Storm Reid

Storm Reid Wants to Reimagine What the World, Beauty, and Hollywood Looks Like

Plus, she tells us about the beauty advice her mom passed down.

When we watch a child star grow up in the limelight, we tend to develop a deeper connection with them. We’re able to watch their evolution in real-time, witnessing their remarkable growth through adolescence and beyond. Storm Reid is one actress who has been on a meteoric rise in Hollywood since her elementary years. Many of us came to know Reid when she made her big-screen debut in the 2013 film 12 Years a Slave. At the time of its release, she was just ten years old. Reid is now a few months shy of her 18th birthday and has a lot more personal and professional experience under her belt. Within nearly a decade, the Georgia-born actress has starred in films like A Wrinkle in Time, appeared in hit series including Euphoria, and executive-produced programs such as her new Facebook show Chop It Up. Having made such significant moves in the industry already, it's thrilling to know that she is only getting started. 

Recently, Reid was named Maybelline's newest global spokesmodel. Her appointment is another testament to the young actress's star power and dynamic position as a trailblazer in Hollywood. When I signed on to a Zoom call with Reid, she greeted me with the warm smile and infectious, down-to-earth energy that she's become known for. During our chat, she opened up about the cultural impact of her partnership with the beauty brand, entering into young adulthood, and the importance of remaining true to yourself in Hollywood. As the cliché adage goes, she's wise beyond her years. Ahead, find Reid's thoughts on it all. 

How have you been doing during the pandemic? You've experienced so much change during this time, like graduating from high school and beginning a new chapter of young adulthood. 

I've been doing good. There were days where I wasn't doing good at all. I think we all had those moments. We are living in a world that is not normal and not what we're used to. I think that [2020] was hard because there were so many just adjustments. And thankfully, I was able to continue to work. So, I wasn't concerned there. But as you said, I had a graduation, and I couldn't walk across the stage. I had family come out here, but it was different. Everything was different. Everything has been a learning curve, especially in trying to get used to staying in the house. It's just all weird. But I'm hopeful. It feels as though the world is starting to get back to a normal place, so that makes me happy. How are you?

I'm doing good. Like you, I've experienced so many different feelings during the pandemic. Then, I graduated from college at the end of 2020. So I've also been adjusting to this new phase of my life. 

I know what you mean. It's a beautiful phase to step into. Everybody was saying, "Oh my gosh, I feel so bad for high school kids." I was like, "No, imagine the people who are graduating from college who have put so much time and effort in." That's a big moment to be able to walk across that stage and get that degree. The fact that so many humans didn't get to do that is heartbreaking. 

Storm Reid

Byrdie / Storm Reid

Let's talk about you becoming the new global spokesperson for Maybelline. Congrats! What is it about the brand's philosophy on beauty that made you want to partner with them?

Maybelline has been a brand that has been in my household since I was little. My mom doesn't wear a lot of makeup, but her staples are a good lip gloss and mascara. She always used Maybelline mascara, so I was familiar with their products. But when I started having conversations with the Maybelline team, I quickly realized that I would be nurtured, respected, and cared for if I had the opportunity to be a part of their brand. I think it's really exciting to be a part of this reemergence of what the world looks like, what the beauty space looks like, and what the entertainment industry looks like in terms of being more inclusive and diverse. It's not just a trend or a fad. It's important, and it's here to stay. So to become the new global spokesperson and be able to walk into a CVS or a convenience store that is near me and see a young Black girl representing so many other young girls is a surreal feeling. It's a blessing.

I completely agree. I think it's so powerful when we're able to walk into these spaces and see people who look like us. In terms of your beauty routine, what are some Maybelline products you've frequently been using during the pandemic?

I've been wearing makeup through the pandemic when I have to work, but I don't usually wear makeup when I'm just around the house. But I am my mama's daughter, and I am a big lip gloss fiend. Maybelline's new lip glosses are super great. They're moisturizing, and they're just perfect. I've been trying to get my eyebrows sort of tamed and together when I can because I have eyebrow envy of my peers and my friends. So, the Maybelline eyebrow pencils are great as well.

You mentioned your mom has always been a Maybelline fan, and she's really into lip products. Has she passed down any beauty lessons or tips with you?

I think she has implemented so many amazing things in my life regarding beauty, whether it's advice or products. But when it comes to beauty advice, she's taught me that it doesn't really matter what's on the outside. She raised us to be as beautiful as possible on the inside and to be good humans. I feel like that does radiate into your outward appearance. Relating to lips, I remember I had a dance recital or something, and I had red lipstick on. I got home and took a shower, and I didn't know how to take it off. Many people know this trick, but you can get lipstick off with Vasoline, which I had no idea about. So, I just thought my mom was a revolutionary and the smartest person in the world when she told me to do that because I didn't know about it.

Before I discovered makeup wipes, that was my go-to trick in high school. So, I would be remiss if I did not talk to you about hair because you are always wearing stunning protective styles. What are some of your go-to products when your hair is in braids?

