Violette: From Paris to the World

5 years ago by

Violette is going to tell us her story and you’re going to love it. I know I did. How did this young, beautiful and stylish Parisian land the title of Global Beauty Director of Estée Lauder with no connections, no mentors and a job she learned on her own? She’s just street smart, honest and completely passionate about what she does.

I’ll keep this intro short because I know you’re going to get hooked on Violette the second you hear her beautiful French accent. So, thank you Violette and thank you so much Estée Lauder for making this podcast happen.

[podcast_episode episode=”259555″ ]

pardon my french violette


On having pride in her work…
I was always very hard on myself. I think it’s amazing because now I have no ego in my work. I have pride and I have a good opinion of myself and am confident, but no ego. I’m the first one on set to say this makeup is terrible and let me get rid of it and do something else.

On what shocked her about the makeup industry…
One thing that really shocked me was you couldn’t be pretty or stylish because you’re the makeup artist. You’re not the stylist or the model and I never understood that. I’d hear indirect comments. I wasn’t that dressed up. I had jeans, a tshirt, lipstick on, a hat and my suitcase was very nice and my nails were always done. I wasn’t fancy, I just took care of myself.

On the importance of having people who support you…
You need to have someone who believes in you. It’s hard sometimes to have a good vision of yourself all the time, so if you have someone and you can see this through their eyes, it’s very helpful.

On how she got onto Instagram…
It was very late in my career. I did editorial work for years and the one who put me on Instagram was Emily Weiss. She grabbed my phone and said, “Ok, you need to be on this new thing, it’s a new app.” And I thought what? Instagram? Does it calculate your weight or something? But Emily is the one who found my name on Instagram, @Violette_fr. And then it became my thing and it’s funny that she really put this out there for me!

pardon my french violette

On meeting Carine Roitfeld…
I was very nervous and I didn’t know how to dress. Should I be myself? I went full on myself. I wore a very high, red pencil skirt, tshirt and intense red, matte lipstick. I thought, this is who I am, fuck it! So, I went there, and I opened the door and I remember it was a very minimalist office. She looks at me, doesn’t say anything, looks at my outfit and says, “Is that a Balenciaga skirt?” And I said yes and she said, “Ok, so you’re a Vogue girl!”

On the opportunity Carine gave her…
She said, “I kind of know who you are, but I need to see it. You’re going to do a few stories for me, like you’re working at Vogue as an art director. We’re not going to publish it, but just as a test for me to see. I want you to choose models, photographers, everything. I want to see who you are. Come back to me when you’re done.” I took her opportunity like life and death.

On her start on YouTube…
YouTube came around from a weird reaction I had about a year ago. I woke up one morning and I always scroll down Instagram when I wake up, after my meditations and I was seeing all these tutorials and I thought, damn, I don’t relate to any of them. I am sure there are other women like me who don’t relate to all the contouring and all the makeup. It’s so pretty seeing a woman do her makeup, maybe there is something poetic about it. So Fabian, who you met today, was in New York with his friend, and I asked them to film me doing my makeup in the car. They said they couldn’t because the lighting would be terrible and I said I don’t care because it’s real life.


pardon my french violette

On her priorities…
My priority is to be happy. For me, being happy is to be in peace and enjoying what I do, being where I want to be and having pleasure. If I have no pleasure in what I do, I’ll do something else.

On French beauty…
I try to share this a lot. In France we learn how to take care of what we have, what Mother Nature gave us. We don’t do blow dryers or crazy hair, but we’ll do an incredible conditioner and hair masks. We won’t do tons of treatments and filler but we will do a wonderful facial every week and eat healthy.

On working with Estée Lauder…
For me, it was never about signing with a brand I really care about. But the fact that this brand was created by a woman, in a time when it was impossible to create a business, and it is still one of the most powerful. After the election, I felt, like every woman here, the need to be supporting other women. So, for me to represent one of the biggest American brands, created by a woman, was so symbolic and so important, and was like, yes, let’s do this! I’m very proud about this!

pardon my french violette

Other things discussed…

Annelise Michelson
NY Pilates
Transcendental Meditation
École du Louvre

Special thanks to Estée Lauder and Violette for making this happen! You can learn more about their story together here!


Add yours
  • What an inspiration! Wonderful interview!


  • Thank you, Gemma! x Carie

  • Loved the interview! Small note, there are some patches of echo and overlay of sound during the recording, not sure if its just my phone. Hope that helps!

  • Thank you for your note, Saglara, much appreciated! x Carie

  • OMG I am OBSESSED with Violette and her YouTube channel. Seriously, she taught me to enjoy makeup… and this comes from a person who’s said “I hate putting on makeup every morning” for most of her adult life.

    Bravo Garance + Violette! Can’t wait to listen to this episode <3

  • I so look forward to listening to this podcast! I visited the Estée Lauder offices years ago as a writer for Harvard Business School. I was there to interview Jeanette Wagner, an executive there and she not only gave me a beautiful compact, which I have kept to this day, but also showed me Estée’s personal office, all done up in blue French toile.

