June Diane Raphael, Actress


“I am a writer-screenwriter-activist-entrepreneur-hyphenate-haver... but mainly I’m an actor. I’m not someone who’s like, ‘Oh, I don’t wear makeup during the day.’ I’m a total product junkie. I grew up in the ‘80s, and my mom was into makeup. I remember watching her put on her makeup, and seeing this ritual of self-care. It was just so appealing to me and I thought she was so beautiful. Now that I have small children, I remind myself that it was very comforting to see my mom take care of herself. It made me feel safe and that all was well, you know? It’s the whole concept of putting that oxygen mask on first before you take care of anyone else. So that’s really what I subscribe to now.

I’ve had a major skincare revelation in the past year or so. For a long time I thought putting on more moisturizer at night meant I was taking care of my skin. The thicker the better! I finally went to a dermatologist who sat me down and was like, ‘What are you doing?’ I was basically using Pond’s Cold Cream—not that, but essentially that. It was not working for me, and even though it was not working, I thought, ‘I guess I just need more!’ So this woman, Christie Kidd, changed my routine and set me straight. She disrupted some major ideas I had—she was like, ‘Throw everything out tonight. You’re going to wash your face with this cleanser.’ She makes all of her own stuff, and it’s cruelty-free. And the only reason I don't have her facial cleanser here today is because I was committed to traveling without checking a bag.

She got me off of the heavy creams, and then she gave me these little pads with witch hazel in them—down to the basics. It was so shocking to me—and it changed my skin forever! You’re giving it the chance to be itself, essentially. Giving it an opportunity to just breathe. My skin turned around in about a week. So that’s my nighttime routine, very simple. She did say that I can still use hand lotions and undereye cream. I have a Kiehl’s undereye cream that I love, the avocado one. And then I do Clinique's Moisture Surge at night, too. I kind of switch it up. She’s like, ‘Put on your eye cream, and put on your neck cream, and do your hand and body lotions if you need. But let this [face] area live. You’ve got stuff on it all day long.’ Especially with working, the amount of stuff on my face is insane. Under the lights and everything, it’s a lot. So that started a completely new relationship with my skin.

I exfoliate with ExfoliKate. And I love this Fresh polish—I know it’s crazy to travel with two, but I love both of them. Someone told me you should only exfoliate once a week, and I don’t think that’s true. I’ve got skin that can handle it. To take off my makeup, I love this Mario Badescu oil remover—it just lifts it up so quickly. And then I love these MAC wipes. The thing I don’t have here is that French stuff, Bioderma—I buy them in huge buckets, so they don’t travel. I mean, I have a whole ritual—I’ll get my cotton pads ready and squirt up three with that Bioderma stuff, and then squirt up two with the oil. I’ll do my cotton pads, then the Christie Kidd stuff, and then the white towel comes out. I’ve also really gotten into using a hot towel. That’s from working—at the end of the day, they give you a hot towel. It really opens up the pores, and I just feel like my skin can breathe for a second. And do people know about this? The All About Eyes Serum—I love this. Sometimes I’ll put some on my lips, too.

From there, it’s just sunblock—Elta MD. You know there are knockoffs online? I got twisted around with that once. I bought some, and I went to Christie Kidd and got my ass handed to me. I told her, ‘This is the sunblock you told me to use!’ And she was like, ‘No, it’s not. It’s an online knockoff.’ That’s my PSA for the day. I do that on my hands, face, chest, and everywhere I can find. What I noticed in LA was that because of driving, one side of my face was getting a lot of sun damage. This arm, this hand—all of it. I have a crazy friend who drives with driving gloves on, and that’s bananas, but now I get it.

As I’m getting older, I find myself wearing less makeup—but I try not to go out of the house without some mascara and lipstick. It’s not because I worry I’m going to look like a creature of the night, I just like how that [look] feels. My dad used to call makeup war paint. In some ways, that is what it feels like to me, a sense of armor. So, I rely on mascara, concealer, and a lip to set me up for success for the day. Here’s my struggle with lips though—it started on Grace and Frankie, because I started wearing these really bold lips. Like, Make Up For Ever does this really pastel pink that I love, and that I wear on the show. But it’s so drying! I have to do a lip scrub midday, the Sara Happ brown sugar lip scrub. I also worked with a makeup artist once who simply cut off the end of what looked like a piece of coral and handed it to me, and it was the best.

The other problem I have is I have a face that consumes makeup. Like, this will be gone in an hour. I’ve heard it’s good news, because it means [my face is] properly hydrated and it’s got the right amount of oils. But people don’t understand—when I’m establishing a new character and they’re like, ‘We want a really natural look,’ you’re going to have to beat my face to get that. I promise you. It just goes away—[my face] eats it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The worst thing for me is—and it’s happened a couple of times—I’ll go into a meeting or an audition and talk with someone for a long time, and I’ll walk out and see mascara running down my face. Makeup just doesn't stay with me. I really have to set that shit, and for that, I am a big fan of Laura Mercier's setting powder.

My mascara is Benefit They’re Real or the Roller Lash—I like both of them. And I will never be afraid to use Maybelline Great Lash. I’m shocked by the number of big budget movies and TV shows where the makeup artists are just using that on set. For foundation, I like Giorgio Armani‘s Luminous Silk. I don’t use that while working because it leaves you too sheen-y, but I like it, because I like a fair amount of coverage where you can still see some skin underneath.

OK, this Kevyn Aucoin Celestial Skin Highlighter. That stuff I love, and I will sometimes use that instead of foundation. People don’t notice the shimmer on me, they’re just like, ‘You’re really glowing!’ I want you to open your mind to it—it’s so great. Or you can just put a little bit in your foundation. Then I use the Clé de Peau concealer. I actually think I am a little colorblind. I really don’t trust myself to buy foundation or concealer. I just have to have someone tell me. The same with bronzer—I would never bronze myself. That’s terrifying to me. But I’ll do the Charlotte Tilbury blush. Another thing I really love is this Candlelight Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder. I also use the Nars Multiple in Orgasm. And I’ve got to tell you—I got a bunch of Huda stuff, and guess what? I love her eyeshadow. Again, I like a strong pigment, and I appreciate her eyeshadows because they sit.

I use oil on my body. The oil that I’m currently using is the Weleda Body and Beauty Oil. I love that stuff. The last thing that I struggle with is that I would love to use a natural deodorant. It’s so hard, because it’s such a chemical reaction. I did try Piperwai paste—I definitely ordered it after seeing it on Shark Tank. It works, but you can't count on it for stressful situations.

Hair is where my regimen ends. I try not to wash my hair as much as humanly possible. Because I’m a blonde, there’s a lot of upkeep with it. I’ll use the Goldwell purple blonde stuff because it's the best at keeping it a bright, not brassy blonde. Kim Elliott does my color in LA—she has her own private studio in Silverlake, and she is incredible. I have to get my hair colored so often, and she saves my hair from damage. That’s the problem now with these HD cameras, the high-def stuff just picks up contrast in a different way. These [roots] on screen look insane—it looks like someone painted black on. So I have to dye it a lot, and I hate that. I try not to do too much except Olaplex once a week on Sunday nights. There was a point where I was like, ‘Can I do this every night?’ My hair was falling out, it was breaking. I found out the answer is no, but that’s my journey.”

—as told to ITG

June Diane Raphael photographed by Alexandra Genova in New York on February 27, 2019.