The Olsen Twins Spill Their Best Beauty Secrets

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are my beauty icons. I'm not just saying that because they're acclaimed fashion designers and Met Gala royalty—although it never hurts to have Ms. Wintour's approval on your side.

So what is it that sets their beauty style apart? Well, it's how they manage to make their beachy hair look effortlessly chic on the city streets of Manhattan, which is no easy feat, especially in the muggy summer months. It's how their skin has a natural glow, and seems to require little makeup. It's that cool-girl approach they take with their beauty aesthetic, fully speaking to my inner lazy girl.

Sometimes I channel Ashley—slightly more pulled together and a bit more girly. Other times I like to embody Mary-Kate with an edgier look. To honor my beauty role models, I did a little online stalking, on a quest to discover their best beauty secrets. Keep scrolling for Mary Kate and Ashley's best tricks and tips.

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The Olsen twins at the Met Gala in 2016.

Try a Waterproof Lip Liner

Make Up For Ever Aqua Lip Waterproof Lipliner Pencil $20

The Olsen twins are famously known for their perfectly puckered pouts on the red carpet. When we asked them about their lipstick preferences, we were surprised to learn they prefer a different lip product altogether. “It’s not a lipstick—it’s a waterproof lip liner!” Ashley told Byrdie. They cited the Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Lip Waterproof Lipliner Pencil ($20) in 03C-Medium Natural Beige as their current favorite. “Our makeup artist [Erik Soto] sends them to us.”

Brush Out Your Brows

Anastasia Beverly Hils Clear Brow Gel $22

When it comes to their dark blonde eyebrows, the twins brush them up and out for a fuller look. To keep their fluffed brows in place, they rely on a surprising tool that you already own, sitting right by your bathroom sink.“First, you need a flat toothbrush,” explains Ashley to Byrdie. “It’s bigger than a brow brush, so it works better, then we just use Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel ($22).”

Use Hair Oil

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Lauren Hutton in 1970.

While the Olsen Twins may be my beauty inspiration, they have a notable actress and model as their own. “We were just talking about Lauren Hutton and how she’s such a woman in every single sense of the word,” Mary-Kate told Elle. "She's known for her beauty but not because of how she looks, but because of who she is and what she stands for. She’s a more natural beauty who’s both approachable and relatable.”

To care for their long, flowing locks, the Olsen twins' trusted hair stylist, Mark Townsend, swears by hair oils (and was even kind enough to share his favorites). "There are so many uses for oils: conditioners, styling products, heat protectants," Townsend told Refinery29.

And their biggest hair regrets? “Extensions,” Mary-Kate told Allure. "I woke up one day and I said, ‘You know, I don’t want to wear a bikini top this summer, so I guess I’ll get hair that covers my breasts.’ And it did!” Ashley regrets the time she went brunette: “It just really wasn’t great!”

Avoid Picking Your Skin


The Olsens in New York in 2010.

When it comes to bad habits, Ashley steers clear from irritating her skin— even if it means getting ready for her day in the dark (now that's commitment, folks). “I don’t do this myself, but I feel like the worst beauty habit that people have is when they pick their own skin,” Ashley told Elle. “That’s just really bad. Everyone’s tempted to do it sometimes, but it’s just the worst thing you can do. I prefer to get ready with the lights off so I’m never even tempted to look at my skin!”

Find the Right Skincare

John Salangsang/

The Olsens in L.A. in 2015.

For their go-to skincare routine, each sister has a trusted brand.“I’m more of a skincare junkie. I do Biologique Recherche—it's facials and things like that,” Ashley told Allure. “I’ve been using Sanitas,” says Mary-Kate. 

Spritz on a Signature Scent

David X Prutting/

The Olsens in New York in 2014.

When it comes to scents, the twins wear their own from one of their successful fashion brands, Elizabeth and James. In a fun twist, they've created twin fragrances, both called Nirvana, with different notes that make them each unique. In the original pair, Nirvana Black blends sandalwood and vanilla, while Nirvana White uses peony and musk for a light floral scent. “They’re both sensual in different ways," Mary Kate told Byrdie. "We want to give women options.”

Lucky for us, they've added even more options and created 2 additional pairs of scents: Bourbon and Rose, and French Grey and Amethyst.

Nirvana White
Elizabeth and James Nirvana White $68

From their signature style to their balance of modern and timeless aesthetics, it's easy to see how these beauty gurus are truly one-of-a-kind (or, for the sake of accuracy, make that two).

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