  • What a cool story + keepsake, Judith! x Carie

  • Its back!!! Been missing pardon my french all summer. Cant wait to drive home later to listen

  • Love Violette_FR work especially on Youtube, it is so different and makes you want to do make up because her application is natural and not over done. Great interview

  • Thank you, mm! x Carie

  • So excited about this podcast!! I just started watching Violette on YouTube and find her videos so calming. She really does show the art and fun of makeup. I love her philosophy on makeup and beauty.

  • Totally agree with you, Laura! x Carie

  • I’m going to listen to this tomorrow on the commute! <3

  • Mercedes October, 2 2017, 2:35 / Reply

    Great interview. I love the way she carries herself, so much confidence in a very natural way. Very powerful. Excited to hear more from her!

    p.s.: yes, there is an eco and overlapping in some parts of the audio.
    Have a great week everybody!


  • Wonderful interview and inspiration! :)

  • finally! my two favorite french girls together. lots of love towards both of you. keep on inspiring!

  • Aparna Mujumdar October, 2 2017, 5:02 / Reply

    Wonderful Interview. I saw her videos on the Barneys website and she is so so relatable and down to earth. She also makes make up look so easy. The story and struggles are really inspiring. Kudos!

  • J´adore Violette aussi, elle est vraiment un souffle d´air frais pour la “beauty community”, mais j´ai un petit question pour toi Garance, c´est d´ou ta montre? ( Se ressemble a la montre d´Isabel Marant)

    Merci bien X

  • I’m looking forward to this. Violette just gets it <3

  • I fell in love with Violette after watching her YouTube videos. I love the way she does her makeup, it’s pretty much how I do mine (not to mention the way she films her videos). It’s a breath of fresh air in the sea of thick foundation, heavy contouring, Instagram makeup and ringlights.

  • cette fille est géniale! je suis admirative. et l’interview est top.

  • Rachel Joy October, 3 2017, 11:28 / Reply

    Waaaaa, I can’t tell you how excited I was when I first saw this post! Love, love love! And I truly hope you do Part 2 too! Love x

  • So inspirational! I enjoy listening to the interview.
    On a side note, I really like Garance’s gold earrings too! Who designed them?

  • Loved this! She is so warm and lovely and open.

    P.S. I also had the sound issues/echo but it’s didnt take away from the beautiful episode :) xx

  • I really loved Violette! She seems so down to earth, funny, easy going, smart and real. I didn’t feel/hear artifice in her voice whatsoever. What an awesome conversation. Congrats to her on her new position!!!

  • Jorge Alexandre Teixeira October, 4 2017, 2:56 / Reply

    Superinspirador , Atelier ! Obrigado!
    Talent , Hard Work with a little bit of luck and being at right place at the right time…Great Things can happen to you , for sure !

  • Violette, Jeanne Damas, Lou Doillon…surely there is more diversity of looks in France than this?

  • I really really really loved t his interview! Thanks for introducing Violette to some of us!

  • Thanx for sharing. Loved the story about getting there, there where your qualities feel just right. Just doing your thing.

  • Hello,
    First I have to say how Garance is such an inspiration for me! Working with her would be my dream come true and I always see her (and her team) work as an inspiration for what I’m doing in my own life. Thank you so much for being so important!
    Then, I had to comment this post because I adore Violette! I follow her on Youtube for a while now and… she is so fresh and natural! I’m so tired of Youtube beauty videos because they all look so fack and the girls wear SO MUCH make up. Violette is a girl like me! She wears very light make up and play with it in a very special and light way! She’s the beauty Youtuber that now I see the most because I totally relate to what she invisions!
    Kisses (from Portugal) for everyone!*
    P.S.: I sent my CV but… you didn’t want to work with me (sad face), but I still like you all!

  • Very great interview!
    Would love to know the name of the art school where she went to, when she was 3 y.o. I am looking for an art school for my kids and their program are usually from 6 or 8 y.o. minimum. Thanks :)

  • Alexis S October, 11 2017, 5:13 / Reply

    Enjoy Violette’s tutorials on Violet Grey. Great to see her here w/ Garance.
    xo from Los Angeles

  • Wow ! Thank you for this amazing interview ! This woman is so “fresh”, natural, spontaneous. She really brings a relaxing and light vibe to the fashion industry. I’m in love !
    That would be great if you could to another interview together.
    Lots of love xxx

  • love Violette sooooo much, watching her videos is pure joy, lots of love from China

  • Superbe interview, j’aime beaucoup la simplicité et la modestie de Violette.
    En revanche je trouve un peu agaçant, Garance, que vous la coupiez sans cesse pour raconter des anecdotes vous concernant.


  • Merci Garance pour cette merveilleuse rencontre, Violette est fraiche et libre ça s’entend.
    Garance peux tu nous dire d’où viennent tes ballerines ? elles sont tellement jolies.
    Merci :)

  • Great interview. I have been so inspired by Garance’s journey and the women she has interviewed that show us you can follow your own path to success. Thank you for that!

  • Loved her honesty and integrity.A woman finding her own way with courage and humility.She has a lot to teach I think,maybe for the future change of career!!

  • Where are her shoes from!!!(:

  • Stellar combination of French charm! Thank you for this interview. Does anyone know what was the name of the book Violette mentions? Thank you!

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