That's a really good question because it is hard when you have a protective style. You think like you don't have to deal with your hair. Sometimes you just do a little bit of baby hair, and you call it a day. But you still have to take care of your hair and keep it moisturized while it is braided up. So, I use Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla Leave-in Conditioner Spray ($11). It smells so good. It leaves my hair nice and soft, and moisturized. I use it when I have braids but also when I do a wash day and have to detangle my hair. My curls are popping, and I don't have any tangles. It's a great product.

I would love to talk about your skincare routine as well. What are some of the products you like to use on your skin?

I'm a person who sees something on TikTok or Instagram and wants to try it. But I have sensitive skin, so that's not the smartest move. I went through a phase where I would try different face masks and stuff, and then I would break out. So, I have a pretty simple routine. I'm adding different serums and moisturizers now just because the weather's changing. It's getting hot, so my skin is getting dry. But I usually just use CeraVe's Foaming Facial Cleanser ($16) and their moisturizer. And then I use Retrouvé. My mom uses it. They have a really good moisturizer.

Storm Reid

Byrdie / Storm Reid

I'm sure you've gotten to work with some incredible hair and makeup pros throughout your career. Have they taught you any beauty tips? 

I've been blessed to work with some amazing hair and makeup people. But on A Wrinkle in Time, the head of the hair department was Miss Kim Kimble. Our makeup head was Miss Lalette Littlejohn. I was 13 at the time, and they both taught me the importance of taking care of my hair and skin and not overcomplicating my routines. They also made sure that I felt comfortable voicing how I feel about what my hair and makeup looks like on set. Even though I didn't have any intricate looks in the film, I was able to take that advice to my other sets and find the confidence to say, "Hey, I don't think I like this. I don't think this fits my character." So, they helped me personally and in a career aspect to be able to go on different sets and voice how I feel in the makeup trailer.

That's beautiful. I love that they empowered you in that way. These days, where do you find beauty inspiration?

On social media. We live in the age of social media. My explore page is full of braids and nails. Because when I'm bored. I'll look at a hair page or a nail page. I think that's what's so beautiful about social media because you can find inspiration in so many different aspects of life. On TikTok, I follow this one young lady who does these intricate crazy eye looks. First of all, they are so cool. And second of all, she is so talented. So, I love using social media to uplift and empower people, but I'm also able to get new ideas to show my makeup artist or hair person, which is fun.

You talked about working during the pandemic. One of the projects that you recently launched is your web series "Chop It Up." What has it been like to executive produce a show during the pandemic?

It was challenging. Producing itself is hard. Then, doing it while the world is shut down and you have to follow the COVID regulations was a little wild. But I'm just grateful for that opportunity. As a company, we are grateful to showcase what Gen Z is really thinking and feeling to the world. I don't look at it as a cooking show. I just look at it as a conversation series by way of cooking. To sit down with my homies, get their perspective on things, and produce something is amazing. Thankfully, Facebook was a great champion of the show. We're doing some bigger-scale producing, and there are some things that we're working on, so it's fun.

Storm Reid

Byrdie / Storm Reid

Do you have any advice for other Gen Zers who want to break into the industry and pursue their creative passions? 

I think this advice goes for any person, whether you want to get into the entertainment industry or the creative space as a whole. It's just about being yourself. I know; it's easier said than done. But being unapologetically yourself in all spaces—especially in the entertainment industry—is very important because you don't lose sight of what you want. You don't try to conform to what society, Hollywood, or anybody else wants. You're able to know what you want, have a goal, and go after it. And of course, there's the advice of, you have to work hard, practice, and study your craft. You have to try to cultivate relationships and do your research on certain things. But I think above all else, you must stay true to what your goal is and what you want as a human and don't get lost in the sauce. Even though this is real life, and I'm so grateful for everything that I've been able to do and will hopefully continue to do, I think people have a one-sided view of what the entertainment industry is. It is hard work and challenging. There are more nos than yeses. Being cognizant of that and what you want to achieve is the most important thing.

I know being able to stay connected with your friends through your show has probably helped boost your mood during this last year. But what have been some of your other self-care practices lately?

I think I've defined what self-care was for me in 2020. Before 2020, I was being pulled in so many different directions. I was always traveling, and I was always working. So I never really had the time to say, "Storm, Are you good? Do you need to rest? Do you need to take a nap? What do you want to do?" 

So, I had a lot of time on my hands to be stationary and do just that. My self-care routine changes—whether that's a nap, doing a face mask, watching a movie with my mom and my sister, hanging out with friends, or just being in my room listening to music and not answering my phone. It's ever-changing for me. 

Being in tune with what your mind, body, and spirit need at the moment is what it's all about. What are you looking forward to in 2021? 

I'm just looking forward to our global community hopefully being a little safer and returning to more normalcy like traveling and being outside. I'm excited about that. I'm also excited about the producing project that we have, the projects that I am considering being a part of, and the amazing things that Maybelline and I will do during the rest of this year. I also turn 18 this year, so I'm excited about being a teenager, growing up, and moving into new spaces in my life. 

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