. I don’t do much anymore. When you’re sweating, it gets pretty nasty.
At home, if I know I’m going to go out of the house, I’ll put on a little bit of tinted moisturizer and maybe mascara and lip gloss. My daily ritual is just sort of just about covering up redness and feeling OK about myself. It’s so simple. I love Troy Surratt’s Moderniste Lip Pencils, and I use his Diaphane Loose Powder. It has a little bit of shimmer to it, but it's really, really subtle—which is great for summer. I’ve been blessed with fairly decent brows, so I’ll fill them in every once in a while with Stila's Stay All Day Waterproof Brow Color and keep ‘em waxed every couple of weeks.
HEALTH & WELLNESS
I’m a big vitamin person. I take like 20 pills in the morning and 20 at night—fish oil, prenatal vitamins, probiotics, biotin...I have an herbalist I work with who has put me on a bunch of different things. I’m very strict about making sure I take them.
At home, we have a gym upstairs. I switch it up between circuit training, Pilates, boxing, and yoga every once in a while. I also jump rope a lot when I’m on the road. That’s one thing that I carry with me because you can do it wherever.
There are moments where I feel insecure, and I have to go out in front of tons and tons of people and put on a happy face and look like I feel beautiful when I feel completely bloated and disgusting. For me, to have to do that is difficult sometimes, especially when I was younger with my skin issues. Working out, taking care of myself, and knowing that I’m doing the best things for myself and putting healthy things into my body makes me feel beautiful—even on the days when I feel like crap. A perk of my job is that I have great people who can do my hair and makeup. So on those really bad days, that can transform my attitude. I’ve finally learned how to pull myself together to feel like I’m presenting the real me to the world, instead of being all made up. Sometimes, when you take it all down, you become even more beautiful.”
—as told to ITG
LeAnn Rimes interviewed by Jane Helpern and photographed by Emily Knecht in Los Angeles on June 24, 2015.
Kim Kardashian talks openly about her psoriasis in The Face. Dita Von Teese takes pride in doing her own makeup, and Jennifer Fisher manages her own social media in The Top Shelf.