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EXCLUSIVE: Alicia Keys Goes Back to Color

Keys will debut her new color-skin care hybrid launches at the Met Gala.

After several years makeup-free, Alicia Keys is returning to color cosmetics.

Keys’ brand in partnership with E.l.f. Beauty, Keys Soulcare, is launching its first collection of color – skin care hybrid products. Keys will unveil the assortment, which is said to deliver light, buildable coverage, by wearing them to the Met Gala on Monday. They include a lip balm, cheek tints and brow gel, and prices range from $15 to $22.

The brand always aimed to take on new categories beyond home fragrance and skin care, but the new collection, called Color Care, also marks Keys’ evolving attitude toward the category. “I was taking on these tremendously oppressive beauty standards that I thought somehow applied to me in regards to being perfect, and I obviously rebelled against that,” Keys told WWD, in reference to her previous disavowals of makeup. “I found my way around to the fact that I get to create my beauty standard, I get to choose what is beauty to me, and how I want to express that.”

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Keys is no stranger to doing beauty her way, going as far as inventing a new lexicon around her brand. Keys Soulcare products are called “offerings,” and influencers are called “lightworkers.” Each new stock keeping unit comes with its own mantras, “I choose my own path” being the one for the cheek tints.

“Our mission is really to translate Alicia’s vision with no limits, and that’s the core DNA of the brand,” said Kory Marchisotto, president of Keys Soulcare and chief marketing officer of E.l.f. Beauty. “Now is always a good time to create your own beauty standards, and that’s really what we’re doing with Keys Color. It’s a combination of moments that have led us here.”

Beyond versatility, the collection touches on key trends in beauty, such as the blurring lines between skin care and makeup. Keys Soulcare’s first entrée to the space, the illuminating serum, has already achieved TikTok virality. “It was the perfect entry to color because a primer really is a bridge between skin care and makeup,” Marchisotto said. “You have the nourishment of these skin care ingredients, and also the color and pigment that allows you to have fun. It’s about choosing this lightweight and fresh-faced look, or building it up for full wattage.”

It’s also the right time to be launching in color. As WWD reported, data from the NPD Group showed the category’s sales grew 22 percent in the first quarter of 2022, making it the largest category in prestige beauty.

While the cosmetics brand she will wear at the Met Gala is now known, Keys didn’t divulge much else about her look beyond saying, “I’m going with Ralph Lauren and I am so excited about what we’re creating.”


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